Rebellion in Children Is Cause for Concern

Elementary-aged girl hands on hip, defiant look on faceWhen no one was watching, Isabella ran her finger around the icing on her sister’s birthday cake. Then, as if she knew she hadn’t done enough damage, she got a spoon and took bites out of the side. She then picked up her doll and sat on the couch to wait for the coming fireworks. Her sister would cry. Mom would be furious. Yelling and punishment would follow, but it was worth it.

Rebellion-What Is It?

The dictionary has what any parent of a rebellious child would consider a rather tame definition of “rebel” (v): to oppose or disobey one in authority or control. Before I had kids, I thought that probably only meant a child saying “no” when asked to do something. I believe a better definition in regard to rebellion in children is “to wreck havoc in a family.”

Rebellion Comes in Different Forms and Degrees

There are as many forms and degrees of rebellion as there are kids. Sometimes, the most difficult rebellion to overcome is the kind done by a passive-aggressive child who quietly rebels in secret.

Overt Rebellion-What Is It?

However, for the purpose of this blog today, I will write about the in-your-face kind of rebellion that causes teachers to email parents, send children to the principal, and think about leaving the teaching profession. Parents’ reactions range from tears to anger to helplessness and, finally, to hopelessness.

These are the children who do exactly what they’ve been told not to do. They’re often physically and verbally aggressive toward siblings and friends. They verbally defy parents and teachers. They damage toys (especially those belonging to siblings) and make messes.

Rebellion Needs to Be Corrected Early

This is a problem that needs to be addressed while the child is small. See related post at Rebellion is more difficult to correct when the aggressive child is a teen, because he or she is physically larger and has greater autonomy. Trust me when I say that now is the time to take control of such a situation.

What Specific Rebellion Problems Do I Need to Address?

In the coming days, I will be posting blogs that address rebellion. If readers have an example they would like me to consider in my posts, please reply to me in the comment section below. I would love to hear from parents and teachers. Please give the child an anonymous name for his or her protection.

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