Words Parents Should Never Speak To Their Kids
By Michael Russell
Positive words can make such a difference in a child's life.
Unfortunately, negative words can impact a child's life in a way
that's unbeneficial. Find out words parents should never say to
Parents are people and unfortunately people can make mistakes even
with their kids. Words that don't seem detrimental to adults can
harm kids. Parents don't try offend or put down their kids on
purpose, but sometimes it's the seemingly harmless statements
parents often make that can really shake a child's self-worth and
assurance. Parents (and people in general) have said things that
they didn't mean. Parents shouldn't be on pins and needles wonder
whether what they just said harmed their child. However, it doesn't
hurt for parents to think twice before they say certain things.
One thing shouldn't be said to a child is "Stop being a crybaby,
idiot, etc" in front of a child's friends. A child may be acting
like an actual crybaby or idiot and a parent may think they have
every right to say so, but they shouldn't criticize a child's
behavior in front of others. It would be better to talk privately to
the child about their behavior.
Another thing that shouldn't be said to a child is "You should
act more like your sibling". This suggests to the child that they
are not acceptable the way they are. Whenever you compare brothers
and sisters, it can hurt the relationship between them. If brothers
and sisters are not already getting along doing, this will not help
any. When you compare one child against another, you're pointing out
their flaws and faults. It's better to focus on the individual child
and their possibility for improvement without bringing in their
sibling. The parent should ask that specific child how they can help
that child improve their grades for example one on one.
Another thing that shouldn't be said to a child is "Don't bother
me, can't you see I'm busy". Children seem to want to pounce on
their parents the minute they walk through the door after work. The
parent is tired and the kids are eager to share what they did at
school or what happened during their day. The kids are not trying to
get on a parent's nerves; they just want to be close to their
parents. Parents do have other important things to do and a child's
needs are non stop. However, it is important to spend time alone
with your kids on a regular basis because children develop
self-confidence from the attention and time spent with their
parents. Instead of say "Not now" tell them to give you a few
minutes go to the restroom, change your clothes and/or get a snack
and then they can tell you all about their day.
A statement parents should not say to their kids is "Why can't
you act more mature?" Kids want to feel that they have accomplished
something, to feel sure and capable of doing something right. Kids
will make mistakes because they are learning new things. It is not
wise to judge kids as "big babies" or childish just because they
drop a glass of drink or wet the bed on occasion. Such remarks can
only cause nervousness and embarrassment. Fear of disappointment
from a parent because a child has made a mistake will only cause
more mistakes to happen. A child should be able to receive a sense
of achievement from their parents in learning a new thing. A parent
should give praise to their children when they can go to the potty
by themselves or can drink from a "big cup" now. If a child needs to
be corrected, turn a negative into a positive. For example, when a
child drops their cup and their drink spills don't say "Why can't
you act more grown up?" but say "You dropped your drink. Since you
are a big girl/boy now, I know you'll be able to hold your drink
without spilling on the next try".
Another statement a parent shouldn't say to a child is "I was
only kidding with you". A parent may think it's their job to tease
their kids at home to prepare them for the possible teasing they
would receive from the outside world. This concept doesn't work.
Teasing from a parent can feel like embarrassment to young children.
A parent wouldn't beat up their kids at home as a way to prepare
them for fights on the playground. A parent's job is to provide a
safe haven from the world and to love them. The world can toughen
kids up in its own time.
Another statement a parent shouldn't say is "My child is always
good and never does a bad thing". This way of thinking is not fair
to the child. Even children can have competitive and angry feelings.
Parents should let kids have a range of both positive as well as
negative feelings. To not be allowed this is not praise but
manipulation. A better way to give proper praise (or criticism for
that matter) is to point out the behavior and not the child. Say
"What you did was great" instead of "You're such a good boy/girl".
Another statement a parent shouldn't say is "I'll do it myself,
you're too slow". A child will feel that they can't do anything
right if parents have this attitude. Parents should resist the urge
to do things for their kids especially when the kids are old enough
to do it themselves like put on their shoes or pick up their toys.
It will leave the kids with the idea of why do something, my parents
will just do it for me so I won't have to.
What a parent SHOULD say to a child? "I'm sorry" if they say
something cruel or do something wrong to their children. Parents may
think this takes away from their authority if they apologize to
their children. Children deserve respect just as adults do. Get to
the point and say you're sorry and didn't mean to and even if you
said or did something wrong, let them know you still love them.
Michael Russell - Your Independent guide to