One of the most valuable lessons that I try to teach my children is that they are incredibly important members of our family. I want them to develop a deep sense of belonging and to know that they are loved.
Showing your children that they are valued is just one of the positive results that can come from displaying family photos in your home. Judy Weiser, a psychologist, art therapist and author based in Vancouver describes that “when a child sees a family portrait with them included in the photograph they say to themselves: “These people have me as a part of what they are, that’s why I belong here. This is where I come from.”
Even my 18-month-old gets in on the fun when she points to her photograph and says, “Me, baby,” or points to one of her Dad and squeals, “Dadaaa!” She is already seeing that she is surrounded by people who love her and seeing their faces in a photograph makes it even more apparent.
“Displaying photos prominently in the home sends the message that our family and those in it are important to one another, and we honor the memories we have experienced,” says Cathy Lander-Goldberng, a licensed clinical social worker and a professional photographer in St. Louis, Missouri and the director of Photo Explorations, which offers workshops to girls and women using portrait and journaling for self-reflection.
When children grow up in a home that values family portraits I hope the message that they receive is one that says, “You are loved, and you are important.”