“Why doesn’t this kid ever listen?”

Why Does This Kid Not Listen- (3)

Little Jerome was tagging along with his mom on a mission. “Mom, I can have this?” he pleaded. They were in the cereal aisle, and mom was comparing the labels of generic raisin bran and the brand name equivalent.  Jerome was pointing at the Fruit Loops a few feet away.

Mom glanced at him for a brief second, proclaiming “No, hon,” and then continued her label analysis.

Jerome got louder. “Mom! I want Fruit Loops. We never get Fruit Loops!”

Mom grew visibly irritated, as if she knew where this might head if she didn’t quickly nip it in the bud. “Jerome, you know we are not getting Fruit Loops. Now put those back and get over here.” Jerome was hesitant. “You listen to me young man!” She was firm. “Do I need to put you in the cart?” Jerome held the box close to his chest. Mom set the bran down and, as if she knew she had an audience, huffed, “Why doesn’t this kid ever listen?” She took the Fruit Loops from frowning Jerome, lifted him into the cart, grabbed a couple of the bran boxes and scurried away.

As she rounded the corner I silently answered her question. “Your kid doesn’t listen because you don’t listen to him.”

5 Ways to Communicate Love No Matter What (Even in Misbehavior!)

Father and Son Connection in DisciplineThis is part of a series on “Discipline that Connects®: Four Powerful Messages All Kids Long to Hear”.

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Communicating “love no matter what” when kids misbehave can seem like a tall order. But when these five simple changes come from a calmed heart, they can powerfully turn the tide of negative discipline encounters.

If We Want Kids To Listen Well To Us

If We Want Kids to Listen

If we want kids to listen well to us, we must first learn to listen well to them. One mom reported, “My kids tell me they know I’m not listening when they tell me about something and I just say ‘Oh that’s nice.’ I know that to listen well requires that I stop my agenda for a minute and really focus on hearing what they’re saying, and responding to the details.”

This is the essence of listening well. You can’t expect your kids to listen to you if you’re not modeling it for them. So before you work too hard on getting your kids to listen to you, take some time to reflect on your listening habits.