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How to get my child to listen?

My 8 year old girl is driving me crazy! Every time I tell her something she either doesn't do it or does something completely different. For example: I tell her to get tennis shoes on to play outside and she puts on boots. I ask her to get a washcloth for the baby and she pretends she doesn't know where they are, thus bringing back something else. This happens just about everyday and not only does it make my life more stressful it can be a safety issue. What can I do?


Asked by Kathy_USMC at 3:12 PM on Mar. 15, 2011 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

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Answers (10)
  • She just might be testing you.The age to start wanting independence is younger now..I taught third/4th grade bilingual for many years..and occasionally saw rebellion of this type.Control battle.
    I believe she understands perfectly what you want..You mentioned there is a baby in the picture...Maybe she dislikes being No. 2 or feeling deprived of you .Are you giving her some time to be with you alone?
    She seems intelligent, also..She is just modifying your wishes, for example with the shoes and boots..Testing..
    As for refusing..I would sit her down and have a heart to heart. Tell her you are depending on her to help...You NEED her help...There really is not an option when you ask her to do a chore. I believe a verbal reward should be enough for obedient behavior...For obstinence, she has two choices...Be obedient, or suffer the consequences...Take a privilege from her...She will get the message..Be calm and consistent..((Hugs)

    Answer by VeronicaTex at 9:10 PM on Mar. 15, 2011

  • If she were mine, I would sit her down and tell her that there are going to be new rules at our house. She will be told once what she is to do and she had better pay attention to the sound of my voice and make sure she gets the instructions right, because if she doesn't, she is going to get a good old-fashioned spanking on her bare behind. If there is any possibility that she may be hearing impaired, get that checked out before you begin the new program. Then follow through, follow through, and continue to follow through. She will catch on very quickly when there is a bit of pain involved with her disobedience. This is how my husband and I raised our three children and we are very well pleased with the results.

    Answer by NannyB. at 3:17 PM on Mar. 15, 2011

  • I have this same problem with my almost 2 year old son. he just won't listen. and i am Stearn.

    Answer by ask-krysta at 3:17 PM on Mar. 15, 2011

  • You can pull a nanny 9-1-1 and speak in an English accent, it seems rediculous, but it's different and my 6 yo son loved it and it worked for us and the intentional not listening eventually wore off.

    Answer by yesmaam at 3:21 PM on Mar. 15, 2011

  • i have that problem but it getting worse my boy is 8 and he doesnt listen and now he starting to back talk im at my end i dont know what else to do......

    Answer by ray-ray552 at 7:05 PM on Mar. 15, 2011

  • Just stress to her how important it is that she follows directions. When you are able, DO offer a couple of choices (like wearing shoes or boots, or choosing pants or a skirt, etc) because kids need to feel like they have SOME control over their lives. Offer rewards for great days of listening and following instructions, but always try to offer some choices as well.

    Answer by KTMOM at 11:10 AM on Mar. 16, 2011

  • Every time before you tell her something say - Okay, do you have your listening ears on? when she says yes, you know you have her attention, then give your request. I know it is an extra step, but it can stop a lot of frustration after the fact when she doesn't listen.

    Answer by cleanaturalady at 2:10 PM on Mar. 17, 2011

  • She's asserting her control. If you say tennis shoes, then dammit, it's tennis shoes. If she puts on boots then those boots are GONE. However, make sure she does get to pick some things so she doesn't develop a mental problem for lack of control of her surroundings.

    Answer by Pnukey at 8:23 PM on Mar. 17, 2011

  • You could try ignoring some of the things that are not dangerous. If she wants to wear boots in the summer, let her go and look silly and be uncomfortable. Consequence of behavior.

    Answer by elasmimi at 9:48 AM on Mar. 19, 2011

  • Consistency. Watch some super nanny episodes for ideas.

    Answer by chiquis at 3:20 AM on Mar. 22, 2011

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