You can’t stop a child from exhibiting bratty behavior at times. It’s their job to push mom & dads buttons as much as possible. It’s how we respond to those behaviors that mold the long term attitudes.
Consistency, consistency, consistency is the key. I’ve raised 2 kids and am now raising my grandson. I can see a huge difference in the parenting styles I have had. My 1st go round my kids never knew if they were going to get away with it or be punished for it when they acted up.
I have much better control over my 2nd go round when I consistently provide a calm but firm punishment for the behavior. The child knows what to expect and will try something else if a particular behavior always produces the same unpleasant result.
The extremely difficult part is staying calm, firm and consistent. I find I must often tell myself, “you already told him to stop….or it’s the notty chair now follow through already!”
Your word has to have meaning or you’ll end up with teens /pre-teens that are uncontrollable.
The parent must strive to always be “bigger, stronger and wiser” than the child