What can I do to make my son LISTEN!?

United States
January 8, 2007 6:46am CST
My oldest son is 9 yrs old. he has the biggest attitude and does not do anything he is told. He fights with his 8 yr old brother constantly! He doesnt clean his room he doesnt pick up after himself, he just plain wont do anything. If I ask him to do something he just ignores me like he thinks he is boss or king or something. what can I do to make him listen??? I try the time outs and standing in corners. he fights with other kids and then when they do something back he is the biggest baby and screams and cries. any tips would be appreciated..
6 people like this
86 responses
@inked4life (4227)
• United States
8 Jan 07
I don't know if you've tried this. We went through a little period like this with my daughter when she was 6. We started taking away some of her favourite toys and the only way she could get them back (1 at a time) was by being rewarded for good behavior or for doing chores around the house. It was amazing how quickly she turned her behavior around when she realized we were serious about what we were doing...good luck
• United States
8 Jan 07
Thanks alot for the tip.. that would be a good thing to try. I am so fed up I am willing to try just about anything.lol.. Thanks again :)
• United States
8 Jan 07
I have a 7 year old daughter who is full of attitude. I found that restriction on the telephone (she has one little friend that calls every day) made a difference to her. You will need to find out what it is that will push his buttons and then restrict it. Also, after a while he will probably not care that he doesn't have tv or phone or whatever it is that you decided on, so you need to have a second plan. Time out still works with my daughter, I have her sit on the staircase where everyone in the house can see her, and then I have a timer that I use for her. At the end of the time out I ask her if she knows why she got a timeout. They need to recognize their behavior issues and learn to correct them, or else you will correct them.
1 person likes this
• India
8 Jan 07
i think this is the best option...
@nickiy (40)
• United States
8 Jan 07
talk to him, tell him whats bothering you then ask him why he does it, go from there if he doesnt want to talk then take EVERYTHING out of his room...leave only his clothes, bed, and desk (if he has one ) if they use a comp at school alot and he has one of those for homework then leave that also (if you know enough about comps, then you may want to "hide" the default games that come installed already....) when he starts to listen then give something small back... and if he does something bad again take it right back out.......if there is a man around (dad, step dad whatever...) then look at how they act...is your son doing the same things? if so talk to the man... if not then have the man talk to him....
1 person likes this
@vijay62 (22)
• India
8 Jan 07
I think your son is having sibling jealousy. ( as you have said that he constantly fights with his brother) You try your level best to show him that he is also equally lovable. May be it is happening that you are paying more attention to your younger son than him. Another way to solve this problem is take him to outing at his favorite place and discuss out, what is the matter with him that he is behaving in that way. Never punish him either physically or mentally as his condition may be further aggravated.
@James72 (26829)
• Australia
8 Jan 07
An interesting point for me is you saying that he doesn't do what he is "told". His attitude may soften if an approach using persuasion rather than directness is used. I agree with Inkdforlife also in that rewards should be considered. Not just material rewards but verbal rewards also. Helping your son develop a sense of pride and achievement along the way to receiving a material reward at the end may just curb his attitude? He also may have worked out that if he leaves things lying around long enough then Mum will pick them up for him. As hard as it is, sometimes we have to look at ourselves to determine the cause and effect on others. I have two kids that are both very young still and I am unfortunately away from them for some time. I did however use trial and error to see what response it had and the softer more explanatory approach seemed to work better for me. It wasn't easy though! Rather than telling them to pick up their toys I explained how Daddy had been at work all day and was tired and that it would really help Daddy if they picked up their toys. It would also mean that the three of us could watch one of their movies together. This worked well for me and I always congratulated them after they were done, which in turn made them feel good about themselves.... It may not work for you also but maybe worth considering? Good luck with your son!
1 person likes this
@Mecboy (1051)
• United States
9 Jan 07
don't be too mad at him, THINK about the stress your oldest son is receiving, WITH YOUR PUNISHMENTS MAKE HIM FEEL WORSE. try to talk to him, hug him, your his MOM, take care of him,along with his brother. You seem nice, but he receiving stress, and putting more workload on him. He will gladly clean his room, if you can help out his mood. You are a great mother you can do it.
@Mecboy (1051)
• United States
9 Jan 07
smart guy im 15, im still a kid. if your really bright, youd realize im kid. next think before you say.
• India
8 Jan 07
Nothing to worry about it if you accept him as a child. that is his natural behaviour. he needs to be encouraged and praised for what ever he listens you and obeys you. then the next time he will listen you. and try to do things together with him as an example. he will come and do it along with you. Jose Thomas
@mnflower (1301)
• United States
8 Jan 07
My approach to this one would be sitting the young man down and saying ok it is your floor, tell me what it is that has you so ticked off that has you acting in this manner and lets see what we can do about it... meet him in the middle know adays kids grow so fast and listen to other kids and what one kid has others want, give him a chance to tell you what is bothering him, and then discuss them and see if someway you two can meet in the middle with it all...taking them from him, you will find he will turn to stealing, lieing and doing behind your back I am afraid, these days kids want to be in with everyone else and they tend to not care what it takes, we have to acknowledge that and treat them as such, giving them time to speak there minds and having them suggest to you some things that would help make it better...just my opinion I have 2 girls 9 and 12 and one stepson that just turned 18...not all works all the time but one thing they tell all there friends is you can talk to my mommy she will listen and try to help make it fair....thanks good luck
• United States
10 Jan 07
I understand exactly what you are going through believe me I have 2 sibilings that fight like bettafish. I dont know if it is a phase they just go through at this age or not. It's almost like you have to seperate them and two ends of the house and if you have a small space you can forget. Im sorry i not of help but to let you know you are not alone.
9 Jan 07
reading this thread was a treat... at least i know that i m not the only one with such a problem with my 4 year-old, who seemed to have developed a problem of selective hearing... i've been having a lot of problem making her listen and remember what she has done wrong but shortly after she'll repeat it again. the other thing that drives me nuts is her constant whining and crying over everything and anything. seeking my attention??? i dunno... i'm giving her a lot of it these days but it's never enough i suppose. i've tried talking, punishing, taking away her things... nothing seems to work. i m just so tired sometimes. well, perhaps i m not doing it right? perhaps i m not consistent enough for her to take me seriously??? i hope i find a technique here that works for me and her. thank you all...
• India
9 Jan 07
nothing can be done...leave them were they r........he will understand everything when hes mature...
@runsgame (2033)
• India
9 Jan 07
i do not think u can do any thing better rather than to wait for your time. because this is the age where child will show more play activities. be patient for some time and i think u can have your voice soon . he will become alright and will listen your voice
@alienstar (5140)
• India
9 Jan 07
Attitude is common in children of this age and can be tackled with some effort isn't it? so, take some stern steps to improve his behaviour as you manynot be able to control him later if you cannot control him now....so, give him some punishment which he has to follow , otherwise don't feed him.So, he will come to terms once he starts co-operating with you in some way's.....
• India
9 Jan 07
well, i dont believe in doing anything by force. the best way to make anyone do anything is by letting them understand the importance of things. if he doesn't do anything still, don't do it for him. let him see what mess he gets in by being unorganised. he's big enough to understand.
@rahulmig (1032)
• India
9 Jan 07
Scold Him.. Put Restrictions on HIM !~!
@blueman (16513)
• India
9 Jan 07
son, mother - son, mother
the best thing i would suggest is that try to put yourself in your sons position and when you try to tell him something try to show you are telling as a friend then i think he might listen to you.
@dexter5 (297)
• India
9 Jan 07
jennifer , i think you should try keeping them from something they like and giving it back to them only when they behave. it works with many of the kids.
• India
9 Jan 07
Just explain him how u feel
@glasser3 (354)
• Hibbing, Minnesota
9 Jan 07
hmm my younger sister is kind of like that and my mom just has had to put her foot down and limit the things that my sister likes to do and it has had some effect on her although she can still be a little terror. I hope you manage to find some way to get your son to do what he needs to do and act like he should.
@cisco1 (539)
• United States
9 Jan 07
if you have a boot camp for kids, maybe put him in one of those programs. It will give him discipline, respect and responsibilities.
@sicnarf (27)
• Philippines
9 Jan 07
i think you should apply the principle of 'kind firmness' here. it means being to kind, caring and loving mom that you are but at the same time the FIRM momma as well. you let him know that you're the boss which means being strongly firm in implementing your house rules and in insisting that he do the things you want him to do. be careful though, don't let him obey you just because he is scared of you. you make him obey you because he respects and loves you. good luck!
@evil66in (18)
• India
9 Jan 07
I am not a very experienced person to give you a justified answer but i have gone through this situation and all i expected all the while is someone to know why i ws so frustrated why i did not like anyone at home. someone suggested me to exhaust all my energy in some game so i took up martial arts and football. It worked wornders on me. You could find out your kids interest and get him trained into those areas.