5 Things You Should Never Say To Your Kids!

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If you’re angry with your child, don’t say a word without first considering the impact it’s going to have on your child. Children sure know how to get on your nerve but you must control your emotions and get your point across in a rational manner without doing any damage to the emotional development of your children.

These are five things a mother must not be caught saying to her children, no matter how upset she is:

1. You are a mistake!

One of the most deadly sin of parenting is telling your child that his/her birth stole your life away, whether you are a single mother or married mother who had an unwanted pregnancy; don’t transfer your bitterness and resentment to your child. Getting pregnant and having the child is totally your decision so take responsibility for it. No matter what a child has done, don’t ever say he/she is a waste of space or that you should have had an abortion when you had the chance. It is a  hurtful thing that no child should hear. It makes them feels like an intruder that disrupted your life and not worthy of love.

2. Why Can’t You Be More Like Your Sister

If you think your child isn’t doing so well, help the child out in a constructive way. Comparing them to others can destroy their self esteem, make them fatally competitive and even damage their relationship with the child you are comparing them to. They could also think that they can only get your approval when they are like someone else and that you don’t love them for who they are. Help your children see the beauty in their own uniqueness by focusing on each individual without using comparisons, when you compare them to others you are indirectly telling them they are not good enough and if they internalize that as a core belief it can lead to undesirable behaviors in the future.

3. Your Father is Good For Nothing

As much as you would want to, you need to bite your tongue on this one. Do not speak negatively about your husband or your children’s father to them. If you are having problems with your spouse talk to an adult don’t put that burden on your children, they are kids and they can’t fully understand complex adult issues. Don’t let them have to worry for you, it will hurt the children and paint negative pictures about relationships to them at any early age.  Knowing that their parents are not at peace can also make them fearful and insecured.

As they grow older, they will become much more aware of what is going on, and if your partner really hurt you, they will find out one day anyway. Spare them the headache when they are still young.

4. You should be ashamed of yourself / I am ashamed of you

You can tell your children you are disappointed in their behavior and make them sober for what they have done without shaming them into feeling guilty. There are times when shaming works and produces the behavior we want from a child, but most times it comes along with the feeling of inferiority that can last a life time. The children will carry on the message of “I am wrong,” “I’m not enough,” and “I can never do anything right.”

One act of indiscipline from your children is not enough for you to be ashamed of them or to make them feel ashamed of themselves. We all make mistakes and the important thing is accepting correction, they should never be defined by the mistakes they have made. You don’t even want your children to think you will love them less when they make mistakes.

5. You Are Dumb, You Are So Stupid …

You hurt your child’s feelings every time you use negative words to describe them. Even if the child acts silly often, don’t tag the child as silly. Being called names continuously can leave the child truly believing that he or she is worthless  and defective, and  they may carry that feeling into adulthood. If you call your child clumsy and stupid every day, what are the chances that the child will stop acting stupid? The child will simply believe he or she can’t be smart like other kids and stop trying to succeed. So if you call your children dumb they are really going to think they are dumb.

(Article First Published In Motherhood Instyle Magazine)

Writer- Shola Okubote

Photo Credit – Getty Images

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Woman.NG is the Web, for the Nigerian woman, by Nigerian women. We publish Nigerian women's opinions, advice, news, issues and stories. Twitter: @WomanNG FacebookWoman.NG

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  1. thnks 4 dis tips is vry important, mothers take note!

  2. beautyay@yahoo.com' Beauty Fabulous. Reply to Beauty

    No be lie ooo. Words are very powerful and the power and life and death is in the tongue so the good books says.
    May God help us mothers. Amen.

  3. True words…negative words to one’s child do have a lot of impact on them.Please let’s be conscious of whatever we say to them cos d tongue is the most dangerous part of the human body.PARENTS,BE WISE,May God bless us all

  4. I can imagine any child hearing that!!! Horrible…hope the parents hear this…I intend to share!

  5. Very true, the words children hear often are so important to their self-worth and self-esteem. Parents have a huge responsibility to control their emotions and be careful what seeds they sow into their children’s lives with their words.

  6. True word!!! words can make or break and children are the most sensitive people they take in so much and never forget, so we have to be careful what we say to them if we are really angry then maybe we should take sometime to calm down before we say something we may regret saying cause words can never be taken back once said!!!

  7. God bless you for reminding parents. do you know
    that the hustle and bustle of the life is turning a lot of parents into monsters

  8. these are only too true its amazing what we say to our kids when we are stressed up and angry
    words can make or break people and children are so vulnerable its terrible the harm they come too

  9. this is on point, a lotta things we say to children that goes a long way in building them up, i like no.2 😉

  10. The world we living in has totally changed we need such reminders of what we should/should not do.. A good lesson to all whether a Parent or not.

  11. bj4shortus@yahoo.com' Oguntimehin bolaji Reply to Oguntimehin

    Its a lovely article,its a common practice. Parents should be able to watch what they say to their kids

  12. I am sure many of us can still remember some of the words our parents said to us in anger or frustration while we were kids (I sure can)….

    Truth is as parents and custodians, God has given them some authority to wield over their children, not just physically but also in the spirit realm. The words we speak over our children begin to form who they are and what kind of qualities they begin to exhibit…

    I guess its easier said than done…thats why we need the help of God in the matter…

    I’ve said too much already…No vex o! Its just something I’m passionate about.

  13. i definitely am gonna watch out when d kids start coming…thanks for d tips..

  14. Very true. Kids never forget and some of them grow up thinking that they can never amount to anything! We should be careful what we say to them! Thanks, Shola!

  15. biskiit27@gmail.com' bisola shonibare Reply to bisola

    Those re words of wisdom and parent shouldn’t be caught altering those words.though,I feel guilty of the 3rd don’t,but now I know. Keep up with d great work gal.

  16. Some of them sound so drastic and evil, then some, I realized a lot of people say, and think it’s normal. People say a lot out of anger even though once the anger fades they don’t mean it. Even though I’m not a parent, this reminds me to try harder not to say things when I’m angry, because the words might cut the person deeply without my knowledge.

  17. Parents should always think twice before they say something to their children, especially if their comment is not going to be positive. The first source of compliment always comes from the home, if the child cannot get that from his or her family, how can you expect child to believe in any positive remarks he or she would get from others.

  18. Veronica Anduha Reply to Veronica

    Interesting food for thought…

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