View Full Version : What percent of the time do your children obey you?

06-29-2012, 09:19 PM
What percent of the time does you children obey you?

100% because they respect me and think my word is GOLD

100% because they are scared of me

80% it is a give and take relationship

60% they always have a negotiation

40% only when safety or severe punishment is involved

20% only when safety or severe punishment is involved, however they try to sneak stuff

0% Never- my kids have a mind of their own and it is not worth arguing with them


Feel free to comment!

06-29-2012, 11:26 PM
I voted other. My kids pretty much always do what I ask them to do. Sometimes it's not immediately - they're kids and sometimes they procrastinate a bit or need to be reminded. Occasionally they moan, though they're not terrible whiners (anymore... oy, preschool was bad for it though). However, I felt kind of funny voting that my word is gold. The word "obey" also makes me a little uncomfortable. I'm not someone who is against having strong boundaries and rules, but "obey" has a lot of baggage in my mind.

The way I see it is that the kids and I are in a relationship built on respect and trust. Their part is to trust me, to trust that my experience is greater and that what I do is in their best interests and therefore worth doing. My part is to strive to only ask things that are reasonable, respectful of them as individuals, and that can be explained in plain terms and make sense. Also, I must try to only ask things they are actually capable of doing - whether because of their age and capabilities or because of circumstance (a well-rested child can be expected to do things a tired child may not be able to do). In practical terms, this means we don't have a lot of rules. Things having to do with safety are a given. Things having to do with respecting others and property are the other given. If things don't fall into either category, then I have to evaluate whether they're really important or not. I have to strive to say yes as much as possible.

So yes, my kids obey, but if I stopped holding up my end of the relationship, they would stop obeying.

06-29-2012, 11:46 PM
I voted other too. Overall, my kids are pretty good about doing what's expected of them. I don't really like to think of it in terms of "obeying" either. It makes it sound like they are bossed around, and it's not like that here. My older son has some chores that he needs to do and if he doesn't do them, he doesn't get his allowance. He's pretty good about it, although sometimes he needs a few reminders. My younger one is very approval seeking, a perfectionist - so I don't usually have any problems with him at all as far as doing what's expected.

I will say that my relationship with my older son is stronger since homeschooling. He was more resistant and we had more conflict when he was in school. The homework battles, getting ready for school, etc. A lot of that is gone now, although he is still a strong willed child. It's so much better though. He is happier.

06-30-2012, 12:50 AM
I just hate the word obey. It brings up memories of a fundamental childhood which was just not good for me. Overall, my kids do pretty well. I ask them to do something, and they usually do it. We discuss things together and have a pretty good relationship built on respect. They teach me just as much as I teach them.

06-30-2012, 02:14 AM
I guess I should have worded this differently! My children listen in general other than when going to bed (which is a battle). My son is very easily distracted and pretty hyper so it is hard for him to follow through with a task. He also sneaks stuff and hides it around the house. He has since he was 2 or so. He takes chap-stick, rubberbands, paper towel rolls, stuff he knows he is not allowed to have like scissors, all of the forks we own, permanent markers etc. After taking everything he hides it in strange places. I wonder why he does this!? I think it is more of a compulsion than a defiance.

Stella M
06-30-2012, 03:52 AM

The word obey doesn't really come into our family relationships.

06-30-2012, 01:29 PM
I voted other--it really depends on the day of the week, the time of day, the phase of the moon, the color of the sky--and we haven't even hit puberty yet! Most days, there is an element of negotiation--she thinking she can out-logic me as she did with her public school teachers on many occasions. I adhear to my Mom's philosophy--you have the right to say, think, do, whatever you want. I have the right to disagree and punish you if necessary in order to teach you better. Mom put it very simply--You have a right to say what you want, I have a right to smack you in the mouth for it! I heard that (and felt it!) all the time growing up!

06-30-2012, 04:09 PM
About 80%. Sometimes 40% where severe punishment is involved. It really just depends. They usually listen but sometimes I have to talk very loudly for them to hear me.

07-01-2012, 08:38 AM
I chose 80%, but I'd say it's more like 75%. Listening isn't exactly "listening" if we have to tell him to do something 2 or 3 times. However, he's mostly pretty good about it. We do ask for obedience, but not in a scary way. More in a please-respect-the-adults-in-charge-of-you way. Most of my orders, requests, or suggestions are prefaced with "please" and always followed by a "thank you". My husband often appeals to my son from the perspective of one who remembers what it's like to be a boy his age. :)

Now that my son is older, he's definitely allowed to share his thoughts on the things we tell him to do, and I encourage him to speak up (i.e. "Stop wandering back and forth through the living room and find something to do." "I'm bored, that's why I'm doing this." "I realize that, which is why I'm suggesting you draw or make a puzzle." "OK." "Thank you.")

He's definitely never been a sneaker/hider of things. He's more of a bat-his-eyelashes type. LOL

07-01-2012, 10:59 AM
See, that's another thing... one of my ds really struggles to listen to anyone as he's so off in his own little world. If I want him to do something, I have to really corner him and get eye contact sometimes. He's not being willful, just... an imaginative seven year-old. We're working on it in general and I know he'll get better as he grows up and as we pay attention to the need for him to stop and listen. And once he's really heard me, he'll do it. But to some people, that would be "disobedience" and to others it wouldn't.

07-02-2012, 11:54 AM
I voted other.
I don't think dd often deliberately goes against something I have told her but sometimes she forgets or acts impulsively and hides the result later.
I wouldn't call it disobedience most of the time and it isn't usually over something big.

07-02-2012, 02:28 PM
Another "other" here. They boys do need to be reminded quite often to do or not do certain things but it's just them being kids, short attention spans and different priorities. When there's a problem, we listen, try to find out what the issue is and work on a mutually agreeable solution. I could never assign a percentage to how often they listen or not because our process just doesn't work that way.

07-02-2012, 03:14 PM
ugh-I just lost everything I wrote! But I voted "other" and I agree with both posts of Farrar's...and with these:


The word obey doesn't really come into our family relationships.

I just hate the word obey. It brings up memories of a fundamental childhood which was just not good for me. Overall, my kids do pretty well. I ask them to do something, and they usually do it. We discuss things together and have a pretty good relationship built on respect. They teach me just as much as I teach them.

My children aren't perfect-and neither am I. We work on what's right and what's wrong more than we work on them doing exactly what I say when I say to do it. I value respect over obedience...and it's a two way street.

That is not to say I never tell my children that they need to do something....

Like Farrar mentioned-I also have a child that needs to be guided. He's a good, sweet, kind child that is eager to please...but he's so very easily distracted! A simple "Please put up your clothes" usually leads to me handing him the clothes, walking him to the room and reminding him where they go all the while listening to his story about Lego Ninjago with occasional gentle reminders of what we are doing.

07-02-2012, 06:48 PM
Another 'Other.' They listen pretty well when I ask them to do things, and DD is pretty good about following the house rules (all based around the Golden Rule and only enumerated for the sake of DS), but DS is a sneaky kid. Drives me batty. I know it's part of his Aspie-ness and his ADHD, but GAH.

07-12-2012, 10:10 AM
Ha, nobody's admitting to 20%! That's us some days! I can admit it!