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How To Discipline A Difficult Child

Posted Jul 04 2010 11:53pm

by James Kennedy

If you have to discipline a difficult child on a regular basis, you might just feel like pulling your hair right out of your head. Having to deal with a child who simply will not listen is every parent's worst nightmare. After all, you want to have a good relationship with your children. If you're constantly fighting them, it does not make for a very good relationship.

Starting early with disciplining children is an important component to long-term discipline. Even when the child is a toddler, it is important to start setting boundaries and consequences early. Children must know the consequences of an action before they take it so that they can learn self-discipline.

Allowing bad behavior to progress without doing something to stop it is only asking for trouble as the child gets older. Although children are known for testing their parents' patience, difficult children like to watch for your reactions. If you react with a lot of drama and excitement, the child will do things to try to get that reaction out of you over and over. This is why remaining calm is the best way to discipline the difficult child.

If you have a child who becomes physical with punching or kicking, it is easy to become angry and violent yourself. However, this is not a reasonable reaction to the situation and can make it worse as your child becomes older and stronger. Lecturing, criticizing and making threats do not work on a difficult child. The more you become excitable, the more dramatic they will become as it spirals out of control.

Parents should know that when they are trying to discipline a difficult child, dramatic and aggressive behavior is a very comfortable feeling for them. If you continue to feed that drama, the cycle of aggression will continue.

Most of the time, like it or not, the behaviors of the child are in part caused by the behavior of the parent. When you discipline a difficult child, first check your own behavior.

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