Bathtime. The mere mention of it makes most parents groan. While baths were once relaxing, the arrival of your little one has turned them into trauma. Instead of relating your bath with bubbles and comfort, it now looks like a struggle. We’ve all been there. Wash day for your little one comes around, and they turn into a beast. Worse, they are a beast that will do anything to stay out of the water. You do everything possible to get them clean, but they fight you the whole way. In fact, they develop a sixth sense, As soon as the bathwater starts running, so do they. The goods news is, there are ways to make the job easier. All you need to do is take these easy steps.
TREAT NOT PUNISHMENT
To start with, change the way you speak about baths. Because the trauma feels like a punishment, we get into the habit of treating it like one. The way we approach the subject of bathing does us no favours. Children are perceptive, and your child will pick up on your reluctance. If you go in all guns blazing, they’ll start seeing bathtime as a punishment. Instead, ensure you treat it like a treat. That way, your child won’t be so reluctant. Small things, like changing your language, will make all the difference. Speak to your child before you grab them. Say things like. ‘Aren’t you lucky, it’s bath day today.’ You may not feel positive, but it’s important you act it! A lot of the time, we’re the ones that make the bath seem daunting.
Never underestimate the power of toys. Kids love to play, so incorporate that into bathtime. The treat theory will work better if your child has fun in the bath. Stock up on rubber ducks, waterproof action figures, and even bath safe crayons! Keep these hidden and only get them out when it’s bathtime. That way, your child will look forward to playing with them even more. Bribery isn’t always the right way to go, but it can’t hurt if it gets them to wash.
MAKE IT PLEASANT
If you scrub and pull, it’s no wonder your child doesn’t enjoy baths. Instead, make the process as pleasant as possible. Spend time playing with your child before you get down to cleaning them. Run the bath ready, so that the bathroom is warm for your kid. No one likes undressing in a cold room! It’s also worth investing in a towel rail with heating. That way, getting out will be a treat too. No horrible dashes in the cold for your little one!
LEAD BY EXAMPLE
Your child looks to you for ideas about how to act. If they see you enjoying your baths, they’re more likely to enjoy their own. Leave the bathroom door open while you have a bath, and let your child see you. Explain how much you enjoy bathing, too. Make them jealous that you’re having a soak and not them!