Parents of children that are constant complainers are often at their wit’s end. With children who whine about everything, how can parents win?
Thankfully, your complaining kid will eventually grow out of this habit. For now, there are a few ways you can help them get over this type of behavior.
Why Is My Child Always Complaining?
Children often complain about their dissatisfaction. Typically, the whining begins when they aren’t happy with what they’re getting.
If your child is a constant complainer, they likely just aren’t appropriately expressing what it is they want. Teach your child to effectively communicate their needs. It’s important that your child understands that they won’t always get everything they want
Are My Child’s Complaints Even Valid?
Likely, your child is complaining because they want something, not because they need it. This type of behavior will only continue if parents give into the complaining.
Parents shouldn’t rush to find a solution to a petty complaint. If your child wants something else and tries to complain, parents should deflect the complaint back to the child. Giving your child the opportunity to find a solution to their problem is important. This way, they’re forced to accept the situation and get creative about changing it.
If your child is complaining about something or someone, this is a different story, For example, if a certain food makes them sick, listen to them. Likewise, if your child is uncomfortable around someone, make sure you take action and hear what they have to say.
Teaching Your Child Gratitude
In your efforts to address unnecessary whining and complaining, consider teaching gratitude as well. Teaching your child to be grateful will go a long way in helping them understand needs and wants.
Experts suggest that children practice gratitude by thinking about their senses. Kids should understand what it means to be thankful for something. Explaining your children’s needs and showing how they’re met is a great way for them to understand and experience gratitude. For example, explaining that health, happiness, and safety are all things they have that they can be thankful for.
Your child will start to shift their thinking from a complainer’s mindset to one of gratitude. As they learn to be more grateful, they’ll focus less on what they don’t have and more on how thankful they are.
Distinguishing Needs From Wants
As your child learns how to communicate their needs, make sure they understand exactly what needs and wants are. Children should understand that needs are essential to survival. On the other hand, wants are nice to have but non-essential.
Explain to your child how important it is to communicate their real needs. For example, if they are hungry, thirsty, or feeling unsafe, they should always tell a responsible adult. When it comes to managing their wants, tell your child that they may not always get what they want. Whenever your child doesn’t get what they want, they should learn to be happy with what they already have.
What If My Child Keeps Complaining?
Kids complain because it works. Children know that being whiny and complaining generally wears parents down.
Though it’s tough, stick it out. Don’t give in when your child complains or makes demands.
If your child simply won’t take no for an answer, disciplining is another option. Task your child with chores to earn enough to pay for what they want. Likewise, consider using a complaint jar. Every time your child makes a complaint, a dollar goes into the jar.
Complaining doesn’t last forever. As your child sees that complaints won’t work with their parents, they stop. Eventually, your child will learn that they must ask for the things they want. As they mature, they’ll realize that while they don’t always get what they want, that’s okay.