Dealing with a Difficult Child

Some behaviors in your child can make parenting a whole lot tougher and every parent knows there are some children who are easy to deal with and others who, for whatever reasons, can make life challenging.
Here are some ideas that can work well for difficult children.

One easy way to determine if someone, child or adult is truly a difficult person is to ask yourself the question “do other people find this person difficult as well?” If the answer is no, then you need to examine how you might be contributing to your child’s difficult behavior. If the answer is yes, then you know you have a real challenge on your hands.

The more difficult a child is to deal with, the more they need clear rules set out for them. Make sure you and your partner are both on the same page with these rules or your child could try to play one of you off against the other.

Let your child know what the consequences are of him or her breaking the rules. Sometimes these consequences can be decided between your child and yourself. They should always be established before any problems occur.

Stick to the consequences. This is very important. If you only follow through sometimes, your child will not listen to you, hoping this is one of the times there will be no consequences.

Always take advantage of “the teachable moment” when something happens that allows you to teach your child something. For example, you are walking down the street and your child litters. You can ask him or her to pick the litter up and explain why it is so important we all do our share to keep our planet clean.

Don’t let your child’s difficult behavior drive you away. Your child needs your guidance more than ever at these times.

Catch your child doing something right and praise, praise, praise.

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