Limits and children;”Build the ship strong”

How deep is your love?

How strict can you get in order to teach your kids some things?

What is the borderline of happy relationship smiles and kisses?

and being persistent to guide children to behave?


It is true that children tend to test our limits and sometimes we  bend the rules we ourselves make.Often, kids just want to see how adults will react. A child who hits his brother might feel relieved when his mother steps in. Or a child who jumps on the couch after you’ve told him to stop might be testing your leadership skills.

Setting limits can be tough for several reasons. Sometimes parents feel guilty about saying no. Or, they want to avoid a temper tantrum that will surely erupt when a child is told it’s time to leave. And of course, partners don’t always agree on what limits to set with kids. When the limits are crossed we are disappointed by their behaviour and don’t know who’s to blame. For example, when I say that it’s time to go, I always leave a period that I know they will stall and keep bring excuses for not getting ready to go. What should be the limit? Is it the same every time?

The eventual goal is for kids to learn to manage all their responsibilities, like homework, chores and taking care of their bodies, without reminders.

Help your child develop strategies that will impose limits on himself. Tell a young child to “beat the timer” when he’s getting dressed in the morning and set a timer for five minutes. Or, tell an older child she can watch TV as soon as she gets all of her homework done.

Limits could also be set with a child’s eating habits. For example, without limits, many kids would eat junk food all day. Setting limits means saying, “No, you can’t have a third cookie”. Just because your child is sad that he can’t eat that third cookie doesn’t mean you should give in. Instead, it gives you a great opportunity to help him find healthy ways to cope with it.

Giving a “penalty” for breaking the rules, shows that you are not going to let things get out of control.And, it shows that you are willing to work to invest energy into your child’s life even if it means having to tolerate hearing “you’re the meanest parent ever.” And to steal a line from my favorite series, talking about parents :“Our job is to build a boat strong enough, that when they decide to, they can get back to us safely.” We need to be firm in order to create a stable boat.

What’s your limits?  When do you real say NO and actually mean it?

Share your ideas in the comment section!



2 thoughts on “Limits and children;”Build the ship strong”

  1. Kids often try to make you feel guilty when they can’t get what they want .We must resist !

  2. Sophie it is easier to play friend than parent! But we are parents…

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