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How to Say “No” Without Saying “No”

Are you tired of bad attitudes and disrespect after your kids hear the word “no” from you? Tune in today as Nikki gives us some reasons why hearing “no” is so difficult for children who have experienced trauma and what we can do about it.



How to Say “No” Without Saying “No”


Good morning I’m Nikki welcome to Coffee with Chosen. Do you find yourself constantly having to tell your children “NO” several times a day? Are you tired of having to constantly deny unreasonable requests, or sometimes even just finding yourself too exhausted to keep saying no. We always want our children to feel free to ask us for what they need but there will inevitably be times where they’re not able to get what they want either from you or from other people.

The truth is nobody enjoys being told no because special needs children are hypersensitive to frustration and no is such a confrontational word. Parents must be super intentional about how and when they use that word. Why is being told no order for children who’ve experienced trauma. Children from hard places desire to control and need it as much as they need oxygen to breathe, so many decisions have been made about their lives and not ones that they’ve made themselves. And they’ve experienced so much loss and changed that they never asked for they’ll often want to maintain a certain amount of control, at any cost even.

When we’re just trying to tell them no for something that may actually help them there’s several ways to say no without having to use the word no. Trust-based relational intervention teaches us that when saying no to our children. We should couch the no and as many positive statements as possible and praise the child before they accept the word no. An example can be, “that is really good asking but this time I’m gonna have to say no, because I’m really tired–hey good job accepting no” before they even realize what’s happening we praise them for accepting no. And they don’t even have the chance to say no this approach will allow us for a swift response that teaches them about the importance of understanding the needs of adults and those around them.

As well other alternatives to using no includes: let’s wait and take a break letting them know that you will find ways to address the requests later or asking the child for a compromise or giving a different choice. This is not permissive parenting, we’re still not allowing certain behaviors we’re just addressing them in ways that the child will respond learn and grow from, rather than just feeling like they’re being met with immediate rejection. When children know that they are loved and appreciated they have an easier time accepting the word no without feeling like you’re doing it just to be a bully or putting your foot down all the time.



If you want more parenting tips geared towards families impacted by foster care, adoption, and kinship care, please visit our resource library. If you need personalized trauma-responsive care for your family, we would love to help! Contact us to learn more about the ways Chosen Care can support your family.
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