The Splendid Value of “No”

“I feel underappreciated.”

I’ve heard this statement and seen this post from more men than I can count.

A lot of men out there feel like a living, breathing wallet.

Their kids disrespect them and show attention only when they want something.

To a degree the behavior is normal; I put my parents through it.

At 16, once I got my license, the world was my oyster.  I had freedom and only “needed” mom and dad when I was in trouble.

I saw the same thing in my boys.

As a dad, I had tough choices to make.  On one hand, I wanted my sons to grow up having more than I did (which is normal).  On the other hand, I wanted them to learn the value of hard work.

My wife and I never, not once, paid for a phone or phone bill for either of our boys.  Yet they both had a phone since the age of 12 or so…

If you’re struggling with disrespectful kids, the first step is to understand who you are and what your role is as a father.

Kids need many things.

A bed to sleep in. 

Food on the table. 

A safe place to live.

They do NOT need the latest first-person shooter video game, or newest version of Apple iPhone.

They also need to learn the value of going without.

Saying “No” is a powerful teaching tool. 

As they mature, they are going to get “No” a lot in life.  Do you think it is better to hear it from you first, so you can teach them how to deal with it appropriately?

I do.

The pressure to be a perfect parent is immense and one of the best stress-reducers in your toolset should be the word “No” used strategically over the course of your child-rearing years.


I am a husband, father, grandfather, business owner, farmer, and deep thinker. I love helping people, having deep conversations, and being around great people.

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