Parenting Tip: Give Short Explanations

Just yesterday I was at the grocery store and I heard the following conversation between a mother and her first-grader: Now, Suzie, I am sorry but you cannot buy any candy. It isn’t good for your body, which needs certain nutrients for you to grow big and strong. Plus sugar is not good for your teeth. If you eat that candy now, you won’t be hungry for dinner when we get home. . . . All the while, Suzie was whining and complaining that she wanted to buy this special candy. Each point the mother made was countered with an argument from Suzie. If you have ever found yourself in a situation like this one, you could benefit from this tip: Rather than give a long explanation, repeat a simple phrase. Parents often find themselves trying to reason with their kids. If you say just the right thing, then perhaps your children will see the wisdom of your words. What happens more often than not, however, is that your children either tune you out or they use your words as ammunition to argue wit..
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