My 4-year-old is so bossy!


Help! my 4-year-old daughter is so bossy to me! What do I do? I don’t want her to be like this forever!


This is an age appropriate thing, so you don’t punish for it. But it’s an inappropriate thing, too, so you teach her how to speak more appropriately.


If my child bosses me with an order, I look squarely at him and say, “I don’t think so. I don’t like how you’re talking to me. Try again, and this time, remember that I’m the mother.” Or, I might offer a script and just ignore the way he said it: “Say, ‘Mommy, please get me a glass of water.'”

I might simply state the boundary by saying, “I do not deserve to be talked to that way.” But I need to make sure I’ve not been talking to them that way, either.

Decide how you want to be spoken to, and then teach her. Role play. Practice. And model it in how you talk to her.