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Kids Are Brats? Try Saying "No"

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Homeschool Mom: Hey parents! Try disciplining your kids to avoid bad behavior.

mom scolding kid

Perhaps I am a little old-fashioned, but I am pretty sure that there are other ways to discipline and curb poor behavior in children and relieve maternal stress other than abandoning children on highways or killing them and stuffing them into trash bags. I have three with whom I spend about as much time as a mother can with her offspring. Here are five easy things to try.

Say the word "No":
I love to say "NO" even to children who are not mine. I have no problem looking in their little faces and saying "No." In fact, saying "No" to children is good for their character. Sometimes I say "No" just because I feel like it.

Say the words "Stop that or else":
I also enjoy the words "Stop that or else...." They are easy to say and flow from the tongue like poetry when someone is noisily bickering in the backseat or repeating the same word in an endless chant meant to drive adults to distraction. Even in a class full of children, the words "Stop that or else" can work wonders.

Try giving them a punishment: These are the "or else" you previously threatened them with. There are those children that need more convincing that their behaviors must change, and that is when you choose from a list of unpleasant consequences you have decided upon in advance.

How to choose a punishment: I find that choosing punishments that make life easier for me is a good way to reward myself for good parenting. For instance, have them do chores you find tedious or take away noisy objects or other things you find objectionable like video games or TV.

What to do when "No" or "Stop that" or a punishment doesn't work: If none of these things work, then you have already ruined your child and now you must start at square one by introducing the child to the concept of "No" and "Stop that or else." I would start by emptying their rooms of everything but a mattress and bedding and one set of clean clothes. It will help them get used to the place they are headed in the future if they do not get the first two concepts down, which will be jail.

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11 comments so far | Post a comment now
mama_chita May 6, 2009, 10:59 AM

This was a great mix of humor and advice. I cracked up at the ‘If none of these things work…’ paragraph. Thanks for adding humor to my day. Now, off to discipline my two toddlers, before they………..

Hollie May 6, 2009, 10:59 AM

Words to live by. If more people did this we wouldn’t have such a generation of spoiled unruly kids.

Shelly May 6, 2009, 11:51 AM

Thank you for this article! I have been doing this with my child since she could crawl and we have never had many problems with her. Because of this we can take her anywhere and know she will behave herself.

jenny May 6, 2009, 2:22 PM

This is great advice. Not enough parents establish boundaries and administer discipline these days.

Rachel May 6, 2009, 4:44 PM

awesome job! I am FIRM believer in the “go out back and pick a switch” method. haha I do NOT and will NEVER understand the “talking it out” disciplinary method. thats complete BS and doesnt teach your child anything. That just leads to the kids being in control over you..and thats NEVER a good thing. so, thanks for making us laugh and the great advice!

Marcy May 6, 2009, 5:02 PM

Wow, really? I’m hoping this article is mostly a joke. “Stop that or else?” What happened to establishing clear boundaries and consequences so they know what to expect? I think this is the worst parenting advice I’ve ever read.

Angela May 6, 2009, 5:07 PM

Too cute, and so true. I actually HAVE taken EVERYTHING from my 11 year old’s room. She had a mattress and all white linens. Even took away fiction books. Since she had to still read for her reading class, I picked up several non-fiction books as her punishment…she turned out to love them and even learned something.

Jodi May 6, 2009, 5:08 PM

Great advice! I am a firm believer in the take things away method as stated in the last paragraph. I believe in handing out awful chores (cleaning toilets is my favorite), taking away her favorite toys and skipping her favorite tv shows. I have never asked my child to “pick a switch” as Rachel stated above. My daughter is pretty well behaved and I do believe in “shame” parenting. My daughter has had time outs (sitting against a wall) in front of her peers,in restaurants, toy stores and the grocery store and, man, is she embarrassed every time. When children learn to feel shame for certain behaviors they learn to control themselves. I am also a firm believer in teaching that shame without causing her physical harm. It’s possible to discipline and have well behaved children without causing them physical pain.

Lori May 9, 2009, 1:08 PM

great advice! And I can attest that it all works because I subscribe to this philosophy and am proud to say my kids are welcome anywhere we go.
It’s so easy why many kids today are brats. Parents are so afraid of saying “no” or “stop that or else” and their kids run the show. Almost makes you feel sorry for these pathetic parents. On second thought…nah…they deserve what they get for creating such monsters.

Ujywnrig June 28, 2009, 10:27 PM

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