Is your 4-year-old misbehaving with his grandparents?
Are you constantly hearing he does not like grandma or grandpa?
Does your 4-year-old hit his grandparents?
We understand it would be quite embarrassing for you to come across such a situation, but every problem has a background, especially when it comes to children of this age.
Grandparents love to spend time with their grandkids as they want to cherish all the moments they have missed in raising their own kids.
But somewhere in between all this, a well-behaved 4-year-old child can sometimes be rude, disrespectful, or even hit the grandparent. Before concluding him a bad child, see what is triggering his behavior to do so. Sometimes tiredness, illness, or feeling overwhelmed can make them grumpy.
Why a 4-year-old is rude to grandparents:
We need to find out every problem related to a child by looking into its background.
Many 4-year-olds reject grandma or grandpa for many reasons, which could be :
1-The parent’s behavior is inappropriate with their parents or parents-in-law
Kids imitate their elders. They learn what they see. If their mother’s or Father’s behavior towards their parents or parents-in-law is not good and they fight in front of the kid will eventually mess up his whole mind.
You may not even notice. Sometimes you will misbehave with the parents-in-law unintentionally.
Never transfer the hate to the next generation, no matter what bonding you have with your parents or parents-in-law. Instead, keep your differences aside and behave well with your child’s grandparents.
2-Grandparents become sickly-sweet:
There is no doubt that grandparents love their grandchildren a lot, but sometimes they become sickly sweet (overly sweet). Some grandparents excessively squash, kiss, and interrupt a child out of affection, which makes the child grumpy. The cloying behavior pushes the child away, and they eventually misbehave.
Gently conveying the message to the grandparents is the only solution.
You cannot expect much from a 4-year-old, but you should also talk to the little one and make him understand the worth of grandparents.
3-Grandparents always want to get involved in the kid:
Due to their free routine, they always want to stay close to their grandchild. They crave constant attention, hugs, and kisses from him. But for a 4-year-old, it is frustrating to pause his play, again and again, to entertain the grandparent simultaneously.
When the grandparent wants attention, you can simply tell your child to come for a second, hug the grandparent, and continue playing.
You can gently ask the grandparent not to interrupt him during his play time so that he would not react badly.
4-Some grandparents also annoy their grandchildren intentionally:
Sometimes the grandparents annoy the child and think it’s fun to do so. But a 4-year-old cannot understand what’s a joke and what’s not.
If you see your child in a good mood, the grandparent intentionally irritates the child, and the child reacts rudely, you cannot blame your 4-year-old. Even an adult would get irritated with such behavior.
Without a second thought, Talk to the grandparents. If it’s the husband’s parents, he has to do the job. If it’s the wife’s side parents, she has to talk to her parents nicely and make them understand.
Ensure to talk to your parents gently. Convey your message in a way that doesn’t hurt them. Old people are like kids. You must understand your feelings and communicate positively.
5-Parents have not stopped the child in the early stage:
Sometimes we oversee our children’s behaviors, which becomes a habit later on. For example, if a child is misbehaving, hitting, or getting rude with his grandparents and the parents are not saying anything will make the child more disrespectful and mannerless.
If your child has started such behavior in his toddlerhood, and you think it is not the right age to make him understand anything, then you are mistaken. Stop the child firmly on such behavior to protect him from changing behavior into a habit.
6-The grandparent is overly possessive about the grandchild:
In some families, where grandparents have only one grandchild, he becomes the apple of their eyes. As a result, they become overly possessive about him and do not like anyone saying “No” to him.
In such situations, the child gets spoiled and does not like to hear “No.” Sometimes, the child misbehaves or disrespects the grandparents, but they take it lightly and don’t even allow the parents to correct him.
Again, having a peaceful conversation with the grandparent is the only solution. Make them understand that this over-possessiveness will cost them in the future. They won’t be able to handle the world out there.
Tips to get a 4-year-old to stop being rude to grandparents:
Follow these tips to to stop your child from being rude to your parents and parents-in-law.
1- Explain the word “Respect”:
To teach your kid what respect is, you must give them respect. They do what they see, so being an adult, be kind towards your parents and kids. Add courtesy words into your daily routine. Take permission from the child when you use anything belonging to him.
The child will model your behavior in his life and follow in your footsteps.
2- Set limits and boundaries:
No matter how much you and the grandparents pamper the child, always tell him about his limits and behavior towards the elders. Explain to him that misbehaving or rudeness with anyone will not be tolerated at any cost.
Even if the grandparents are not saying anything to him, the child should know how to behave with them.
3- Give your little one the alternate words:
Sometimes kids get frustrated when they don’t want to do anything but are forced to do it. Tell the child that it’s okay to feel that way, but he can’t be disrespectful or rude to his elders.
Instead, he can nicely ask his grandparents if he doesn’t want to play a particular game right now or ask for a break.
Teach your child to say “No” respectfully and communicate what bothers them.
Pushing a child over anything, again and again, makes them more stubborn. It is better to give them some time to understand their own behavior. Your responsibility is to tell your child about him disrespecting his grandparents.
After that, when they behave rudely, just look at your child neutrally. He should understand that mom is not happy and has noticed my behavior.
Many children will immediately get your point of staring.
5-Gently talk to the parents:
Involving the grandparents in the process is a good idea. Talk to them and explain that you have noticed unacceptable behavior towards his elders. Ask them to take part in trying to overcome this behavior and what they can do to help you.
Use positive words and make them feel like you are asking for their help. Use positive sentences like “XYZ is being rude to everyone. I’m afraid he won’t be able to keep his friendship if he continues to behave this way. Can you help me overcome this behavior? Do you have any ideas how we can stop him?”
6-It’s a phase:
We understand that toddlers and pre-schoolers go through good and bad phases. Like all other problems, this phase will pass too. But it doesn’t mean you won’t stop your child from being rude and disrespectful towards his grandparents.
If you don’t take action, your child will not stop being rude to them.
4-year-old hitting grandparents:
Disrespect and rudeness towards grandparents are different things, which can be corrected slowly, but hitting a grandparents needs immediate and strict action.
First, understand that hitting grandparents seems like a sign of disrespect, but it is not. It is a way of communicating about something that bothers the child from the inside. A child will hit when he cannot articulate. His reaction is his expression of frustration.
When your child hits his grandparents, you should immediately stop him with a firm tone, Clearly saying “No.” even if you think he is frustrated and doing it in reaction to frustration, you need to stop him anyway. Hitting someone cannot be justified or let go.
Give him a time-out. Make him sit in a corner and think about what he did. After some time, when he looks calm, go to him and gently ask him, “What do you feel? Did you do right?”
Based on his answer, communicate with him. Ask him to apologize to the grandparent right away.
After that, when he apologizes, take him to a separate room and ask him why he is doing so. He will obviously have a reason for hitting. You should validate his feelings and give him alternate options for a ‘reaction.’ For example, tell him, “You could gently say “No” when you do not feel like playing a certain way, or ask the grandparents if you need some break, etc.”
Most importantly, being a parent restrict yourself from hitting the child. We understand it becomes overwhelming for the parents to handle a child showing such behavior towards his elders, but sometimes we forget they are copying us in many aspects.
If your 4-year-old is rude to grandparents or hits them. You must take action. Figure out what is causing your little one to behave rudely with them. Solve the reason. Behave gently with your child and parents as well.
And yes, ignore the people who say that this is your parent’s fault and they should get a clear answer. Your parents deserve your respect just like you deserve your children’s respect.
Talk to your parents or parents-in-law gently and make them feel like they are very important and you need their help.