A lot of modern parenting blogs and posts, focus too much on what you must say to your child . Don't say 'No', say something else instead and so on. As parents we shouldn't have to think every minute of how we should frame our sentences with our child. There are so many reasons, this doesn't seem to be the most authentic way to be with your child. For one, you are not even communicating with your words but someone else's. Secondly, I can imagine how impractical and challenging it may be for a parent to remember an exact sentence to say to the child in some moment. Either they have to memorize those sentences several times, or be extremely quick and trained to recall those words
Why would we want to develop such an unauthentic relationship with our children. If you don't want your child to do something, you should be allowed to be genuine and simply say, "No, I don't want you to hit your brother." or "No, you shouldn't be eating that chocolate. You have had enough for today.! " Why do you have to beat around the bush or have a prepared script ?
I don't say the words are not important, but they are truly not as important as the feelings you feel in that moment, which your child will sense, regardless of what you say to him/her in that moment.
We tend to undermine our children's capability of being able to understand not just the words we are communicating, but differentiate between what we are saying and what we actually mean to say.
Alison Gopnik - a brilliant scientist and child development, has done extensive research on how children as old as 3 years old go into deeper meanings of what we say, and they are able to differentiate several semantics of how we are saying it and who is saying those things.
I use a lot of examples on what and how to say it to kids , in my sessions with parents and teachers all the time, and guess what is the most common question i get asked, "Can you pls repeat what is it that I have to say to the child?" and of course it seems handy if someone can pass on a script to you, but it is definitely not the best solution . i usually ask my clients to follow one basic philosophy, which is what I will ask all of you as well . Every time you feel tongue tied with your child, unsure what to say next, don't go back to remembering what words that blog or insta post asked you to use. Just take a pause and think to yourself, what is the most genuine and honest thing that I could say to my child in a kind and calm manner, even if it may seem unpleasant in that moment, but in the long run you would be communicating your true feelings to your child and teaching them to do the same. What can be better than just being yourself, while teaching your child to do the same?