Keeping the Word “No” Out of Your Child’s Life

When you have a child, you probably have all sorts of ideas about what life will be like.  Your child will never act up in the store, throw fits at home, or cry for no reason at all, right?  Wrong!  If there is one thing any child will do, it is test his boundaries.  Because of that, many parents quickly find that the word they hate to hear their child say to them is the word they say the most themselves…no!  If you do not want to be one of those parents who always hears a defiant “no!” from their children, make a few goals for yourself early on in your child’s life.  Here are a few samples of things you could do other than say “no!”  That way, with any luck, you will not hear the word shot back at you as much from your child.

When the child is young and does not really understand the difference between right and wrong, the best thing you can do to stop a particular behavior is to distract the child from it.  Instead of yelling no when he pulls the dog’s tail, give him a stuffed dog and let him pull its tail all he wants.  Distract your child from the wrong behavior with another game that is okay.  Children at young ages do not have long attention spans and will easily be directed to something else.

-Alternative phrases
There are plenty of ways you can say, “no” without actually saying the word.  If you see your child doing something wrong, you can say, “please do not do that,” or “could you do it this way instead?”  Get creative and you’ll be amazed at how many ways you can say no without actually using the word.  When you use these other phrases, your child gets language skills along with new forms of understanding.

-Use No Selectively
There are times when the word “no” is really the only way to go.  Use it in danger situations to shock your child out of the behavior so that he does not get hurt.  If he is about to step out into the street alone, touch a hot pan, or do something else that would hurt him, yell “no” loudly.  If it is not a word he hears very often, he will stop because of the tone in your voice and because of the force behind the word.  If you use it only in danger situations, it will have more effect than if you use it all day everyday.

No matter what you do, your child will eventually learn the word “no” and use it on you.  When she is young and you can influence her, however, teach her how to use it properly so that it does not become her favorite word in moments of defiance.  Keep in mind that your child is watching everything you do at all times and learning from your words and actions.  If all you do is say “no” all of the time, it is eventually all you are going to hear.


Aug 22, 2012 | Category: Blog | Comments: none | Tags: , ,

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