My child will not stop whining! I hate to say it like that, but I am just getting so frustrated. What can I do?
Get ready because I am about to be REALLY blunt. Kids whine because it works.
Because we let it happen. Because we can’t stand the whining and we will do whatever it takes to stop it, which often entails giving the child the item for which they are whining. Some folks also might think that is the way that young children talk. Nope. They do not need to. They can speak calmly and clearly if we expect them to, but it does take a bit of effort.
Here is your path to change:
Give kids the words that you want to hear.
Kids may know what NOT to do – whine – but they may not know what TO do. Tell your children exactly what you want them to say AND in the tone that you want to hear. Do not move forward until you hear what you are looking for. Especially the tone. Young kids may not be able to say ALL of the words that you say but they CAN use a calm tone.
Do not respond to the whining.
If you respond to the whining, kids will feel that it is an accepted form of communication. You can acknowledge your child, but do not over-engage and encourage more whining.
Do not mock your child.
Sometimes we think that if we whine back at a child it will help. She will hear the whining and realize it is not a positive way to speak and stop. The problem is, what she sees is you making fun of her. This will not end well. She will get embarrassed and you could end up with a big tantrum on your hands.
With a little patience and effort you can say, “See ya,” to the whining and teach positive, clear, and constructive communication.
Brandi Davis, ACC, is a professional Parenting Coach, Parent Educator, and Author of O.K. I’m A Parent Now What? She can also be found on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and be sure to catch her parenting podcasts on iTunes. The goal of Brandi’s practice is to bring respect, calm communication, teamwork, and FUN into the home or classroom. To discover all that Child and Family Coaching can bring to your family stop by www.childandfamilycoaching.com.
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