When Children are Defiant and “Disobedient”

In this episode: Janet responds to a parent who wonders how to react to her daughter’s consistently stubborn behavior. “I feel like I have a set of tools to handle my 4-year-old daughter’s outbursts of emotions, but I am at a loss for what to do when she stoically disobeys or ignores me altogether.”


Please share your comments and questions. I read them all and respond to as many as time will allow.

  1. I have a defiant 5 year old granddaughter. She has loving caring parents who meet all her needs. They go over and above. She wants her own way and screams and yells at her parents when she doesn’t get It. She refuses to come into the house when told she has 5 more minutes. She feels that some kids have more than she does eg. Outdoor swimming pool, horseback riding lessons etc. Yet, my granddaughter has lots of toys , outings and undivided attention from her parents and grandparents. It upsets me to see this child upset her parents so much. Any suggestions? I’ve read several of your posts and like your ideas on child rearing. Thanks.

    1. Thanks so much for reaching out, Isabelle. How are the parents with boundaries? The behavior you describe and also your comment that the parents “go over and above” and are upset by their daughter’s behavior suggest to me that the parents may not be confidently setting limits. She sounds like a strong child that needs strong, decisive leaders.

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