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I want one!

By Camilla McGill. January , 2018
Who has been in a shop with a loud, nagging child and wound up buying them something to keep them quiet?  Whether it is in the supermarket, a toy shop or at the airport, it can be so hard to keep your cool and stick to your guns and not buy them 'just a little thing'.  What is wrong with buying them something small even if you said you weren't going to? The problem with giving in is that it gives the child the message that their nagging works.  They know they can wear you down and if you are particualry frazzled, they know that the nagging might work very fast. This undermines your authority and puts the child in a position of power which is harmful for them developmentally.  A fail-safe solution for this is to make sure your message is clear before you step foot in the shop.  'Nathan, we are going into the toy shop to buy a birthday present for your friend Joe.  You are going to see all sorts of things that you want.  Even though you really want them I am only buying a present for Joe.  Let me just check you have understood - "who am I buying a present for?"....  'You can help me pick it out and you can also tell me the things you like and I will write them down.' The writing down their wishes is very, very effective.  Make the list on a scrap of paper or in your phone.  Acknowledge all the things your child likes in a positive way.  You don't need to keep repeating that you aren't buying them - children get the message pretty quickly. Try it - it works like a treat!