Posted in Anger Management, Behavior, Emotions, Social Skills, Therapy

“I” Messages and Responses – Respectful Communications (kids)

I messages chart best

I messages communicate your wants, needs, and feelings in a respectful manner.  


I Messages-Asking for Change

  • Starting a sentence with an, I, conveys how a person feels or what they want; I feel mad that you take my toys.
  • Starting a sentence with YOU, assigns blame: You took my toys!

Start by practicing half of the sentence; I feel mad, when you

take my toys.  On a separate occasion after the first section is

said smoothly, add the second part.  I feel mad, when you take

my toys.  Can you please ask me first, and then you can use them.

    I Message Examples

I feel mad, when you take my toys.

Can you please ask me first, and then you can play with them.

I feel frustrated, when you push me.

Can you please stop pushing me, and then we can play/get along.

I feel scared, when you yell at me.

Can you please talk in a softer voice, and then I will try to pay attention when

you are talking.

Response-Active Listening

The next step is learning how to answer back with active listening.  If a person

answers back in this manner, others will know you have heard them, and

understood what they are saying.  It works well to learn this in two sections.

    Response Examples

You sound mad, that I took your toys.

Next time I will ask you first, and I’m sorry.

You sound frustrated, because I pushed you.

Next time I will not put my hands on you, and I take responsibility.

You sound scared, that I was yelling.

Next time I will talk softer, and I am sorry that I scared you.


Mother, Pediatric Nurse and a Trail Blazer for Positive Change.

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