“There is a guest in your house, your father summons you and asks to get a glass of water for him. You run immediately to the kitchen and do as your father says. Oh! the fear of dad’s voice coming from another room.”
Did a wave of nostalgia hit you? You must be thinking of your childhood when one instruction from your parents was the only goal of your life. If your mom has told you to play a video game for an hour, you never dared to exceed the time by even a minute. Be it because of fear, nervousness, or restrictions...it was the time when elders were given the respect they deserved.
But the parents of this age have become lenient with their children, haven’t you all? You try to be friends with your child and not really a parent hoping that your kid will love and respect you. But do you feel that too much of your love and carefree attitude has backfired? Lack of discipline and lenient manner only spoils a child.
Types of Behavioural Problem in Kids
If a child's bad behaviour is not corrected well in time, he will become more rebellious and defiant as he grows up. But that does not mean all children will react or behave in the same way. All children face different problems in life which affect their behaviour. Following are some common behavioural problems in kids that may sound familiar to you if your child's behaviour is not up to your expectations:
Aggressive behaviour:All kids fight and get angry, it is human nature to argue and fight, but if you notice that your child’s behaviour is violent, it might be a problem. Mood disorders, frustration, trauma can result in aggressive behaviour in kids. An unhealthy environment at home also makes kids aggressive.
Lying:Lying is another common behavioural problem in kids. If parents are too strict with children, kids often resort to lying to save themselves from the wrath of their parents. Fear of getting scolded in public or fear of being hit often makes them lie. And this behavioural problem becomes a habit as they grow older.
Manipulative behaviour:Nowadays, almost all children are manipulative, but if you delve deeper, you will realise that it is parents who are responsible for this kind of behaviour in kids. These days parents hardly have time for their children and they opt for barter system with their kids to stop their relentless cries. “If you finish your lunch, then you can watch your favourite cartoon.” - Does it sound familiar to you? This kind of approach makes them believe that if they do a particular task, they will get something in return. And if you don’t comply with their demands, they cry and throw tantrums. Manipulative behaviour in kids is fine when they are young but as they grow old, it is not acceptable to their peers.
Disrespecting elders:If your kid is 2 or 3 years old and doesn’t listen to you or talks back, you will probably find it funny. Imagine the same thing when your child is all grown up and back talks at a party. Of course, you will not like it. Being over-friendly with your kids make them believe that they can say anything to you, which you should not accept. If you don’t inculcate good manners in your child at the right age, the chances of kids disrespecting elders will be even more in the future.
Bullying:Bullying is a serious issue and if not dealt with in time, it can worsen the matters. Bullying can result in emotional and physical abuse in a child. Kids who are strong often bully others in order to feel powerful and show other kids that they are superior to them. This behaviour of a child induces fear in his peers.
Bad Behaviour in Kids – Decoded
If you find their aggression beyond normal, probe deeper for possible causes of bad behaviour in children. Some of the common causes of bad behaviour in children have been listed below to help you understand possible loopholes in your parenting techniques and how you can rectify them:
Communication Gap:Today’s fast-paced lifestyle doesn’t always allow parents to spend quality time with their child. In the absence of proper interaction, the child is unable to express his feelings to busy parents. This harms long-term relationships and causes bad behaviour in children.
How to Deal With It:If you don’t give your child enough time, he will only grow apart from you as he grows up. Giving time to your child should not be an option but a responsibility. Make sure there is some time set out for family bonding every day. You can talk to your child about his school, his studies, or discuss football with him and even his favourite player. This will make him happy and he will feel that you care. You can also play board games together. If you don't have any board games at home for making family time fun, look here for some interesting board game options.
Technology:The children of this decade have access to all electronic devices, be it television, laptops, smartphones, or a play station. If parents don't pay attention, kids may watch something that is not apt for their age. They get inspired from all the wrong sources which might aggravate rash and destructive behaviour in them. Children with bad behaviour face difficulty not only with parents but also friends, teachers and peers.
How to Deal With It:Giving mobiles and laptops to children from a very young age only spoils them. So, avoid giving gadgets to your child until he is in his late teens. It is in teenage when kids are most disrespectful. If you allow him to use your laptop or mobile, make sure you set a time limit. Also, keep an eye on what your child is watching. Let him watch educational videos.
Abuse:Child abuse-verbal, physical, or sexual can scar a child’s impressionable mind forever. Children can become total introverts or extremely destructive.
How to Deal With It:A child who has been a victim of child abuse can react in different ways. Parents need to watch out for warning signs and reach out to their children. If you notice that your child keeps to himself or is scared to talk to a stranger, gently approach him and ask him what the problem is. If necessary, seek professional help.
Broken Families:A divorce or marital separation can shatter a child, who loves both his parents, emotionally. The pent-up emotions can lead to an aggressive child who follows his parents as an example.
How to Deal With It:Children are extremely sensitive, a divorce or a dispute in the family can affect him. At this age, he should receive love from his parents and he should be taught to respect his family members. So, make sure he gets your unhindered attention and love. If you have had a disagreement with your partner or a family member, it should not reach your child, else it will disturb him. Solve the matter in private, spare your child from arguments and feuds because he deserves your love.
Parental Pressure:Unreasonable expectations and excessive pressure from parents to perform in academics can cause stress in children. Little or no time for outdoor and co-curricular activities is detrimental for a child’s overall development.
How to Deal With It:Don’t force your child into something he does not like. If your child scores less marks, don’t scold him, be gentle and tell him to work harder next time. Instead of being a parent, try to be a friend first. Help him in in his studies and do not discount on his play time. A little refreshment is necessary. You can play a game of chess with your child and later help him with his homework. This way he will be assured that you are with him in everything.
Sleep Disorders:Good sleep is imperative for mental and physical regeneration for children. Watching TV and using mobile phones till late at night alters sleep patterns in children. This makes them cranky in the short term and can cause aggressive behaviour in the long term.
How To Deal With It:Insomnia is a common problem in children these days. Lack of sleep only leads to aggressive behaviour in children. Hence, it is important that you take the required action in time. Pamper your child but don’t spoil him. If you are allowing your child to play a game on your smartphone, set a time limit; give him a clear instruction that he cannot use a computer or mobile before bedtime. Be a little stern if need be, if you don’t control matters when necessary it will affect your child’s health and behaviour.
Faulty Food Habits:Children nowadays are hooked on to junk food. The regular pizzas, burgers and colas take a toll on their health. Research has shown that excess intake of junk food can lead to behavioural disorders in children.
How To Deal With It:If you wish to improve your child’s behaviour, assess his eating habits too. Convincing a child to quit junk food is hard, and you will have to do it too. After all, your child looks up to you. We know it is hard to give up those cheesy pizzas topped with jalapeños and olives, but do it for your child’s sake. Make a rule to eat out only once or twice in a month, discuss the health benefits of fruits and green vegetables with your child to spike his interest. You can even try an attractive recipe with healthy veggies.
Parents' Failure to Incorporate Good Manners:Children learn whatever they are taught. If parents don’t inculcate good manners and correct behavioural principles at the right age, children will also grow up to be disobedient and aggressive.
How To Deal With It:Instil good habits in children from a very young age. Teach your child to respect elders; tell him to treat everyone equally-whether rich or poor-discuss why it is important. Be polite to everyone and let him observe you. Children learn from their parents. So, watch your actions too! Inculcating good manners in children is important, you can even take help from this suitable reading material for kids to inculcate good manners in them.
Unhealthy Home Environment:If parents fight in front of their children, they feel scared and insecure. Such poor environment at home makes the child feel neglected and unloved, which might lead to low self-esteem, rebellious behaviour, and other personality issues in future.
How To Deal With ItYour problems should never affect your child. Create a positive environment in your home. Home is not a place, it a feeling and it is a reflection of the times spent together as a family. So, make sure you create good memories with your child because when he grows up and moves out in search of his life, he will always have his happy place to return to.
Consumerism:Children have become demanding nowadays. Parents’ of this generation are lenient, which actually spoils children. From a young age, children wear expensive clothes and go to fancy restaurants, that they don’t value money and people and take things for granted. Exposure to constant commercials on TV and print makes them want to own every new object in the market.
How To Deal With ItAs parents, it is critical to draw a line and not give in to all such demands from your children. Acquaint your child with realities of life. Make him understand that they should value people and not be materialistic.
To inculcate good behaviour and habits in your kids, start leading by example. Show them how to behave appropriately and they’ll follow suit.
Why do you think children behave badly? Share your thoughts and experiences with us!
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