Religion is a complicated topic, controversial to some, and it can be difficult for parents and others to address. Answering a child’s questions to the best of your ability, while making them comfortable, is the best solution. Consider your own beliefs, and those of others, when talking to children about religion.
- Come to an agreement together, as parents, regarding this decision as to how religion will be pursued in the family. This ideally should be done before the baby is born.
- Speak with your families regarding your decision and ask that they abide by your rules. This can be difficult should you have very observant families, if you choose to proceed differently from the path they follow. Sometimes a firm hand must be used for the spiritual well-being of your child.
- Ask the child questions too, making the conversation interactive. Make sure you’re explaining things at their level, and not talking “above” them. Using words like, “Does that make sense?” and “Do you have more questions about that?” can be helpful. It makes the child feel confident questioning the world around them.
- Do extensive researches on any child care facility before allowing your child to attend. Be sure that your religious wishes will not be interfered with.
- Let your child know about the decision you’ve made regarding spiritual life and let your child know, too, that you are open to religious discussion and different interpretations of religion.
- Answer any and all questions in an age appropriate manner.
- Preface your comments with “Well, some people believe”. This will help you to avoid swaying your children to any one religion.
- Go to your local library and pick up a few books on the topic. If your child is a reader, let he or she read to learn more, coming back to you with questions. Or, read the books together.