A whining child! We know, it is possibly one of the most irritating sounds we hear. It is as irritating as the creeping sound of nails on the wall. Believe it or not, not only children whine, adults do it too. The only difference is; adults merge it in form of words and emotions, but kids don’t. They try to hold their feelings in their tiny hearts, and when they have had enough, they have an outburst of emotions in the form of whining.
The real concern here isn’t how to make your child stop whining, but why do kids do that? Whenever your baby walks up to you, whining you may desperately want to say to your child, ‘If you want something just say it. But stop whining!’ No. It’s not what children want, it’s the fact that at that moment they feel helpless and disconnected. If a simple spoonful of cough-syrup can make him/her cry, you can imagine how vulnerable they can get.
Your child’s whining doesn’t just bother you, but it is equally or even more harmful for your child himself/herself. Your child probably doesn’t even know why he/she is doing that. There could be many such occasions where you are frustrated about your child’s this kind of behavior. Your child might actually want to help you, but unable to understand why you are frustrated and how to help, thus they might end up whining even more. You can be merited for your parenting and child discipline skills, and yet your child might feel lonely.
Why kids whine? Understand the real cause for it:
While raising children, we can raise our voice and perhaps even our hand, but just imagine how it will reflect on their future. We try to control children, given that we have the right to do so. But, imagine if that is replaced with positive parenting tips, you will raise a wise human!
L. J. Cohen said, “I am always amazed when adults say that children ‘just did that to get attention’. Naturally, children who need attention will do all kind of things to get it. Why not just give it to them?”
Have you ever wondered? May it be for the newest dress we wear or the latest gadget we buy, Don’t we flaunt it around? Isn’t that for attention too? When adults need attention, then why not kids? Children crave for attention, sometimes it unreasonable, we agree. But mostly there is a sincere reason behind it. These reasons might not make sense to us, but for a child, they do.
Your child is whining probably because someone did something wrong to him or said something which was unbearable for his/her innocent heart. Children whine probably because of the struggle to track words in sequence out of their mouth to convince you. The result of failure to deliver the emotions just as they feel is a whining baby for us. If children keep on whining it is acceptable to feel ‘upset’ and totally understood if you ‘want to take a break’ from it. But, to literally do so means, inviting more whining!
To help you deal with a whining child we have filtered some efficient ways by which you can, not only understand the reasons behind your child’s irritating behavior but also cure it.
Ways to stop your child from whining:
1. Bridge of communication:
Communicate with your child in a way that he/she understands what you want to convey. Your children will learn what you teach them. They will eventually express their emotions the way you do. Be a good and calm role model for them. If you yell and ask your child to do something, they will do the same, YELL!
If you display, ‘you can make someone do something by just yelling and shouting’ they will be encouraged to do the same. There is a need to reflect on the child’s ‘whine cues’ very carefully. Sometimes you need to stay calm, while other times you need to stay stiff as a board, well a smiling and calm board. Irrespective of your child’s consistent whining, take some time and try to comprehend why exactly is he/she whining. Half of your problems will be ironed out right there.
2. Keep the cup half full:
If children are demanding something, you can always fulfill half of their wishes. More often than not it is feasible for parents to fulfill almost every little wish of their children. But the aspiration of raising a wise child keeps us in check of what and how much we need to provide? So, this can be your guilty pleasure to actually make your child half happy and stop him from whining for you to get rid of it.
3. Listen, analyze, and govern:
Listening is a simple mantra to stop your child from whining. If your child starts whining or shouting, you can calmly say, “Baby, I cannot understand when you are whining. So, when you are done with that you can explain your thing to me nicely. I will be right here” It’s as simple as that. Saying so, you let children understand that whining isn’t going to work here. If they need to convince you for something, they will have to stop whining.
4. Don’t let them see you sweat:
This is dangerous territory! If you panic or sweat in front of children, they will know that the whining is, in fact, working on you. So, stay firm and don’t accept it. And when we say don’t accept it, we mean don’t react at all. No SHOUTING- No PANICKING- NOTHING! Just stay calm. This will induce some discipline and make children understand that whining is hopeless. That way they will try to explore words and learn how to speak nicely. Probably, children can’t even comprehend what ‘speak nicely’ means, until we show them.
5. Try to be attentive:
We recently visited a colleague Natasha for her birthday, who has two daughters. Natasha was engrossed with her younger baby (Tanya) that the elder one (Akriti) was deprived of her mother’s attention. We tried to talk to the Akriti and her reply was, “mommy spends most of her time with Tanya”. Akriti then started screaming and throwing tantrums, in the hope of getting some attention just like a small baby girl.
We might not notice this easily, but kids freak out when we don’t give them enough attention, or sometimes overlook their behavior. Then starts the tantrums and whining process, which they think would be enough to get you hooked to them.
6. Accept the challenge:
Children whine sometimes to get you to do something. Now, that something can often mean ‘Not suitable for children’. At such times you need to have a firm hand on not giving your child the benefit of whining. Parents often shower their children with whatever they want, just to make them stop whining. But, this can make the kids more aggressive when they grow up. Children might also stop valuing the things that are provided to them easily. Don’t just cave in and accept their offers. Instead, stay calm and make a counteroffer to settle on some midterms. Something like, “Not now baby, but maybe when you reach the correct age”.
7. Guide them
Children are ignorant of other ways to express themselves, hence whining comes on the field, because that’s easy. Cherish your good parenting skills and guide your child to explore different ways to express. If your child simply wants an ice-cream and starts whining for it, you guide your child to say ‘please’ and that you will give him/her an ice-cream if he/she behaves well. There are many ways to stop it, the whining, only if we guide our child.
The parenting tips shared above are simple and effective. Just like a sculptor knows how to carve out a beautiful statue out of a log of wood, know how to raise your child into a wise person lovingly.