Give me a child who does not talk back to adults.
In any form or fashion.
Give me a child who knows that the adult means what they say. When I say something to my children, they know that I mean it, and no amount of "back talk" by way of whining, crying, begging, pleading, or sassing will change things.
Kids are smart. They are very quick to learn how to manipulate adults. If for example, I tell one of my children to go clean their room, and they whine and cry, and I give in and tell them never mind, that they don't have to do it, something clicks within them. They realize that whining and crying gets them out of cleaning their room...and if it works for getting out of cleaning their room, then why not try it when they are told to wash the dishes, or fold the clothes. And if it works for those things, then why not try it the next time they don't get their way. There are endless possibilities! Mom and Dad go from being in control, to being controlled.
But, if I tell one of my children to go clean their room, and they whine and cry, and I add extra consequences for their whining and crying, my children are quick to learn that whining and crying does not get them out of anything. It actually only adds to the work they have been assigned to do. It may take a few times of extra consequences, but they learn that Mom and Dad mean what they say, and obedience with a happy heart (good attitude) is better for the whole family.
Please understand that I am not talking about abusive behavior. Our children know that they are never to obey an adult who tells them to do something that goes against God's laws. I am talking about everyday, regular, getting life done kind of obedience. Take out the trash. Feed the dog. Clean your room. Wash the dishes. Read your book report book. Do your homework. Pick up your toys. Turn off that video game. Call me when you get there so I know you are safe.
This is an area where we strive to be fairly strict on our children. I want my children to respectfully obey adults without talking back or giving an attitude. We are not perfect in this area, by any means, but we do work at it diligently. Our children go through stages where this is easy, and stages where this is hard, but we do not give up, because we understand the value of a child who obeys . We know that a child who willingly obeys authority will have a much more tender heart when it comes to obeying God.
Give me a child who does not talk back to adults, but understands that the adult means what they say, and obeys willingly. This is a child who will stand out in today's world of children who think they should be in charge. This is a child who will actually accomplish something in life, and not just expect everyone else to "hand them the world on a silver platter." Give me a child who obeys with a good attitude, and I'll show you a child who will go far, and make a difference in this life.