If you are searching more about parenting a difficult child, I know that you feel confused and overwhelmed. Unfortunately, parenting is hard no matter how much we love our children.
Every child is different and every child is not a big fan of rules. However, there are some children that are hard to control. It’s not just about disobeying rules. It’s about causing problems for everyone.
It’s hard for a parent to admit that their child is not so perfect. It’s hard to admit that you can’t see the right path for you and your child. In this article, I will help you to make a plan for handling this tricky situation.
What Is A Difficult Child?
It’s hard to put a definition on a difficult child. First of all, it depends on what kind of person you are. Some people are more flexible, and some people are strict. Maybe you’re a modern mom who allows freedom in your house. Maybe you’re on the traditional side and you have your rules.
Whatever style of parenting you have, you are a good mom. Don’t doubt that for a second. As I’ve said, everybody is different. Some kids are more complicated. When it comes to defining a difficult child, it depends on you and your parenting style.
A challenging child can be a picky, clingy, or shy child. Also, a child who is aggressive, loud, disrespectful, and rude can be considered difficult. If you’re having problems with your kid even though you’re trying to be a good parent and giving them everything they need, you have a difficult child.
Parenting a difficult child is a great challenge. The love you feel for your child is unconditional, and it is almost impossible to be harsh and strict. Unfortunately, that’s life. Kids can’t be adults, and they can’t know everything.
No matter how old is your child you’re the one who has to show them the right path in life. You’re responsible for your children. It’s hard to admit that something is wrong, but if you want your child to become a good person, you have to work on your difficult situation.
Parenting a difficult child will take away everything from you at some point, but it will be worth it. One day, you will realize that your fight was worth it. Your fight and dedication will pay off.
Also, your child will understand the power of a mother’s love. Not giving up on our children should be a priority.
What To Do?
Parenting a difficult child should be an organized task. You have to accept the fact that your child needs a different approach. Even if you have other children who are responding great to your current parenting style, you have to accept that it’s not working with this child.
There are different kids with different behavior that’s not harmful to anyone. Those aren’t difficult kids. They’re simply unique.
If your child is breaking rules, causing problems for everyone and everywhere, you can’t let that go. Managing this problem is hard, but it has to be done.
Of course, it all depends on how old your child is. It’s not the same for a one-year-old and a fourteen-year-old child.
Little babies can also be difficult, but that approach is much easier since they completely depend on you. You just have to stick to your rules, and they will get used to it.
If you have a difficult toddler who can eat, drink, and go to the bathroom alone, you should work on solving that problem. Difficult children at a young age can stay like that if you don’t do anything.
When it comes to older children, the approach varies. It depends on their age, gender, habits, likes, and dislikes. I will talk in general, and you can use everything and apply it to your child. Modify it and make the best out of it.
Accept The Problem
It can be difficult to accept that you have a problem. It’s hard to admit that your child is difficult. It’s hard to accept it and deal with it.
However, that is the first step when it comes to parenting a difficult child. You have to understand that no matter how much you love your kid, there is a problem.
You can’t let it go, because your child will suffer in the future. Besides, other people could suffer because you didn’t solve this issue. This is the hard time when you have to become a strong-willed mom.
Identify The Problem
Sometimes it’s not so hard to accept the fact that your child is problematic and difficult. You see it, your partner sees it, and everybody else sees it. However, it can be hard to recognize the problem.
You are so busy with problems your child is causing, that you didn’t have the time to think about the cause of that behavior. Take some time and analyze it. Analyze your child.
Try to remember when it all started, when you’ve started noticing these changes that didn’t seem important. However, it’s important to talk.
Maybe you know what it is, but maybe you’re wrong. Children are little people, and they go through a lot every day. You have to talk with your kid and be there. Be open-minded and supportive.
Sometimes, children are filled with rage and anger. There is a reason for that. So, don’t just ignore their words and thoughts. Don’t guess. Maybe you will be wrong and you will try to solve a problem that doesn’t exist.
If your child is not interested in talking, be persistent. Be persistent, but full of love and understanding at the same time. If you didn’t have a successful talk, don’t worry, there is still hope.
Stay Calm And Patient
If you know the reason behind these problems, it’s time to talk about solutions. Even if you don’t know what the real cause is, you have to keep going. The most important thing when parenting a difficult child is staying calm and keeping your composure.
It sounds impossible, but it’s essential. If your child is truly difficult, your anger and yelling will make it worse. If you start making a scene, you won’t do anything good for yourself or your child.
Stay calm whatever you do. It’s time to set some boundaries. Tell your child that you understand everything, even if you don’t. Explain that you’re someone who is always there.
Just open your heart and relax. After being gentle, it’s time to get back to solving problems. Tell your child that no matter how much you love them, you can’t allow certain behavior. Try to explain why their behavior is not okay.
This is the time when you could get nervous and mad, but please stay grounded. No matter what your child says to you, you have to stay calm and stick to your principles.
Tell them that you would love for them to behave nicer and that you will do everything in your power to make that happen. Maybe this will be a good moment, but it’s possible to experience negative emotions coming from your child.
Whatever happens, it’s time to speak up about your rules and boundaries. Figure out the perfect punishment. A punishment that will make them think about their behavior and attitude. It could be something like taking away their phone, computer, or toy.
Remind your child that you only want what’s best for them. You want to see them happy, but they have to learn some important things in life.
Be Persistent And Stick To Your Rules
Parenting a difficult child is truly exhausting. I understand that all the rules, punishments, grounding them, and arguing with them are hard. Some kids are not even hard to manage. Parents can be difficult too.
When parenting a difficult child, you have to stay tough. Maybe you don’t have the strength for another argument. Maybe you don’t know how to ground your child this time. Maybe you simply feel sorry for your kid.
All of this is perfectly understandable. It’s your kid, your favorite person. But, you have to stay strong. Follow your rules and stay devoted to your principles.
If you get soft before it’s time, you will make it worse. Your child will see your weakness and the bad behavior will continue. It will be hard to start over. So, try to keep up with your own rules, and stay consistent and persistent.
Show Love No Matter What
When parenting a difficult child, staying committed to your routine is a must. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t be a loving parent at the same time. Like I’ve said, being calm and cool will get you places.
Even if you’ve grounded your child, try to express love and compassion. It’s important to be gentle even when you’re disciplining your kid. Don’t ever forget that.
Reward Your Child
Talking, punishments, and everything else is quite normal if you’re parenting a difficult child. That’s something that has to be done and that’s it. But, if your child is improving or doing something good in general, reward that good behavior, even if you wouldn’t reward it.
You have to show your child that you have a softer side too. This will show that you’re fair and kind. Also, your kid will see that you know what’s good and what’s not. Maybe your reward will motivate them to be better and less difficult.
Positive reinforcement is an effective way to improve someone’s attitude and self-esteem.
These are some essential steps when you’re approaching your problem. Parenting a difficult child takes time and effort. Use these steps and modify them for your situation.
How To Stay Calm?
I’ve mentioned a few times that staying calm and strong-willed is important. You probably know that it’s better to stay calm. However, it can be hard. Your child is creating problems. Maybe they are big problems. And you’re supposed to stay calm?
Everything is a challenge and a test when parenting a difficult child, but being calm and patient is extremely hard.
You have to find a way to accomplish this. Deep breathing, yelling when you’re alone, running, or anything that will remove anger from you is needed now.
Maybe your anger will change things for the better. Maybe your child will get scared and obey you when you start yelling and screaming. But, in the long run, that’s not what you want.
A child that is afraid won’t tell you anything. You will miss many important things. Also, you could miss some important things just because your kid was too afraid to tell you. That’s why you have to learn how to be calm and understanding when talking with your child.
Maybe it seems useless in the beginning, but trust me, it will pay off eventually. One day you will realize that your child sees love and support. Besides, being angry and scary works only temporarily.
Children grow up, and it’s meaningless for them to be afraid of you. You deserve respect, and that’s something that doesn’t have to include fear.
Talking with your children and being realistic will get you respect. Don’t be angry and loud with your kids, be authoritative. Find a way to get through to your children without scaring them. That will chase them away forever.
It’s hard to achieve this and there will be times when you won’t succeed. That’s okay. It happens. You’re a human being and you’re not perfect. If you’ve crossed the line, try to apologize. There will be many love and power struggles inside you.
Apologizing sounds like the last thing when parenting a difficult child. However, that is something that could make your child softer and more approachable. They will understand that everybody makes mistakes and it’s okay to try and correct them.
Considering A Professional Help
Parenting a difficult child can be too hard for you as a parent. There are professionals who can help you and there is no shame in that. You know that you’ve done your best and now it’s time for a different approach.
Maybe your child has some special needs that are hard to understand without professional help and instructions.
Besides, seeing a therapist is someone everyone should do. Talking about your feelings with someone who can be helpful and objective is truly healing for your mental health.
Conversations between your child and therapists are private, but if your child is a minor, you will know some basics. The therapist will suggest some things that could help with rebuilding your relationship.
The problem with this option is getting your child to be on board. Children who are open when it comes to talking with friends and family have difficulties when talking with a therapist.
Again, explain to your child in a gentle way why it’s important to do this. The therapist will find a way to get through to your child, don’t worry about that.
Many people are ashamed of this, even though there is nothing wrong with it. There are some parents whose children are causing serious issues in school, family, and community, and they’re still refusing to visit a therapist.
Consider A Family Therapy
After a few sessions between your child and therapist, talk about a family session. Of course, maybe it’s not necessary if your child is troubled with some things that aren’t connected with your family.
However, it can’t hurt you. Family therapy is a great way to reconnect and share your feelings. It can be done at home, but a therapist will be there to guide you and give you some tips for improving your communication and relationship in general.
Therefore, don’t run from this, and do it to mend family ties. You will be surprised by the positive transformation of your family life and mental health.
Include The Whole Family
Parenting a difficult child takes a lot of time and dedication. However, if you’re alone in this challenge, it’s time to change that. If your partner is too busy with something else, it’s time to shift that focus to your child. Both of you are parents.
This is important. Even if your child is very young, certain behavior is unacceptable, and it needs to be stopped. Maybe you can handle this all alone, but don’t do that.
Your partner and the rest of the family should be involved. This is not the time for secrets, standing behind, or not caring. You’re doing something important that has to be done, and you have to talk with everyone else.
If your partner is not on the same page, you have to solve that. You have to compromise as soon as possible and move on. Parenting a difficult child is tougher for moms, but you have to explain your concerns and opinions to your partner.
If you have other kids, you should inform them. Don’t exclude them or neglect them. If they’re big enough, explain that their sibling is not behaving right. Explain that they shouldn’t follow their behavior.
Another important thing is telling everyone who is in frequent contact with your child, that you have some rules from now on and everyone should respect them. It’s not uncommon that people don’t get these things seriously. Sometimes family members encourage negative behavior.
The point is, to stand up for yourself. If you’re on a mission to improve your child’s behavior, be serious about it, and don’t let anyone bring you down. You don’t need someone who will slow down your progress. You need help and support.
What To Do If Nothing Is Working
All of these things are highly effective and instructive if you’re parenting a difficult child. But sometimes, they don’t work. Maybe your child is not so problematic, but there is no way to get through.
You’re a mom and I know that you won’t give up. Every day is a new day, and it’s always good to try. Don’t feel sad and discouraged, it will pass.
I would also like to talk more about cases where nothing helps. Unfortunately, some kids lose their way. Maybe you’re a parent of an extremely difficult child who has too many problems.
Maybe you have too many problems and these methods for parenting a difficult child seem ridiculous and outdated. And I get that. Life happens and sometimes you’re in a situation where you can’t do anything.
Of course, this scenario usually happens with older children. No matter how old they are, you love them too much. And it hurts that you couldn’t change anything.
I know that you can’t stop caring and worrying. I know that you feel defeated. But you have to stay confident. You have to remind yourself that you did everything in your power to change the situation. Don’t belittle your parenting strategies.
Your love and care were always there. You truly worked hard as a mom. Things didn’t work out the way you wanted them to, but don’t feel bad. Try to look forward and hope that the future will bring better things.
Try to say some nice things to yourself and encourage yourself. Life is not always fair, but in most cases, that’s not your fault.
I Feel Like My Child Hates Me
Unfortunately, the feeling of being hated by your own child happens. Even if you’re not parenting a difficult child, you can feel like this.
Kids don’t know many things, and they’re still learning and growing. They don’t appreciate their parents enough. This is even more present when they’re teenagers. In most cases, this feeling goes away. Children grow up, and they become more gentle and understanding.
However, if you’re parenting a difficult child, you probably feel that your child hates you all day, every day. You feel unloved even when you don’t try to discipline your child. Bad behavior makes you feel like a bad parent.
You feel unappreciated and humiliated. Of course, if you’re trying to manage your child’s behavior, you feel like the worst world.
Your child doesn’t hate you. This is a confusing time and some things are left behind. If your child knew anything that mattered, they wouldn’t behave like this. Don’t take this by heart and try to focus on solving the problem. You have to keep a positive mindset and you have to keep your faith strong.
Raising kids is hard. It’s an everyday job without vacation. Sometimes, things don’t go as planned, and your kids become big trouble.
It’s not the end of the world. You have to be stronger than ever because parenting a difficult child requires strength. This is a challenging time for parents, but you can make this right. Your love, care, and support will help you during difficult times. Don’t give up, and get to work.
Hi all, I am Sidney, a nutritionist by education, a hobbyist photographer, and a mother to two sweet girls who are my motivation. I love sharing the tips and tricks I gained all these years I’ve been a mother. I hope it will help you!