How To Deal With A Disrespectful Grown Child? 

“Why is my daughter being so disrespectful?”

“Why my son hates me?”

These are questions many parents ask themselves. If you’re dealing with a disrespectful grown child, you’re not alone.

There are a few reasons why your child might be behaving this way. It could be a reaction to stress, anxiety, or even depression. Or, it could signify that they feel powerless and need to regain control of their life.

Whatever the reason, there are ways you can help your child learn to respect you again. You can get through this difficult time with patience, understanding, and a little tough love.

how to deal with a disrespectful grown child

4 Reasons Why Your Grown Child Might Be Disrespectful

1. They’re Stressed Out

If your child is under a lot of stress, it’s natural for them to lash out. Maybe they’re dealing with financial problems, relationship issues, or health concerns. Whatever the case, their stress can manifest itself in the form of disrespect.

2. They’re Anxious or Depressed

Anxiety and depression can also lead to disrespectful behaviour. Your child might be struggling to cope with their mental health issues. As a result, they might take their frustrations of mental illness out on you. Also, remember that some medications can cause side effects that include disrespect.

3. They Feel Powerless

Sometimes, adult children act out because they feel like they have no control over their lives. If your child feels like you’re always telling them what to do, they might start to rebel. In their eyes, disrespecting you is a way of regaining some power and control.

4. They’re Going Through a Rough Patch

It’s also possible that your child is just going through a tough time. Maybe they’ve recently gone through a break-up or lost their job. Whatever the case, they might need extra support and understanding during this difficult period.

adult daughter

How to Deal With a Disrespectful Grown Child?

1. Talk to Them

The first step is to talk to your child. Try to find out why they’re behaving this way. Once you know the reason, you can start to work on a solution.

It’s important that you set firm limits with your child. Let them know that their disrespectful behaviour is not acceptable. Be clear about the consequences if they continue to behave disrespectfully.

2. Encourage Them to Express Their Feelings

Please encourage your adult child to express their feelings constructively. If they’re stressed, have them write their thoughts in a journal. If they’re feeling angry, encourage them to take some deep breaths and go for a walk.

3. Consider Adjusting Your Parenting Style

Sometimes, the problem isn’t with the child but with the parent. It’s possible that your parenting style is no longer effective and needs to be updated. This is especially in grown children as they enter new life stages.

Think about how you currently parent your grown and younger child. Are you too lenient? Too strict? Do you hover too much or not enough? Consider what might need to change to meet your child’s needs better.

It cannot be easy to make this adjustment, but it may be necessary to improve the parent-child relationship. If you’re unsure how to proceed, consider seeking counselling or therapy. This can help you work through any challenges and develop a parenting plan that works for you and your child.

4. Set Clear Boundaries

It’s important to set clear boundaries with your disrespectful adult child. This will help them understand what is and isn’t acceptable behaviour. If they cross a boundary, follow through with any consequences you’ve established.

It may also be helpful to converse with your child about respect. Discuss what it means to show respect and why it’s important. Let them know that disrespectful behaviour will not be tolerated.

If you’re struggling to set boundaries, consider speaking with a counsellor or therapist. They can provide guidance and support as you navigate this difficult process.

young adults

5. Seek Outside Help if Needed

There are times when it’s simply not possible to resolve the issue on your own. If you’ve tried everything and nothing seems to be working, it may be time to seek outside help.

Various professionals can assist you, such as counsellors, therapists, or mediators. These individuals can help you and your child communicate more effectively and work through your issues.


1. What To Do If My Child Is Not Willing To Talk?

If your child is unwilling to talk, setting some limits may be necessary. You might want to consider a brief period of no contact, such as a week, to give both of you some time and space. If, after that time, your child is still unwilling to talk, you might want to consider seeking professional help.

2. What if My Child Is Disrespectful?

If your child is disrespectful, it is important to address the behaviour immediately. Try to have a calm discussion with your child about why the behaviour is inappropriate and how it makes you feel. If the disrespectful behaviour persists, you may need to set some consequences, such as losing privileges.

3. What Do You Do When Your Adult Kid Argues With You?

If disrespectful adult children argue with you, it is important to try to stay calm and constructive. It may be helpful to set ground rules for arguments beforehand so that both know what is and is not acceptable. During the argument, try focusing on the issue and avoid getting personal. Once the argument is over, take some time to calm down before talking to your child again.

4. When Should You Cut Your Child Off?

Knowing when it’s time to stop giving your disrespectful grown children money can be tough. You may feel like you’re enabling them or just being a good parent by helping them out. But at what point do you draw the line?

There is no easy answer, but here are a few things to consider:

  • Your child’s age: If your child is over 18, they should be able to support themselves. If they’re not, you may need to reassess whether you’re providing too much financial support.
  • Your child’s job situation: Is your child employed? Do they have a steady income? If not, it may be time to stop giving them money.
  • Your child’s living situation: Is your child living at home? If so, you may need to talk about when they plan on moving out. If they cannot support themselves, it may be time to stop giving them money.
  • Your financial situation: Can you afford to keep giving your child money? If not, it’s time to cut them off.

If you’re still unsure whether you should cut your child off, consider talking to a financial advisor or family therapist. They can help you assess your situation and make the best decision for you and your family.

5. What Do You Do When Your Child Hurts You Emotionally?

When your child hurts you emotionally, it is important to take a step back and assess the situation. If your child deliberately tries to hurt your feelings, you may need to have a serious conversation with them about their behaviour. However, if your child is acting out due to stress or other factors, you will need to understand and try to help them cope healthily.

6. What Do You Do When Your Grown Child Ignores You?

If your grown child is ignoring you, it may be because they are going through something difficult and don’t want to burden you with their problems. However, it is also possible that they are simply disrespectful and believe that they don’t have to listen to you. If this is the case, you will need to have a serious conversation with your child about their disrespectful behavior and make it clear that it is unacceptable.