It’s winter and it’s freezing out there. But my seven-year-old refuses to wear his snow pants. I’ve tried empathy. I’ve tried sweet-talking him. Nothing seems to work. Can you help?
You’re not going to like my short answer. Don’t make him wear the snow pants. What? Keep reading.
I’m betting you have a strong-willed child. I think we can agree that his determination and drive will serve him well as an adult, but it certainly is challenging to raise a strong-willed child. It sounds like you two have gotten into a power struggle over this. Is this the hill you want to die on?
Some might advise you to crack down with consequences. You could try to break his will, but the damage to your relationship will make things harder in the long run. You need to learn how to work with him instead. This personality temperament, while challenging, will serve him well in life.
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Sarah Rosensweet is a peaceful parenting coach and educator. She lives in Toronto with her husband and three big kids (ages 12, 15, and 18). Sarah teaches parents a non-punitive, connection-based approach that uses firm limits with lots of empathy. Find her at sarahrosensweet.com