How to Handle a Stubborn Child: We are all born with a certain temperament. You must realise that other parents also have children with a difficult disposition like your youngster. Many parents have stubborn kids, and it’s okay when the children are still very young. The kind of adult your stubborn child becomes, however, will entirely depend on how you approach them as a youngster. The toddler and adolescent phases are thought to be the most challenging. If your child ignores your commands, it could make you crazy. So, what can you do if your child is uncooperative? Read this article to learn how to handle your child’s tendency for stubbornness.
It’s crucial to remember that while some kids are naturally obstinate, others use it as a strategy to push against limits and make their opinions known. Therefore, it is your responsibility to teach your child the various coping mechanisms and emotional expressions.
Causes of Your Child’s Stubborn Behaviour
You might question why your youngster acts stubbornly if they do so frequently. Is it just a personality thing, or is there something else going on? Here are a few typical explanations for childrens’ stubbornness.
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1. Immaturity: It’s possible that something is not permitted and your youngster isn’t entirely aware of why. Maturity comes with age, therefore if your child observes their classmates engaging in behaviours that is often not permitted by you, it could lead to stubborn behaviour. In this situation, rationality is useless.
2. Poor Communication: As a parent, you could frequently feel overburdened, and this feeling might be conveyed to your child as rage. Your child may become accustomed to being stubborn and getting out of being punished if you yell at them all the time or try to discipline them. Speaking to your child rather than yelling at them is always a good idea.
3. Constant Comparison: Some children experience continual comparison to their friends or siblings, which over time can be upsetting. When compared to other kids, some kids act stubbornly as a way to vent their annoyance.
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4. Need for Independence: A child’s yearning for independence increases as he gets older. If your child feels dominated by you frequently, they may act stubbornly to show their independence. As long as it’s safe, let your child investigate things on their own.
5. Absence of a Role Model: Children watch how individuals around them behave. If you, your spouse, or any other family member frequently behaves stubbornly at home, your child might imitate that behaviour. Additionally, individuals could believe they can act stubbornly if they observe their buddies acting that way and getting away with it.
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How do you deal with children who are stubborn?
Stubbornness can appear in children, adolescents, or even infants and can last far into adulthood. It’s crucial that you as a parent figure out how to deal with your child’s resistance so that you can control their behaviour without becoming frustrated yourself. Here are some methods for dealing with a recalcitrant child:
1. Don’t Argue: Children that are stubborn are always prepared to argue their point of view. Therefore, don’t give them a chance to do so. Instead, be a listening ear to your child’s opinions and encourage dialogue as opposed to confrontation. They are more likely to listen to what you have to say when you demonstrate that you are willing to hear what they have to say.
2. Establish a Connection: Do not make your youngster perform an action they do not want to. They will become even more rebellious as a result, and they will be determined to do anything against the rules. In order to get your youngster to quit watching television and start doing their schoolwork, try watching some TV with them for a time. This will foster a sense of community, and after a short while, you may ask your child if they’d like to complete their homework while you read your book or complete some work while seated nearby.
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3. Offer Some Choices: A child’s rebellious nature will undoubtedly be sparked if you give them instructions. Instead, provide them with options so they can feel like they have control over their lives and can independently pick what they want to accomplish. Offer simply two or three options to keep the number of options from confusing your toddler. Instead of asking them, “Where do you want to start?” when they have to tidy up their room, you may ask them if they would like to start with the bed or the wardrobe.
4. Step Into Your Child’s Shoes: Consider the situation from your child’s perspective and try to determine why they are acting in such a manner. You must explain to them why you were unable to meet your commitment if you promised to take them to the park but declined because of the bad weather. If you explain why you can’t go and schedule a later date for the outing, you can prevent your child from seeing it as a broken promise.
5. Develop Routines: Maintaining daily and weekly routines can help your child behave better and perform better in school, and it’ll be hard to break it. A set bedtime is necessary, and it should allow your child to get plenty of rest. Children between the ages of three and twelve may behave poorly due to lack of sleep or fatigue.
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6. Brush Up On Your Negotiating Skills: Stubborn kids have a hard time accepting a flat-out denial when they ask for something. So instead of imposing the law, attempt to bargain with them. As an illustration, if your child insists on hearing two bedtime stories, try to dissuade them by coming to an arrangement where they can choose one for tonight and one for tomorrow.
7. Stay calm: Screaming at a rebellious youngster will escalate a normal dialogue between a parent and child into a yelling match. Your child might see your response as a challenge to a verbal duel. Things will only become worse as a result. Since you are the adult, it is up to you to guide the discussion to a useful conclusion. Help your youngster comprehend why something must be done or how they should act.
Mediate, exercise, or listen to music if necessary to maintain your composure. Play soothing or relaxing music in your home. Play your child’s preferred music occasionally. By doing so, you can get their “vote” and give them a chance to relax.
To de-stress and regulate your mood, try shifting your concentration. You might try concentrating on the things that make you feel better instead of the event or person who made you angry. Performing an exercise or going for a walk may be necessary.
8. Respect them: If you impose control on your children, they will definitely rebel against it. Consequently, the following are some examples of how you might exhibit respect and support in your relationship:
a. Do not demand strict devotion to orders; instead, seek cooperation.
b. Do not be lenient just because it is convenient; instead, have clear rules for all of your children.
C. Never discount someone else’s thoughts or opinions; instead, empathise with them.
d. Avoid the urge to lighten your children’s load by letting them take care of what they can on their own. This demonstrates to them your confidence in them.
e. Do as you say, and say what you mean.
As Betsy Brown Braun, author of You’re Not The Boss Of Me would say, “You should always set a good example for your children since they are constantly watching you.”
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You and your child are not alone in this kind of predicament; stubbornness is a surefire method to try any parent’s patience. But as your child matures and tests limits, this resistance is very normal. Children may frequently appear stubborn, which is perfectly natural given all the developmental and social changes they are going through. Just be sure to set limits and deal with stubbornness as soon as you can.
It’s okay to have a stubborn child. In fact, it has been observed that kids with these traits frequently succeed in both their academic and professional lives. They are less likely to succumb to peer pressure, which helps them avoid engaging in harmful activities that their friends may be involved. Making an effort to understand your child and using appropriate disciplining techniques can go a long way in assisting them in developing into strong-willed but responsible people.
Edeh Samuel Chukwuemeka ACMC, is a Law Student and a Certified Mediator/Conciliator in Nigeria. He is also a Developer with knowledge in HTML, CSS, JS, PHP and React Native. Samuel is bent on changing the legal profession by building Web and Mobile Apps that will make legal research a lot easier.