How to deal with your child’s manipulative behaviour?

I have a mum who’s written in, asking about her ten year old son. He tends to throw tantrums, blackmails her, sulks, and basically has some manipulative behavior that she does not know how to handle, and she ends up usually giving in to his demands, and sometimes, very very unreasonable demands. So how can I help his mum?

So today’s five points are:

1) Recognize the manipulative behaviors of your child. Some children tend to say, I know you love my sister more than me, I know you don’t love me at all, I know you never think nicely about me, whatever I do, they throw tantrums. So make a list of the manipulative behaviors that your child tends to do, so you are ready with some sort of preparation to help him.

2) Know your own triggers. Sometimes as parents, there is something that actually hurts us within, whether it is your child saying, you don’t love me, that hurts us because we want our child to know that we love them more than anything in the world, and that is a very very powerful anti-behavior of the child. So as a parent know your own triggers, what is it that hits you here, and really upsets you. So if you have a list of that, then you know when the child is behaving in that particular manner, you need to back off from the situation.

3) Define your families rules, define your boundaries. What is acceptable to you as a parent, what is not acceptable in terms of the children’s behavior, and in the long run, this always helps because for children, it is very very important that they work in certain framework. Just like in school, they know they have to attend school lets say from 8 to 3, so they’re mentally prepared. So if you have a family guide, or a family rule book, where a lot of the major components are written in, or have been discussed openly, then the children know that no matter what, they are not going to be able to break those rules, and get something that they want.

4) Teach your children, effective communication. Teach them that by throwing a tantrum or by saying hurtful things, or by sulking, and not talking for hours and days on end, their demands are not going to be met. Teach them to approach you at a time when everyone is in a calm mood, when everyone is ready to have communication at the same level. So teach your children the do’s and don’ts of effective communication.

5) Believe in your child. I know it is very difficult when children can sometimes put up a lot of negative behavior, and they come across as very manipulative, but it is always important to realize that they are little innocent beings, and their intentions, behind the behavior are normally good intentions. But its the cover of that bad behavior that puts us off and we feel that they don’t realize how much we love them, or we feel that they are not getting how much we are trying to put into the family or in parenthood. But realize that your children are coming from a place of good intentions, and when you believe in your child, your child learns to believe in himself.

To recap the five points:

(1) Recognize the manipulative behaviors of your child
(2) Know your own triggers
(3) Define your families values
(4) Teach your children how to communicate effectively
(5) Believe in your child

Do feel free to email me about any further questions about children or parenting on or inbox me on my Facebook page: Athena Coaching Solutions or you could also call me on (+971) 0561399033