Ask PWC | Constant Questions and Chatter

How do you handle the kid who is constantly talking to you and tends to ask the same questions repeatedly?

Image courtesy of jscreationzs /

Image courtesy of jscreationzs /

First, let’s understand why your child may be doing this. Like so many other maladaptive behaviors, this constant chatter may be how your child’s anxiety is manifesting itself. He made need to chatter to keep from being alone with scary memories and thoughts or to keep him connected with reality. Additionally, he made need that constant interaction from you to feel safe.

While knowing why your child chatters can help, the truth is that this behavior can grate your nerves raw.

Here are some practical suggestions to help everyone keep their sanity in tact:

Address the anxiety. Check out this post for suggestions on how to reduce your child’s overall anxiety.

Answer with silliness. If the questions asked are ridiculous, answer back with non-sense. Traditional tongue twisters are fun answers.

Use a chattiness catcher. Provide your child with a special sack or bag or recording device where they can chatter away and you can “listen” later.

Assign chattiness. This is a little reverse psychology and some solid connected parenting all rolled into one. Dare you child to chat for 5 minutest straight while staring into your eyes. Try this daily and see what happens.

Reflect the question back. Try to engage that thinking brain, by challenging your child to answer his own question.

Compete. Try to out-chatter them.

Connect then separate. Engage in a connecting activity together…maybe the silent game…and then take 5 minutes separated. Put your child in a safe place doing something you know will engage her and you get 5 minutes of a break.

Self-care. Dealing with constant chattering can bottom out the entire house’s compassion tank pretty quickly. Be sure to find time to get respite and self-care.


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