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Is your tween stressing you?

 It is in their tween years that children start to show rebellion (Photo: iStock)

Once your child steps into their tween years, which is around nine to 12 years, there is a huge shift in their personality. They are no longer that sweet quiet baby and some even start to become know-it-alls.

Unfortunately, at this stage, traditional forms of discipline like caning don’t work. And if your child is already showing signs of rebellion, this might make it worse.

So, you have to be smart about how you choose to discipline them. Here are some suggestions that might yield positive results:

Lead by example

Children learn their first habits from what they see at home, this is already a proven fact. And now that they’re developing and analyzing everything in a more complex way, they take what they are seeing as part of their personalities.

If you’re someone who abuses others openly, guess what, they might be getting that from you. For you to really help them become responsible adults, you have to do the self-work and ensure you are a good role model.

 Try and find out why they are acting out (Photo: iStock)
Deal with the root of the rebellion

Most kids don’t just wake up one day and decide to rebel. It has to have a root cause and most likely it has to do with something that’s happening at home or at school.

You might find that they have developed behavioural problems because they’re unable to understand why they are being bullied at school or why their mom or dad drinks too much.

There are a number of reasons and the only way to find out is by having a conversation with them.

Talk to them about real consequences

I’m sure you can remember your tween years when you thought you were so mature. If you had that rebellious phase at the time, you know how hard it can be for someone to convince you that something is wrong.

When you think about that, you can understand where your tween’s mind is at. Some of them start experimenting with dangerous things that might lead to early pregnancy, alcoholism and drug addiction and you never know what they are up to.

To be on the safe side, you need to have the sex talk with them and educate them on issues like substance abuse.

 Sometimes the best thing is to let them learn from their own mistakes (Photo: iStock)
Let them learn from their own mistakes

You should also allow them to understand how life works instead of trying to shield them from everything all the time. Eventually, they will see the results of their actions and avoid making the same mistakes.

If for example they get angry and break their phone screen, don’t be quick to get it replaced. That is when they will understand the results of their actions.

Let the punishment fit the crime

You also need to ensure you’re not being so brutal with the way you’re choosing to discipline them. These are things they will remember all the way into adulthood and they will always question if your aim was to actually help them.

At that stage, they’re still developing and they will make mistakes that will drive you crazy. But don’t be excessively harsh for every small mistake they make.

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