The management of your child’s demands is a significant aspect of daily parenting. In this essay, we analyse the optimal approach to this frequent difficulty.
As a parent, it might be difficult to fulfil your child’s wishes. Nobody wants to feel like the couch police, always saying “No, you can’t watch more television” and “No, you can’t put your feet on the sofa.” Of course, there are instances when this kind of response is really required, but there are other times when it is easy to get into a routine of saying “no” out of habit. After all, parenting is a difficult job, and it might be difficult to react with patience at all times!
WHY YOUR ANSWER MATTERS
Requests are a natural opportunity to educate children about appropriate communication and how to manage emotions that occur. Whether your answer is yes or no, this holds true. It may be beneficial to frequently state the following: “It is OK to wish to accomplish or have things, and you may always ask me for them. Sometimes I will say yes, and other times I will say no. But it is always acceptable to inquire.” This demonstrates that they do not need to conceal or be embarrassed of their desires, and that you are responsive to their needs.
The second piece of advice is to keep in mind that the way you react to your child shapes his or her knowledge of communication, politeness, respect for the viewpoint of others, and compromise. Be conscious of your tone of voice, avoid being reactive or excessively unpleasant, and strive for clarity so that your kid has no space for misunderstanding.
HOW TO REACT
Here are some basic actions you may take to interact with your kid in a healthy manner when confronted with continuous demands.
Consider their mode of inquiry.
Positively respond to your youngster when he or she makes a polite, calm request. Acknowledge their politeness and how pleased you are to observe it. This helps children associate excellent manners with praise and demonstrates that you will thoughtfully consider their requests if they ask gently, even if the response is no. Regardless of the outcome, basing your first reaction on how your kid asks enables them to communicate effectively with you.
In contrast, if your kid makes demands, constantly requests for the same item, whines, or acts inappropriately, make it plain that they must speak properly before you will listen to what they have to say. Use a strong tone and state, “I need you to talk to me politely, and we both need you to use your calm voice.”
Make sure they are heard
It’s easy to respond immediately to (yet another!) request, and it might be irritating if your kid has previously requested for several things to do, purchase, or have. It is reasonable to be tempted to just tell your kid “no” and walk away from the situation. However, there are several advantages to truly hearing what your kid wants. Before providing a response, you should ensure that the individual feels heard. When children feel seen, appreciated, and understood, they are far more inclined to accept your choice, even if it is a negative one. Feeling heard prevents anger and increases collaboration significantly.
Even if you don’t want to answer yes, displaying empathy may go a long way toward improving communication. Let your youngster know you fully get the reason for their request. The use of phrases such as “I can see why you want that toy truck, it’s quite nice” demonstrates to children that you understand and sympathise with their desires, hence reducing their resistance to your refusal.
STOP AND CHOOSE
Taking a pause enables you to ponder the request and conveys to children that you are giving it some consideration. Evaluate if you must say no or whether you can genuinely say yes. If the answer is no, consider if you can bargain.
Frequently, a yes is feasible. Occasionally, you may be able to bargain with your kid to reach a solution that you can both agree. Your consistent and fair replies will educate your youngster how to ask for things most effectively.
Sometimes you must say no, which might be challenging. Nobody wants their kid to be sad. Nevertheless, youngsters cannot always get their desires.