It’s important to establish rules and expectations for your children early on in their lives. However, sometimes it can be difficult when they don’t agree with the rules you set forth or choose to ignore them altogether. To avoid confusion or unnecessary punishment, make sure they understand why these are so important before setting out any guidelines.
Younger children do not typically understand a lengthy explanation of why it’s important that they should be home from their friend’s house at a specific time or why they aren’t allowed to play ball in the house. But when possible, try explaining things using simple language and examples, so your child is more likely to comprehend what you’re saying.
When you tell your child, they can’t play with something or someone, stay calm and explain that it’s because “it makes me happy when you follow house rules.” You should also avoid using the phrase, “Because I said so,” as this only adds to their frustration.
Younger children, especially those still in primary school or just entering them, will need a less direct and more informative explanation of why you don’t want your child hanging out with friends past 10 pm. For example: “I asked you to be home by 10 pm because we have an appointment early the next morning for our check-up at the dentist’s.”
You can also remind younger children of previous consequences if they break this rule, such as being grounded from something special like going over to their friend’s house. Checking it off on his/her calendar day by day until completed which helps him/her visualize how long he must wait before seeing their friend again.
It is usual for children to ask why they are expected to follow specific rules. They want more information to make sense of their world, and this shows that you have raised your child well by teaching them critical thinking skills!
Though your child may challenge you by asking the reasoning behind a rule, it also shows growth as an individual thinker. This will help prevent anger or frustration when dealing with these questions; after all, they’re simply trying to learn about their environment around them. It’s entirely natural for kids to question authority, so don’t get angry at such inquiries – realizing how much work has gone into raising an independent-thinking kid who knows what he/she wants means parents should be proud too!