Our children often pester us. They do this when they want to talk to us and we aren’t paying any attention and also when they want us to buy them something. This is very normal in most households as parents have very busy lives and don’t often have the time to listen to their children. Or, they don’t pay much attention because they know what their child is after and have heard it a hundred times!
We are aware that children pester parents. But do parents pester children? I think the answer has to be yes. I am not talking about nagging – let’s leave nagging out of it. I mean pester.
How Parents Pester Children
Some parents will pester their children by asking them a barrage of questions when they pick them up from school or they come home from a party. They want to know, “what did you eat, what did you do, who was there and what did they talk about?”. They will often repeat the questions when their child does not answer.
How do you think this pestering makes the child feel? What do you think they are thinking? Maybe they want you to leave them alone and let them have some private business. They could be worried that saying something may get them into trouble if it’s something private. And anyway, what do you need to know for?! Sometimes the child may not even remember enough detail to answer your questions.
We need to take a step back. Be interested but not hound them with so many questions. It can also put pressure on that child to make something up to make the parents happy so that they will stop asking or worrying that if they say anything they will get into trouble.
Ask them one or two questions to show that you want to hear about what they have been up to, but then let them share more if they fancy. As adults we often choose what we share with people. It should not be any different for your children. We can still keep the relationship strong without prying.