Psychology and Psychiatry

Stubborn child

An obstinate child is a child who causes emotional and educational problems (in family, kindergarten, school), such as constant disputes and disagreements on serious occasions and because of minor trifles, unwillingness to hear someone else's point of view, as well as situations , causing an increase in danger to the life of the child (lack of obedience on the roadway, disregard for safety rules at home, etc.).

Raising a stubborn child becomes a test for the nervous system of parents, but their fate can be a little easier, knowing that the first bells of stubbornness will appear at the age of two years, accompanying the crisis of three years. During this period, the most frequent thing that can be heard from a previously sweet and obedient child is protests and negative answers. Similar behavior is associated with the discovery of one’s own borders and differences from the outside world, after which there is a desire to try these borders for strength and consolidate one’s separateness through opposition and disobedience.

This is a way to test the world and its own capabilities and the ability to defend opposition to others. Further strengthening of stubbornness is expected by the next crisis (in the region of five to seven years), where the same desire to affirm its position and value in the world will serve as motivation, but if at a younger age these were monosyllabic protests and refusals, then the child now begins to confront the whole sentences subordinate to its logic, which is often difficult to argue, but it is rather offensive for loved ones. Children still do not know how to filter their statements, anticipating the painful reaction of those who are dear, while they feel their own victory over an adult and omnipotent view, seeing parents weaken or becoming emotionally defeated.

A very stubborn child of 5 years is capable of turning the whole family system with his energy, because he comes into opposition at the slightest hint of infringement of his opinion, even where it was not planned. To prove self-reliance, any means are used, and yet there is no understanding that any autonomy bears not only constant indulgence in desires, but also responsibility, i.e. fear and restrictions in protest behavior are practically absent.

The next stage, when parents again face the stubbornness of their offspring, is adolescence, as the most famous and strong personality crisis. The child begins to rebel against the whole world and it’s good if by this point the relationship with the parents has already been clarified, and they can remain a reliable rear and place, otherwise what is happening at home may begin to resemble a war or lead to a rupture of family ties.

How to raise a stubborn child

To figure out how to raise a stubborn child, it is worth delving into the mechanisms of the emergence and development of such a line. Predisposition to the manifestation of stubbornness to the extent that surrounding adults begin to look for anxiously for answers is the very nature of the child, emerging in the process of education and the type of his nervous system, laid down genetically. With the manifestation of innate qualities, it is difficult to do something; of the options, only adaptation and consideration of the existing features remain. Therefore, the focus should be on the characterological aspect, because the children themselves do not begin to stubbornly - this is a response to the crisis moments of growing up and the relationship of significant adults.

The most common cause of stubbornness is the desire of parents to completely subjugate the child, leaving him neither the right to choose, nor his own opinion. In such a picture of the world, the child’s inability to carry out the required (for example, to start reading at three years or tie their own shoelaces after two demonstrations) or to disagree with (go to offending, choose clothes for which they are teasing) are perceived by adults without taking into account the objective reasons and the child’s subjective perception, and immediately regarded as malice. From a similar point of view, there is only one solution - to break the protest by force and then the opposition intensifies. And the child remembers that you need to defend yourself loudly and using all possible resources, because the parent is not on his side.

Such relationships have an impact on the future fate. Usually, such children are rather cruel to their peers, have no trust and are all traumatized by cold family relationships that develop on the opposition of forces, and not on support and warmth. There are two ways of development here, and both of them lie at the extreme poles - either the child learns to manipulate and becomes a rather tough dictator in his own family, or loses all activity and obeys demands from the outside. Such a submission at a younger age in adolescence is transformed into a strong crisis period, where all parental systems break down, and people around get all the accumulated destructive energy suppressed in childhood.

Obstinacy may appear due to the normal development process, so a very obstinate child of 5 years does not want to do everything in spite of his parents, now he is just aware of his independence and individuality, begins to understand his personal desires and their satisfaction becomes an overvalued task in shaping the personality. And when such aspirations meet resistance, the share of stubbornness increases.

Another point in the emergence of stubbornness is any change in the child's life (daily routine, place of residence, new people, many impressions) - this happens as an adaptation mechanism and if you return the child to a familiar environment, then stubbornness will disappear, or it takes time to get used to. Bad mood, fatigue, hunger, lack of sleep make the baby very sensitive, capricious and stubborn, and he cannot obey until he satisfies his basic physical needs. A large number of prohibitions, especially unmotivated, provoke stubbornness without explanation, but also cause permissiveness caused by the lack of attention of parents (here stubbornness is a way to attract attention).

There is also neurotic stubbornness, which develops from a long confrontation between the parents and the child, instead of searching for other ways of the code, the parent decides to take the same tactics and the competition of stubbornness begins. The only difference is that the psyche of the child is not yet strong, and it is the upholding of his opinion that now forms the personality, which turns out to be impossible. Child neuroses and stuttering, baseless fears, insomnia, and speech problems, including refusal to speak, stem from the consequences of such upbringing.

The lack of a clear line in the behavior of the parents makes the child unstable. When the actions of the parents are consistent, the requirements are always the same and the child understands what to expect, knows that his needs will be heard, the age of stubbornness passes much easier for all family members.

Stubborn child - how to set boundaries

The idea that the parents are most often to blame for the development of the stubbornness of the child is not new and is justified, so there is an urgent need to develop a system of education that would help avoid such distortions. One of the most popular methods is recognized by the Mackenzie system to establish the boundaries of what is permitted for a stubborn child. The author believes that the basis of stubbornness is temperament, which corresponds to many scientific studies on the relationship between stubbornness and the strength of the nervous system, and accordingly it is a kind of innate style of behavior and knowledge of the world, which can have both soft and invisible surrounding forms, and take the scale of the tragedy for taken by the family.

The first thing that parents need to do is to revise their own parenting styles, since some of them only provoke aggressive and stubborn behavior in such children. Thus, the authoritarian style, where power is taken as a basis, the child is brought up by submission and fear is rather strong, but there is no respect in it. For soft and obedient children, such an attitude is too unbearable, and they choose to obey when those who are more emotionally tolerant of such an attitude and organize a rebellion, responding to disrespect with disrespect and intimidation with evil and protest.

It may seem that the most effective here will be a respectful and not strict style of upbringing, when the parents expect the child to understand the need for himself and his steps towards him. The problem is that this attitude is connivance and does not give the child an understanding of the boundaries of this world, which he is not able to form independently, this requires adults with a fairly firm attitude. As a result, such freedom can turn into a child’s dictatorship, anarchy, and the absence of any control. The alternating alternation of such approaches does not produce results - it only confuses the child, throwing it at different extremes and finally knocking the ground out from under its feet. The only possible way of working with stubborn people is a democratic style, when parents are strong enough in their beliefs and actions, but at the same time, the child is given the opportunity to make decisions, make choices, solve problems in the areas accessible to him. Power is not taken completely and given to the anarchic order, but clearly denotes the areas of influence of the child on the situation, with the provision of full responsibility for their choice.

The hardness of the parent’s position will be constantly checked by the child, so you must strictly adhere to your own rules (that is, if you said you didn’t buy this toy, then you don’t buy it, even if you are encouraged, podlizyvayutsya, threaten, negotiate or fight hysterically semi). The first few times to withstand verification attacks will not be easy, but in the future they will be less, and communication will be improved, and the child himself will become clearer to navigate in a world where what has been said remains unbreakable.

When a statement sounds its dissatisfaction, then it should sound as specific as possible and be accompanied by actions - statements that you are angry or the child will be punished in the evening, are not perceived by children in any way. It is best to indicate which actions of the child will lead to what consequences (disobedience in the park - to return home, refusal to do homework - to the lack of evening games), and most importantly, then implement what was said. Remember that your words are checked for accuracy every time. You should not enter into disputes or agreements, since all this puts your boundaries in doubt and gives rise to the idea that if not for good, then by more rigid methods they can be moved. At the same time, if you noticed that you yourself went too far in the manifestation of aggression and somewhere violated the child’s borders, then apologize and explain your behavior from an emotional point of view, tell us that you were very upset, but still love him. Similar examples help the child to find more constructive methods of interaction.

Stubborn child - what to do

The main thing for understanding how to raise a stubborn child is the desire to maintain a balance between maintaining its independence and strength, while suppressing confidence that the whole world obeys every whim. The desire to completely change the child should not appear in the list of your tasks, since stubbornness is not his whim, but an innate quality, a feature that has both positive and negative sides. The parental task includes the development of strong and practical points and the leveling of the frustrating impact.

Your task will be strict adherence to your borders, and you need to give your child a sphere of influence. Much of stubbornness is caused by lack of choice, so you can provide it, but to a limited extent. Those. you do not ask the child where he wants to go, then to silently carry out his whims or to prohibit the choice that is inaccessible to you - all this is in the area of ​​violence. You give him a choice of what will suit you initially, i.e. two specific places to choose from which you are willing to visit. Similarly, it should happen with clothes, if you understand that you need to dress warmly, then do not let the selection process take its course, giving the child, and give him the opportunity to decide for himself - to go in a warm jacket with a hood or in a hat. This style forms a partnership where there is a clear primacy of your borders, but the child does not act as a silent obedient toy.

In moments when it is not possible to quickly reach your understanding, and the child continues to stubborn, instead of pressure by force (which will cause even greater resistance), put off your hurry and start listening to the child, his arguments and description of the emotional state. This will help you understand him better and perhaps find another way out, because there are times when parents are wrong, on the other hand, the more the child describes his condition, the more aggressive stubbornness will be replaced by a feeling of helplessness and powerlessness. It is stubbornness in its most rigid form that the child simply does not know how to change the situation, he needs your help and support, but he cannot ask her directly, because at the time of the conflict you are not on the same side. Listening to your child, your task is to show him that there are rules and requirements, but this does not mean that you abandoned him, he must understand that he is always behind him.

Watch your behavior and the frequency of refusal - children copy patterns of adult behavior and if the child hears refusals for most of their requests or suggestions expressed wishes, then soon you will begin to hear refusals. The kid will do it unconsciously, because he will perceive this way of response as normal, therefore, comments and punishments for such will undermine his perception of the world. In such a case, you should start with yourself and try to formulate the answer as positive, perhaps making some corrections, but without fail, doing the above. And before you fight with stubbornness, exclude the real facts (perhaps he does not oppose to write, but just a left-handed person, perhaps this is not a revolt against dinner, but his grandmother recently fed him), because to struggle with stubbornness, when it’s far from it, and parents act petty tyrants, can break both your relationship and the psyche of the child.

How to raise a stubborn child 2 years

The appearance of stubbornness is one of the signs of growing up and personality transformation, this process is quite crisis, so all the peaks of stubborn behavior are synchronous with the crises of age development, the first of which occurs in the region of two or three years. At this age, self-esteem, self-esteem and many other qualities begin to form, starting with the prefix itself, that is why defending one's opinion becomes so important for the child and if adults do not perceive the changes and continue to act in the old concept, this will cause significant difficulties.

It should be remembered that the reaction of the resistance of a child of 2 years is a form of protective behavior from excessive parental care, he can already do many things himself, it brings him pleasure (remember, the main protest of two-year-olds lies in the phrase "I myself"). At this age, the child begins to better differentiate his desires and needs, therefore excessive control and provision from adults causes resistance, but if he is still forced to comply, then aggression accumulates. From a sense of his own uselessness, depression, perception of his desires unimportant to others, the child begins to attract attention and attention to him and himself through hysteria, stubbornness, rudeness, ignoring the requests and advice of parents, including all available negative manifestations.

Constant bans lead to confrontation and protest for the sake of protest, but concessions to the kid’s desires that have erupted can lead to sad consequences not only from the point of view of the formation of a despotic character, but can be really life-threatening. Accordingly, parents need to rebuild their behavior, the realization that now this is not a helpless little ball, but a little man who already has his preferences and ability to do something. It is necessary to give the child an appropriate piece of power over the areas that are now available to him (let him choose the sequence of eating foods or a dress to meet the guests), but at the same time parents should decide the global issues and establish common rules.

В этом возрасте дети начинают проверять устойчивость родительских установок, крепость их решений, таким образом, они пытаются исследовать мир и его границы. Границы детям необходимы для формирования своего восприятия и адекватного контактирования с миром, поэтому так опасно поддаваться детским истерикам или слезам - они дают ощущение, что точно также можно проломить весь остальной мир, что неизбежно приводит к психотравмам. All parents should do is to hold their own borders (when not, it means no, no matter how their child tries to change the decision), which is simple only in words, but it must be done constantly. If you succumb to persuasion several times, then you will cast doubt on your whole position and give a reason for strengthening the pressure methods, naturally unconsciously.

Show attention and patience, the more situations you can translate from confrontation to moments where you can praise the child, the more will reinforce the model of collaborative behavior.