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Using the "Me Too" Approach to Stop Arguments with Kids:

Using the "Me Too" Approach to Stop Arguments with Kids:

May 5th 2023

The phrase "Me Too" is often associated with empathy and understanding, and it can be a powerful tool for diffusing arguments with children. This article explores how the "me too" approach can help reduce conflicts and promote a more positive relationship with kids, backed by research papers and physiological findings.

The Power of Empathy

Empathy is the ability to understand and share the feelings of another person. Research has shown empathy is crucial in effective parenting and fostering a strong connection between parents and children (Davidov & Grusec, 2006). Empathizing with a child can help de-escalate conflicts and create a more positive atmosphere.

The "Me Too" Approach

The "me too" approach involves sharing your experiences, validating the child's emotions, and offering support. Doing so creates a connection, acknowledges their feelings, and makes them feel understood. Here is how it works in practice:

  1. Active Listening: Pay attention to what your child is saying and try to understand the emotions behind their words. This approach helps you to connect with their feelings, which is crucial for empathy (Krevans & Gibbs, 1996).
  2. Validating Emotions: Validate their emotions by acknowledging their feelings and letting them know that it is okay to feel the way they do. Research shows that emotional validation is essential for fostering a secure attachment and healthy emotional development (Gottman et al., 1997).
  3. Sharing Experiences: Relate to your child by sharing a similar experience or feeling you have had and saying, "Me too." This will help them feel understood and less alone in their emotions, creating a sense of connection and trust (Brown, 2012).

Physiological Findings

When a person feels heard and understood, their stress levels decrease. Research has shown that empathy and connection can lower stress hormones, such as cortisol, and increase oxytocin, a hormone associated with trust and bonding (Karns et al., 2017). By using the "me too" approach, parents can reduce stress for themselves and their children, which can help prevent arguments and conflicts.

Benefits of the "Me Too" Approach

  1. Reduces Arguments: The "me too" approach can help defuse arguments before they escalate by creating a sense of understanding and connection.
  2. Fosters Trust: Sharing your experiences and emotions with your child can build trust and a stronger bond (Brown, 2012).
  3. Teaches Emotional Intelligence: Validating and empathizing with your child's emotions can help teach them how to understand and manage their own feelings, an essential skill for emotional intelligence (Gottman et al., 1997).


Based on empathy and connection, the "me too" approach can be an effective tool for stopping arguments with kids. By actively listening, validating emotions, and sharing experiences, parents can create a supportive environment that fosters trust and emotional intelligence. The physiological benefits of reduced stress through empathy and connection further emphasize the importance of this approach in parenting.