How to Keep Children Away from Toxic People

Toxic people in a child’s life can be in various forms of teachers, relatives, neighbors, or even friends. It is significant that they are kept away from kids.

Why is it important for children to stay away from toxic people?

  • Toxic people and their negative behavior can lead to long term psychological damage to a child.
  • Toxic people often harm a child’s self-esteem, confidence, cost them their happiness, and hinder the child’s growth and sense of worth.
  • Such people can cause your child to suffer from anxiety, depression, isolation, and even physical illness.
  • The prolonged influence of toxic people can hamper your child’s ability to form relationships in the future where he/she is respected and loved.
  • Your child may start feeling guilty or may even start blaming themselves for the behavior of toxic people.
  • Children often adopt negative self-talk where they assume that it is their fault and whatever the toxic people are saying is right.
Signs that your little one is dealing with unwanted people:
He/She tends to become overly extrovert
He/She prefers staying home Avoids socializing
He/She will start showing signs of nervousness and fear

When to decipher that kids are dealing with toxic people?

Kids can hardly decipher whether others are toxic for them. As a result, the parents must look out for signs or changes in the normal behavior of their children. 

  • Your typically extrovert and jolly child starts to become withdrawn and sulky.
  • Your kid suddenly doesn’t want to go to school or dance practice or anywhere where she previously had no problem going to.
  • Your kid seems more emotional, worried, or cranky than usual and bursts out in tears over minor issues.
  • Your previously enthusiastic and outgoing kid seems lethargic and is no longer interested in most of the things that she previously used to love.
  • Your kid is suddenly experiencing unexplained stomach aches or nervousness.
  • Your kid has started to treat the siblings differently and usually, they replicate the way they are being treated by the toxic people.
  • Your kid has suddenly become more controlling at home.

If you discover that your kid has become naughtier than what he was, a toxic person might have things to do with it. Ensure that you know the gentle tips for dealing with naughty kids

How to help kids stay alert of a toxic friend?

Tips for dealing with toxic friends of kids
Provide an ear to everything they say.
Remain very patient.
Ensure that they do not have hesitations in trusting you.
Try to show that the friend is actually not good for them.

Be a good listener

Be empathetic and just listen to what your child has to say. Kids don’t always feel comfortable talking about such experiences. It also often takes time for kids to open up to the parents.

However, if the parents are constantly there and show their support and empathy by saying that they understand how much such experiences have hurt the child then things will be easier.

Banish negative self-talk

If you find your child saying that they are not good enough or that everything is their fault, you need to step in. Tell your child how amazing they are and verbally point out everything that makes them unique and great. Hearing such positive things makes kids feel better.

Establish trust

Tell your kid that whatever they confide in you will remain between them. Assure her that you will not accost the toxic friend or talk to teachers about the same without her permission. It is important for your kid to feel safe to talk to you without the fear of your intervention. 

If you find that your child is being bullied and that she is reluctant to inform the teachers, make her understand why such behaviors should always be reported. You will face several unwanted challenges as a single dad, but do not forget to establish trust. 

Ask your kid open-ended questions

Such questions will enable the kid to open up more about her feelings. Be empathetic and make her feel safe so that she finds the words to express herself. 

Be gentle and patient

Being calm as well as patient is super necessary. Kids will never understand the toxicity of people.  Your kid is probably feeling very low and alienated and is probably blaming herself for that.

Show them the toxic traits of that friend

Kids often don’t even recognize toxic behavior and thus continue to be manipulated by that toxic friend. Show your kid how they would never do something like that to another’s friend and thus it is actually the toxic friend who is wrong and not them. 

Tell your kid that even though the toxic friend has manipulated the teachers and other friends into thinking that she can do no wrong, it is actually not true. Tell your kid that sometimes toxic friends are manipulative.

Help your kid distance herself from toxic friends

At first, your kid will be reluctant to let go of the toxic friends as by now all her other friends have probably gone to the toxic friend’s side. Kids try to cling to toxic friends in the fear of losing all the other friends. 

Parents need to encourage the child to form other friendships such as friends in places like the neighborhood, dance class, or school clubs that she is a part of. Once your kid has formed other friendships, it will be easier for her to let go of that toxic friend. If you are not able to deal with toxic people harming your kids, it is one great sign of bad parenting

How to help kids stay alert of toxic relatives?

In the case of a toxic relative, parents need to do almost the same things that they can do in case of a toxic friend. However, certain important differences needs to be paid heed to.

  • It takes more time

Your kid has probably been taught to respect that relative and probably thinks that the judgment of that toxic relative is right. It will be more difficult to identify toxic behavior that is coming from a relative.

  • A very thin line

You or your kid may not like a relative or may not like their opinions. Even the relative may also not like your kid. Disliking and showing toxic behavior is not same, remember the line.

  • Difficult to replace

It is much harder to replace a toxic relative. In most cases, kids have to continue facing that toxic relative.  As a parent, if you can’t sever ties with that relative, try to limit your kid’s interaction with toxic relatives as much as possible. 

Ensure that you avoid all parenting mistakes that can ruin the kid’s growth. 

Why should parents be careful of toxic people?
Toxic people can ruin all the qualities of your kid
Your kid will start ignoring what you tell them
They will get into the wrong habits
They can start becoming casual about life and things in general

Frequently Asked Questions on How Can Children be Kept Away from Toxic People

How to identify a toxic relative?

Ask yourself if that relative treats your kid differently than other kids. Be attentive to find out if that relative is giving your kid lesser opportunities or is excluding her from activities. Try to think if that relative is always quick to blame your kid for their mood or behavior or anything in general. 

How to know that an adult is being toxic or if my child is misinterpreting it?

Talk to kids to understand their emotions. Make sure that your kid’s behavior is not wrong and ask her what the actual response of the teacher was. Try to differentiate between unfriendly and toxic tones or behaviors. Try to understand whether your kid is systematically targeted by that adult without any reason. 


Adults must teach children to recognize the signs of toxicity in people. Guide them ideally to perfectly deal with these toxic persons.

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