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April is Child Abuse Prevention Month. As part of our global efforts to help protect kids from abuse, bullying, and other harmful behavior, each day this month, we will share a time-tested skill from our Kidpower® 30-Skill-Challenge Coaching Handbook.

If someone doesn’t listen, set your boundary more strongly.

Skill #16: What If Somebody Doesn’t Listen?. Most people don’t like being told what to do – and often have trouble listening when a young person sets a boundary about unwanted or unsafe affection or play. Especially with family members and friends who are important to them, kids might set their boundary once and then feel too uncomfortable to “push the issue” if the other person doesn’t stop when asked. We don’t have to let this happen! Here’s how to prepare a child to persist in setting their boundary if somebody doesn’t listen.

This full practice is a part of the Kidpower® 30-Skill-Challenge Coaching Handbook.

Have you ever noticed that people sometimes don’t listen? Kids and teens need to know what to do if someone doesn’t listen to their boundary at first.

Put your hand on the young person’s shoulder. Coach them to move your hand away, look towards your face, and say, “Please stop.”

Say, “If I don’t listen, you will need to tell me more strongly.” Pretend not to listen: put your hand back on their shoulder and say, “Oh, but I like touching your shoulder!”

Coach the young person to, “Stand up. Take a few steps back. Make a fence with your hands. Say, ‘I said stop.’”

Respond, “Okay, I’ll stop.”

Remind young people to tell an adult they trust about touch or anything else that makes them worried or uncomfortable, even if they set a clear boundary and the person listened.

For a FREE explanation on the simple methods you can use to teach children to use each of these skills, download the Kidpower® 30-Skill-Challenge Coaching Handbook on our website –this ebook will be FREE of charge in English, Spanish, and Arabic in honor of April as Child Abuse Prevention Month.

Please share this skill with others. Let’s work together to teach young people to take charge of their safety, increase self-confidence, and develop healthy, positive relationships! 

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Published: April 16, 2019   |   Last Updated: April 16, 2019

Kidpower Founder and Executive Irene van der Zande is a master at teaching safety through stories and practices and at inspiring others to do the same. Her child protection and personal safety expertise has been featured by USA Today, CNN, Today Moms, the LA Times, and The Wall Street Journal. Publications include: cartoon-illustrated Kidpower Safety Comics and Kidpower Teaching Books curriculum; Bullying: What Adults Need to Know and Do to Keep Kids Safe; the Relationship Safety Skills Handbook for Teens and Adults; Earliest Teachable Moment: Personal Safety for Babies, Toddlers, and Preschoolers; The Kidpower Book for Caring Adults: Personal Safety, Self-Protection, Confidence, and Advocacy for Young People, and the Amazon Best Seller Doing Right by Our Kids: Protecting Child Safety at All Levels.

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