Teaching kids to deal with disappointment

pristine writing diary

It’s summer vacation for kids here in the UAE and my daughter is home for at least the next 8 long weeks. Dubai is so hot in the summer that outdoor life just won’t have a place in our daily itinerary. No chance of outdoor life while the sun is up (but even then it is still hot at nearly 40C in the evenings) means very limited activities for children in the summer.

No, we don’t have channels installed in our TV (but she can watch DVD’s). 

Pristine had been looking forward to do modelling again jut like last year, an annual program for Dubai Summer Surprises. It would be a great activity for her and it would kill 3 of those 8 weeks at home. Even if that is still an indoor activity, at least it would keep her busy. We registered and were selected for interview. There were more than 200 children vying for 24 spots (ONLY 12 boys and 12 girl models will be selected) so the competition is stiff.

Unfortunately, Pristine wasn’t selected to model this year, citing reason that she already had the chance last year, blah, blah, blah. Fine. I mean, that was fine for me…but what about for her? I know she’ll understand but man, she had been practicing this for a year!

However, I wasn’t too afraid to tell her the news, after all, she isn’t that kid who’ll throw tantrums or wail like there’s no tomorrow just because she didn’t get what she wanted. She knows that obviously, a child can’t go on throwing a fit or a tantrum when something doesn’t go her way. We have taught her that. She took the news gracefully though it doesn’t mean she wasn’t disappointed because she spent the next hour not talking and kept on writing and writing. As a parent, we want our children to sail through childhood free from disappointments, ever. But we all know that it isn’t possible and not a very good preparation when disappointments definitely come their way later in life.

Giving chances
I talked to my daughter calmly and told her the life is all about giving chances. When she got selected last year, it was because someone wasn’t accepted so she’ll have her chance. Now, it’s the other way around. She wasn’t accepted so someone can have the same experience she had. It would’ve been nice if all were given chances but sometimes there are limits. She was given the chance before, it was time to give back.

Parent’s acknowledgement
No matter big or small the disappointment is, we parents can help our children by letting them know that we are willing to be there to listen and help with the resolution. Lastly, as with many aspects of parenting, we parents are the mirrors of our children. Children learn to respond to disappointment by what they witness their parents doing so I try hard to keep hysterical reactions to a minimum. 🙂

How do you handle your kid’s disappointment?

9 thoughts on “Teaching kids to deal with disappointment

  1. nawa… ayna lagi na ipa model2 oi.. ma pressure nalng nuon nah… ipa dula nalng ng sports oi para mo daghn ya playmates. d jud na cya maka feel og disappointment unless ma pildi kung mag join ng tournament hehehe.

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  2. I am so sorry about prinstine that she can not do the model this year.
    but try to other event, there much event in dubai I think

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  3. hmmm. may be if I were in your shoes I would be the first one to not feel good, but I don’t think my kid wont mind that much. It’s a good thing that Pristine knows how to handle disappointment as well as her mom 🙂
    .-= Edez´s last blog ..Weekend Random =-.

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  4. Oh, it’s so hard to see your kids disappointed! This year, both of my boys tried out for the school football (soccer) team – my younger son was picked, the older one was not. My older son was so disappointed, he’d been practicing and practicing. And as a mom, it’s so hard to see them hurt like that; you want to protect them from everything.
    .-= Kelly´s last blog ..Shrek Costume for Babies =-.

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  5. Hello grace,

    This is the main reason why I would want my children (if they are old enough) to learn a sport and actively play it even through their adult life so they can learn very early on that life is not all about winning. There would be times they would lose- and it’s ok….

    Nice man ang summer grace- for fun activities like ballet lessons, or learning a musical instrument like piano. Danielle went to ballet school this summer. Gipa continue namo maski classes na (nursery na siya) because she just love to dance. Di ba pristine likes dancing? I think she would love it if she’ll dance this summer 🙂

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