My 8-year-old daughter can be quite judgmental

Ask the Expert: My child is a perfectionist who can view others in a negative way

At eight years of age,  children are only beginning to learn the important skills of empathy and understanding the context for other people’s actions. Photograph: iStock

At eight years of age, children are only beginning to learn the important skills of empathy and understanding the context for other people’s actions. Photograph: iStock

Q: Have you any tips on how to deal with a child who sticks very much to the rules and can be quite judgmental? My daughter is eight years old and, at times, can judge others in a negative way. She doesn’t always say something negative but she has a “look” that other children definitely understand. She is a very “good” girl who is afraid of making mistakes and getting things wrong – a bit of a perfectionist. The perfectionism don’t bother me so much as the perception I have that she can see herself better than others. Have you any advice on how to deal with this?

A: As parents it is important to help children to be non-judgmental and empathic of others and not just because this is an important moral value, but also because of the benefits to children themselves.

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