The strong-willed child-do you have one?

Do you have a strong willed child?

Are you exhausted by your 9 month old, always wanting it NOW (and having a fit when you are a bit slow in understanding exactly what he wants!) or your 2 year old always saying “NO” to everything? If your answer is yes, you very likely are the parent of a strong-willed child! Raising such a child can be extremely challenging to say the least. And tiring!  My eldest son was one such baby, toddler, child, teenager and now an adult!!!  At the time I did not realise that I had a strong-willed child and if you, too, are wondering about your child, have a look at 4 of the signs which may point you in the right direction!

4 signs you have a strong willed child

1: They are very, very stubborn right from an early age


These kids know what they want and when they want it! You can try to distract them, put roadblocks in their way, threaten punishment and it will all be to no avail – they will not abort whatever mission it is that they are on, nor will they forget all about it if a friend suddenly appears! My little grandson is all of 9 months old now and I fear that he is one of these strong-willed persona (takes after his dad, methinks – or maybe grandma!). He will wriggle and moan and flap around until we figure out what he actually wants, give it to him and then he is perfectly happy.

Once a baby grows into the toddler stage and learns to actually express themselves, it becomes a little more difficult as they will say “No” as many times as it takes for you to finally get the message that they are NOT putting on their jacket when about to go our even though its pouring cats and dogs. Truthfully you may as well not argue as they will have as many NO’s as you have reasons for the jacket! You will end up giving in (and discretely raising an umbrella over their head!!)  So it is much better to let them have their way provided you set a limit or a condition (this way they might learn to negotiate rather than demand!). I think that “No” is probably the most frequently used word in a strong-willed child’s vocabulary!

2: They are bossy and want things done their own way – or no way!!


Watch your child when he is playing with other children – is he always the one telling the others WHAT to do? And HOW they should do it? Does he always decide what games they are going to play and who should play whatever role he has chosen for them? Yes? Then, you likely do have a strong little personality on your hands.  This bossiness will spill over into other areas as well – such as the order he wants you to put his clothes on, which cup he wants to drink from or even the order his food is put on his plate!! Patience and a good dose of humour are the only way to deal with this child!!

3: They are full of energy


Strangely enough, these little beings are full of energy…they are like that Duracell battery bunny, and never seem to run out of steam. As babies, they outgrow their daytime naps far sooner than YOU would like (even though they become tired and cranky and a little nap would do a world of good in your opinion!). And they are ALWAYS on the go (with you behind them to see that they don’t hurt themselves or do something they shouldn’t be doing…this is where the tiring part comes in as you may not have Duracell batteries!!). At the same time, these little ones can be very intense and passionate in something which arouses their interest. Then they become hooked on everything to do with that interest, almost to the exclusion of other toys.

4: They challenge boundaries


These children are born leaders and tend to want to march to their own tune. They will not care what you or anyone else thinks of them. They seem to think that their way is the right way and so they will do what they want to do and not what others want them to do, unless you can convince them that their way is incorrect (good luck with that!). Seriously, they can argue like pros and unless you have all the facts at your fingertips, you are going to have a tough time persuading them to do something your way!

There are probably many more signs displayed by seriously strong-willed children but as each little person is a unique little human, maybe only one or two of the signs show up in your child or maybe you have one with many more than the four signs I have listed. One thing you can be certain of, is that these strong-willed children, if handled with understanding and empathy will turn out to be awesome adults who can and will achieve all they want out of life! And make you, their parent, very proud of them as they do so!

Yours in photography,


P.S I’d love to hear about your experiences with your strong-willed child….let me know in the comments box below!!

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