10    Sep 20124 comments

Family: 10 things never to tell your kids

In Denise Schipani's article, 10 things you should never say to your kids, she lists common phrases that parents may say to their children in the heat of the moment.

Although these comments might not sound bad, they can actually be harmful and upsetting.

The list:

  1. "I know you can try harder."
  2. "Are you sure you need that second cupcake?"
  3. "You always…" or "You never…"
  4. "Why can’t you be more like your sister/brother?"
  5. "I told you waiting until the last minute was a mistake!"
  6. "You’re the best at soccer!"
  7. "Don’t worry—the first day of school will be fine."
  8. "Because I said so!"
  9. "I wish you didn’t hang out with Jack; I don’t like that kid."
  10. "That’s not how you do it! Here, let me."

What's interesting about the list is that no phrase is actually that bad, objectively. However, the sentiment could upset or potentially damage the child.

Parenting advice has changed over time. The old Victorian adage - "children should be seen and not heard" - is clearly no longer relevant. Our parents were brought up differently than their own parents. And the way they brought us up, and how we bring up our own children, is likely also different.

What are your thoughts? Do you agree with the article? What should we say to our children?

Share your comments below.

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Comments (4) Trackbacks (0)
  1. When a child asks ____ (fill in the blank), we should not reply with "I don't care". "I don't mind" or "That would be fine" would be much better in my opinion.
  2. I never said any of the above comments, except for #8. I said, "Because I'm the Mommy, that's why.
  3. Re the first one, I would ask my children did they think they could try harder. Not, I know you CAN try harder. They are now 20 and 24 and I know they try their best. It is a very long time since I needed to ask them did they think they could do better. Their personal best is fine by me.
  4. Re number 7 it would all depend for me on the child's comment originally. Some kids are excited about school, some are aprehensive, some are somewhere in the middle. Many times, the first day of school is just fine and to suggest otherwise is alarming the child unnecessarily. My object was to give my children the confidence in themselves so they could gain as much as possible from school years.

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