Why Parents Need to Practice Saying No

by Vickie Louise

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Saying “NO” to your kids is tough, as moms all we want is for our children to be happy. So why should we be saying “NO”?

Are you saying ‘No” to your children enough? Or not??

“No” is a firm word that we might use to direct our waitress to what we want to order from the menu, to answer the doctor during an exam, or a to contest a salesman’s unwanted suggestion.

But when did “No” become such a difficult word for parents to say? When did “NO” become so hard?

 

“I’m sorry honey, but…”

Looking back, I think “No” became a taboo for parents because all of the parenting books suggested we limit saying it.

We were told not to say “no”, but to explain to our children why they needed to stop. Instead of “No! You cannot have another cookie” we became “I’m sorry honey, you’ve already had three cookies and we need to save them for tomorrow” parents.

And there’s nothing wrong with this; until your child becomes a teenager and “No” isn’t an acceptable word to them.

Today’s teenagers don’t have a clue how to handle ‘No” and although it was intended to be a good thing, it isn’t! When they hear “No”, they want to know why, they want to negotiate, or they behave like a toddler who was just told “No” for the first time.

Don’t wait until your child is a teenager to start expressing your use of “No!”

 

It’s exhausting!

It is absolutely exhausting to spend hours, days even, arguing with a teenager who is fighting your sudden use of “no.”

It can cause YOU anxiety, fear, and an array of other overwhelming emotions. — Have you ever heard the story of the mom who went to the physiologist for the first time?

She went in sobbing, telling the doctor everything that was going on at home. How her son and daughter make her feel like she is the worst parent ever. How she doubts her parenting so much that she now doubts her ability to do anything. How she can’t work, concentrate, or do her day to day tasks. When she finished pleading her case and asked for the doctor’s opinion, he said to her:

“Yes, I know exactly what is wrong, you’re parenting teenagers!”

(Scream)

 

Become a “NO” Parent!

Become a “NO” Parent before it is too late! When you feel a strong urge to say “No”, say it! Mean it! Don’t waver from it!

If your child has had two cookies and now wants a third, tell them “No.” If your baby is trying to plug something into an outlet, tell her “No.” If your tween wants to hang out with someone you know isn’t a good influence, tell them ‘NO!”

Say it whenever you feel the need for it. Practice it. Practice it daily, that way, when your kids are teenagers, they will know and understand that NO MEANS NO (and I”m not just talking about date rape lingo here!)

 

NO MEANS NO, so mommy can keep her sanity until the kids are grown! No means no so parents can set boundaries without argument. Do you have a great tip for practicing “No”?

 

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