How to Raise Children Who Can Take “No” for an Answer

April 18, 2012

By Joyce Batten

Hardship makes character stronger, but we don’t care about that. Here’s how to develop children who can take “no” for an answer.

For example, your child wants to go somewhere with his friends.  You say “no”.  He throws a tantrum, and says things like, “You don’t love me.”  “I hate you.”  “Everybody else…”  But if you stand your ground, the tantrums will diminish over time as your child gets used to taking “no” for an answer.
Here’s how to teach your children to take “no” for an answer.

  1. Say “no” when you need to and stick to it.
  2. Be firm, not angry, and stick to your “no”.
  3. Be prepared for some blow-back or trantrums.
  4. If that happens, you may have to respond with punishment, such as a time-out or the loss of some privilege.

This technique is all about helping kids develop the willingness and ability to adapt to roadblocks, such as not getting what he or she wants. It helps them to accept this and change their plans and expectations.  If kids grow up with reasonable expectations, they’ll be happier and so will everyone around them.

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