How To Cope When Your Kids Get Cheeky

All kids usually go through a cheeky stage, but it doesn't mean you have to accept their bad behaviour. Here are ways to cope.

At some stage, your kids are going to go through a ‘cheeky stage’ and they will drive you mad with their negative attitude and overall cheekiness.  

The bad manners, rudeness and constant back-chatting is a normal feature of children’s behaviour but that doesn’t mean you need to accept it.  

Here are some ways to cope when your kids get cheeky, so you don’t have to drive yourself mad with the constant arguments and battles.  

Find out why your child is being cheeky  

Most of the time your child is cheeky because they have certain triggers and things that cause them to become frustrated. You may be able to figure out why or when it is happening so that you can find ways to avoid this type of behaviour before it becomes a nasty habit.  

Is your child tired, hungry or annoyed? Find out and you can curb the behaviour.  

Look at who your child spends time with and what they watch  

If your child is hanging around with cheeky kids or if a lot of them are exhibiting cheeky behaviour, then the chances are your child is going to follow suit. This isn’t the other children’s fault either, as they are learning too.  

Talk to your child about it and talk to the parents of the kids that your child is hanging around with. If everyone gets on the same page, the cheeky behaviour has less chance of becoming out of hand.  Some kids may watch TV shows that are not suitable and look at what it is they are watching, and you may notice the similarities in their behaviour. 

Sad child on the floor with a toy bus.
Is your child tired, hungry or annoyed? Find out and you can curb the behaviour.

Punish cheeky behaviour  

This is not the time to let cheekiness slide and if your child is consistently being cheeky, you have an issue. For younger kids, the naughty step is a good place to start with but for other children, this only adds to their misbehaviour.  

Placing them in the quiet corner to think is also another strategy that may work well. If your child has a certain treat during the week explain to your child how they may not be allowed it now after their cheeky behaviour.  

Talk to your child about respect  

It isn’t good for a young child to think they can speak rudely to people and not be punished. They need to understand why cheekiness is not nice and how disappointed you are when they do it. Teach your child manners, respect and morals by letting them see you behave this way.  

Children learn from those around them so while the kids may influence your child, you do too. Make sure they are influenced properly and show manners to everyone you meet and stop short of shouting in the house or saying hurtful things to others.  

Keep working on it  

It takes time for children to fully understand why cheeky behaviour is wrong, but they will learn with your help. They will need continuous reminders of manners and how to communicate with people without losing the run of themselves. Teach your child to handle their emotions when they are angry by telling an adult instead of lashing out with cheeky words.  

When your child says something rude or cheeky, pull them aside and make it clear that the behaviour won’t be accepted even if someone was rude to them. Listen to your child too, as a child that feels important and listened to, is less likely to lash out with cheeky behaviour or mannerisms.  

Good luck! 

Emma Hayes

Emma Hayes is a busy mum to two girls aged 17 and 11 and is married to her childhood sweetheart.

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