The Word “NO” – Part 3 of 4

Kids often have difficulty with the word “no.”

As a parent, how can we effectively say “no” to our kids without feeling like we are giving in and most importantly maintaining the relationship with them? 

This week we will focus on “GIVE” which is all about maintaining a positive relationship with your child and still being able to say “no.”

G stands for (Be) Gentle. Your child will respond better to you and be more likely to hear the word “no,”  if you respond to them with a nice and respectful approach rather than a harsh approach. This means no attacks, threats, judgements, or disrespect. 

I stands for (Act) Interested. This demonstrates to your child that you are listening and hearing what they are asking for and are actually paying attention to them in that moment. This allows you as the parent to convey to your child that you care about your relationship with them because you are taking the time to hear their point of view.

V stands for Validate. This means to acknowledge your child’s thoughts and feelings of being upset about not being able to get the video game and maintaining a non-judgmental stance on your part through words and nonverbal communication.  Validation will help improve your relationship with your child even when you aren’t telling them no! 

E stands for (Use an) Easy Manner. Use humor with your child to lighten up the situation or soothe them by giving them a hug to show that you care. Essentially this is creating a safe atmosphere for your child to hear “no” and actually feel okay about it! 

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By making this checklist freely available, we hope to make a positive difference in the lives of those facing mental health challenges. At YES, we understand the journey can be tough but rewarding. That's why we're here to support individuals and families and provide specialized training for mental health professionals, enhancing their ability to bring healing and hope to those in need.