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What To Avoid Saying to Your Child

What To Avoid Saying to Your Child


The purpose of this reading is to simply share with you words that tend to hurt kids. I know that you are reading this because you love and care about your child. You want your hold to grow into their best version.

Part of growing into a wonderful parent is engaging in the process of learning and growing.

The language that parents use with their kids directly impacts the child’s thoughts, feelings, and behaviors.

A child that hears, you are not good enough, can grow into an adult that struggles with praise and self-esteem.

This is why it is vital for parents to think about the words that they use and how the words impact development.

As a counselor that works with kids and families, I love to share with parents the long-term effects of language.  

Click here to learn more about how working with a counselor can help.


Please know that the phrases below are dependent on certain situations. For instance, the first example is, “I do not believe you.”

If your child comes home from school and shares with you an incident that took place and the immediate response is “I do not believe you.” What may take place is the following:

  • Your child may feel disconnected from you.
  • Your child may feel that you are not invested.
  • Your child may in the future think twice before being vulnerable and sharing their thoughts and feelings with you.
  • Your child may also withdraw from others and reduce the amount of information that they share with others.
  • Your child may learn that their voice and experience hold no weight.


Remember the words that children receive extend beyond the moment. The words can stick like a tattoo and carry for years to come.

42 Things To Avoid Saying to Your Child


1.     I don’t believe you.

2.     You have to give (them) a hug.

3.     Go hug “X” person.

4.     We do not do that in this family.

5.     All you do is lie.

6.     You are a liar.

7.     Can’t you do anything right.

8.     You are selfish.

9.     Don’t tell your mom/dad about this.

10.  I do everything for you.

11.  Stop being a baby.

12.  Stop crying.

13.  Stop trying to get attention.

14.  I wish that you were never born.

15.  You don’t have to feel like that.

16.  I don’t have to like you.

17.  Can’t you be more like your brother.

18.  You are the man of the house now.

19.  What did you end up doing to yourself?

20.  Your mom/dad doesn’t care about you.

21.  Stop being so dramatic.

22.  You are pathetic.

23.  You are lazy.

24.  Don’t eat that you are getting fat.

25.  You have to earn love in this house.

26.  You are so dumb.

27.  Man up.

28.  No one loves you.

29.  Boys don’t cry.

30.  You were an accident.

31.  You are just like your mom/dad (when commenting a negative trait).

32.  You are getting fat.

33.  You don’t really feel that way.

34.  If you start something you need to finish it. We do not have quitters in this family.

35.  Why can’t you ever be happy.

36.  Girls don’t do that.

37.  Can’t you ever be satisfied.

38.  You are always so angry.

39.  Take that off, you look stupid.

40.  You are stupid.

41.  Adults are talking so stay quiet.

42.  I can’t deal with you right now.


For more supportive reads on helping your child build emotional intelligence and grow into their best version follow the links below.

10 ways to help kids with performance anxiety

Awesome ways counseling helps kids with behavioral challenges

Parenting raising confident kids

11 strategies for raising happy and successful kids.

Using structured systems for kids on the autism spectrum


Have you considered working with a counselor?

Counseling can be a wonderful space for families to learn how to grow a healthy family system. Parents can use the space to connect with their children and foster healthy lasting relationships. I want to share with you a few benefits of working with counseling.

  • Learn to express thoughts and feelings in a healthy way.
  • Remove resentment.
  • Heal in a healthy way.
  • Build healthy habits and behaviors.
  • Grow a healthy support system.
  • Build a healthy relationship with yourself and others.


CLICK HERE to schedule a counseling appointment. I provide counseling to anyone in North Carolina. My physical office is located in Greensboro, North Carolina if you would like to have face-to-face sessions.