This week I will be implementing a second new rule with the children to help calm down this household. This rule, though I’m sure is a given for most households, has been a real struggle in ours for a lot of reasons. The rule is: No Talking Back. To understand why this rule has gone out the window up until this point in our household, takes some understanding of the kids, mainly my daughter.
My daughter was speech delayed as a toddler and consequently, she wasn’t able to express herself at a critical time when children are starting to verbalize needs and wants. This created some behavioral problems with her that resulted in her lashing out physically when she would get frustrated or when things didn’t go her way. As the speech issues resolved themselves, we encouraged her to use her words instead of her hands, feet, and teeth to express herself. Even if this meant talking back when asked to do something or told not to do something, the talking was an improvement over the physical lashing out that use to occur so we were making progress. However, as she has matured, the talking back only adds to the chaos in the household since she has gotten used to being able to say “no” or a variety of other things when asked to do something or not to do something.
By going through this with my daughter, my son who is two years younger, saw how she behaved and decided he could also get away with it and so we have two children that verbalize A LOT when asked to do something that they don’t want to do or told to stop doing something. This leads to arguing between them as well as my husband and I and this week, it is going to stop.
I realize that this rule is going to be one of the hardest to implement in order to ease the chaos in the household, but it is something that must be done. So, to help ease this transition I’m going to set up a reward for the kids. We have been using rewards that don’t involve food or buying anything in other areas and I’m going to add this to the list. Hopefully this will be enough of an incentive to help this become a habit, if not, I may have to raise the stakes a little. I will keep you posted on how this rule implementation goes.