Put an End to Back Talk

Dealing with your child's rude tone can be frustrating. Here'€™s how to handle back talk and get her to speak to you more respectfully.


[MUSIC] Kids start back talk around age two, with there very first no. As they get older their back talk can come more sophisticated and more unrelenting. Sometimes kids talk back because they crave the power or attention that they get when their parents get all riled up. Even nice kids sometimes talk back to their parents. Often, it's an experiment. Maybe they heard someone on TV, or a friend saying something like that, and they wanna know how you'll react. Sometimes, they just wanna get their way. They wanna get out of chores or not do their homework. Back-talk is a tricky issue, because we can't stuff the words back into their mouth. We can't tell them, you can't talk to me like that because they already did. So, what we need to do instead, is not get drawn into it, not engage. The second that you start yelling and arguing back, you are no longer a parent, you are a sibling, and you know what those conflicts look like. What I recommend is if your child says something fresh to you, very calmly just tell them it's not okay to talk to me like that. And then turn around, go do the dishes, or something boring, because that's more interesting than engaging in this back talk discussion with them. Modeling is also very important. So if you want your child to speak respectfully to you, make sure that you're speaking respectfully to your child and to your spouse. Whatever the usual emotional tone is in your home, that's what your child is going to think is normal. [MUSIC]

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