A Simple Tip For Dealing with Children/Teens Who Like to Argue with Their Parents.

Have you noticed that children and teens today tend to be more argumentative than when we were kids? Things have changed; the world has changed. Children and Teens want more freedom and often parents perceive their need for freedom as rebellion, disrespect or rudeness.

But if parents see it that way and react, usually with anger or frustration, they have just fueled an argument with their own child/teen… and no one wins.

Parents keep in mind: you do not need to participate in every argument you are invited to. There is a better, simpler, less stressful way to diffuse an argument and create in your child a responsible champion for life.

Has your child ever said to you:

“You’re mean!”

“You never get me what I want!”

“You never let me do what I want!”

“You don’t love me!”

I bet if you’re really honest with yourself, you have heard any one of these at least once. Any good parent will hear these. It’s a part of life, a part of parenting — whether we like it or not.

Let’s shift this paradigm to make life simple and stress free.

Following is the greatest phrase parents can use to diffuse potential arguments — experiment with this and see what results it produces.

“I love you too much to argue with you.”

Is that a little bit different than how you might feel when your child or teen talks to you that way? It might be; however, if you react to their words you are inviting yourself into an argument you do not have to attend.

Children and teens don’t know why they feel what they feel, and why they say what they say. Of course they don’t mean it and yes it can hurt your feelings, but rather than react — do the exact opposite of what most parents do, PROVIDE EMPAHTY.
Don’t try and scare children or teens into behaving, it will only make them feel worse and learn nothing about how to communicate respectfully with their parents. Scaring them will only perpetuate more arguing and defensiveness.

Parents, you don’t have to be mean, or be “the bad parent” to course correct your child teens behavior.

An expression of genuine empathy has the amazing ability to soak up emotions and diffuse them. In fact, it activates a child/teen brain to “think” and not react or fight with you.

You see, it’s hard to stay mad or be mean to someone who is responding with empathy. It’s easy to continue being mad and argue with someone who throws it right back at you. This causes your children/teen to respect you more, have more trust in you and it actually builds their confidence that they are still loved by you.

Here are some examples of empathetic statements that work:

“Oh no, I bet that feels terrible.”

“Wow. What a bummer to feel that way.”

“That’s too bad. You sound frustrated.”

Here are some examples of statements that don’t work:

“Don’t talk to me like that or you can spend the rest of the day in your room.”

“Oh yeah, some kids having nothing. At least you have toys.”

“No child of mine tells me they hate me; go sit in the corner.”

NOTE: an obese child/teen will simply resort to EATING and TV. This form of communication only causes an increase in weight gain in order for them to FEEL better. It’s not healthy! For them or YOU!

Here is a sample dialogue to diffuse potential arguments:

Child: “You never let me do what I want.

Parent: “I love you too much to argue about that.

Child: “But Christina always gets what she wants.

Parent: “I love you too much to argue about that.

Child: “Yeah, that’s because you like her better.

Parent: “I love you too much to argue about that. Thank you for sharing how you feel with me.

Unless you have done something to hurt your child/teen, then keep in mind a child’s/teens problem should be kept their problem, do not make it yours. That is too stressful and time consuming for parents. How much time and life do you lose by arguing instead of diffusing?

Obviously, if your words or something you did hurt your child/teen, you need to take responsibility for it. Otherwise, don’t make it your problem.

By using this approach, you’re building a champion for life. Champions take on their problems and break through them. They take ownership of their problems and learn to change by making better choices, especially when they realize what they are saying is NOT working.

Since children/teens learn by modeling, using empathy creates more powerful children and teens. They will be less likely to seek revenge or blame you for their feelings in the future; and you maintain an adult-child/teen relationship.

The goal is to build a champion quality character in your child/teen so when they day comes they are ready to take on the world and their life, and live it to their fullest.

Author's Bio: 

Coach Carl Logrecco, ECH Founder and CEO, has coached, advised and counseled hundreds of doctors all throughout the U.S. , Canada and Australia in patient care, communications, inspiring patients and running a family-care office environment. Having been a personal and professional trainer and speaker for 11 years, he has now dedicated his life to our younger generation in building champions for life.