Junaid Khan, son of Bollywood superstar Aamir Khan, has faced a media storm surrounding his debut film “Maharaj.” Despite the controversy, Junaid revealed that his father watched the film a few months ago and enjoyed it.

In an interview with ANI, Junaid discussed his relationship with his father. “He (Aamir) normally lets us do what we want to do unless we ask for something very specific; then he gives advice. But he liked the film. Kuch mahino pehle dekhi thi unhone film aur unko kaafi pasand aayi (He saw the film a few months ago and he liked it).” He added, “He normally tends to give very good advice but otherwise, he doesn’t get involved in… he lets his kids be.”

Letting go can be hard, especially when it comes to our children. But as they transition into adulthood, giving them space becomes crucial for fostering a healthy and lasting relationship. Dr Mazher Ali, Consultant Psychiatrist at CARE Hospitals, Banjara Hills, Hyderabad, explains why respecting your adult children’s autonomy is key to building a strong and supportive bond.

Junaid Khan in Maharaj Junaid Khan in a still from Maharaj.

The importance of space: A recipe for growth

There are several compelling reasons why giving your adult children space is crucial for a healthy relationship. It fosters their independence and self-reliance, said Dr Ali.

Respecting their autonomy is another key factor. Your adult children are individuals with their own paths to navigate. Acknowledging their maturity by respecting their choices, values, and goals fosters mutual respect within the parent-child bond.

Festive offer

However, failing to give your adult children space can have detrimental effects, according to Dr. Ali. Constant interference and a lack of space can breed resentment, leading to strained relationships and communication difficulties. Your child may feel suffocated or controlled, causing tension. Over-involvement can also lead to a decrease in open communication. Fearing unsolicited advice or criticism, your adult child might become hesitant to share details of their life.

Finally, if your child feels their autonomy is not respected, they may create emotional distance as a way to protect themselves, weakening the bond between you.

Building strong foundations: Tips for a thriving bond

By implementing these strategies, you can nurture a healthy and supportive relationship with your adult children:

Open and Honest Communication: Encourage open dialogue and active listening. Create a safe space for your adult child to share their thoughts and feelings without fear of judgment.

Respecting Choices: Respect their decisions, even if they differ from your own. Offer advice only when requested, and avoid criticism or controlling behavior.

Healthy Boundaries: Establish clear boundaries that ensure both you and your child have your own space and privacy. This fosters mutual respect and prevents overstepping.

Supportive, Not Intrusive: Be there for your child and offer support, but avoid being intrusive. Show interest in their lives, but avoid micromanaging their choices.

Maintain Your Own Identity: Engage in your own hobbies and interests. This allows you to maintain a balanced life and reduces the likelihood of over-focusing on your children’s lives.

Celebration of Achievements: Acknowledge and celebrate their accomplishments. Showing pride in their successes strengthens your bond and fosters a sense of your unwavering support.

The Power of Listening: Sometimes, all your child needs is a listening ear. Practice active listening and show empathy towards their experiences and emotions.

Unconditional Love: Let your adult child know that your love and support are unconditional, no matter what. This unwavering sense of security strengthens the bond and fosters a lasting connection.

By understanding the importance of space and implementing these tips, you can transform your relationship with your adult children into a supportive and trusting partnership as they navigate their lives as independent individuals.