Are you wondering how to get your Dad to shut up? Be straight up; communication is the key to any successful relationship. However, successful communication also requires respect from both sides for it to really work. If you need space from your dad’s constant chatter, you need to let your dad know directly that you can’t take one more word from him.
Sometimes people rub us the wrong way; sometimes people have too much to say; sometimes people are so fully charged with negativity that they drain us of all our energy, and sometimes those people are our parents.
What if you need your dad to stop speaking and just shut up?
Sounds easier said than done, right? I mean, what drives us to the edge and then gives us the leg to stand on in terms of actually getting our parental figure to hush? What kinds of reasons lead us to make such demands of our parents? What easier methods could take the emotions out of the request and make it more rational, logical, and clear-cut and dry?
Related Reading: Ways To Ignore Your Dad (6 Helpful Tips)
Different Ways to Get Your Dad to Shut Up
It can happen that simply telling your dad to keep quiet might not work. And having a heart-to-heart or face-to-face conversation is not so cut and dry. Emotions may take control in some situations, and instead of expressing ourselves clearly, we make the mistake of escalating the problem, and there is even less understanding.
We can use other methods, requiring more discipline and others implementing some more old-school practices to get your message across.
Of course, all these methods ultimately depend on why you want your dad to shut up. There could be countless reasons we need our dads to keep quiet and get out of our mental spaces. We all have different situations and different limits. Most of us would be considered lucky to have fatherly figures that we are happy to hear from all the time and who have our backs and are willing to offer us support and advice whenever they see fit.
There are various reasons why you want your dad to shut up, ranging from vindictive attitudes, complaining too much, or offering constant invasive advice/ interventions into your life.
These are some methods to get your dad to shut up:
1. Write a letter
The old trusted and true way to get a message across, put it down on paper. Express your concerns, share your thoughts, let your dad know why it is that you just can’t bear to hear another word from him.
This course of action will allow you to look at the situation from a different angle, reread your message, and make sure it is clear, concise, and, most importantly, compelling. It really allows you to think over your message.
2. Family meeting
How about requesting an appointment with your dad? Think about the issues that are getting to you and then ask him if it would be possible to talk about it all over a cup of coffee.
This kind of meeting gives you a chance to organize your thoughts and let him know precisely what is bothering you and, most importantly, why. Try to anticipate your dad’s responses to prepare and express your point of view accurately.
3. Play it cool/dumb
Let it go. It might be easier in some cases just to let things slide, like water off a duck’s back, than let it get to you; of course, it depends on the situation. For example, if you feel you need to defend your significant other or another family member or friend from an unjust comment made by your dad.
It may get you in more trouble to ignore it. However, if it is directed towards you and you know it is toxic or unconstructive, try to be more mature and walk away.
4. Set boundaries
However you choose to do this, by letter or face-to-face, this is essential in all relationships. Your dad needs to know where the line is, and you need to set boundaries that should be stuck too.
A good idea to keep in mind is to frame your boundaries with gratitude for your requests to be better received. This way, your dad can see you are thoughtful towards his actions too. If boundaries are set healthily and respectfully, they could benefit all parties involved.
As you know your dad reasonably well, you should be able to anticipate how he will react in certain situations. What is a reward for him, what would drive him a little crazy, or what he could respond to? Sometimes giving him an ultimatum could help solidify the boundaries you set or give you the space to breathe a little easier.
Your request should be stern, and it should be something you can stick to; otherwise, it’s just a bunch of hot air and won’t help anyone. An example could be: “If you don’t let me make my own decisions, I will have to stop calling you for a while, for my sanity.”
6. Lead by example
If you want your dad to shut up because he is constantly harping on about the same things or complaining about things like lifestyle. The only way to truly get him to shut it is by living your best, healthy life and promoting a way of life that could inspire him.
He needs to wake up on his own sometimes to realize how he is harming himself and others.
Why is it so Difficult to Get Your Dad to Shut Up?
It may not be accessible at all to get your dad to put a sock in it, especially if you, as the kid, are telling him what to do. This all leans heavily on your relationship with your dad, how caring, and what part he has played in your life. It may be hard for your dad to let go or view your opinions as more valid than his if you have always turned to him for help and support.
If your dad is a stubborn old ox of a man, stuck in his ways and complaining about everything in life, from the weather to the government, it may just be better to let him be and instead focus on living your own life, leading a better life by example.
Age also plays a part in the success of getting dad to shut up, don’t expect your dad to stop talking or stop sharing his advice, opinions, or thoughts if you are still a teenager. Dad will feel he has to do so, and if you are not careful, it comes across as highly disrespectful to tell him to zip it.
What are Some Reasons We Would Want Our Dad to Shut Up?
There are many reasons why we would need our dads to keep quiet and get out of our mental spaces, each of us has different situations and different limits.
Most of us would be considered lucky to have fatherly figures that we are happy to hear from all the time and who have our backs and are willing to offer us support and advice whenever they see fit. However, here are just a few reasons why it could just be all too much:
Do as I say and not as I do
Now, this reason really “grates my gears”, dad has so much to say about everything, yet when it comes to following his own advice he falls short. No one will be willing to hear you out if you were just a hypocrite. Fair enough some things are easier to say than to do, but I’d rather he shut up and do it himself sometimes rather than tell me what to do.
Putting his nose where it doesn’t belong
Okay, we want our guardians to be actively involved in our lives. If they helped raise us and were our biggest supporters growing up, we want our champions to stay with us.
In saying this, there are areas in life that we now need to live by ourselves, we need to make our own choices and even our own mistakes sometimes. Dad may have been here and done this, but it’s our turn now. So kindly shut up and let us be for a bit.
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Nothing but complaints
As we get older our bodies sadly start to degrade and aches and pains take over. Now, this is understandable, but what about when dad does nothing to help himself, he just lets himself go and complains about it nonstop.
We might try to help. Drink more water dad, try to get some exercise dad, and in the end, we just waste our breaths – it might be time to let him know we don’t want to hear his complaints anymore if he isn’t willing to help himself, then how can anyone else?
There might also be the situation where dad knows best and everything else is sub-par. Nothing is good enough for him from the way the burger was made to the way the government is handling the global pandemic… Dad, please, just shut up!
Whatever your reason for wanting your dad to shut up, there are ways to do it to benefit the situation and achieve the goal. Try these methods to share your concerns with your dad and hopefully get the results you desire. Remember that if it is a toxic relationship, you need to set your boundaries and respect yourself enough to walk away from your situation when you feel emotionally exhausted.
After earning his Master of Social Work from the University of Toronto, Stuart gained experience working with families in community mental health settings and in the child protection sector. Since becoming a father himself, Stuart now works in private practice offering psychotherapy services. FatherResource is an opportunity for Stuart to share what he learns on his journey as a father with a larger audience.