Rebellious Children

All children rebel and some rebel more than others. While it may be infuriating, try to view it as a sign that your child is developing their sense of self and their independent side. This might be tricky!

Rebellious ChildrenChoose your Battles

If your older child is determined to have a hairstyle you think is outrageous and go to a party you think will be too old for them, then saying no to both is likely to cause a lot of resentment. Instead, choose your battles and think about the repercussions. So, in this case, the hairstyle is likely to be a temporary expression of their individuality. In itself, this isn?t a bad thing. So perhaps saying yes to the hairstyle and no to the party will feel like a compromise for your child. Just hold onto the pictures of that hairstyle for when they bring home their first boyfriend or girlfriend!

For younger children, the same concept applies. So, they want to dig in the garden wearing nothing but their pants? Instead of forbidding this, choose your battles ? yes, you may dig in the garden, but you are going to have to wear clothes. If they refuse the compromise, they get neither. They will soon learn to compromise or lose out.

Stay Calm

Dealing with rebellion calmly can be incredibly powerful. Sometimes, your child is simply testing your boundaries, seeing how far they can push you. By staying calm, you show them that it isn?t working and that they would probably be better engaging with you in a different way. Give them another option ? sitting down and discussing the issue calmly.

Combat Rebellion with Responsibility

Each time your child rebels, they are trying to assert their independence. For older children especially, a great way to counter rebellious activity is to agree that your child is independent. Agree that they need some freedom and decide together on the freedoms they are to be allowed. Explain that freedom needs to be earned, and that if they want the freedom they have to prove they are responsible enough to deserve it. This could mean expecting an improvement in behaviour, or it could mean taking on a new chore. If your child is truly ready for the extra freedom they will step up and earn it, and if not thy will be glad to avoid the extra responsibilities and the rebellion should stop.

When Compromise Isn?t the Answer

Some rebellious behaviour needs to be immediately stopped. Make the punishment fit the crime when it comes to disciplining your child so they can see that what they have done has consequences. So if they are constantly refusing to do what they are told, stop asking them to do things and remove all luxuries, rewards and privileges. Let them work out for themselves that their actions have consequences and be quick to reward good behaviour so they know that it works both ways!

Rebellious behaviour will become worse if you try to stamp it out without understanding the cause, so listen to your child and discuss why it is happening.

Author: Arlene Copeland

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