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How to gracefully handle your child's embarrassing remarks

Melissa Leonard has been wowing clients and readers over the past few years with her fun and dynamic approach to the often perceived 'stuffy' world of etiquette. After having two children (well-behaved, of course!), Melissa took her inno...

Oh no... What did he just say?!

Simon is a precocious 5-year-old who has lots on his mind and uses every opportunity to let others know what he thinks. Everyone loves Simon -- he is cute, cheerful and lovable. Yet, some feel sorry for the boy's mother, as she is often put in an uncomfortable position due to her son's innocent and completely unintentional indiscretions.

Simon says... "We belong to two country clubs... how many do you belong to?"

Oh no... What did he just say?!You may ask, "Who would say such a thing?" This question was not pulled out of thin air -- it actually was the topic of conversation amongst a group of four-year-old girls.


Any child can feel empowered by material possessions, and comparing is only natural for young children. But you absolutely want to put a stop to it immediately, because too much emphasis on who has the nicest house, the best car and the most memberships will eventually make your young child into a spoiled teen and pretentious adult.


Parents must ask themselves, "Where did these children learn to talk like this?" It often starts in the home. If a child hears you comparing wealth or putting others down, they naturally think that those are the things that are truly important in life. These are not the kind of lessons we want to be teaching children. There are so many other more worthy topics for kids to discuss!


As for examples of some fun -- and more appropriate -- conversation topics, try suggesting: family pets, favorite books or movies (and why), show special art projects, discuss and offer to teach a hobby, talk about favorite foods and what they like to cook, or demonstrate unique skills (can walk on hands, do the splits, say the alphabet backwards).


There is a bit of Simon in all of our children (and even in us!), but with a little know-how and practice, we are guaranteed to handle the awkward or embarrassing situations with confidence and grace!

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