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Why won’t kids listen?

This is a question most parents seem to ask themselves on a regular basis…why won’t kids listen?

Children appear to have an inbuilt ability to switch off from any words to exit a parents mouth that involves tidying, cleaning, getting ready, hurrying up, calming down, chores, doing a less pleasant task, homework or not touching something! Just how do they do it? I wish I could switch off from this too.

Child listening through headphones

Wouldn’t it be great if we had a pound for every time we repeated ourselves, I would be a millionaire, then I could pay someone else to do the cleaning and tidying.

Last weekend, we spent every waking moment reminding the children to be careful of the paintwork (we were decorating) and to walk through doors, not touch them. Do you think this worked? No, the children still managed to get paint on their clothes.

Asking a child to put their clothes and toys away, feels like an impossible task that is never-ending, by the time I have got one child to listen to me, the other two have created even more chaos and so the process starts again. If only all three children would listen at the same time!

It’s not just the not listening when I ask them to do something. If they get cross about something, I like to talk them through the issue to help resolve it, but they are unable to listen to my words and hear what is being said. This can be the most frustrating situation, however, I know children are young and still learning how to deal with their emotions, I just wish they’d let me help.

Every morning, the children are ready for school half an hour or more before we have to leave, that’s great, except the moment the words “it’s time for school, can you put your shoes and coat on” leave my mouth…. nobody moves. For some reason these words get lost in the air. I often wonder if I’m going mad, did I actually say that out loud, or did I imagine saying it in my head?

I am sure I am not alone with this phenomenon. We have our ups and downs with it, but this week seems to be a lot of questioning ‘why won’t kids listen?’

10 thoughts on “Why won’t kids listen?”

  1. We definitely have days like that here too! I find Arthur listens much better if I get down on his level and look him in the eye. It’s definitely not always practical though – and he still seems to manage to filter out the bits he doesn’t want to hear!

  2. Yep, I have the same problem with Ethan. He would not listen – always until I finish playing or watching something to the end. I feel like pulling my hair out! Gosh! How many times do I have to say it?! “100 times?” Hello! Rhetorical question?! Sigh… we just have to keep on trying I guess – I seem to be bribing him a lot these days. lol!

  3. This sounds so like our house, mine all have their jobs but these last few weeks I feel like I’m nagging them to get on and do them and they often say they didn’t hear me ask. AHHHH!

  4. I think almost every single parent can relate to this! Selective deafness is the single most frustrating things in the parenting world. Somehow they don’t hear a single word you say and yet they can hear you unwrapping a sweet from a mile away in the middle of a thunderstorm!

  5. This is a problem we have in our household. Factor in a kid on the spectrum and you start to wonder whether you have become a broken record…

  6. A lot of parents in school view my son as nice. What they didn’t know is that when I ask my son to do anything it takes so many times before he do it! One time my son is asking why I am asking him come on so many times and I told him that I will say its once if he would listen thg first time.

  7. I really don’t think you are on your own with this one, what child ever listens? I have adopted different voices with my three and this ensures that when I use ‘the’ voice, they have to listen.

  8. Oh yes, I can definitely relate! My husband and I have been lamenting this fact this very week as the kids seem determined to pay no attention to us, especially the 3yo. Ah well, at least we’re not alone!

  9. I feel your pain here! Sometimes I wonder whether I just say things purely to hear the sound of my own voice because I’m sure the children don’t listen to it! Hope the decorating is going well.

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