Parents have to always struggle with their kinds. No matter whether they are just little kindergarteners or whether they are fully grown adults. With people with different opinions and different ages living under one roof, specially grown people, it is normal to have disputes among one another. But the problem is with the number of grown children still living with their parents. And due to their lifestyles and struggles, many children tend to be disrespectful towards parents. So here are some ways on How to deal with a disrespectful grown child.
It is without a doubt difficult and stressful to deal with such a child. This is because the grown-up child could no longer be withheld by imposing boundaries such as curfews and groundings because he or she himself is a grown-up person who needs to handle his or her own issues. And parents don’t feel like they should take the matters into their hands and make them behave.
As a parent, you must be able to carefully consider why your child has grown up to this. There can be many reasons. People living in this modern world have problems bottled up inside themselves more than you can figure out by looking at one’s outer appearance. And this does not mean the normal aggression of teenagers.
That is absolutely normal with them hitting puberty. But the disrespectful behavior, which is the main focus in this article, is something more than that, something which might be a result of an internal struggle with which they might need your help. So, no matter how grown-up your child is, pay attention to them.
When older children are disrespectful with their parents, they always try to have their way with their parents. And moms and dads, out of affection or in order to get rid of the nuisance, succumb to their kid’s demands. This might get physically, mentally, and financially draining for you. And at the end of the day, you might end up needing professional help. Parents often go on a guilt trip reminiscing on their parenting mistakes and taking responsibility for their kid’s disrespectful behavior. That is not at all necessary. This all can be solved with or without help and also without having to get into bad terms with each other.
Why are they like that?
There are a number of reasons for your adult child behaving disrespectfully. Most of the reasons are psychological. Some of the reasons might have logical reasons and root causes. Some are just imitations of people they idolize.
As above mentioned, a #1 reason for an adult kid being disrespectful towards parents is because they are imitating their parents. Childhood traumas of their parents being extremely hateful towards them or between parents has a long-lasting effect on the brain development of the kids.
It is completely normal that at one point in their life, children will want to stop following their parent’s wishes. They might have their own dreams which they want to pursue. These dreams are sometimes prone to end up in shambles. That is when all hell breaks loose. Some kids let this out in a calm way. Others just can’t. They bash at their parents.
And adult children still lack life experience. Most of the time, their actions are driven by emotions and not reason. Parents have the responsibility to make their kids find a reason, vested upon them.
Biologically, the prefrontal cortex of the brain starts to develop at teenagers. This triggers questioning everything, resulting in adolescent aggression and rebellion.
Your child’s opinion matters in situations. Authoritarianism and control should not be done over. Communication is the key. Lack of all this at young adult years will definitely back the disrespect you receive from them once they grow up.
Lower your expectations. Your kids are not entitled to obey you all the time. If they do so, there might be something else wrong with them (just a suspicion) or they are just super saintly kids.
Do not react, I repeat.
In simple terms, be a bit aggressive. But make sure not to overdo it. If your kid is the one creating the commotion, you are always at a disadvantage because the kid will have excuses for everything. Instead “try to be a creator”, says Shirley Baldwin, an entrepreneur, certified Transformational Life Coach and the author of the famous composition Get What You Want From Your Man. Her way is not to become one of them, Be different from the kids and stop disrespecting each other.
Try to set an example by being calm yet authoritative on the matter. That will instill a sense of respect for you in the kid.
They are your friends, mate
This ‘almost’ reverse psychological method has proven to be very effective and also healthy between a child and a parent. This is not limited to adult children. A parent must always be the best friend of the kid. Open about their day to day lives. Your kids should be able to come back from school, work, party, or even clubbing and tell you everything that happened in the day. Moms should be able to sit down, sip a glass of vine, and talk about their future plans with their daughters. Dads should be able to share a can of cool beer and talk about each other’s life struggles with their sons. A family should have empathy and sympathy towards each other.
But this does not only mean “treat your friend good, no matter what”. This also means “cut your toxic friends off your life if you cannot handle them”. Yes, you have to try your best not to give up on your children. But, let’s be realistic. There are some rare instances where you can’t take them anymore. Feel free to cut contacts with them and make them go their own way. Maybe give some life advice for the last time and tell them off.
Remember, be open to them always. Do not close the door if they ever come back. Be ready to forgive and forget. That’s how you deal with disrespectful grown children.
Do not let them manipulate you
Kids take advantage of your parenthood in situations like this. But according to Jeffrey Bernstein, Ph.D., psychologist, and author of 10 Days to a Less Defiant Child, you should not always bow down to them and help them out all the time. You might feel compelled to do so with the parental affection you have towards your kids. But this is for their own good. Let them learn the responsibilities of life and make them understand the sacrifices you have made for them.
Here are some tips and tricks you could try to stop your disrespectful adult children from manipulating you.
- Keep your walls intact. It is advised to set boundaries with your children and keep them strictly.
- Do not ever feel guilty to the extent that they use it to manipulate you. Kids often use your parental mistakes to make you feel guilty and do what they want you to do.
- Struggling children may ask you for money. You should set limits on that. Maybe instead of giving money, try to find them a way of income so that they can take up responsibilities on their own.
- Disrespectful behavior is not solely a result of you providing poorly for them as a child. It could be a result of over-pampering as well. All you can do is to make them take responsibility from a young age. It will make them understand that real life is not a bed of roses.
- Feel free to change your mind. You don’t always have to keep your promises to your child because not all promises would be good for them. You might promise to go their way in order to calm them down one time. But tell them that you changed your mind later. Let them shout. Let them dash out. Let them get it out of their system.
- Be ready for rejection. Your kids will change their mind at one point as well. And you are not meant to be miserable. Let go of them and be happy with hope.
Would it be that simple?
No, it will not. Life is not supposed to be easy. Everyone needs to face the stages of conflict in their lives. It will be hard to go through hard times with your own loved offsprings. But keep in mind that they are individuals as well. Always parent them well when they’re young. That does not mean over-pampering them at all. Teach them the responsibilities of life. Let them be exposed to society. And don’t be hesitant to get professional help if you ever feel suitable. There is absolutely nothing wrong with being needy to make peace with your beloved child. Living and loving is the key to a happy life. Prevention is always better than cure. But that does not mean that you aren’t allowed to make mistakes.
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