Na Na Na Goo Goo, You’re Not Parenting Your Parents!

We are not parenting our parents, however certain behaviors can make it seem like our parents are childish. However, a distinction to consider is childish vs. childlike. This chart can help you discern the differences and find solutions to what the loves of your life are communicating through behavior!

When you understand people’s motives it’s easier to approach the person with love and compassion, which, of course, solves most of the world’s problems!


Possible Meaning for a child

Possible meaning for an elder

Attention seeking: Not getting the recognition they

feel they deserve.

Desiring a connection with and understanding

from the people with whom

they are in direct contact.

Resistance to


Feeling the need to have limits

lifted commensurate with their

expanding abilities.

Wanting freedom of choice within

the imposed boundaries created by a diminished capacity of function.

Argumentative in


Needing to be acknowledged

for their growth and knowledge.

Needing to be honored for their

accumulated wisdom.

Assumed helplessness: Discouraged; not feeling encouraged or capable of competence. Discouraged by lack of attention. Finding ways to have someone notice them by needing them to help them.
Demanding, Bossy: Testing limits. Fear of being weak, taken advantage of. Asserting one’s self in order to get needs met.
Getting the upper hand. Dislike being dependent upon others. Drastic measures to stay safe. Fearing loss of freedom.
Ignoring authority and/or peers: Avoiding confrontation. Sometimes needing to appear superior. Holding on to control of self. Afraid that giving in will give away personal power.
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