What to Do When Your Parent Doesn't Give You Enough Praise

Not getting enough (or any) praise from a parent can be very frustrating, and even hurtful.

While many parents give praise readily for a job well done, others are less inclined to do so. If you have a mom or dad who's reluctant to applaud you when you accomplish something, it can be difficult to deal with, but there are ways to address it, and potentially even change the situation for the better.

Scroll down for some tips on how to deal with a parent who doesn't give you enough praise.

Tell Them How You Feel

This may seem ridiculously obvious, but the first thing to do if you have a parent who you feel doesn't give you enough praise is to let them know how you feel. Parents are people, too, and they likely won't know that you have an issue with something until you give them a heads up. When you talk to your parent, try not to be too confrontational and avoid drawing comparisons to other parents. That could start the conversation off on the wrong foot, as your parent might become defensive, and then be reluctant to hear and register what you have to say. Instead, approach the situation by being as honest and direct as possible. Say something like, "When you don't acknowledge that I did well on a test, it makes me feel unvalued." Your parent will hopefully understand this candid, straightforward statement and strive to do better.

Graduate Kissing His Mom
(via Unsplash)


Recognize That Their Praise May Look Different Than What You Want or Need

While your best friend's parents may boast all of their stellar test scores and buy them flowers after every choir concert or school play, it's entirely possible that your parents show their approval and praise in a different way, and that's fine, too. If your parents aren't effusive (or at least aren't as outwardly effusive as you would like), try and look for the other ways that they show they're proud of you. It could be anything from giving you more freedom outside of school (hello, driving privileges!) to entrusting you with increased responsibility at home. Though you might not see it, those are both signs your parents trust you, and would like to reward you accordingly.


Don't Discount Praise That Comes From Other Places

Though there's nothing quite like a pat on the back or a "job well done" from a parent, praise can, and will, come from other places. Don't discount or ignore it. Praise from a friend or teacher is meaningful in its own way, and in some cases it might even more meaningful (and less common) than the seal of approval from a parent. Take it for what it's worth, and take solace in the fact that someone is recognizing all of your hard work, even if it's not the person or people you really want it to be.

Teacher Helping a Student
(via Unsplash)


Learn to Identify What Really Matters

This is a tough one, but it's important. If a parent isn't giving you praise and you're bothered by it, ask yourself if it really matters. Obviously if you're upset, it matters to you in some way, but if you have to supportive parents who show their love and affection for you in other ways, you might realize that a lack of praise for a high test score or a well fought debate isn't actually all that important in the long run. As you age and grow, it's important that you learn to prioritize what really matters, and this could be a good first step in that direction.


For more advice, click HERE for a list of tips on how to gracefully back out of a major commitment you made to a friend.