It feels good to be back again, Alhamdulillah! and yes this topic is the very first point i’ll be writing about under Guidelines for intellectual and social upbringing. So, I will be sharing with you the stand of expressing love to your children in the sunnah and 6 practical ways to implement that love.
Kindness and showing love towards children was one of the Prophet’s (sallallahu Alaihiwasallam) special characteristics, and it has been reported in many hadiths how affectionate he was towards children, which i would be quoting few:
Abu Qatadah said: “The Prophet (sallallahu Alaihiwasallam) came in and Umamah Bint Aby Al-‘Aas is on his shoulders, whenever he bows he puts her down and whenever he rises he picks her up.” [Reported by Al-Bukhari 5996]
And when Rasulullah sallallahu Alaihiwasallam hears a child crying while he’s praying he would lighten his prayer so the mother could finish prayer and carry him, see what he needs so he would stop crying. He said: “I rise up to pray, with the intention to elongate my prayer, thereupon I hear the cry of a child which makes me shorten my prayer disliking to make it hard on his/her mother.” [Reported by Al-Bukhari 868]
Anas ibn malik(RA) narrates while describing the love of the prophet for children. He said: “I have not seen anyone who was more merciful towards his family and children than Rasulullah sallallahu Alaihiwasallam.
And there are just so many other hadiths about his love for children, he would say salam to them, always play with them, he talks to them even though some people see children as less important people, he gave them respect, and situation recurred where children would urinate over his clothes and that too because of his love for children he carries them a lot , he was patient with them and always understand them. Subhanallah! This was the best of all creatures, so who are we not to be compassionate towards children?
Children can not comprehend matters like rights, duties, principles, foundations, morals and meaning of things,they understand all these things step by step through their life time. And you would be making a great mistake if you treat children the same way you treat adults who already know the principles and rules. That’s why we find a lot of people(not just parents) mistreating children, beating them, waiting for them to be quiet, rational, matured and dignified which is not possible.
Love your children, and be with them through their life time as they get to understand all of these things gradually, because When you love your children and go extra mile to give them the best upbringing, Allah makes things easier for you. And also we need to understand that bringing up a child is a great ibadah, with which we should never look down, question or judge others base on how they choose to bring up their children, if you don’t like it just pray for them.
6 practical ways to Express that love to your children:
- Calling them beautiful names: Now, am not talking about the main naming process, because obviously you should have chosen a beautiful name for your children according to the shariah, so am talking about calling them with beautiful sweet names. For example Luqman and prophet yaqub(AS) would say Ya bunayyah (My dear son) when talking to their sons, and even Rasulullah sallallahu Alaihiwasallam gave Nana Aisha(RA) the name Humairah . Do this with your kids, they’ll love it, it makes them feel really important, and you get their attention easily. Get them used to it.
- Welcoming them: There are three most important times that when you’re there for them they feel the love: As soon as they wake up from sleep, When they come home from school, and right before going to bed. These are times you need to be there for them, try not to scold them within these times, i know It’s challenging but try keeping calm, just control it. And Yes! if you can’t be there during these times, then be there for them at least once.
- Physical Touch: Yes, am talking about the hug and the kisses, they are just so many ways you could have those physical touch with your child and this touch has lots of benefits. it leads to cognitive and emotional development of your child as those touch triggers the release of certain neuron transmitters which soothes the child’s system and lower the child’s level of cortisol (a stress hormone). It also signals safety to the child’s brain, and you as a mother it makes you become less anxious.
- Words of affirmation: This is you telling your child you love them, saying thank you to them, Making Du’a and appreciating them for achieving something good.. it sort of gives them that motivation to move on, knowing you’re always there to appreciate them.
- Give Timely Gifts: This isn’t a way to spoil them or make them get used to receiving gifts, you need to learn to do this in a strategic way, but give gifts to appreciate them.
- Acts of services: Going out of your way to do things for them physically.
And that’s it. I do hope you find this beneficial, feel free to drop your questions in the comment box if theres anything you’re not clear about. Jazakumullah khairan.