Is It “Misbehavior” or “Mistaken” Behavior?

Constructive Parenting…

A new way to think about “misbehavior” is “mistaken behavior.” Just knowing about this concept is likely to make you feel a lot better about guiding your child through difficult situations.

Everyone makes mistakes, and the important thing to do is learn from them.

Parenting Technique 7 – Change the word “misbehavior” to “mistaken behavior.” 

When misbehavior happens, focus on the real goal… to help your child not to make the same mistake again.



  1. Hi Donna,
    The book is called The Guidance Approach to Discipline. The author is Daniel Gartrell. That book has the best explanation of “mistaken behavior” that I have ever seen. I hope that helps.
    Dr. Sally

  2. Joshua Nicholson

    I am writing a paper on the difference and how to use guidance to distinguish and facilitate them. Could you please tell me the difference between mistaken behavior and misbehavior.

  3. Hi Joshua,
    I love this question.
    I have a section on the site called Q and A and will have your answer up in that section by some time tomorrow.
    Good luck with your paper.
    Happy to be of help.


  1. […] the post “Is it Misbehavior or Mistaken Behavior?” we learn that something as simple changing the name of a term can lead to just the right way […]

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