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10 Reasons Your Kids Don’t Listen to You


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mother showing it is easy to make children listen to you

As parents most of you want your kids to listen to you – isn’t it? But, how often do your children really listen to you?

It can be rather frustrating when kids just don’t want to listen, which further aggravates the problem.

I’m sure as kids, even you might’ve had problems listening to your parents, and it must’ve been an uphill task for them to get you to listen! Sounds familiar?

Well, I remember my time. Even though I was an obedient child but there were still times when I wouldn’t listen to my parents.

Similarly, having raised my kids, I sure know the reasons why they don’t listen, and what I need to do to make them listen. That’s what I would love to share with you today.

Well, there are various reasons as to why kids don’t listen to you – and I’ve tried to mention most of them below.

“Don’t worry that children never listen to you; worry that they are always watching you.” ~ Robert Fulghum

Why Kids Don’t Listen to You

Unless kids are taught to listen, they won’t listen. Listening is a learned behavior.

Kids are born to think they are in charge, so unless you ask them to listen to you – they won’t.

So, the real training starts when they are babies, which is when parents teach them the yes’s and no’s of things.

Mostly kids, like adults, prefer to do what they want to do. If a child is playing and you ask him/her to finish homework – he/she might just ignore what you said!

Don’t you too love to do things that interest you, that let you have fun, and that you WILL to do?

Children don’t listen to you because it isn’t pleasurable or convenient for to them to do so. They rather do what they love doing, or do just the opposite of what their parents want.

In case of teenagers, some might just not do anything, no matter how many times they’re told – ask me!

Actually speaking, aren’t parents forever telling their kids what to do and not to do!

Could that be something wrong that parents do in spite of their best intentions to teach the RIGHT things to their children?

I think most parents are forever after their kids to clean up, eat their meals in time, brush their teeth, finish their studies or homework, bedtime, and other such un-fun activities – isn’t it?

Why would your kids listen to you if you get so boring in the first place? That includes me too, as I do a lot of that myself! Perhaps we need to learn more about effective parenting.

Sometime kids turn a deaf ear to what you as parents have to say, which is one of the main reasons why kids don’t listen to you.

They just let your words pass through their heads without even registering them in their brains!

“Listening to parents’ advice is sort of like watching commercials. You know what’s coming, you’ve heard it all before, it’s a big bore, but you listen anyway.” ~ Anonymous

Reasons Why Kids Don’t Listen

The common mistakes or reasons that lead to such “parent deafness” in children could be many. But mentioned below are what I feel the reason kids don’t listen to you – the parents.

I’ve also included what all you can do, if it helps. That reasons are because as parents you:

1- Lecture kids

I’ve seen my own kid’s just gaze over the moment I start lecturing them and that really doesn’t work! I guess I need to become a better parent and lecture them less :)

Children decide whether to listen or not from the way parents speak, and their tone.

They feel like parents are forever just talking, talking, and talking, without really listening to them. It works best to not lecture, preach, or instruct them forever, instead take their views too.

Not to mention that some parents never stop talking! They don’t think about giving the child a chance to talk, and the child also doesn’t listen to you when you talk non-stop.

Instead, say all that you want to say in less than 10 seconds, or else you might be wasting your time.

Remember, a child’s attention span is short, so use declarative statements and be clear with what you want your kids to do.

2- Use some words kids don’t like

Parents often start their sentences with the words “You”, “If”, “Why”, or the big negatives like “No”, “Don’t”, and “Can’t”. These words stop your kids from listening to you.

‘You’ statement make a child feel as if you are attacking his or her character. They feel you are directly pointing a finger at them. ‘If’ statements makes kids feel as if they are threatened.

‘Why’ statements expect our kids give explanation to us about their behavior, which they can’t if they are too young. They probably don’t understand and know the whys.

The rest of the words too stop kids from doing what they want to do, even if it’s something they can and you feel they can’t – that puts them off!

3- Speak in a loud instructive tone

Parents often speak in a loud authoritative voice.

Then it becomes a habit with some kids to only respond when they are spoken to in a loud tone. That’s because they know NOW their parents mean business.

They don’t listen unless they are spoken to in such a voice.

4- Talk without first getting the attention of your kids

Parents start talking when the child is busy doing something else. Instead, inform your kids that you need to talk and need their attention. Let them stop or end what they are doing, and then listen to you.

That eye-to-eye contact is vital before you speak. Thus, sometimes when your child isn’t listening to you or seems to ignore you, it might be because he/she is distracted.

This happens mostly with younger kids, who tend to be fidgety and lose focus easily. Thus, it’s better to get their full attention before you speak.

With teens too, make sure they are not on the mobile, Facebook, or playing video games while you’re talking to them. They get so engrossed that they probably don’t even hear you said something to them!

It’s not easy understanding teenagers and the lives they lead, and you need to sometimes ask for their time to talk to them, or make them listen to you.

5- Yell when kids don’t listen to you

Don’t you as parents sometimes yell or blow your top! You feel that by yelling or raising your voice, your kids will listen to you. Or you are just angry and at times take out your frustration on your kids.

In such cases children often turn into their own shell and won’t talk nor listen to you. Or, they might just get angry, reply back, shout, and turn defiant.

At such times, you need to talk in a soft loving voice and not loudly – to make kids listen to you.

6- Compel your child or use the language of coercion

If kids like to have their own way, it can sometimes become difficult for bossy parents. Certain kids respond better when in control, though it might not work with some parents.

There might be clashes between such parents and kids, which will stop them from listening to you.

7- Repeat their reminders and request

Kids are quick to make out how their parents will repeat themselves, and how they will react thereafter.

Remember, if after 1-2 repetitions your child doesn’t listen, then by constantly repeating yourself, you become a nag.

Instead, you need to lay out rules, and follow the consequences for not listening to you.

8- Are not a good role model

Remember, your kids will follow you. So, if you are a good listener, they notice that and do the same. But if they notice that you don’t listen when someone talks or they talk, they too will follow you.

Don’t talk loudly, fight back, or not listen to your spouse or others? Your kids are watching you!

They imitate your actions more than your words in most of the cases, and all this happens so quietly that you don’t even come to know of it. So, be careful.

9- Out of choice

If after trying all the above kids don’t listen to you, it might be because they choose not to listen.

There could be many underlying reasons for that like seeking your attention, disrespecting you, or some other unresolved issue they might have with you.

Sometimes, it’s just the stage of teens having their share of problems when they tend to turn to their friends more than you.

10- Medical reason

If there is some medical condition like some listening problem or other condition, your child might not listen. It might be wise to consult your pediatrician or doctor at such times.

“Listen to the mustn’ts, child. Listen to the don’ts. Listen to the shouldn’ts, the impossibles, the won’ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me… Anything can happen, child. Anything can be.” ~ Shel Silverstein

You might enjoy this video that helps you understand why kids don’t listen to you, especially nowadays as compared to kids in the earlier days. Weren’t we all good kids! This video shows how.

Understanding Why Children Don’t Listen ~ Patti Cancellier ~ YouTube Video

But, how do you handle kids who just don’t listen at all? Even after you’ve tried reasoning, distracting, reminding, explaining, bribing, punishing, or even begging – and nothing works?

Ah…that secret I would share with you in another post about how to make kids listen to you.

Remember, they are kids and sometimes they don’t listen to you – it’s okay and normal. You too were a bit like that when you were a child – weren’t you? Of course, their behavior should be within limits.

But there are workable solutions so that the problem doesn’t aggravate, provided you and your kids are ready to work on them.

Over to you

As a child, did you always listen to your parents? If you are a parent, what do you think are the reasons your kid’s don’t listen to you? Share your views with all of us below.

 

Photo Credit: FreeDigitalPhotos


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About Harleena Singh

Harleena Singh is a positive thinker and a freelance writer. She loves to write inspiring and thought provoking posts on self-improvement, family, relationships, health, and other aspects of life. She's not another personal development guru, but just an average person with great life experiences. She's also a blogger, who loves to share her blogging knowledge and experiences. Network with her on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+..

64 Comments

  1. Shalu Sharma

    February 22, 2013 at 3:42 pm

    Very interesting points.

    I have children and often wondered why they don’t listen and do things that you don’t want them to. I think a lot of patience is required and use of positive signals will go a long way in dealing with children.

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      Harleena Singh

      February 22, 2013 at 7:14 pm

      Glad you found the post interesting Shalu!

      Those of us with kids will be able to better relate with the post because we face the problem of kids not listening to us so often. However, even others I’m sure can relate to the post because they were once kids, and it’s a known fact that most kids will not listen to you – sometime or the other. I guess it makes sense knowing the reasons for their such behavior. Yes, time and patience is something all kids need.

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

      • Shalu Sharma

        February 22, 2013 at 7:55 pm

        Indeed as a mother, its important that we take care how we tackle their behaviour. Thanks for producing this excellent article.

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          Harleena Singh

          February 23, 2013 at 9:35 am

          That’s true Shalu. :)

          Being parents we need to understand our kids inside out – isn’t it?

          Thanks once again. :)

  2. Harry Rakhraj

    February 22, 2013 at 7:03 pm

    “Don’t worry that children never listen to you; worry that they are always watching you.”
    Having said this, is anything else left to say?

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      Harleena Singh

      February 22, 2013 at 7:16 pm

      Welcome to the blog Harry!

      Yes indeed, I loved that quote the moment I saw it and knew it had to be in this post. I guess it says it all, and we as parents HAVE to be very careful of our actions.

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  3. Mayura

    February 22, 2013 at 7:46 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    Interesting post and you know I enjoy ‘em not as a parent but wannabe ;) Also it reminds me of my life as being a kid.

    Really parents can think that way? I don’t think many will do though. Anyway that what I’ve experienced.

    I really don’t know how it really feels to be a parent but me neither wanted to listen to my parents :) But I had to. Yeah, it meant for my own good. But the way they approached me is not encouraging at all dear. However communication was really lacking and still, though it improved for some extent :) Can you believe, it took me 8 years to say I have a farsighted problem to my parents? Even not by myself.

    It was the loud instructive tone which always embarrassing me Harleena. As a child, there were times I thought what if he comes to me and talk like a friend and ask something to do nicely. Did you watch the movie “Taare Zameen Par” Harleena? :) Once while watching that, father joined with us there. I thought my father would understand my feelings through the movie but when I looked at him, he was sleeping :D lol… I always thought about it when I come across scenes which reflect parenting. But now I don’t feel that way and it’s just past I don’t wanna remind much. It made me think, my freedom will be when I can take my own decisions after going away from my parents :) Probably “Marriage”.

    Actually, it’s amazing what a kid feels when they lack of love and care :) Eventually they get used to it. But the time they have been through it is kind of a large black hole in their lives.

    I do talk more when I come across a topic like this. Isn’t it dear? Sometimes feel sad, but feel good about who I am now.

    Have a GREAT weekend Harleena :)

    Cheers…

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      Harleena Singh

      February 22, 2013 at 8:09 pm

      Hi Mayura,

      Nice to know that you enjoy the posts on parenting, even though you aren’t a parent yet. :) But just as you mentioned, you can well relate to them as you have been at the stage of a child and undergone all of these things yourself. And, it’s always a preparation for your future too – when you become a parent!

      I guess none of us were all that obedient as kids, which includes me too. But with age we mature and learn things, though sometimes if our parents are strict, we learn before our real learning time, which might have happened in your case as your Dad was a disciplinary or perhaps a little more strict than others – was he? Yes, sometimes the way parents deal or handle kids isn’t all that good, but as my husband says – it’s not entirely their fault because that’s the way they were brought up and raised by their parents, so that’s the only way they know. However, with time people change and so do parents, though I know there are exceptions. :)

      Communication between parents and their children is THE most important thing, and everything is based on it. A parents harsh tone, raised voice, anger, etc. can harm kids in more ways than one, and it has it’s effects for years to come. You would know that much better I guess. And in such cases kids turn within, they won’t speak their heart out to their own parents and go in a shell, which again you mentioned it happened in your case – it took you 8 years – Gosh!

      Yes, I loved that movie and howled away, it was a very touching one indeed. I agree, if parents use a soft and loving tone with their kids – they can achieve anything I feel. It bonds both sides better. I wish your father had watched the whole movie too, as it would have made him understand you much better.

      I’m glad you are over that phase Mayura, and I know from the conversations we had in the earlier posts that it wasn’t easy for you. So, for that you have done wonderfully well and reached a stage where you can overlook and understand things better. When such things happen, they make us stronger and better as a person, and I’m sure you’ll make a very doting and loving father, whenever that time comes because you know what it is to be one.

      Nothing to feel sad about – instead be proud and happy that you HAVE come a long way from where you were, and that’s what’s made you who you are today. :)

      Thanks for sharing your life’s experiences with all of us – much appreciated. :)

      • Mayura

        February 22, 2013 at 10:31 pm

        Hi Harleena,

        Well, I’d say mostly my father is quite hot tempered rather than being strict dear :) Strict in some parts too.

        Absolutely, you are right Harleena. The communication really the key in Parent-Child relationship as I’ve seen how my friends interacts with their parents :)

        I’m glad that I didn’t thought of any kind of risky alternatives dear :) You are right again. It made me who I am and I can be proud of myself. I’ll be really proud when I will able to give the childhood I dreamt for mine :)

        Thank you so much Harleena :)

        Cheers…

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          Harleena Singh

          February 22, 2013 at 10:45 pm

          Ah…it’s the anger then I guess Mayura!

          Yes, some parents are like that – and mostly fathers. We have a few in our family too, and perhaps it’s the work load or their general nature that makes them such. However, there can be no excuses when it comes to parenting the right way, something that most parents learn with time – isn’t it?

          You are right – the right channels of communication make a lot of difference in bonding a family I feel, and I know that out of experience as I was raised in one such family where we were and still are very open about anything and everything. Whereas, I see things differently in many homes around the place I live, which makes a lot of difference in the relationship of parents and children.

          I know you WILL live your childhood the right way through your kids by being a perfect father – I can bet on that one! :)

          Thanks once again. :)

  4. Sapna

    February 22, 2013 at 9:32 pm

    Hi Harleena Di,

    Great post as always!

    I think I can relate to almost all the reasons which you have mentioned.

    At times I shout at my children and then realize I could have made them understand in a better way.In my case children are really pampered by their grandparents and they overlook my advice.

    After reading I feel I should not yell at them and need not behave as a bossy parent who would believe in “my way or highway”.

    Thanks Harleena Di for sharing this.Have a great weekend.

    Sapna

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      Harleena Singh

      February 22, 2013 at 10:02 pm

      Hi Sapna,

      Nice to know that you could relate to the post and liked it too. :)

      You are certainly not alone where shouting is concerned. More so, being working Moms we do tend to get tired and stressed out too. But yes, speaking of myself too, that’s no reason to take it out on our kids – isn’t it? It always helps if we speak in softer tones because they grasp things better that way, though we need time and patience for that.:)

      Ah…grandparents! Yes indeed, they can certainly pamper and spoil the kids, though are also a great help, especially where taking care of kids is concerned. I guess it works well if you can somehow come to a balance where certain things they handle, while the main ones you do, so that kids have the best of both worlds. So, how many kids do you have? I only heard of the lovely and creative Divya :)

      We all tend to feel we are always right as parents, and often turn bossy or authoritative at times. I feel stepping into your kids shoes and trying to understand their feelings and emotions would help us understand them better, and this will eventually make them listen to you willingly.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences. Have a nice weekend as well. :)

  5. Ilka Flood

    February 22, 2013 at 10:25 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    And then they come to you years later and say, “Mom, Dad, I should have listened to you.” And your heart breaks because if they had, you could have spared them so much pain and suffering.

    However, kids need to learn from their mistakes. That’s the only way they do. We can’t always be there to ‘bail them out.’

    But on that day, when they tell you they wish they had listened you know that you brought them up right and that your values fell on fertile ground…although they may not have sprouted right away ;-)

    Thanks for another great post, Harleena!

    Ilka

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      Harleena Singh

      February 22, 2013 at 10:39 pm

      That’s so-so true Ilka :)

      You would know it best having grown up kids and must’ve gone through all that’s mentioned. I agree – if only our kids would have listened to us, it would have saved so much of hassle of going through repeated rounds of shouting, yelling, negativity, anger that leads to suffering for both, our kids and us.

      But as you rightly mentioned, kids and some of us also always prefer learning from our own mistakes and trying out our ways – isn’t it? And I think a stage comes in life, especially when kids reach their teens that you prefer letting them be and let them try out things their way. It’s like let them learn it the hard way if they don’t want to learn it our way.:)

      Ah…I’ve yet to experience the time when they grow to that stage to tell me that they wished they had listened to me, though I look forward to those years of theirs when realization strikes them. At least I can look back and feel good about my parenting ways- a little good that came out of it.

      Thanks for sharing your words of wisdom with us. :)

  6. Ash

    February 22, 2013 at 10:43 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    Being a teen myself, sometimes I don’t listen to my parents because they do not understand what I am doing. For example, when they tell me to get off the computer I don’t because I’m working on my blog. They do not understand websites very well and the benefits they can have. For example I tried to explain Adsense to them but they thought they had to find all the advertisers themselves! Great post Harleena!

    Ash

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      Harleena Singh

      February 22, 2013 at 11:20 pm

      Hi Ash,

      I do marvel at you having accomplished so much at this young an age, and I do see a lot of young teens getting headlong into computers and Internet etc., something which wasn’t there during our time.

      I can well understand your situation because I too have teen kids, though they have limited access to the computer as they are in their crucial years of studies presently. Speaking of myself, I too have to tell my kids to get off their mobiles or books and either do up their rooms or have their meals, even though they are working on things they feel are important. But yes, I give them fair warning and sometimes might repeat it a few times before I flare up, which is rare as now they are tuned to listening within 2-3 calls.

      Stepping into your parents shoes who don’t have much idea about websites and the work you do, I feel it’s their concern for you which makes them say or do things. Perhaps they don’t want you to sit too long on the computer working, or want you to take a break, rest, or come and join them for a meal, etc. Yes, work is important, but perhaps you too can chalk out a time or schedule so that you can balance things out and be there when they call you.

      I might be wrong but that’s the way I feel as a parent, and this is something I often talk to my kids about with my husband. Such family discussions are a must once in a while as they make relationships stronger and help understand each other better – isn’t it?

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing a part of yourself with us. :)

  7. Debbie

    February 23, 2013 at 3:48 am

    Hi Harleena,

    Number 8 is a great place to start if they are not listening. “8- Are not a good role model” When we learn to listen to them ourselves they are more like to listen to us.

    When i was raising my girls I did learn what battles I wanted to pick when it came to them listening. I always stop to think is this that important or not.

    Thanks again for a very great post.
    Debbie

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      Harleena Singh

      February 23, 2013 at 9:51 am

      Hi Debbie,

      I agree with what you said – when we listen to our kids, they WILL learn to listen to us too. After all communication IS always a two way process, and shouldn’t be just one-sided. However, with some parents it’s easier said than done and they prefer to be the bosses. :)

      Being parents we do need to make the right choices with our kids, which I know with your experience and wisdom you must have made while raising your children.

      Thanks for stopping by an sharing your wisdom. :)

  8. Corina Ramos

    February 23, 2013 at 5:12 am

    A great post, as usual Harleena :)

    As a child I listened to my parents because they were strict. I grew up with the old school Hispanic family that made you pick your own switch from the tree so I was a good little girl :)

    As a teen, it was called rebellion. It wasn’t crazy stuff but I would break curfew, date the wrong boy. I think I did it because my parents would use the negative language and it had that talk-down kind of feeling.

    If I had to choose why kids don’t listen I would say Television is partly to blame. I look at reality shows like The Kardashians and see how those ladies talk back and down to their mother and she’s okay with that.

    I know if that were me, I would be picking up my face off the floor if I would talk to my mom like that. I don’t watch that show but I was watching in a comatose state because I couldn’t believe what I was seeing.

    My daughter asked me once what would I do if she talked down to me or not listen to me what I would do. I told her she’d get an old school Hispanic whippin’ on live TV, LOL :) so you see, it’s that type of show that makes it seem cool to disrespect their parents.

    Out of my five teens, two have rebelled and unfortunately have learned the hard way what bad decisions can do and I think this is what keeps my other teens grounded because I remind them of what their older brother and sister did and I’m never too far behind my kids.

    Thanks for putting this post together. Hope all is well :)

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      Harleena Singh

      February 23, 2013 at 10:12 am

      Glad you liked the post Corina!

      Ah…you sound a lot like me where listening to your parents was concerned – obedient and good. However, my parents weren’t all that strict or perhaps we mostly listened when told to do things and were generally happy-go-lucky kids, so they didn’t have to tell us much. :)

      I can understand about rebellious teens as we have one such in an extended family, though am glad none of us were ever like that. But again, mostly it’s due to way parents deal with their kids at that crucial age, which turns them the other way – just as in your case.

      You raised a very good point that it is the television and exposure to social media too that makes them not listen to you. Certain shows on television I feel should be banned, or parents shouldn’t allow their kids to see them for the negative impact it has on their kids. I too have to switch the channel when my kids start watching such shows, though I’m glad they are allowed only a limited time for television and other things and are more into their studies presently. But I have seen how they become if let loose. :)

      I haven’t seen the show you mentioned, though we do get similar shows that disrespect the parents or kids arguing and raising their voices, which again is something kids watch and learn from. We let them watch a little of it when we are around so that we can guide them how wrong those kids are, while at other times prefer they watch something else. I guess parental control is needed all the time – isn’t it? But still kids do manage to get away with saying hurtful words at times, no matter how much you teach them – part of being a parent!

      Five teens! Gosh! I didn’t know you had to deal with 5 of them because I know what’s it like dealing with 2 of mine! Yes indeed, sometimes time is a better teacher for those who don’t listen to you when you tell them the right from wrong. And as you mentioned, it must be a learning lesson for the younger ones too.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your years of wisdom with all of us. :)

  9. Donna Merrill

    February 23, 2013 at 7:05 am

    Hello Harleena,

    What a great subject to bring up. Who is more important that our children (or children to be in some reader’s cases) When we yell and scream, it is just letting out our energy and is a non effective way to communicate.

    Agreed..we cannot communicate while the child is playing, we need face to face contact. It shows we are serious. We sit them down, and in a calm voice tell them the message we want to convey. And with kids, it has to be consistent!

    If there is a persistent negative behavior and talking isn’t working well, reinforcing good behavior works along side with this also.

    But, kids are kids and they are all different. As long as we keep our cool and not show emotion, but show seriousness it usually works well.

    I learned one thing communicating with my daughter. When I couldn’t get through, I would put “house rules” on the refrigerator. This way I didn’t say the word “YOU” – then point to those house rules. Worked pretty well.

    I came from a home of yelling and confrontation. Yikes, I swore I would never do that to my kid and I kept that promise.

    Great advice as usual,
    Donna

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      Harleena Singh

      February 23, 2013 at 10:35 am

      Hi Donna,

      Nice to know that you liked today’s post and could relate to it. :)

      You are right – by screaming or yelling we tax ourselves more because of the energy released, and it really results in nothing more than tiring ourselves out! Being consistent IS the key in parenting, which most parents fail to understand and often give up soon after trying for a while.

      Absolutely! Kids will be kids, and there are so many ways parents deal with their kids – so there can never be one rule that fits all. With parents it can get tough if they don’t remain cool or tend to get angry at the drop of a hat, and it never gets results.

      I liked your idea of having ‘house rules’ and placing them in a common place! I agree, with such rules you don’t have to say anything to your kids as they will follow the rules on their own. I guess all that we have undergone in our lives that we know wasn’t all that good – isn’t something we would like our kids to go through.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views. :)

  10. Andrea H.

    February 23, 2013 at 12:26 pm

    Very interesting post Harleena,

    There is a reason if being a good parent is the most difficult job on earth, always on the edge. Luckily most of the times when grown up kids recognize the efforts done.

    That’s what I’ve done but it took me time. :)

    Have a great weekend!

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      Harleena Singh

      February 23, 2013 at 1:06 pm

      Welcome to the blog Andrea – nice to have you over!

      It sure isn’t an easy task being a parent, but those are parents wouldn’t have it any other ways too – isn’t it? I guess being parents in itself teaches us all about parenting, though it always helps to keep learning things from each other. Oh yes…if your efforts are appreciated by your kids – you’ve scored well. :)

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  11. Rupali

    February 23, 2013 at 4:34 pm

    First time i visit here, and i like this post. I dont know too much about this topic but As i think parents should spend more time with their kids to understand them.

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      Harleena Singh

      February 23, 2013 at 7:06 pm

      Welcome to the blog Rupali!

      Yes indeed, parents DO need to spend lots of time with their kids, and this is the most important gift they can actually give their children – the gift of their time – isn’t it?

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  12. Sylviane Nuccio

    February 23, 2013 at 6:28 pm

    Hi Harleena,I love that post.

    Your first sentence is very catching; “children will listen if they are taught to do so”.

    That’s so true and so many people don’t know that at all. That’s why they struggle so much, especially here in the US.

    What this lady says on the video is not only true for the US, I know for a fact that’s the EXACT same thing for Europe, for example. How many times my mother told me that I’ve never listened to her, while she was “forced” to listen to her parents.

    But because she so disliked the way SHE was raised, she made sure to give her own kids more freedom, but because of that me and my brother, while nice kids, we also were very strong headed.

    This is a great post for any parent, and will be sure to share it :)

    Another great post, my dear :)

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      Harleena Singh

      February 23, 2013 at 7:34 pm

      Hi Sylviane,

      Glad you liked the post. Yes indeed, kids are like clay who parents can mold the way they want. And they need to be taught things right from the time they are young, which includes their listening to you. I know in the US things are much worse as compared to our end, though it’s changing here too, especially when kids get influenced with the people in the US.

      I enjoyed listening to the lady too, she talked so much sense. Not to mention about how we are tuned or as you mentioned, forced to listen to our parents, whether we liked it or not. I’m glad in a way things have changed for the better now, though if not controlled – they can surely go haywire.

      Just as Mayura also mentioned, if we aren’t raised the way we felt was good enough, we can take those lessons and ensure we don’t bring them up with our kids. I guess your Mom was very careful about that while bringing you kids up. So, there’s always learning in every step of life, whether the good or bad – isn’t it?

      Thanks for stopping by and adding more value to the post. :)

  13. Carolyn

    February 23, 2013 at 9:25 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    I have never heard of this issue before. Kids not listening to their parents? That really happens? Who knew?

    You offer excellent solutions, Harleena, not only to get kids to listen, but also to have a peaceful home while getting kids to pay attention. Your examples are positive examples of behavior management. Your suggestions will also help build respect for the parents, not just let parents get their way.

    I loved that quote, Harleena. It’s just perfect! I read when I was a new parent that when your child asks you for something, you shouldn’t keep saying, “In a minute” unless you want your child to do that to you when you ask her for something!

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      Harleena Singh

      February 24, 2013 at 12:34 pm

      Hi Carolyn,

      That’s surprising! So, I guess you have very obedient kids who listen to you all the time, and you too were such a child. :)

      However, if you ask parents in general, there are so many that would have the main problem of their kids not listening to them due to various reasons. Yes, it does all come down to effective parenting and how well you can manage your kids, speaking of which, one can make out you faced no such problem with yours. :)

      Thanks for liking the post and the solutions offered. I have undergone a few of them myself and seen some parents go through the others, so thought it best to share it with everyone, though I would be offering the real ways to make kids listen to you in another post as this had become lengthy as a tis.

      Yes indeed, I love quotes too and thought to put them up once again, though limiting their number. This one seemed apt. I agree, if we want something out of our kids, we first need to look at ourselves and see if are we doing what we expect our kids to do. We aren’t perfect, but need to know that they look up to us as their role models, so be careful of our actions.

      Thanks for stopping by. Always a pleasure to have you over. :)

  14. Vijesh

    February 24, 2013 at 12:45 pm

    Hello Harleena,

    Good you made a post on why children won’t listen to their parents. I am a teacher by profession and most of the time when I find children neglecting their studies I learn that they waste most of their time seeing TV serials. They come to school and plan to copy from other children but fail to do so when they don’t get enough time.

    I believe parents should not watch serials even if they watch they should not expose their children to such programs. Even some of the game shows too are ruining the time and what else they start to give reverse answers when we ask them for Home works. Some times even few parents support their child rather than scolding them. Should see how it might be after couple of years.

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      Harleena Singh

      February 24, 2013 at 1:09 pm

      Welcome to the blog Vijesh!

      Nice to know more about you, more so because you are a teacher, something that I was before I started blogging long back. I agree with you about kids watching TV or game shows and neglecting their studies, something that parents need to monitor actually. This effects not only their studies, but also the way they speak to their parents, their behavior, and overall development, .

      Kids will be kids, and they will watch television or be a part of social media non-stop unless they are stopped or unless parents set time limits for them. And you are right, this results in them copying the work in school or taking short cuts and not really doing their home-work on their own.

      I’m glad we have a rule in our house where kids are just allowed an hour of TV in the evenings, though on weekends and holidays we allow them more time, or perhaps even watching a movie if they like – after all we shouldn’t be all that strict too – isn’t it?

      It’s actually tough to stop parents from watching serials or television because it might also be their recreation time if they are working parents, though I feel parents need to monitor their kids time to watch television and allow them to watch only certain programs. And this training starts when they are young not when they get used to it. If parents support their kids with all the above mentioned, then they are only asking for trouble when they grow up!

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  15. Annie André

    February 24, 2013 at 5:45 pm

    I read every word of this post and it all makes so much sense but… having said that, it’s so hard to put into practice.
    I am constantly playing parent/ psychologist trying to secretly coerce my kids to willing do what is right, to listen to me, to study, to clean up. it’s so exhausting.

    As it turns out, one of my kids has ADHD the innatentive type which adds to my frustration. He lacks executive functions in a big way. When kids are just normal and don’t listen it’s one thing. but, when they have medical reasons it can be very daunting. I constantly have to try to read about how to best parent him. How to motivate him because all the normal ways of parenting don’t work with him. Sometiems it’s just best to get help. Professional help from an outside party.
    We are in that process now looking for counselors whom we can chat with over skype (for convenience)..

    Anywho, i digress.
    Thanks for another inspirational and informative post Harlena..

    Cheerio

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      Harleena Singh

      February 24, 2013 at 6:28 pm

      Glad you could relate to the post Annie!

      Yes indeed, sometimes things are easier said than done, but if you really get down to them, they aren’t all that difficult too – isn’t it? I can well understand your state, which is so much like any Mom who cares for her kids and wants the best for them.

      Parenting IS a tiring full-time job! And for mothers I feel, it’s all the more tough as they have a house to look after to beside their kids. Not to mention if you are a working mother on top of that- then hats-off to you! (I say all of this having undergone it myself!)

      It is tough if you have a child with a medical condition like ADHD or any other, as they need special care and attention from you and the other siblings too. Things need to move slow with them for which you need to devote more of your time. Yes, seeking professional help is the best way I guess. But don’t lose heart, it’s a matter of time till you find your way about to manage all of them well enough. :)

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with all of us. :)

  16. Ahsan

    February 24, 2013 at 6:59 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    I think parents should build a good chemistry between kids and themselves. Specially mothers need to understand their kids psychology and behave according to that way which gives attention to kids. This article is very much beneficial to know why kids don’t listen to parents and good suggestion to bring their attention when parents talk.

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      Harleena Singh

      February 24, 2013 at 7:54 pm

      Hi Ahsan,

      Yes indeed, the channels of communication between parents and their children need to be open all the time, which happens only when parents make the efforts and kids listen to them. Mothers play an important role, but so do fathers – after all parenting is a good combination of both – isn’t it?

      Glad you liked the article, and thanks for stopping by. :)

  17. Melissa

    February 25, 2013 at 6:22 am

    My big problem is that I repeat myself. I get busy doing the dishes or working on something and I repeat myself when they don’t listen. They don’t have consequences for it, they just keep asking. I need to work on this because it really grates on my nerves. Great post.

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      Harleena Singh

      February 25, 2013 at 2:29 pm

      Welcome to the blog Melissa!

      You are surely not alone! As mothers who are forever on our toes and working, we really don’t find the time to sit and tell our kids what to do or not do, though ideally that’s what we should be doing. At such times, especially when we are working alongside, we tend to repeat things to make our kids listen. I too face this problem sometimes when I am really busy and my kids refuse to listen!

      I guess it would help if you have some kind of consequences laid out for them like no television till you clean your room, or no phone till you drink your milk, or anything of the kind till the time they start listening more often.

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  18. farouk

    February 25, 2013 at 2:23 pm

    I don’t have kids yet but the post is very interesting, when I have kids I think I’ll follow these advice : )

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      Harleena Singh

      February 25, 2013 at 2:32 pm

      Hi Farouk – nice to see you back again!

      Glad you found the post interesting, and yes, I’m sure when you have kids many of the posts on parenting would be of help to you. :)

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  19. Hiten

    February 25, 2013 at 3:52 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    I really enjoyed your post on why kids don’t listen.

    What you wrote about is so true and it got me thinking about how I will approach this issue when I have kids. What I appreciated in particular about your post, is how we parents need to be careful of the language we use. There are certain words like ‘why’ ‘can’t etc. that we find hard as adults to process. Why should youngsters be any different?

    The issue about being a role model is so important. Kids learn from what we do as adults. We need to be mindful of what messages we are sending out to kids. As you say, all the ‘negative’ stuff we display is being watched and taken in by our kids.

    Thanks for writing such a great post, Harleena! :-) I’ve bookmarked this one for future reference.

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      Harleena Singh

      February 25, 2013 at 6:53 pm

      Hi Hiten,

      Glad you enjoyed the post, even though you don’t have kids yet. :)

      I’m sure you would make a wonderful father and that by itself will make your kids listen to you. Yes indeed, it all does come down to how parents treat their kids and how they speak to them. Children are quick to notice each move their parents make, and do just the same – knowingly or unknowingly.

      I agree, just as we adults feel about certain words and so many other things, so do kids. It would be so much better for parents if they placed themselves in their kids shoes, which would help them understand things better – isn’t it? And yes, for kids their parents are the best role models till they grow up and find others, so we have to be careful of every small thing we do or say.

      Thanks for stopping by, and for bookmarking the post! Hope it helps you later in your life. :)

  20. Anne

    February 25, 2013 at 7:48 pm

    I liked number 8. Kids won’t listen if they know you’re a hypocrite. If you ask your kids to lie for you (or you lie to them) then tell them not to lie, they won’t listen to you.

    If you tell them not to fight, yet you abuse them verbally (and your spouse) they won’t listen. There are lots of reasons kids don’t listen, many of which you’ve covered above.

    However, I think one of the main reasons is because they see no need to. Kids will listen to what they see you do and how they see you behave, rather than what you say.

    I’ve noticed this with the teenagers I worked with, and with my own kids as well.

    Great post.

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      Harleena Singh

      February 27, 2013 at 1:54 pm

      Hi Anne,

      Glad you could relate to the post. Yes indeed, kids are quick to make out if you are being a hypocrite and will either follow you, or without you knowing of it, make it part of their lives.

      In such cases, they will not listen to you because we as parents aren’t practicing what we are preaching or teaching our kids. They see and hear every little thing we do or say, and will do exactly the same things, whether we like it or not – and there’s no stopping them then. Nor can we because we are at fault.

      Yes, sometimes they just don’t wish to listen to you, which I mentioned in #9 as it’s their choice or will to not listen, especially if they have any issues with you, or have some thing in their mind already that’s hard to break. Teens react this way more than others – as I see my teens too. :)

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  21. Theodore Nwangene

    February 25, 2013 at 10:23 pm

    Happy new week Harleena,

    I know I listened to my parents when I was a kid even up till now, although there are those times when I will start exhibiting some stubborn attitude, but I do calm down when called to order.

    The only thing that will make me not to listen to them is if they speak to me in an unfriendly manner and on something that is not worth it.

    Thanks for sharing.

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      Harleena Singh

      February 27, 2013 at 2:10 pm

      Happy week to you too Theodore!

      Glad to know that you were and still are obedient, though sometimes we all tend to exhibit those not-likable behaviors. I guess that’s part of being a child after all – isn’t it? Everything will not be perfect, and am sure parents too understand that. :)

      There are many reasons why kids don’t listen to their parents, as in your case it was because you felt it wasn’t worth listening, or you weren’t spoken to in a friendly way, which might have been if your parents were angry with you about something. I guess as kids we sometimes can’t make out why parents do what they do, though years later we realize it was for our good after all.

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  22. Adrienne

    February 26, 2013 at 12:59 am

    I was nodding my head as I was reading your post Harleena. I also know that everyone is different so sometimes it’s not that you could ever speak to them differently, they just refuse to listen. My sister was like that, very rebellious.

    My parents never really sat me down as a kid and explained things to me. I was just told to do something and I’d better do it period. There were no explanations. You know it was “because I said so.”

    I know for me when I grew up that I didn’t want to be that way which is why I’m such a good communicator. Of course I never had any kids to teach this to but I do have nieces and nephews and they look up to me for advice so that’s a good thing.

    I know that all parents can relate to this post so I’ll say thank you for sharing it too. Great advice, all of yours is.

    ~Adrienne

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      Harleena Singh

      February 27, 2013 at 2:26 pm

      Hi Adrienne,

      Glad you could relate to the post :)

      Yes indeed, each one of us is different and it’s tough to make everyone listen to us, and same is the case with parents when they want their kids to listen to them. Most of the times parents raise all their kids in the same way, but still there are few who will listen, while others might not – just as your sister, though there might be reasons for her being so rebellious.

      Ah…you were a ‘good child’ just like me. My parents too never had to repeat a thing twice – them saying it just once was enough, and it was done without any ifs and buts! that wasn’t out of fear, but more out of respect and because it always seemed they were saying the right things or I couldn’t find any fault or reason not to listen to them. There was no question of me not listening to them, or arguing with what they said, though I did do a little of it when I was in my teen – yet not as much.

      You surely are gifted where communication is concerned, even when you have to convey your thoughts, which you do so wonderfully through your comments and the posts on your blog. It’s almost like we are speaking to a real person – face to face. Your nieces and nephews are indeed lucky to have you in their lives, and am sure must be valuing your advice.

      Being a parent, this was a topic I knew most parents could relate to, so I thought of writing it. Hope they can take back something home through the post too.

      Thanks for stopping by and adding more value to the post. :)

  23. Babanature

    February 26, 2013 at 3:34 am

    Hello Harleena,

    You really did bring out the characteristics of a mother in this post which is great. I believe mothers can and should learn a lot from this post. As a father; at times my son do prove stubborn but a papa is still a papa. Like Shalu said, to treat a child is through patience and positive signal. By the way, i love the video. Thanks and do have a great week ahead.

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      Harleena Singh

      February 27, 2013 at 2:31 pm

      Hi Babanature,

      Nice to know that you liked the post, and yes, being a mother I did try my best, though am sure it would work for any parent, whether a father or a mother – isn’t it?

      I agree, sometimes kid’s listen more to their mothers, but it’s the other way round too in some homes. As they say, sons are closer to their mothers and daughters to their fathers. However, it all depends how you parent your child so that they eventually learn to listen to you.

      Glad you liked the video – I also thought she spoke a lot that we could relate to. There’s a lot that goes into parenting children, and they DO need your undivided time, attention, love, understanding, support, and patience, without which they can sometime turn the other way round too.

      Thanks for stopping by. Have a nice week ahead too. :)

  24. Cathy Taughinbaugh

    February 26, 2013 at 6:55 am

    Great tips here Harleena! Getting kids to listen has been a challenge I would think for most parents. I know I experienced that at times when my kids were growing up. I like the video as well. So true that we that the societal gap makes a difference in how children are raised There is a happy medium between being too authoritative and being too free and easy. Thanks for sharing.

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      Harleena Singh

      February 27, 2013 at 2:38 pm

      Hi Cathy,

      Glad you liked the tips and the video too. :)

      Yes indeed, all of parenting is challenging I feel. More so, if you have kids who don’t listen to you, it’s double the amount of work! A little bit is allowed because they are kids and won’t listen all the time, but if they get into such a habit, it can get tough.

      The societal gap surely does make a difference, and how kids were raised long back is very different from the way they are raised today. We as parents need to change our ways for sure to remove that gap and bond better with our kids – isn’t it?

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  25. Sue Neal

    February 27, 2013 at 2:48 am

    Hi Harleena,

    I don’t have children, but can relate to this from my own childhood memories. I think the biggest issue for me was feeling I wasn’t listened to myself, or understood. Communication’s a two-way process – I think if parents really listen to their children, they’re more likely to listen back,

    Sue

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      Harleena Singh

      February 27, 2013 at 2:43 pm

      Hi Sue,

      Glad you could relate to the post even though you don’t have kids. I guess anyone can relate because they themselves were kids and have undergone similar situations in their lives – isn’t it?

      Yes indeed, when we aren’t listened to or we feel that our parents don’t understand us, we also tend to not listen to them. Communication is always two-way, and if those channels of communication aren’t open between parents and their kids, it tends to create communication gap somewhere.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with all of us. :)

  26. Ferb

    February 27, 2013 at 3:55 pm

    All I can say to encourage children listen to their parents more is to explain , explain and explain… in a calm way and see the important of things they really want to do to, help them prevent dangers. Teaching children is not easy but we can wish them to become a great person in the future and help them from now.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      February 27, 2013 at 5:36 pm

      Hi Ferb,

      You are absolutely right! Parents need to be patient with their children and have time enough to explain things to them, or even the right from the wrong. However, even kids should be receptive and patient enough to listen! I guess such training should start from the time when they are young – isn’t it?

      Parenting on the whole isn’t easy, and each one of us have our own ways to get across our message to our kids. But it does help to get better and find new ways if we are lacking in some. And like you said – every step taken to make them better is worthwhile.

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  27. Utkarsh Bhatt

    February 27, 2013 at 10:13 pm

    Wow!! I am a 19 year old boy and I can certainly say that most of the stuff you have written is true. I can certainly say that the point about Yelling is the most accurate one!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      February 28, 2013 at 10:43 am

      Welcome to the blog Utkarsh!

      Glad you could relate to the post and found them to be true. :) Yes indeed, yelling and shouting at their kids is something parents should avoid, and in the same way, it’s something even the kids shouldn’t do – isn’t it?

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  28. Jackie

    February 28, 2013 at 4:22 am

    Such great points. It suddenly came to my attention recently that my kiddo didn’t listen to me at all. I was guilty of a few of the things you mentioned. I think the biggest thing was that I had acted in a way that showed her she didn’t need to listen to me, wasn’t expected to listen. So now we set some new rules. I lowered my voice. I only say things once. There are clear definitive boundaries/consequences, and she’s listening 95% better, life is calmer and much more fun.

    It’s funny how I’ve lived almost 7 years without her listening and only realized THAT was the issue recently. :( but…when you know better you do better.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      February 28, 2013 at 10:55 am

      Hi Jackie,

      Nice to see you back. Glad you could relate to the post :) Yes indeed, kids tend to not listen to their parents for various reasons. Mostly, it’s the parents who need to guide their children in the right way so that they listen to them, and it’s not tough once you make out the reasons they aren’t listening. I agree, speaking in a soft and gentle tone work much better with kids as compared to loud voices, and that’s what they tend to learn from you too.

      It’s never too late as they say. Whenever you learn and implement it, is the first day – a new beginning – isn’t it?

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with all of us. :)

  29. Angela McCall

    March 1, 2013 at 2:06 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    I could not agree with you more. When it comes to being CONFIRM, a parent need not to raise his/her voice when talking to the teenage child. Some kids might say, “Oh, I’m not taking my mom so seriously.” And his friend asked, “Why?” Then he said, “Well, mom hasn’t yelled at me yet.” *laughs*

    We don’t want our kids to take us like this! I think a low-tone “confirmed” voice is what the teenage child needs. Plus, the yelling doesn’t do us any good except high blood pressure! You might get an action but the kid wouldn’t take you seriously until he sees you blue in the face! This is a great article to those parents who are still struggling with their teenagers.

    Anyway, it’s pass midnight here on my end and I better go to bed before I turned into a pumpkin. I hope you have a wonderful weekend.

    Angela

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 2, 2013 at 2:16 pm

      Hi Angela,

      Glad you could relate to the post and agree too. :)

      Absolutely! Parents can easily be firm by using softer tones, though most of us don’t realize the fact and feel raised voices will have a better impact on the kids, but that only affects adversely I feel. I agree, this really doesn’t work with teens – ask me! I liked your example…lol…that’s how it really gets :)

      Oh yes…yelling, shouting, loud voices only harm the parents, and it will result in high blood pressure and other ailments, and none of this will make the kids listen to you either ways – so why should at all. The kids too tend to get used to your behavior, and they see ok mom hasn’t raised her voice or shouted, so I can wait a while, and will do what she asks me to once I hear her yell! The answer to all of this lies in the hands of the parents – they have to mold their kids and teach them to learn to listen to them, without having to repeat things more than once or twice.

      Thanks for stopping by hope you have a nice weekend as well :)

  30. jason nelmes

    September 20, 2013 at 9:34 pm

    Very interesting article, having four children of my own(including triplets)I can surely relate to most of the things you say, Time and Patience is the key!

  31. hiren

    August 19, 2014 at 11:52 am

    Nice article very informative post for all. All the parents should read this post one time its very helpful for them. thanks to sharing.

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