How to Deal with Disrespectful Grown Children

The fact remains that parenting entails a lot. You are to care for a child emotionally, psychologically, mentally, physically and otherwise. As the child grows you need to add discipline along the way to mold the child to be useful to you, his or her self and society. This sometimes can be overwhelming but as a parent you need to keep at it to reap the benefits in future.

teaching respect

However, you would still encounter some struggles as the child grows older and begins to have a mind or his or her own. What you frown at and termed bad is what the child wants to do. It even becomes worse if these wrong attitudes are exhibited when they have grown. You know that you would have to change your pattern of approach in this instance.

The truth is that how you had disciplined a child in his or her teens wouldn’t be effective or applicable with that same person as a grown child. So the best bet will be to use a more effective approach that will bring positive outcome at the end of the day

So if you have been dealing with a disrespectful adult son or daughter, then you need to acquaint yourself with the right information on how to handle the situation to get productive result. This article would furnish you with all the details of how to deal with a disrespectful child for positive outcome. So you need to keep reading.

Who is a grown child and what causes them to be disrespectful?

A grown child is a young man or woman that is above the age of 18 years. They are usually described as young adults. At this stage, their body system has fully developed and they usually have a mind of their own on what they want for their lives and wellbeing. So thinking and doing things their way becomes a norm for them. In due course, they start to see correction and guidance as undue and unwanted influence .They start being offensive and abusive to others. Even to their parents.

Some of these attitudes and actions are done ignorantly and the onus is still on the parents to fix them so that they would fit in better into the society. Because a disrespectful child that offends people at home and not being corrected will exhibit such character outside the home as well so as not to tarnish the image of the home outside. Parents would have to correct this behavior to help the society have not only respectful but well- behaved adult.

What causes a grown up to be disrespectful to the parent

So before delving into how to handle with the lack of respect  from an adult, we need to find out what the causes are. Experts are of the views that the below can be the causes of the lack of regards from a child to his or her parents.

The home environment:

 The activities going on in the home can impact negatively or positively on a child. When the home is filled with rancor, quarrels and malicious words especially with the parents, the child becomes affected. The child might learn this attitude and start exhibiting it. This is why the home should always be a peaceful haven for the good functioning of the children in it.

Psychological issues:

Another outstanding cause of disrespectful from grown child is when the person is psychologically down. This can stem from stress and worries hence making the child despair. They may decide to take it out on people around them. Especially for those that don’t know how to handle the new situation.

Lack of parental love:

Children always needs the assurance that they are still desired and love by their parents. When you shift your attention away from them, they will want to get the attention back but putting up some disruptive behavior like being disrespectful to gain back the attention

Lack of parental guidance:

A child would exhibit offensive behavior to others when the parents that needed to guide them are focusing on others things and not directing right. This is mostly about parents that are very busy and sometimes leave the upbringing of their children to others like nannies or teachers

Peers influence:

This is one very big cause of grown child being disrespectful. They see other children exhibit this bad character and getting away with it and they follow suit. Other children might even tell them it shows they have grown and not answerable to anyone.

Substance abuse:

Abuse of substances most times beclouds ones sense of reasoning and leave people acting negatively. So with this, the child who engages in substance abuse, starts putting up some disrespectful attitude and damn the consequences. They always get high and careless about whatever anyone thinks of their attitudes.

Signs of disrespect in the home

  • The child makes fun of others and doesn’t care if it makes the other feel bad.
  • Becomes a nuisance in the home by becoming very aggressive
  • Leaves the home without permission and does it with no remorse
  • The child finds it very difficult to apologize for any wrongdoing
  • Response to simple issue in a very harsh tone
  • Becomes very hostile and want everyone around to suck up to him or her
  • Is rude and loud to the elderly and sees nothing wrong with the act.
  • Does bad acts before you and believes it is the right thing to d
  • Shows outright hatred to you and people around and is not ready to take correction.

Steps/Tips to deal with a disrespectful grown child

The negative effects of a disrespectful attitude on a child are enormous.  As such, you as a parent should deal with it with love and understanding in order to get the intended positive result. That said, here are some ways to handle a disrespectful child especially if they are young adults:

  1. Treat them as friend: Don’t turn your child into an enemy because he or she is disrespectful. This will be counter-productive. Draw your child closer to you and have a heartfelt talk with him or her. Let the child first know that being disrespectful doesn’t bring anything good to him or her.
  2. Teach your child how to show respect: Start by finding out what triggers him or her to be disrespectful. If it is stress or anger, then teach your child how to be objective while trying to be expressive. Let them know they can still deal with life situations without being disrespectful.
  3. Be patient with them: There’s no need snapping at them when the changes are slow. Understand that they are still work -in -progress so you should follow the process with perseverance. Remember a negative character change didn’t happen overnight so don’t expect the turnaround to be very quick too. Just follow them a step at a time and they would follow through with it in time.
  4. Seek help for them: You can also help them receive help from counselors, therapists, psychologists or other professionals. The experts would be in a better position to reform them and instill the positives in them without having to damage them the more.
  5. Avoid taunting them with the bad behavior. This is one action that parents try to use but at the end of the day, you might just be doing more harm than good. Don’t be nasty or bad mouth your child. They might act more disrespectful to get back at you. Don’t compare them with any other child, show them more love. They might just be disrespectful as an subconscious way of getting your attention.

How to handle verbally abuse from your child

Being verbally abuse by your child or children can make you frustrated mentally, emotional and psychologically. it is worse because it is coming from someone that should love and appreciate you for all the care you must have bestow upon him or her right from childhood. This shouldn’t make you lashed out, but find out what the child is going through.

They are things that might trigger this habit in your child. You know that hurt people just wants to hurt others. So all the verbal manipulation, blaming and abuses is aftermath of what they are going through. So you would need them to handle the situation better than just going on a verbal abusive spree with them. The grown children might not know better.

So how do you handle a grown child verbally abusing you?

  1. Call the child to order: You need to first point out to the child that he or she is being verbally abusive to you. Let her know that the insults and put down words are forms of abuse in case the child was doing this out of ignorant. Let the child know that towing this route will put a strain on your relationship with him or her.
  2. Show empathy but be firm: If your child is lashing out because of unpalatable situations at the time, you would need to empathize with him or her. But let them know that being abusive because of that situation is counterproductive. They should work with their loved ones to get things better for them, not working against them. Being verbally abusive to your parent will cause more harm than good.
  3. Don’t reciprocate the abuse: you would be guilty as well if what you are accusing your child of doing, you begin to indulge the person with the same dose of verbal abuses. In fact, the child might even start believing that you are the one that is being abusive to her. So do not engage the child. Rather do the next point
  4. Be calm and communicate with the child: there’s something about being calm in a face of a storm. It makes the other person have a rethink and question the morality of what he or she is doing. As you are not giving the same negative energy by remaining calm, you would be in a better position to approach your child in a more positive way. This will help you talk you child out from further verbal abuse on you and others.
  5. Set boundaries: Can you avoid getting in the way, and bringing up issues or actions that will trigger abuses. Make sure to search yourself as well to be sure you are doing things that get the young adult upsets all time.
  6. Seek help: if all else fails then it might just be time to bring in people who can help. Experts or professionals that would help instill the needed mindset in your child to stop being verbally abusive. This will bring a faster turnaround as the issue would have been given the professional aid that it needs.
  7. Prayer: Talking to God about your child is one major way of ensuring that there is a change in the attitude of your child. Speak to our Father about the mind of your child. Let him touch the child’s life and correct every mindset that is causing the child to be abusive and disrespectful. Let God also give you understanding and teach you how to handle the situation. See our article on Special prayers for a disrespectful child

How to deal with physical abuse from your child

You might not be ready for the level of hostility, antagonistic behavior and the assault you might get from your child in the future. But, unfortunately, this might still happen to you.  You would make the statistics of parents having to deal with physical abuse from their grown kids.

However, you don’t have to just fold your hands and continue to suffer in silence. You need to access information on how you can handle the situation maturely and appropriately.  This would be necessary if you are trying to avoid a strain with the relationship between you and them.

So how can you handle this issue? The practicable tips below would help you perform excellently well

  1. Safety first: if you being physically abuse by your child, you should leave the environment immediately; especially if you know that your continuous stay there will escalate the situation. Leave the environment as soon as you can
  2. Put your authority into action: if the abuse is happening in your home and your kid is an occupant there, then it might just be the time to kick the abuser out and change the locks.
  3. Make a report: Physical assault that might leave you with bodily injuries, wounds and bruises. Hence you need to put a stop to it as early as possible. You need to report the incident to the nearest police department. This will enable the police to protect you by inviting your child and giving him or her order to stop all physical abuse on you or face the consequences of disobeying the law.
  4. Lay down rules and follow through: You should verbalize some rules you want your children to adhere at home. If any of your kids violate them and even went ahead to physically abuse you, it will be time to implement the rules to let the child know you meant all of your words. This will serve as a deterrent. If you stated he will be arrested if he or she ever assaulted you. Follow through with it to drive home your point that you do mean what you say. This will help the child know you are not ready to bargain your well-being for anything.
  5. Avoid heated argument with your grown kids: More often than not, heated arguments result to a fight. Try not to have issues with your kids that will bring yelling, screaming or intense anger. Avoiding these will prevent anyone from using their fists to win an argument.

What to do when they turn against you

This is one crossroad that parents don’t need to get to, but unfortunately it does happen. Some children for reasons best known to them might just turned against the parent. It can be very heart breaking for parents who are not emotionally strong. But not doing anything to arrest the situation might just let the issues linger for a long time.

So how do you deal with this issue that might be staring you in the face?

  1. Start by having a heart to heart talk with your young adults: We are all humans, and you being an adult don’t exonerate you from being guilty. So if your kids are turning against you. Then it is time to have that long talk to find out where you went wrong to make amends.
  2. Report to a person they respect: You can also table the matter before a family member they respect. It can be an elderly person in the family or a relative you believe they can listen to. The person will help talk to them in clear terms why they need to turn a new leave. They will most likely see reasons with this person as they respect them.
  3. Don’t turn against them: You might be angry with the way your adult child might he treating you but you don’t need to feed the anger by turning against him or her as well. Rather, seek support for yourself while waiting for your child to come around. They usually do with time. So don’t escalate the situation by doing same. You should demonstrate here that you are the bigger person
  4. Apologize if need be: If you were wrong in a way that hurt your child, then you shouldn’t hesitate to show how remorseful you are. You can give a heartfelt apology that will validate that you understand the pains you caused and you are ready to do all that it takes to help put all that behind them
  5. Be patient: You can’t change anyone not even your child by the snap of your fingers. It is a gradual process. So apart from telling them how you feel and hoping they see reasons with you and re-track their actions, you can advise them to seek therapy as well. But don’t agitate for an instant change to avoid stopping the wheel of progress.


The young adulthood phase of a child seems the hardest phase for parents. This is because; it is the period that children believe they have come of age and shouldn’t be under any kind of control or guidance any longer. The parents need to be careful with handling their kids who are going through this chapter of their lives. Show them that you love and understand them. Support them, talk to them, let them know that you will always be there for them, do not give up on them but be firm. If you allow them to deal with life by themselves, you might just be having a huge disaster waiting to happen in the future.  It might not be easy but it is still good to nip it in the bud as early as possible.

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