Who has not heard phrases like: “if you don’t let me watch TV, I won’t let you play with me anymore”? or “If you don’t let me do that, I won’t love you anymore”… Yes, they are phrases spoken by children and that surely many are familiar with. So when they happen, you look at your children and you seem to be looking at a half-meter-tall gangster. It is the moment when you discover that children also know and experience different ways of getting what they want , and the most common is blackmail.

The bad habit of blackmail is a phase that almost all children in the world go through, mainly between five and seven years of age, and responds to a very simple need: wanting to get away with it quickly and with little complexity, for which they use emotional blackmail as a magic formula. This is what happens in every house when a child wants above all else to get his way and one day finds out that blackmail is the easiest way to do it.




When this happens, first of all stay calm and think that in reality children never resort to this with the true intention of doing harm, but you do have to do everything possible to avoid it, because it can become a habit with the passage of time. time difficult to remove. The example with which we have started this article may even seem funny, but children are innate psychologists and they can say things that really worry you, such as “you and dad don’t love me”, or “you love my brother more / that to me ”,“ you don’t listen to me when I speak to you ”… and so on to countless allegations that can cast doubt on your ability as a mother or father .



Three methods of emotional blackmail that children often use

The first thing you have to do if your child tells you something like this is ask yourself if he is really right or not, since sometimes without realizing it, we ask older siblings more than younger ones because it is easier for a child of five years than one of three or similar cases that happen without malicious intent.

It also happens (we all know it) that at the end of the day one comes home very tired, which means that we do not have our ears wide open when children begin to express themselves or count things before going to sleep. If you think, no matter how dubious the idea, that your children may be partly right, try to change your behavior and do not feel guilty … dads and moms are human beings who are also wrong!

To identify this type of blackmail, if you are not able to grasp it easily or your child has a lot of skill to decorate this type of maneuver, take note of the three main methods that the little ones usually use to hit on the side of emotions and try to get away with it:


  • The child pretends to feel victim of a situation

“You always scold me”, “you never let me do anything”, “I always have to put my toys away” … That’s it. He has succeeded. You feel terrible and you agree to his request, whatever it may be, as long as you don’t get angry anymore. When this happens, remember that children see things only from their point of view, and that they are not yet able to adequately analyze real situations . Explain the reason for your behavior and do not give in, or he could make this a bad habit with which he always justifies himself by blaming others for his failures.


  • The child makes you a victim of a situation

It can be a “I don’t love you anymore”, a “I’d rather be with my grandfather than with you”, or another series of “stabs to the heart” that will leave you breathless, but you should not give it the slightest importance, because they do not they really know what those words mean. Do not put on an anguished face and always answer with the opposite: “Well I love you more than anything in the world “, yes, without letting him get away with it.




  • Stage or put on a show

One situation that many parents have been through is being in a department store with their children lying on the ground writhing like a lizard without a tail and screaming nonstop. Well, it seems that the little or the little gangster has long discovered that in public it is easier for the adult to give in. Despite how complicated the situation can be, stay firm and look closely at a nearby article as if you were not a witness to the show or did not seem important to you. And stay calm too, because if someone looks at you badly when observing the situation, they are not a father or do not have a heart.


Finally, and the most important thing, is that you analyze your own way of behaving at home with your loved ones, because we can all fall into emotional blackmail at some point , which is not only counterproductive but also cruel towards the little ones, and a complete lack of example. A child thinks that what an adult says is always true and can really believe “that you are going to leave him alone if he doesn’t shut up” or “that you don’t love him so much anymore”. Let us never forget that children learn to imitate and behave in accordance with those they love the most.




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