Anderson is singing a song out loud and his sister Aubrey asked him to stop. He ignores her and keeps singing. Their mom overhears them.


  • Although Anderson’s mom knows he heard his sister ask him to stop, she doesn’t get drawn into his Yuck. Instead, she focuses on staying calm herself.
  • Instead of telling Anderson all of the reasons he’s wrong, she gives him the tools to act better. 

Mom: Anderson! Did you hear Aubrey? She asked you to stop singing.
Anderson (keeps singing).
Mom (walks over to Anderson). Hey, bud. (She puts her arm on his arm.)
Anderson (stops when he feels his mom’s arm on his): What?
Mom: Aubrey asked you to stop.
Anderson: I didn’t hear her.
Mom: OK. Whether you heard her or not, please stop. (Knowing that Anderson is making noises because he’s understimulated.) Oh hey, I’m looking for a new recipe to try tonight. Want to help?
Anderson: No. That’s boring.
Mom: What wouldn’t be boring?
Anderson: Playing my new game on my tablet.
Mom: Unfortunately, that’s not an option right now. BUT…You can certainly talk to me about your game. You got to level 4 of last time, didn’t you? How did you do it?
Anderson: Oh, it was so cool… (Anderson starts to talk to his mom.)




This situation would not have gone the same way if Anderson’s  mom did not

  • Know how to handle her own Yuck (so that she didn’t lose her cool when Anderson claimed that he didn’t hear his sister ask him to stop)
  • Understand what is causing Anderson’s behavior — that he’s making noise to keep himself stimulated… and even ignoring his mom and sister will offer stimulation that he’s seeking
  • Demonstrate that she means what she says on a regular basis so that Anderson knows he has to do what his mom asks
  • Deposit into her relationship with Anderson so that he doesn’t use ignoring her as a way to disrespect her or feel more in control of her