Alex's Answer

Are these inappropriate things for a parent to say to their child?

Your Question

Are these inappropriate things for a parent to say? “Get out of my sight!” “I don’t give a sh**e!” (In response to me standing up for myself when I tell them that punishing me for someone else’s actions is wrong) My parents are always screaming at me and making threats. I just want them to stop but no one will stop them.


Hi there, thank you for sending your question to Ask Alex. We’re glad you were able to get in touch.  

Firstly, it is important to say that our words and the way we use them have power. When standing up for, or expressing ourselves, we need to be mindful of our words and body language. This is what we refer to as ‘communication style’. There are different styles of communication and 80% of our communication is non-verbal. This includes our body language and tone of voice. Screaming and shouting is referred to as aggressive communication. On the other hand, passive communication can look like shrugging our shoulders or saying ‘whatever, I don’t care’ or hinting at what we want as opposed to expressing it directly. In assertive communication, we express how we are feeling in the situation. In the examples that you have given, an assertive response could look like: 

“It hurts my feelings when you tell me to get out of your sight because I feel like I am not heard.” 

“I don’t like it when you scream and shout at me because I don’t feel heard.”

It is important to remember you are not alone in this. Is there any adult such as older sibling, aunt, cousin, teacher or coach that you could confide in about the communication style that you are experiencing at home?

Childline is always here to listen when you need to talk about whatever is on your mind. If you ever feel like chatting to us, you are welcome to call anytime on 1800 66 66 66 or you can use Childine’s text service by texting 50101 or to contact us online visit and you can register there to chat with us. All these services are free, available 24 hours a day and are confidential and non-judgmental. 

Hopefully, you will find this reply helpful and please know you are welcome to contact us again.  

Take Care,  


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