How to keep a healthy relationship with your family

Good family relationships are an important part of strong families. Strong families grow from love, security, communication, connection – and a few rules and routines too.

Why family relationships are important-
Good family relationships are enjoyable for their own sake – it just feels good to be part of a warm and loving family.

But good family relationships are important for lots of other reasons too. They:

make children feel secure and loved, which helps their brains develop
can help to overcome difficulties with children’s eating, sleeping, learning and behaviour
make it easier for your family to solve problems and resolve conflict

Here are some ways you can make quality time happen in your family:

  • Use everyday time together to talk and share a laugh. For example, family meals and car travel can be great times to catch up on the day.
  • Have one-on-one chats with each family member to strengthen individual relationships. It can just be five minutes or more.
  • Set aside time with your partner, if you have one. It can be a good idea to explain to your children that it’s good for your relationship with your partner to have this quality time together.
  • Do regular, fun things together as a family.

Try these positive communication ideas to strengthen your family relationships:

  • When your child or partner wants to talk, stop what you’re doing and listen with full attention. Give people time to express their points of view or feelings. But sometimes you might have to respect their need not to talk – especially if they’re teenagers.
  • Be open to talking about difficult things – like admitting to mistakes – and all kinds of feelings, including anger, joy, frustration, fear and anxiety. 
  • Be ready for spontaneous conversations. For example, younger children often like to talk through their feelings when they’re in the bath or as they’re getting into bed.

Appreciation for each other and family relationships

  • Take an interest in each other’s lives. For example, make time to go to each other’s sporting events, drama performances, art shows and so on.
  • Include everyone in conversation when you’re talking about the day’s events. 
  • Share family stories and memories.




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