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Home >  Information A-ZAll Kids Information Articles Back-Talking


One of the most irritating phases a child will go through is when they start back-talking their parents. No matter how sweet your little angel is, at some point or another, they will test their limits and they will talk back to their parents with an attitude.

This may be something as simple as telling you "No," which is something they usually begin to do when they are a toddler, or it may be more extreme, such as them yelling at you.

Whatever you do during this time, it is important to remember that all kids do go through it, and it usually gets worse shortly after they start school. This is most likely because, with their newfound independence, they feel more in control over what goes on in their lives. This is a good thing, but it can lead to a child having an attitude with their parents and possibly even arguing with them.

No matter what discipline method you choose, it is very important to put a stop to this type of behavior as soon as possible. As kids develop more and get older, they also form stronger opinions, become braver, and are willing to say a lot more things than when they were younger. This means that if you are always consistent with discipline about this type of behavior, your child is less likely to talk back to you so much when they begin to hit those wonderful teen years.

One very important point to know about, too, is that there is usually one parent that a child will do this to more than the other. Obviously, they will pick the more lenient parent to act this way to, and it is important to not tolerate this. Instead, this parent needs to discipline the child just as strictly for this type of behavior as the other parent would.

If necessary, you can call the other parent in for back-up during these times. It is very important for your child to know that just because the stricter parent isn't around does not mean that they can behave badly toward the other one.

While it may seem like something small when your child talks back to you, you should remember that it can (and will) get worse if you let it go. When your child behaves this way as a one-time occurrence, it is one thing, but many times it will become a temporary regular behavior. In this case, it is important to evaluate what set off this attitude in your child.

Many times children will mimic what they see other children doing. This isn't usually a conscious behavior, either. If they have spent the night at a friend's house, and the next day when they come home, they argue with everything you say, it may be that your child's friend was able to talk this way to their parents, and this is why your child is doing it.

If your child starts acting this way and it continues for an extended period of time, it may be that something is bothering them that they haven't told you about. It may involve you and it may not. They could be having a hard time at school, or they could be mad at you because you didn't buy them that toy they wanted last week.

Aside from disciplining your child, you should talk to them about their behavior. It is important to find out if it really is just a phase they are going through or if there is something bigger going on.

Once you have determined the cause of the change, it is a lot easier to determine a solution.

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