If you feel that your children are out of control and that you have lost your parental authority, you may also be feeling quite overwhelmed and unsure of what to do next. The fact is, many parents go through this and some never actually learn how to correctly control their kids and use their authority correctly, or even at all. This is something that can adversely affect the entire family and, even worse, follow their children into adulthood with bad habits and emotional problems that could easily last a lifetime.
If you lost your parental control and authority somewhere and somehow, take a look at some of the tips we have below that will help you to get it back, regain control and make sure that your children are not running your life.
One of the first things that you need to be when you’re a parent is a good actor. The reason is simple; when your child is throwing a ridiculous tantrum, screaming and raging and throwing things around, you need to be able to keep an expression of neutrality on your face even though, on the inside, you’d like to hit them over the head with a frying pan. (Not literally of course.) While you may feel on the inside that you have lost control, it is vital that you display a look of control and authority on the outside.
Dealing with a child’s tantrum or behavioral problem right away is vitally important as well. Letting it pass, letting it slide or overlooking it are the worst things that you can do because that will only encourage your child to do the same in the future when they don’t get their way. As firmly as possible you need to tell them that their behavior is not okay and that you’re not going to let them get away with it. Deal with it right away, meet out whatever punishment is necessary, and move on.
If you’ve lost your parental authority you’re going to need to get it back a little bit at a time, especially if it’s been gone for a few months or even years. A good idea here is to ask yourself about what it is that you would like to change and where it is that you would like to start being more authoritative. Once you have an idea of what this is, start with it and incorporate other changes as you go. Start small and work your way up.
Many parents will have a hard time setting limits with their children and, even though they are well-meaning and loving, many never have any real authority in their house. Many times authority is lost due to the fact that our lives today are so busy. When dealing with jobs, relationships, illnesses and sometimes even death, authority is lost as you ‘let things slide’. While these things are all facts of life and have to be dealt with, they shouldn’t be used as excuses.
The good news is that authority can definitely be regained. The fact is, most parents have much more strength than they think they have and, once they realise this, they are better able to take back their authority.
In the end, those parents who set firm limits, don’t back down when their child starts to throw a tantrum or behave badly and keep it consistent with their consequences and rules, are the ones that can successfully regain their control, take back their authority and reign in their children. The fact is, every parent can successfully take back their parental authority and take charge of their family again with a little bit of time, patience and faith. If you truly love your children (and we know you do) taking back your authority may be the most important thing that you can do for them.