How do you deal with a disrespectful child?
You've done your best to instill values of respect and kindness in your kids, but one day, it seems overnight, you wake up and your little angel is acting like a total jerk. How do you deal with unexpected rudeness and disrespect with your kids?
For me it was constant and I mean Constant follow-through. Punishment is WORK, a LOT of work. If you put them in time out (when they are little) and they get up, you MUST put them back, put them back, put them back, again and again. It is usually a battle of wills and if you allow them to take the upper hand, you've lost the battle and the war. If you take something away, you Must stick to it, Idle threats are a parents biggest mistake. If you say something will happen to them or they will lose something if their behavior does not changes you HAVE TO Stick to that threat. Follow Through is KEY, even with teenagers. I STOP talking to my daughter when she is rude, I don't speak a word to her, except in response to general hello, etc, very short and curt. I don't do laundry and I do not discuss daily day to day things. Then I CALMLY explain to her that I will NOT tolerate her disrespecting me, I will NOT tolerate being spoken to like her friends, i will NOT allow rude thoughtless behavior and if she wants me to respect ANYTHING About her life/lifestyle, things, clothes, food, than she better respect me. Respect is Earned, just like trust and if she wants me to be respectful and speak to her with love and interest, I Demand that from her. We have a fantastic relationship, she is 20 and we have almost NEVER argued, yes we disagree and I have my own opinions as does she, but no one is Rude in my house, ever!
"Say what you mean and mean what you say" my son knows when I say u will lose that toy if you don't pick it up. He knows when I say put your clothes in the laundry room or they don't get washed. He is 6! And I'm proud to say everyone who meets him comments on his prefect manners and thoughtfulness . He takes off his hat when he enters a room and when he sits at a table. He will remind others to do so. He knows if he puts it on side ways or backwards I WILL throw it away. (he knows because I have done it) YES I am one of those tough parents. BUT I want a functioning adult as he grows up. I am also that mom who hugs all the time , that says I love you lots. And I always praise when his bed is made in the morning. I'm the first to tell him when he has done a good thing and that im proud of him. I'm NOT his best friend or his babysitter , IM his mom, I tell him my job is to teach him to be able to make smart choices when I'm not there to decide for him! Children are not born with common sense, we teach it to them.
Some situations are more complicated than others. My children (ages 12 and 14) both have Asperger's Syndrome, a form of high functioning autism (like Max on Parenthood show). Sometimes my husband and I have to pick our battles, and only emphasize one thing at a time. For example, if they have to get on the school bus and are rude, I let the rudeness slide as getting on the bus is important (if I focus on the rudeness, a meltdown may occur with means two hours or more of inability to function, and you can forget getting on the bus). At other times, we focus on the rudeness. Rules that work for neurotypical children do NOT work much of the time on children with special needs. So the next time you see me or my counterpart dealing with a mouthy child in public, cut us some slack, give us the benefit of the doubt that we know what we are doing, and are not push-overs. Spare us the looks of contempt and indignation. A smile of understanding would be much appreciated.
I take all privileges away. Period. My sons want to be jerks, then I am a bitch.
At 14 and 17, they KNOW that if they are disrespectful, they will be treated with just as much disrespect as they treat me with. If that means that I am mean, then I am mean.
When they were little, a respectful attitude was instilled in them, and they never had a problem. A pop on the butt, or simply counting to 5 usually ended any disrespectful behavior. As they get older, and pushier, I deal on their level.
I will say this, though. Even in my oldest's son's most disrespectful outburst, he will deal with any other person than a family member with the utmost respect. So my battle is 1/2 over...
I do not agree that you treat disrespect by showing the child disrespect....as the 'teacher", the child needs to learn what respect is by seeing it and experiencing it. They need to be calmly taught that disrespectful behavior is not tolerated and there are consequences if they choose that behavior. The consequence depends on the age of the child and what works. That means they loose something meaningful and they earn it back by showing respectful behavior.
All of the postings have been fantastic so far, and the only thing i could add would be to lead by example. If you child sees you treating anyone - your spouse, your boss, the clerk at the grocery, or especially them - with disrespect, it sticks with them. Those times when you feel frustration or anger at a situation are exactly the same - in a different context - as their own, and if they see a parent have a "grown-up tantrum" they don't understand why they're punished for it. 'Do as I say, not as I do" is an old-school lesson parents used, and while it can seem to be an easy way out it only makes your job harder. Show them respectful behavior, and they will follow.
My 6 year old is negative all the time. I have taken to makeing her say 2 positive things about a person that she is being negative about. If its just negative behavior she goes to time out and has to come up with 3 positive ways to express herself.
It seems to me that the first thing we all need to do as parents is teach respect. That's where the consistancy begins. It is difficult to teach respect because it is so abstract. BUT, once you feel your child understands: putting toys away ( on their own), cleaning his/her room, using good language and manners, eye contact, making an effort to be a team player...yatta-yatta....this is where you can use respect as a fall back tool. When a child is disrespectful, it is always for a reason. Attention, jealousy, dominance. I know to a lot of you, it may seem cheesy and you are going to roll your eyes, but talking it out is the answer for me. When my child disrespects me, a toy, a friend, an adult....yes, there are consiquences, and to be honest, they are different every time...pertaining to the situation. I always have a conversation and make them "FEEL" why what they have done is unexceptable. Falling back on what respect means, reminds our kids to be kind, because it is a full circle effect. If we want our kids to be respectful, we have to be as well. Yes, we are in charge...but if we have done our job teaching respect....that's a given anyway. In a perfect world this would work everytime....but there is no harm in giving it a shot!!!
I see parents all the time barking orders at their children instead of saying please and thank you to them and then when the child mimics the parent back at them they are blind to the fact that the child is simply mirroring your behavior. I say to stop the moment it happens and ask them to tell you in a respectful way what has gotten them upset. I don't go for this taking their favorite thing or multiple important things away in place of finding out what caused the behavior in the first place. Showing that you care how they are feeling will earn a lot more long term respect than punishment. After all, aren't we supposed to be teaching and guiding them to better behavior by showing that we care how they feel too? Ultimately, they don't get what they wanted until they ask in a respectful way or if the problem started because they were asked to do something...they still have to do what was asked of them.
All the comments have good points, and, certainly, it is our job as parents to teach our children respect. The other thing we need to remember is to show respect...to your spouse, to your parents, etc. Children do learn by example. Be respectful of others in your peer group, and don't tolerate disrespect for anyone! When they hurt your feelings, let them know. Calm and quiet discussion usually works best with older teens.
the four "c's" Calm, Consistent,Collabrative,Consquences.
Calm- clear and calm manner-no matter how mad they have made you.
Consistent- stick to your plan. NEVER change your mind or go back on your word.
Collabrative- as parents discuss a team plan and never let the child play one parent against the other.
Consquences-in our household the child gets to discuss the consquence and choose what consquence they will have to suffer.
It works eventually but you have to be the brick wall that they will not be able to knock down.
When my kid is disrespectful I give him a warning then put his favorite toy on time out until he can apologize and 'turn things around.' He can have his toy back when he is respectful for a predetermined amount of time - like until dinner is over. He earns his toy back through respect.
We started putting his toys on time-out because he doesn't take time out seriously if he's already being disrespectful. It is too easy for him to get up and make a 'game of it.' He always takes his favorite toy being on time out seriously. That way we hold the power - which is important for us when trying to turn his behavior around.
God first .....family second.....job third.We as a nation have lost our own priority and rank of importance. Soooo, maybe these are our results.How about ALL of us pray and ask GOD how to turn things around.It seems it's an epidemic in our generation. Oh I forgot,we took God out of the picture...
Well we had a lovely incident last month with our 5yr old daughter. Hubby went out of town and when he does he sometimes brings her back a little something special. Well he went to a nice toy store and got her a beautiful puppet by the brand Folkmanis. If you have never heard of them I suggest you google them. These are beautiful puppets that are well loved in our house. So he decided to get her a hermit crab one because she likes hermit crabs and we have some fun memories about them. When he showed it to me when he got home I thought it was wonderful! And he really put some thought into it. Well he goes to give it to her and she is pissed right off. This is not what she was hoping for, this is not what she had expected. She doesnt like it and doesnt want it. Now I know she was up late cause she wanted to see Daddy when he got home. And was just generally "off" in her spirits that day. But I knew one day that this would happen. It happens with every kid ever. And I had decided that the day this happened that I would make her give that toy away. No way is she keeping it if she cant even be polite and say thank you in the moment and then we could talk about it later. I had always told her to say thank you no matter what. Always told her that she is lucky for the things she has. And we are a family that donates alot. And she also donates. So she knows all of this. Well I told her then she could not have it since she didnt want it anyway. And told her that the next day she could either take it to the public library and hand it over or take it to her Kindergarten class which has a puppet rack. Now knowing my daughter and the fact that she actually DID find the crab charming I knew that she would opt for the classroom. On the simple fact that she would want to still see it as well as play with it. So that is what she picked. And I never let her in on the fact that I would not be with her when she handed it over. So that morning I told her I was packing it in her bag, and that she would have to explain to her teacher why. She attends a french school so I explained what she would have to say. When her teacher asked her "Pourquoi? (why)" she would have to tell her that it was because she was not grateful for the gift. So double lesson there. She not only had to hand it over but if she chose to be selfish about it she would also have to explain to the woman who is her adored teacher that she had done wrong and was in trouble. Hope this helps. And I very much doubt my daughter will be so quick to be fussy in the future.
I model for them by speaking respectfully to them and to others.
Funny! Last I told my 17, 15, and 9 year to clean the kitchen (a normal task). Our 17 year looked at me with her head to the side and told me she already did it the day before. I pointed out all the areas that had not been taken care of for at least two days (items that had not been put away). She quickly screamed at me that the person that used them should have taken care of them (that PERSON was her father- who wasn't home). I looked at her and told her to go to her room and close her door. She did NOT want to do that, as I remained claim and simply repeated those directions the other two quickly started cleaning. She finally went in her room. The funny thing was after a half hour she "messaged" me on Facebook from her room to tell me she was "sorry". I reminded her that she KNEW she would NEVER talk like that to her father. She wanted to know what her punishment was "loss of her phone, ipod, laptop, etc", I told her, "nope, you are in your room, thinking, and we are done talking." My other two were pretty quite and THEY aplogized for not having it already taken care of. Funny how sometimes being calm, but swift and not wavering can have an impact. This morning, she got up and took care of all her chores (as my 9 year-old was please to report).
I usually try not to get angry back and I try to engage in conversation with my kids who are both much older teenagers. I will say...for instance...."You know better than to talk to me that way, why are you being so disrespectful? Is something going on that I should know about? Are you tired? Is something happening that we need to talk about?" I'm talking about 18 year olds...not little ones who normally would recieve a time out....its amazing how often just opening a discussion with my kids will bring out information about whats going on in their lives. They are usually introspective and apologize for their behaviour.
Everyone has their own way of dealing with children that are disrespectful...It also depends on the age of the child...The older child take away their privileges like cell phones and computers, going out with friends, etc...The younger child take away what they like the most...You need to get a firm hand on the situtation...Let them know that you are the parent and deserve their respect, but remember too they deserve yours...
Depends on the age. If a older teen. Breathe, set limits etc. and wait till he or she is about 25 and it will change. If a younger child. Read lots of books on child rearing and find a program that works or you. I go with choices and consequences. Draw up contracts with child and agree on consequences etc. Love with Limits works, or 1,2,3 magic is a great program for young children. Used this well with my children until they were older teens.
I say, "Wow, that was really disrespectful. Do you speak to me that way? Let's try again." Works like a charm. When we go out in public, I have two perfectly behaved children. People stop me and remark on how well behaved they are all the time. You've got to be consistant and not tolerate unacceptable behavior.
My children are not rude or disrespectful. It's a mistake to think it's their fault if they are because both of those are completely abstract ideas and the meaning of them changes from person to person. If your children's actions are bothering you, you need to look at the why. Don't place blame on them. Perhaps you should gently explain why it is upsetting. If my children say something that upsets me or that doesn't bother me but may be considered rude in public, I sit them down and explain the rules around what they say/do. They only need a gently reminder maybe once every few months.
What is your child REALLY trying to tell you int these frustrating moments...?
They do the best they can with what has been shown them...
Parents - we need to take a good long look at ourselves when things like this happen -
I nip it in the butt when it happens. My first response is to say "excuse me" real firmly because when I say that to our 7 year old daughter she realizes what she did or said was wrong and usually apologizes or stops it pretty quickly (most of the time). We don't spank in our family so if my firm words don't work then I give her a warning that she will get a time out. Thankfully, time outs still work with her.
I totally agree with Linda B. Constant follow through and consistency is key to not having a disrespectful child. It is not easy but parenting isn't easy. I feel punished when our child is in time out because the TV goes off instantly. It is important to show low tolerance and your actions speak louder. Why because they will realize that when you say something you mean it. Empty threats or actions don't exist.
Parenting is not an easy job because it takes a lot of time, love and money to be a good parent. It is worth it when your child apologizes to you when they realize what they did was wrong and they say I LOVE YOU in spite of being reprimanded or put in time out.
I made it through all the teenage years with all four of my children. It's a live and learn process and watching what you think are mistakes others make. I want to know how you habdle a 28 year old who is a real pain and very disrespectful.
We have the house rules posted in our living room. Whenever my daughter or stepdaughter breaks one of them, they have to recite it to us, then write it down 20 times. If they violate a series, then they have to write the series 20 times. They are both 10, but they have only had to do standards twice each. The threat of standards is enough to scare them straight. Anyway, respect is a series rule, so I just point it out to them and ask "Do you want to write that 20 times?"
I am of the mind that 1)they are feeling disrespected somehow themselves and I want to get them to find out and tell me so I insist on that giving until the end of the day or something age appropriate. It usually takes less than an hour and 2)they want to know if they can get your goat. So don't let them! Like with any bully behavior, one responds not! Laugh but not disrespectfully at their attempt to get power the wrong way and calmly help them get power the right way. My dad was the only winning boy's coach in my town for 20 years. I learned this from him.
My 22 month old son can get out of hand sometimes. In stores he can get to where he wants something and if I say no he throws a fit. I have learned that getting upset with him does nothing. Redirecting his attention works best. I make something else seem more interesting and for the most part that works. At times it is hard to keep your cool and thats when I walk away and have learned that even though being a parent is a really tough job at times the toddler years are the most crucial times in a person's life. I treat my son how I want to be treated and I find that that is the best way to communicate with him.
If treated with respect than they learn from that. I agree consistentcy is a key.
I have a two daughters who test me everydayand the one thing I have found is not to give in .
We have a chart where he gets stickers for being great and nothing for the hours he is disrespectful.
well i'am from the Bahamas and we do it different.u spear the rod u spoil the child,my 16yr old he reads the expressions on my face and he knows mom will take it up a notch. Children need boundaries i love u but dis is what happens wen u step out of your shell, I'am never called 2 come @ his school 4 miss behaving and those grades need 2 be on point. Single mothers can do great jobs it takes a stern woman 2 raise a child (children) and never let them see your weakness mom(s).
I have 2 7th graders and 3 8th graders. 3 girls and 2 boys One of my 8th grader son Hunter can be real disrespectful. He talk backs to me, doesn't do anything i say, rolls his eyes at me, say he hates me, say i hate him when i toally do not, complains, and just give me all but stress. Now my 3 girls are like angels and i'm waiting until they turn into Hunter. Tyler is not bad but he can't stay focus at school, complains, rolls his eyes, and talks back to me. When my kids are like that they know sometimes they get some kind of punish. So what i do is give them chores to do for a week, no something like phone, computar, Tv., I-pod, or viedos games, grounded only if this something that goes on and on or soemthing bad, no friends over or going to friends house, or whatever comes to my mind. Really i am not harsh to my kids but when they get disrespectful and it goes on i can't handle it.
Ladies I know everyone here is a mom so its probably really rare for a guy to ask about these kinds of problems and I do have a problem. My elder brother is disrespecting me. He's 32 years old and i'm 26 the youngest in the family. I am a tolerant man, very optimistic, forgiving, and family guy. Throughout my whole life I have suffered from his constant childish abuse to come out on top with every argument and simply said pride issues. He never does laundry, insults my intelligence, doesn't listen to people, and never admits he's wrong. My method of dealing with him before is simply to treat him like a child by ignoring his disrespect and don't let it get to me. Problem is eventually it does and then I talk back. This is where the problem starts, he uses tactics to make me angry to explode then takes it into my parents hands. I lose. When I tell him to stop doing it, he continues to do it and acts like he doesn't know what I'm talking about by playing dumb or asks me what exactly he did is disrespectful well everything in truth but I'm too dumb to say what exactly because I'm not very articulate with words. When the chance comes when I do say something thats intelligible, he denies it vehementely and continues to enforce his rules on me being a younger brother as a tactic. If that doesn't work he continues to insult and rub salt in my face. I give in. I lose. I get angry, parents step in, I lose again. This is just the normal instances. Here is an even more intricate situation. A lot of times bill payments will come in with my brothers name on it. Then I have to pay for it since its overdue like months ago or something otherwise they are going to overcharge. Now I look for him and he doesn't want to pay making excuses like who, what, when, where, why, how this bill is connected to him and if I'm unable to answer he drags it and makes excuses not to pay when he did promise my mother that he will pay in the first place. Now he's backing out and making some lame excuses with it. Fine I let that go since I'm lenient and forgiving. Then I have to go pay the bill, ask and explain what this bill is, and wait for him to pay me back by chasing him down and asking him outright. Last time this happened I asked him three times clearly and three months later he still hasn't payed me. In the end my bubbles burst and I exploded at him which finally led him to pay me the next day. Truth is he thought nothing of what I said and took everything for granted. He acted like he is in the right because he has this thing about not admitting your wrong means that your not; however, that just my interpretation and venting out. There are other problems our whole family has with him that I'm not going to go into but the truth is that he is a cancer in my family and even my dear loving mother has given up on him. The same with my second older brother too. I'm the only one left and my heart is dripping in a pool of blood on the floor like always. So now here's my question, what can I do to improve this situation?
I have a question. All of these answers are all wonderful, but none of them has worked with my almost 14 year old daughter. My daughter does not respect a woman's authority. We have tried everything. Does not matter what we try she builds up a wall and it does not phase her any longer. She has had everything taken away, to where she had to earn things back. She just finds something else and forgets about what she has to earn back. She manipulates people to get what she wants. Nothing as phased her. She is a good child as that she is not into drugs or boys. We all just want her to respect women's authority. So she will be a better adult. Any suggestions would greatly be appreciated.
By modelling the desirable behaviour and rewarding every positive change in behaviour, by reward I don't mean tangible rewards, but rewarding your child by spending a quality time with him or her:)
This page might help. There is a lot of advice and information here for parents who want to inspire a better change in their disrespectful kids. Teaching kids how to be respectful is very important. It takes time, effort, a lot of patience and understanding, but it’s also the kind of lesson that will help kids live at peace and grow to be outstanding individuals.
You make stern eye contact, Lower your voice and sternly state "you will not speak to me like that. Now, go to your room until you apologize and can speak to me respectfully". If you are in public find a place to send them to for a time out.
"I don't like the way you spoke to me just now" "No rudeness allowed" In a calm and firm voice usually helps
"That was rude" Describing the child what he/she did
"I expect more respect when you speak to me" Laying out the expectation
"You got yourself a very upset mom right now" Expressing your feelings
I believe in the action follow consequence method and i never use punishment or time outs to guide my child back to track.
Just keeping it short and simple is the key for me. If you need to elaborate on expected behavior to the child choose a time when both of u are calm.
I think your advice was perfect. Thank you.
I think your advice was perfect. Thank you.