What To Do When A Child Misbehaves?

Raising a child is not an easy task; understanding the causes of bad behavior and knowing what to do is an art. Learn in this post what to do when a child misbehaves.
What to do when a child misbehaves?

When a child misbehaves, we tend to lose our temper and end up in a power struggle. We often think, wrongly, that children misbehave on a whim. Our task as responsible parents is to identify the reasons for our children’s misbehavior.

Inappropriate behaviors can manifest in the form of tantrums, prolonged crying, or breaking and hitting toys or other objects. Some children pee or defecate when they have control of the sphincter. Others simply ignore the instructions of their elders, scream or play pranks that leave the adults completely defeated.

Why does a child misbehave?

child misbehaving

One of the main reasons is the desire to get your parents’ attention. This occurs when the child determines that, by behaving well, he does not receive the attention he feels he deserves.

She behaves badly so that there is a disproportionate mobilization on the part of her parents and adults around her. That’s when they talk about their behavior and make the child the center of the family’s attention.

Another reason is when the child feels unaccompanied. It usually happens when, for example, they go shopping and the little one feels tired. He tells his parents this, but they only take him into account when he throws a tantrum. Obviously, this means that the next few times he doesn’t say he feels tired, but he resorts directly to bad behavior.

If a child misbehaves, it is also possible for him to feel jealous. It may be the envy of one of your siblings, friends and even one of your parents. The truth is that children discover early on that when they misbehave, they can deal with the situation of their own accord.

In addition,  a lack of parental boundaries  or contradictions between the norms they set can be a reason for a child’s misbehavior. For example, the mother forbids something, but the father gives her permission.

Only in extreme cases is there bad behavior due to serious problems such  as low frustration tolerance, hyperactivity, poor social skills, and poor impulse control. An inadequate family environment, overprotection, school problems and family abuse are also causes of bad behavior.

We recommend that you read: Is mindfulness effective for children and adolescents?

What to do when a child misbehaves?

After analyzing misbehavior and determining what is triggering it,  we should examine our behavior when a child misbehaves. There are factors in our behavior that, in the face of a tantrum, instead of eradicating the problem, we keep it going; and, in the worst case, it will get even worse.

1. Show patience and understanding

child who misbehaves

Faced with the inappropriate behavior of a child, parents go into crisis, despair and end up imposing themselves. Try not to get angry and be kind but firm in saying what the most appropriate behavior should be. Losing your calm will only generate a struggle to know the other’s limits.

Also read: Patience and silence: virtues of wise people

2. Don’t be influenced by what others might say

A tantrum in front of others often creates a feeling of discomfort in parents that is very difficult to deal with. Parents end up giving in and comply with what the child asks to calm down, or they are forced to flee from this uncomfortable situation.

Don’t let others affect you.  A very successful technique is to hug the child tightly. Depending on his age, you can pick him up and walk off to a corner, hold his hands lovingly, and explain that he’s not doing it right.

So you can continue what you were doing, even if he continues to cry. Taking attention away at times like these will prevent  future tantrums.

3. Avoid yelling or disqualifying him

children behaving badly

When a child misbehaves, depending on his age, he may be trying to communicate but still doesn’t know how to express it in words. Children learn by example.

If you ask her not to scream, you get exasperated and scream, you’re likely to create more confusion in your head. It is also not a good idea to tell your child that he is a bad boy or that another child is behaving better than he is.

4. Reinforce good behavior

Most parents do not praise their children’s good behavior. Phrases like “I’m glad you share your toys with your sister” or “Thanks for taking your toys and clothes, you help me a lot” will make him feel great.

Disciplining a child does not mean controlling him, it means helping him maintain self-control. It’s better for him to do the right thing because he wants to do it, than because “it’s his duty” to do it. With this you will only transmit dissatisfaction and insecurity to your child.

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