In this video, parenting expert Dr. Rene Hackney covers ways to prevent whining and steps to lessen whining once it starts. This information is for parents of two year olds who have just started to whine and older children who whine out of habit.
Host: What if the whining doesn't stop? Rene Hackney: If the whining doesn't stop with that initial cost, adding a cost of a few minutes delay. You can increase the cost of whining again, I wouldn't do this so until a child is about five or six year s old, till they've had really good practice at the first voice and whining has become problematic. The idea is to say, Okay, you know that voice, when that voice happens the answer is no. In an older child, they come up to you and they want to ask you about something in that whiny tone. If the answer is already going to be no, whining becomes entirely ineffective and they tend to stop. But again I wouldn't do that with a two or three year old, it's too great and wouldn't do it with a five or six year old until they have had several weeks of practice of being able to fix their voice and being able to fix their voice with the delay. Usually that s enough for most families. But once they head of school-age, they should be able to manage it, a little bit better. Another thing you can do with older children, with the six or seven year olds, a lot of times, I think that six or seven years olds don t even know what they sound like. They are just whining out of habit, that s just how they ask for things now. So, the idea is as a parent you might point out to them the difference between what whining sounds like versus a nice voice. So, you sit that seven year old down and you say. Okay, I'm going to say something, and I'm going to say it in two different ways, the first way is kind of a whiny way, are you ready? and then the parent musters up their whiniest voice and say something like, I don t want to make dinner, I don t like this house. And you throw yourself on the couch, it sound crazy, but the idea is the child probably goes, oh that was nasty. They haven t heard you talk like that before, and so then you sit up and say, Okay, I'm going to say the exact same thing, but in another tone, are you ready? Mommy needs a break before I make dinner, I'm going to sit down for a minute. And then you say pleasantly you say, do you know that sometimes when you ask for things, it's in that first voice, I'm going to point that out to you. You are letting that child know that there is something a miss with the way they are asking for things, if they are just doing it out of habit.