How to Parent a Difficult Child Effectively

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Are you struggling with a child who is disrespectful, obnoxious, or constantly challenges you? Are you frustrated and exhausted from arguing constantly and just want to figure out how to have peace in your home? Trust me, I know the feeling. All children behave badly from time to time. But, when defiance, hostility and refusal to comply are a constant behavior from your child (as it is in my home) that affects the entire family, you’ll know it requires a more serious intervention. As I’ve learned from experience, parenting a difficult child can be extremely challenging. A child who resists cooperating, refuses to listen or throws temper tantrums to get his or her way can be nearly impossible to control if you don’t know how to address it effectively. For me, this was and is an ongoing struggle in my home. However, with the proper resources, I’m learning to effectively address my daughter’s negative behaviors. I’ve learned by establishing clear rules and assigning natural consequences to bad behavior, parents remove themselves from the discipline process and place the responsibility on the child. Be sure to discuss and agree upon specific rules with your spouse, explain the new rules to your child in a calm manner and be sure not to wait until your child is upset to introduce the rules. Make sure you create appropriate consequences that will occur if your child breaks a rule. Make sure he or she completely understands what will happen if the rules are broken. They need to understand that choosing the behavior means choosing the consequence. Make sure you’re consistent and follow through with every consequence you set up for making poor chooses. Consistency is the only way children will learn from their mistakes and avoid making the same poor choices repeatedly. Also, try to find teachable moments to talk to your child about making the right decisions and about the consequences people face for making poor decisions. Something I find that works well with my...
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