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In: home > Raising Children / Raising Smart Children / How to Say "No" to Your Child in Proper Way

How to Say

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It is very difficult for parents to say “no” to their children. However, saying “no” to children for certain things is a must. And also it becomes a daunting task for parents to say “no” to children and prevent them from doing certain things. Read on to know how you can say “no” to your children in right manner.

The word that is used more often during the parenting years is ‘no’. People actually use this word at the drop of a hat and the manner in which they blurt out a “no” makes one wonder whether they are really aware of what they are saying a no to. When used repeatedly in this manner, the word loses its effectiveness and become more like a crying wolf. So parents must learn how to say a ‘no’ and when to say it as well.

The best option is to find an alternative for a ‘no’; and it is a good solution. When you limit its usage, your kids will know that you really mean a ‘no’ when you say it. When you are responding to a question like, “mom, can I have a chocolate?” say, “yes. Later”. Note that your child is ready with a ‘no’ but will find it harder to fight against a ‘yes later’.

Then for a question like, “mom, can I leave for my friend’s place?” you say, “give me a minute dear”. You take out some time to work your case and points. Get your logic right on why a visit at that time would be inappropriate, you will find that this can effective assuage a chance of an argument.

Then, for the third query like, “mom, can I stay out the night” or “mom, can you buy that to for me?” say, “no”. This will mean that you are setting limits and the kid is expected to obey them. Explain them the reasons and be convincing enough to make your kid understand the situation.

According to parenting instructor Mary Gordon, a parent may not be aware of the fact that an emphatic ‘no’ often helps the child to feel safe. So there is no reason whey the parent should feel disheartened that a no will de-motivate the child. A ‘no’ means that you are setting certain limits and asking your child to adhere to certain guidelines. Although they will desire and wish to break free, they will also know in their subconscious that they are being cared for. Firm parameters also are an indication of good discipline. These will all reap results as your child grows up and leads a responsible life.

When you are saying a no, be particular about these aspects:

  • When you say a NO, mean it – If your child acts up and you give in, he will get the impression that this is going to work every time. He will get used to it and will go to any extent to make you relent.
  • Do not make it up by anything else – Say, you have said a no to one of his demand for a certain toy. He is in a foul mood; do not try to make up for it by buying him a chocolate instead. Children can be very perceptive; they will soon deduce that they should have cried hard enough to make you budge.
  • Forget the instance instantly – Harping about the bad behavior on the mall or at a relative’s place will not make the situation better. It will only encourage their rebelliousness and they would feel like repeating the act again.
  • Talk – If your child is just a toddler, explain that you have said a ‘no’ as the thing is not good enough. If he is at an age that he understands money, say that the toy that he was demanding does not fit into your financial budget.
As such, saying no in a right way will help you to make sure that you are raising your child in a right way. It will also help you to be sure that the child does not get de-motivated because of saying “no” bluntly. Hence, saying ‘no’ to your child in a right way will add to your effort in wholesome development of your child. 

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Ravina.2 years ago
interesting read. My child pesters me for chocolates daily, will have to find a new reason daily :D Only when he's gone to Orchids school do I get the time to plan my strategy for the evening.
Priya.2 years ago
It happens with my kid too. Hard to manage those tantrums at time in the public. These tips are really thoughtful.
payal.2 years ago
Saying "No" in the public place is very tough for me as my child tends to throw tantrums which sometimes go uncontrollable. I need to be very careful and wise enough to deal with my kid. I got to keep talking to make him and her understand few things. Proper communication helps a lot.
Karthik Raja.3 years ago
Same with my kid. every time to save myself from embarrassment, i give in to the demands and whims of my child. But his demands are increasing even more. Now i am thinking of putting a stop to it. so from now on he has to listen to my 'no'. I will surely follow the tips given here.
Robin Jaiswal.3 years ago
Everytime I say 'no' for something, my kid throws a tantrum and it is very difficult for me to manage him at that moment. He does not consider the place and time of throwing a tantrum. Once he threw a tantrum in a mall, when i said 'no' for a toy. He created a big ruckus. It was very embarrassing and i had to give in to his demands.
Ram Dayal.3 years ago
Kids should be taught the importance of 'no'. giving to to every demand and whims of a kids makes it difficult for them to have a 'no' for an answer. they should be taught to take a 'no' in a sportive manner.
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