Something that helped me the most with my stepdaughter was not giving the child a countdown to obey, or another, “If I have to say clean your room one more time. . . .” “Let your yes be yes, and your no be no.” I found my anger issues cleared up drastically when I stopped giving “one more time’s” to her and just gave the consequence at the first sign of disobedience. I had to communicate this to her at that point, because I had developed a bad habit and she was old enough (six years old) to understand I was changing things. However, you can start out doing this with a young child, even a nonverbal one. Decide on your rules and stick by them. Children cannot learn to obey a God they cannot see if they do not first learn to obey a parent that they can see.
—Beverly, Fort Worth, TX
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