Controlling Your Kids’ Wants


 This is a partnered guest post.

Your kids are the most precious thing in your life, but sometimes even the best kids can be greedy beyond all comprehension. Sometimes they want that new sugary cereal they saw in the commercial or a new toy that all their friends at school have. Either way, they won’t quit asking until they get it.


Saying no to these requests can be very difficult, especially if your kids are persistent and stubborn. Fortunately, all hope is not lost when it comes to denying your children’s insatiable desires. By investing some time and effort into setting new rules, you can control the way your children express what they want in positive ways. The key to this change is patience and assertiveness.


Assert Your Power

It may sometimes feel like your children are in control of any given situation, but that is only an illusion. As the parent, you have the ability to control nearly every aspect of your children’s universe. It’s essential that you exercise this control if you feel like your kids are getting out of hand with their demands. Kids gain a powerful position in the parent-child relationship only if you let them. If you constantly say yes to every whim and demand, they will quickly learn how easy it is to get what they want. By simply setting rules and enforcing them, your children will learn to recognize your authority.


Shift Control

Adjusting the balance of power from your children to yourself can result in a seemingly dramatic situation. Your kids won’t be used to being told “no”, so they may react badly at first. The key to success when taking the power back is to be consistent. Your kids may try to use all the old tactics that were once successful, but if you stay committed to the change, they will eventually learn the new rules and your new style of parenting. Your kids only resorted to begging and whining because it worked. When that stops, they will learn to shift their attitude to tactics that are more effective.


Reward Positive Behaviour

No parent wants to deny their children everything, but rewards should be given for positive behaviour, not begging, whining, or acting disrespectfully. If your children really want something that doesn’t fit within your budget, online surveys in NZ can provide you with prizes and cash that you can use to reward your kids’ good behaviour at school and home. Children that try to get what they want through good deeds will not only be much easier to be around, but they will learn a valuable skill that will help them later in life. You can also give your kids chores that you would normally do yourself; this will allow you to earn more money on the side by using various online moneymaking services.


Explain Your Motivations

Kids aren’t stupid. If you change all the rules at once without an explanation, they will feel that they are being treated unfairly. It’s important to carefully explain to your children why they can’t have everything they want exactly when they want it. Teach them how money management works and how every dollar you spend needs to be earned with hard work. Your kids will appreciate your effort to tell them the truth, and they will reward you in return with respect.


I'm a mother of 2 who likes to get involved in too much! Besides writing here I started a non-profit, I'm on the PTO board, very active in my community and volunteer in the school. I enjoy music, reading, cooking, traveling and spending time with my family. We just adopted our 3rd cat and love them all!

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  1. These are great tips. The “wants is a common problem that I deal with with my boys, especially as they get older.

  2. It’s hard being a parent. Toughest job I have had.

  3. I’m having this problem with my 18 year old. He “wants” are pretty expensive, too.

  4. we deal with this all the time

  5. We already have our children do chores for a small weekly allowance to teach them that you have to work for things you want.

  6. I think it’s really important to explain your motivations. Kids need to know that they can’t just have anything, anytime. These are great tips.

  7. This was a challenge for us… mainly because we have an only child and well, we love him and wanted him to have all the things we never had. We changed our behavior (and his) over the last year and things are working quite well. 🙂

  8. My daughter doesn’t really want much.

  9. My 3 year old is at that stage where he gets that it takes money to buy things- he just doesn’t get that you don’t have an unlimited supply of money. We’re working on it.