Kids may vary, but NO is NO.


Feb 10, 2000




"You can't play with that. Put it down" "Susie, Put it down now" "Honey, you really need to put it down, it could break" "honey, if you don't put it down, you might break it and that would make mommy sad" "Honey, you don't want to make mommy sad do you? Please put it down"

ARGH!!!!!!!
I want to scream when I hear this from a mom. Some children will listen after "Honey.. put that down please". Others, it feels like you must scream just to get their attention. I realize these differences exist, But if children don't obey, sometimes the parent gets WEAKER rather than stronger and this only sets the parent up for MORE difficulties later on. I have heard myself do this type of thing on occasion and it only backfired later. I think the only reason it happened to me is Lazyness. I didn't want to get up and make them put it down/come/stop doing it/start doing it.

If I didn't make them obey, I set myself up for them to EXPECT that I wouldn't enforce the rules later. I let them think that whining would improve their case and only made it harder on myself.

Some examples of how I like to talk now (but don't always do it.. hey.. I have learning to do all the time) is:
"You need to put that down, it will break"(to announce the rule.)
"SUSIE! Put it down or I will make you put it down"(this gets attention in case they were in la la land before and gives the consequence of not listening)
(take it from the child) "THANK you. Next time, I will give you a time out for not listening right away"
If, at any point, the child listens(puts it down) before you actually take it away, Thank the child and if it wasn't after the first request, remind them that after you ask the first time is when you want them to put it down.

Actually getting up is worth it! You may need to add time outs if obedience is not getting quicker, but if it is, they will soon be under what I call "verbal control". For me, it wasn't until they were about 4 or 5 that this happened. But I don't want to be chasing a 5 year old around making them drop something. I want them to listen to me the first time. Establishing that I am the parent and I know best from the beginning is the best way I've found to do this.

Backtalking has similar issues involved and I have an Epinion about that as well.


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