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Misbehaving, not listening

My kid is misbehaving, refusing to listen...

and I don’t know what to do.

Do you have a “troublemaker” who doesn’t seem to respond to anything you do?

Are they constantly up to no good, testing your boundaries, and refusing to listen to anything you say?

Sometimes they keep at it all day and you can’t wait for them to fall asleep in the evening so you can get some peace and quiet?

You’ve tried practically everything:

Explaining. Negotiating. Yelling. Saying a firm “no”. Threatening. Spanking. Taking away privileges until they straighten up. Promising a reward if they behave well (at the doctor, for instance).

Yet still neither the carrot nor the stick seem to work?

How the Unparenting course can help:

Don’t worry, we aren’t going to regurgitate generic phrases like, “You just have to be firm with them,” “Be consistent,” and, “Children want boundaries.” You probably already know what you should do. The problem is figuring out how.

We will help you filter out the ineffective parenting strategies that often accidentally create that out-of-control, disobedient child. We will show you how to respond when they get on a roll so that you keep the situation in hand and they don’t completely lose it. And we will teach you how to set up boundaries that work. 

If your child hasn’t responded to boundaries before, with Unparenting they will.

You’ll hear about what boundaries children need most and why commands and orders don’t work on them. You’ll learn how to set up boundaries that your child will respect instead of constantly pushing to see what you’ll tolerate. As a result, your child will start to see you as a natural authority.

All the techniques you will see in the course can be used even with the youngest babies. So if you have a little one who isn’t talking much yet (but might be getting up to plenty of mischief already), you don’t need to worry that they won’t work. We’ll give you plenty of guidance on how to do it.

You will learn what to do when your little ones keep on doing things you don’t want them to do (getting into the potted plants, throwing things all around, running into the street), how to get through challenging situations that always cause a fuss (diaper changes, baths, trimming nails), and how to set up boundaries so things don’t spiral out of control. 

How parents from the Unparenting course have handled misbehavior:

I have to say that I’d always thought my daughter was a total wild child. She was so opinionated even as a little baby, and for me as a less assertive sort of person, that could get pretty tough. Then Unparenting came along. I guess my little girl should have taught me to say what I need. Things have been going great since then. My daughter is incredibly helpful and puts so much energy into contributing to the family. Sometimes I can’t believe what a full-fledged member of the family she is at just 20 months old. I think she’s reflecting the way we help each other out. When we treat her as a partner, she wants to cooperate.

After almost two months with Unparenting, I feel like I can work practically anything out with my younger daughter (22 months). The child who always wanted to go the opposite direction … the tiny hurricane it was impossible to pick up after … and yet it doesn’t actually take much. Just tell her what I need and why, and give her space. Finally I’ve learned that I don’t always have to get my own way, that she won’t grow up into a criminal if she gets her way sometimes. Sometimes you just forbid things or give orders to give yourself the feeling that you’re doing right but without any solid reason. The most important thing is that now I feel calm, centered, and able to stop and look for solutions in difficult situations.

I used to think my kid had a death wish. I was ready to write him off as hyperactive. After my incredibly calm, perceptive firstborn daughter, I got this bold explorer who never understood why some things were off-limits. He was always up on the table, shelf, windowsill — or sticking crayons into the electrical outlets. Four or five times a week (no exaggerating), I had to wash bloodstained clothes, usually small stains, but that’s not exactly reassuring. It was so stressful wiping blood off his mouth on a daily basis. I dove headfirst into Unparenting out of sheer desperation, and the results left me speechless.

I realized what he wanted and needed. He sees the world completely differently than his calm sister. He’s probably going to become a physicist or mechanic or maybe some extreme-sports athlete or something. Eventually I was able to explain to him why something was off-limits, and shockingly he would get it on the first or second try. That was when he was about 18 months. It worked because I said it calmly, without yelling or smacking his hand or spanking, just explaining why something was not okay, that I was worried he might fall or whatever. Thank you, Unparenting, for helping me fall in love with my little boy all over again when I learned to appreciate how he sees the world. The hyperactive wild child is now an amazing, understanding, perceptive 2-year-old. :)

Hi, thank you so much for yesterday’s audio. I sent it to my mom too. She’s an amazing preschool teacher with more than 30 years of experience (including special ed). Her kids love her, but she still thought the audio was great. She said she took her preschool kids to pottery today. Generally they listen and do what she asks, but they always act up at pottery.

Today she tried your method out (how would they like to do things, etc.) and apparently couldn’t believe how well-behaved and amazing they were. So Unparenting isn’t just for parents. It’s for anyone who wants to have a wonderful relationship with children. Grandparents, teachers, school counselors, anyone. Thank you for everything you do.

We’ve seen a huge improvement, like the atmosphere was lifting and the air clearing up. My daughter (15 months) “misbehaves” much less now (or I no longer see it as misbehaving). It’s easier to communicate with her, if you can call it that at this age (Unparenting taught me that yes, you can communicate with babies even at this age). Yesterday in the grocery store, for instance, my daughter started running along the shelves, pulling things off as she went. In the past I would probably have raised my voice and tried to stop her, but this time I tried to look at things from her point of view. I asked if she would like to look at the things on the shelves, described what they were, helped her explore them, and then showed her why and how to put them back on the shelf. And she did! She put things back with no yelling, and she was proud of herself for managing it!

I definitely recommend doing the experience audios, because they helped me remember what it was like to be a young child myself. I realized that sometimes I treat my children in exactly the way I didn’t want adults to treat me back then. Thank you for that! And thank you for all the practical tips on communication and how to handle difficult situations.

My two kids have big personalities. The first is my daughter. When she was 18 months, I thought we would never be able to have another child, because I just didn’t have the strength to handle her. Then I started following Unparenting, listening to their audios, and gradually changing my approach. I find things easier with my son, even though people around us stare at what all he can do and what I allow him to do and at how I stay calm since I know what he can handle and what he can’t. It’s much easier to talk with him and work out what I need and what he needs.

What now?

Look at other topics you’re interested in and keep on exploring the course.