Teach your girl HOW to appeal your “No”

July 26, 2012 in lessons for daughters,Nancy Rue

The Girls Club girls chat long lately. They are all ten, now comfortable with each other, and full of relationship issues they don’t know how to solve. They interrupt each other and don’t listen well and are so eager to share their own story that they forget to offer each other advice. Still, it is good and safe and precious.

We are reading Nancy Rue’s The Buddy Book. Two weeks ago we studied the chapter entitled “Raising Good Parents.” And we stumbled on a lesson they have referenced many times since. After seeing how powerful it was, I want to share it because talking about potential issues proactively is easier than talking about real issues in the middle of them.

The Lesson: Teach your girl how to ask about an issue you have said “no” to.  
Sometimes those precious girls of ours have thought carefully through an issue and they have good reasons why they should be allowed to get their ears pierced,  be allowed to stay home alone for an hour, have a friend sleep over, or move their bedtime to 9:30. Sometimes their good reasons will trump your good reasons. Sometimes they won’t. But being able to have the conversation will save much stewing and is great practice for the adult world.  Plus this proactive establishment of expectation  is powerful.

Tips for Daughters disagreeing about a “No” response.
1) Parents are not mind readers. If you want to move your bedtime to a later time you have to let them know. In the right way.

2) Speak in a mature way to your parents. (Parents to help your daughter understand this one, role play both a mature and an immature response. Remember to use tone and body language. Let her play the part of the mom!)
Immature request:
Daughter: It is so dumb that you wont let me stay up an hour later. I am not a baby any more. What do you think is going to happen if I stay up? I’ll turn into a pumpkin? For Pete’s sake, I am 11 years old and shouldn’t have to go to bed when you say.

Probable Mom response: If I treat you like a baby it is because you sometimes act like one. I don’t like your disrespectful tone.

Mature request:
Daughter: Mom, since I get myself up each morning without complaining or feeling tired and since I am getting older, do you think we could try moving my bedtime back an hour? I rarely feel sleepy when lights out time comes and I end up just lying there in the dark for a long time waiting to fall asleep.
Probable mom response: You have some good points. I will consider this, talk to your father, and let you now soon.
3) Telling your parents that everyone else has a certain device or that everyone else gets to do a certain activity will result in the response you weren’t hoping for. Usually it sounds something like, “Well if your friends were jumping off a moving truck traveling at 50 miles per hour, would you jump too?”
4) If your parents disagree with you,  accept their decision. God gave your parents the responsibility to raise you and keep you safe. Trusting their decision is also trusting God who picked out your parents.
5) If four months go by and the same issue is still bothering you, you can bring it up again as long as you do it respectfully and maturely.

6) You are more likely to gain freedoms if you never do things behind your parents’ backs.

The ideas on this list are summarized from chapter 2 of Nancy Rue’s The Buddy Book. 

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{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Positively Alene July 26, 2012 at 9:12 pm

I love your heart here. I wish I would have had a big group of moms to encourage me when my kids were younger. Blessings girl as you raise those precious princesses! love ya


Bell Jar Vintage July 27, 2012 at 2:32 am

Hi Laura!
Love this! Thanks for such helpful parenting tips – I particularly love #4!


Mothering From Scratch July 27, 2012 at 1:42 pm

{Melinda} My daughter is 15 and I am still working with her on turning her immature requests into mature requests, but we both have come a long way in our attitudes. We may disagree, but we’ve learned to respect each other while we’re disagreeing. I’ve found that the more they see that their mature requests gain your respect (even if they don’t always get what they want), they want more of it.

Like anything, if they are in the habit of talking out of their emotions, it takes time for them to break that habit. It takes time for us as moms to break the habit of responding emotionally. But I can tell you, from first-hand experience, it is worth the time and work to turn it around. 🙂

Thanks for sharing this!


Diana Denis July 28, 2012 at 2:09 am

I am going to share this post with my teenagers! These are great tips and they give me an opportunity to teach them about being articulate. We may not always get what we want but if I can teach them to respond to those situations with meaningful statements and not emotional outbursts then they’ve learned a powerful lesson. Thank you!


Melissa July 28, 2012 at 12:15 pm

Thanks for sharing these tips. I hope I remember some of them when my daughter gets older … although there are times I could probably use some of them with her now 🙂 (Stopping by from SITS Girls)


Weather Anchor Mama July 28, 2012 at 1:18 pm

I have a daughter of my own, I call Princess. hehe. Great post, great advice! VIsiting from SIts! My daughter is only 1, but I have a lot to look forward to.


Jessica Ambrose July 28, 2012 at 2:07 pm

what great advice! I have three daughters. My oldest is almost 9 so she’ll be coming up there soon. I’m over at http://www.theredheadedprincess.com 🙂 Your newest RSS follower 🙂


doseofreality July 28, 2012 at 2:16 pm

Great advice. I am definitely remembering these tips to use with my daughter who is 8 going on 18! 😉


Jenna@ Busy Mom in the Kitchen July 28, 2012 at 3:28 pm

Excellent advice and a daily struggle for most of us mothers. Teaching our daughters to react maturely and rationally isn’t always the easy way out!


Jennifer A. Hall August 2, 2012 at 12:37 am

Giving you a visit after you gave me one! I need this advice, thanks!


Angi December 5, 2012 at 2:06 pm

This is EXCELLENT! Great post for us parents with tweens!


Rennie February 21, 2013 at 12:09 am

This is wonderful!!! I have 2 daughters who are quickly approaching the tween years. I think this blog will be a terrific resource for me!!! So glad I found you!!!


pruningprincesses February 21, 2013 at 3:31 am

Hi Rennie, thank you for blessing me with a comment. I love knowing that this blog encourages other moms. Hope to see you “around” more.


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