9 Effective tips for parents on how to deal with a controlling child

how to deal with a controlling child

When your child is strong-willed and stubborn, things can get difficult. This article covers 9 helpful and effective tips for parents on how to deal with a controlling child and also understand signs and Controlling child behavior.

You may find that your kid always indulges into power struggle. They will also have their own opinions, morals, and principles that they refuse to budge on. However, if this happens frequently and you find things getting out of hand, then there’s a good chance that your child is controlling instead of just strong-willed. Most parents end up dealing with controlling kids at one point or another. It’s not uncommon for children to be quite controlling at different stages in their lives.

If you recognize the telltale signs of a controlling child, then it’s time to take action before it gets out of hand (and causes major problems). Here are 9 helpful tips on how to deal with a controlling child.

Signs of a controlling child

A child with control issues is one who tries to controlling parent in one way or another. The main signs of a child with control issues are –

  • Control through threats, intimidation or coercion – They may threaten to harm you, your pets, or your property. They may also threaten to report you to the authorities if they don’t get their way. They will also often use guilt-tripping and manipulation tactics to try and get you to give in to them.
  • They will also try and play on your emotions and make you feel guilty for the things that they do.
  • They may also try and control how much time you spend with your family by making you feel guilty for not spending enough time with them.
  • They may also try to limit your ability to spend money by taking away your access cards or refusing to buy food for you.
  • They will often be extremely possessive and jealous of the time that you spend with other people, so they will usually try and control any interactions that you have with other people.

9 Helpful tips for parents on how to Deal with a Controlling Child

It’s scary for any parent to feel like their child is growing further and further away from them, but that’s exactly what controlling kids do. Instead of trying to understand where their parents are coming from and using that information to make better decisions in the future, controlling kids will only see things from their point of view. They put up walls and try to manipulate you so that they can get what they want.

This disruptive behavior isn’t just annoying it is harmful for your child. But by recognizing the signs, you can be proactive in stopping them before things get out of hand. Here are some ways to how to deal with a controlling child that results in positive outcomes.

Be consistent in your parenting

The first thing you should do if you notice your child is controlling is to be consistent in your parenting. This means that you need to follow through on your promises and keep strict boundaries. Your child needs to know that you will follow through on your promises and that certain rules cannot be broken. If you’re being consistent but your child is still being controlling, then you may need to take things a step further. The important thing is be strict with yourself.

Keep firm boundaries

As we’ve already discussed, you need to keep firm boundaries with your child to combat their controlling ways. This means that you need to be strict when it comes to certain rules and regulations. If your child is showing aggressive behavior, then you need to draw the line in the sand and enforce those boundaries that you’ve set in place. If your child is being too demanding or is trying to break the rules, then you need to stand your ground and keep those boundaries firm. It is important to focus on good parent-child relationship to incorporate good behavior

Don’t reward inappropriate behavior

If your child is controlling, then you need to make sure that you aren’t rewarding them for oppositional behavior. If you do, then they will only continue to be controlling. If they are acting in a very controlling manner, then you need to ignore them or give them a firm “no” when they are pushing the boundaries too far. If you reward your child for being controlling, then you are only encouraging the behavior further.

Try to understand why your child is controlling

As we mentioned before, the best way to deal with your child’s controlling behavior is to understand why they are acting like this in the first place. If you can understand your child’s reasoning for his temper tantrums, then you can figure out how to address the problem. Make sure that you talk to your child and try to understand what’s going on in their head. They may have a valid reason for being so controlling, so you need to make sure that you address this and try to solve the problem.

Set up a frequent and consistent routine for your child

While your child is controlling, it’s best to keep them on a consistent schedule. This will help to make them feel more secure in the world and will help to keep their emotions and impulses in check. If your child is controlling, then they will have a very strong and loud voice inside of their head. This voice may be telling them that they don’t have enough time, energy, or attention.

Use reward systems and encouragement to train your child

If your child is being highly controlling, then you may want to consider using reward systems and encouragement to train them. This will help to improve their behavior and will teach them to control their emotions and be more mindful of their surroundings. This can be done through positive reinforcement, sticker charts, positive feedback, or rewards. If your child is controlling and you need to train them, then you can implement positive reinforcement to help them learn how to better control their emotions. This also displays clear consequences to their behavioral problems.

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Try using logic instead of arguing with a controlling kid

If your child is controlling, then it’s best to avoid arguing with them. Arguing will only make the situation worse and will cause more stress and tension in the home. Instead of arguing with your child, try using logic to help them learn and understand the world around them. You can do this by answering their questions, explaining to them why you do certain things, or finding ways to help them learn.

Find support from other adults and friends if possible

Sometimes, the best way to deal with a controlling child is to find support from other adults and friends. Talk to your partner, your friends, your family members, or your neighbors. They may have dealt with a child with control issues before and may have some helpful advice for you. They can also help you to stay calm during this difficult time and can help to mediate some of the arguments between you and your child.

how to deal with a controlling child
Controlling child behavior

Take professional help

Sometimes things do get our of control and you aren’t able to find a solution then an effective way to deal with your child’s negative behavior is to take professional help. The best thing is that there are lot of experienced people and clinical psychologist who could identify the issues and help your child. In some cases you might have to take a family therapy.

Controlling child behavior

Controlling child behavior is a key component to parenting. Controlling a child’s behavior involves more than just saying no to bad behavior; it involves setting clear expectations for good behavior and offering consequences when children fail to follow those expectations. Parents who are able to control their child’s behavior will have a better chance of success as they get older.

There are three main categories of controlling child behavior: positive reinforcement, negative reinforcement, and modeling.

  • Positive reinforcement is when parents show their children that they value good behavior by rewarding them with praise or treats.
  • Negative reinforcement is when parents take away something that a child likes (such as TV privileges) if he or she misbehaves. This type of negative reinforcement is effective because it punishes the unwanted behavior while still rewarding the desired behavior (i.e., the child learns not to do the unwanted behavior in order to get what he or she wants). One of the most common forms of negative reinforcement is time-out, in which a child is taken away from his or her surroundings for a set period of time (usually one minute).
  • Modeling means that parents try to show their children that certain behaviors are acceptable by following those same rules themselves. For example, if a parent does not scream at their child in public, the child will likely learn not to do so himself or herself.
how to deal with a controlling child
How to deal with a controlling child


Remember that controlling children are often just struggling with their own emotions and trying to find security in the world. They may just want more attention, love, or time from their parents because they don’t know how to ask for it. They may feel insecure and uncertain about the future because they are growing up and going through major changes inside and out. Having a controlling child is never easy, but you can find a way to deal with the issue if you work hard enough.

The best way to deal with a child with control issues is to be consistent, keep boundaries, don’t reward bad behavior, try to understand why your child is controlling, set up a frequent and consistent routine for your child, and use reward systems and encouragement to train your child, try using logic instead of arguing with a controlling kid, find support from other adults and friends if possible, and finally, be patient and don’t lose hope.

9 Effective tips for parents on how to deal with a controlling child
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16 thoughts on “9 Effective tips for parents on how to deal with a controlling child

  1. Such an awesome post that is worth reading especially to all parents! Definitely a big help to solve and help build a great and harmonious relationship among kids and parents.

  2. It is helpful to have this information. Using this data is a good way to gain an understanding of children who control their parents. People are so unaware of that.

  3. For me the number one rule is Keep firm boundaries! However it feels like it’s the hardest one for most of the parents.

  4. My husband and I are both very firm with our boundaries for our kids. I think any kid can become controlling if they constantly get away with things. The younger you start, the better as they learn what they can and can’t do and what behavior you will accept.

  5. I love these tips! Left to their own devices, controlling kids can become a nighter. However, with the right guidance, we can teach them how to harness that strong will into positive directions.

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