Is Your Child Being Defiant? Here’s What You Can Do

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

There comes a point in every parent’s life when their child stops listening and following instructions. Depending on the severity of the situation, some parents may find themselves at a loss on what to do. Perhaps they may be asking themselves if they should just let their child be, or if they should punish them for their defiance. Either way, it’s a challenging task – one we can help with.

If you are a parent looking for a concrete solution on how to deal with this certain issue, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. There are, however, general guidelines you could follow to get your child back on track. Learn more below:

Maintain your control of the situation

Once your child misbehaves, refrain from reacting in the moment. Instead, pause for a few seconds to breathe and rationalize the situation. Resist the urge to give a scolding, as it will do more harm than good – taking your child on with your negative emotions will likely just lead to more contempt.

That said, the best thing to do would be to calmly (but firmly) enforce discipline on your child. For example, if your child won’t calm down after being barred from watching too much television, then you may choose to send him to his room and tell him that you “will discuss this with him later.” This statement will serve as both a warning and a promise that there will be consequences for their unacceptable behavior.


Do not resort to punishment immediately

Getting frustrated at your child’s actions is wholly normal. However, having to always resort to punishment is not.

Whenever your child makes a mistake – and they will, intentionally or otherwise – use it as a learning opportunity instead. Take the time to sit down and communicate with him. Find out why he acted that way in the first place, then try to resolve the issue. But if it’s not immediately actionable, then you could simply offer a listening ear instead. After that, you could then guide him to come up with his own solutions.

Remember that the secret to clearing up conflict lies in understanding one another. Of course, the same rule applies for you and your kids – sometimes, all it takes is a bit of empathy. Try to see things from your child’s point of view and do your best to check if there’s anything you could do to help them.

Create rules and establish boundaries

To ensure your child’s compliance, make sure to always communicate what you expect of them. Teaching your child the limits of what they can do early on will allow them to facilitate their own behavior in a way. It lets them judge right and wrong for themselves instantly, which in turn causes a lower risk for misbehavior in the first place.

Hold your child accountable for their actions too. The key here is not to shoot for complete obedience, but to teach them the fact that there are consequences for not following the rules.


Remember that misbehavior is a normal part of your child’s growing up, so being patient during this time is crucial. As long as you maintain your control, avoid over -punishing, and set clear boundaries for your child to respect, then you are well on your way to ensuring a better relationship for you both without having to compromise discipline.


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