4 1/2 year old girl won't listen


We have a 4 1/2 old girl. We have very little issues with her except for one big one - listening! We have to repeat ourselves 3,4, 7 or 8 times for her to do the simplest things. Lastnight my husband was putting together a toy for our 21 month old son, he asked our daughter 3 times to stop playing with a certain part of the toy and right when I walked in the room - he had had enough and ended up raising his voice too loud and the tears started up.

Please tell me how to get her to start doing the things we ask on the first asking time and if she doesn't mind - what punishment do we need to do inorder to get this under control.

Thank you!


I think your daughter is being asked too many times to do the simplest things. You should not have to repeat yourselves, and that should be made very clear to her from the get-go. You also should do your best to stay calm, casual and in control. Reclaim your authority. My suggestion to encourage her to listen more closely to your directions is to let her know that you are no longer going to put up with her lack of compliance when you tell her to do something. From now on, you will tell her ONCE what you expect her to do, and if she doesn't do it, she will go directly to bed as soon as dinner is over. Of course, her room can not be a place where she easily entertains herself. But more than likely, she will not be very happy to be sent there right after dinner so she will hopefully make an effort to listen more carefully and make sure she obeys.
Another way to handle it is to delay the consequence. Tell her once, then if she doesn't listen, you don't have to do something right away. Wait until it's convenient for you! Remind her within three days (when she wants to do something special) that she didn't obey (describe the event as a reminder...she will remember) and therefore will not be allowed to enjoy XXX (a special event, playtime with a friend, a favorite TV show, whatever makes an impact). Rosemond states that the punishment should never fit the crime~ it should be impactful so she does not make a habit of disobeying. She will soon be paying more attention to what you ask of her. Let us know how it goes!
Ann Van De Water

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