The relationship between an uncle and his niece is a very special one. Especially if it is an unmarried or childless uncle. It affords the uncle some quality time with the young lady in his life without the need for competition from his own children. It is also an opportunity to do things and go places that maybe are not options for the parents – who are typically a little more conservative in their approach to the daughter. But how do you build this relationship? It needs to start when the niece is young, and the truth is, if you get things right at an early stage, you can build a quality relationship that lasts a lifetime. Here are some tips to help you be the uncle that every little girl wants to have.
Everybody likes a gift and it is a great way to build rapport with the young lady. Put genuine thought into what you are going to buy her. There are plenty of stylish baby gifts available that are a good value for money, and which will thrill and delight a young person. It is not about how much you spend, rather it is about the level of thought and intention that goes into picking the present. Don’t hold back on that – if she is always looking forward to her gift from you then in turn, she is always looking forward to seeing you.
Be prepared to make time for her and make sure that when you are together, and you are interacting with her that she feels as though she is the most important person in your world. It doesn’t matter what else is going on – be it work issues, sports scores or Tinder meetings – when you are with her focus on her. And don’t make excuses for having to run off or leave. Remember this is an investment and a relationship that is going to last a lifetime which you are building. If she feels like second best to your phone or to anything else, it sends a bad message. Invest completely. Frankly, this is advice that should be applied to any relationship in which you are investing.
Engage at their level
It is very easy to engage with a child on your level, it might work for you, but it certainly doesn’t work for the child. You need to hear their stories, listen to the things that are important to them and buy into their imaginations. And it is not just about being mentally on their level, get physically low as well. Get down on the floor so you can make eye-contact at baby’s level. It makes a big difference in how interactions take place. In short, you are treating them as an equal. They will still respect your authority as an adult, that is not going to change, but they will also feel safer with you and more open to engaging positively and constructively. The special bond will immediately start to grow.