As a parent, I am often talking to my kids about their behavior and how to correct it. They’ve heard me say many times, “Look, this is something we don’t do,” or “Mom and I have talked to you about this,” or “God has talked about this.” But every now and then, they will fire back at me about something I have done. “Hey, Dad, you’ve talked to us about being calm and under control and you’re yelling at us.” Have you ever had your kid call you out as a parent?
Those moments are not fun, however, here is how I have to respond when they do.
Acknowledge the wrong.It’s more powerful to show your kids how to behave than telling them.
I have to say to my kids, “You know what, you’re right. If you were doing what I’m doing, I wouldn’t like it.” Let them know you see that you were wrong so they don’t see you being a hypocrite.
Do what you expect from them.
It’s important to apologize to your kids in these situations. I tell them, “I was wrong and I’ll try not to do it again. Please forgive me.” It’s a great opportunity for you to model how they should respond. It’s more powerful to show your kids how to behave than telling them.
Sound off: When your kids call you out, what do you do?
Huddle up with your kids and ask, “How many times do I have to say something before you take me seriously?”