Sometimes kids can start behaving in unbecoming ways. Time for a parenting tune up!
Parents are so busy these days it’s easy to just wing parenting as you go … and sometimes that’s fine, says Rex Forehand, Ph.D., author of Parenting the Strong-Willed Child (McGraw-Hill). But if it gets to the point that your kids are ruling the roost and on the verge of being brats, here’s a tune up for setting things right again:
1. Be Clear on the Boundaries & Consistent With Them
Kids need to know what’s OK and what’s not and to be held accountable to that. Be clear about your rules at home or out and about and then, oh so important: Be consistent about enforcing your rules.
2. Don’t Cave in to Tantrums
Learn to be silent when your child is melting down for not getting his way. No matter what, do not let yourself get drawn into a battle.
3. Mean What You Say
If you tell your child that they cannot get a toy when you go to Target, for example, then DO NOT CAVE IN and buy a toy. If you do you will send the message that you don’t mean what you say and that they can hammer you for whatever they want because eventually you’ll give in. Hang tough!
4. Model the Behavior You Want
Want them to say please, thank you, yes m’am, no sir? Want them to pick up after themselves, be courteous on the phone, etc.? Then YOU have to model this behavior to them.
5. Do Something One-on-One With Them From Time to Time
Spending quality time with your child is so beneficial! Go get an ice cream cone, take a walk, SOMETHING. Most bratty behavior comes from kids who don’t get enough of their parent’s attention.