Delaying tactics when it’s time to leave

When you drop your child off, she cries and begs you not to leave. However, when you come to pick her up, she dawdles and doesn’t want to go. Does this sound familiar?

Or perhaps your child is older and enjoys going to over to friends’ houses to play. When you come to pick him up, he finds many creative ways to delay leaving. You find yourself feeling frustrated and embarrassed as he refuses to even come when you call him.

One way you can help solve this problem is by explaining to your child ahead of time your expectations. You can tell your child it needs to take no longer than 5 minutes to do these things:
  • Help clean up.
  • Say “thank you”.
  • Put on shoes and jacket then leave. 
You can then ask your child to repeat back to you these expectations in his own words. If he’s missing some of the key concepts, discuss it further until you have a mutual understanding.

Once you agree on the pick up process, if he still dawdles you can remind him of your agreement. You may also need to go take him by the hand and lead him out. If you end up feeling hassled by his behavior, you can let him know about your disappointment as you drive home. You can also add a related consequence like that you probably won’t be taking him to a friend’s house in the near future because leaving was so difficult.


Jean Tracy, MSS said...

Kathy, you give the best suggestions like the 3 things to accomplish in 5 minutes and the setting expectations before the visit.

Kathy Slattengren said...

Thanks Jean!

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