how to deal when dc is just obtinant and difficult to deal with - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 13 Old 05-22-2009, 11:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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dc #1 (age 6) has just been as they say a "bear" all day, nothing is going right for him, lots of bickering, saying rude things, saying hurtful things to me and dh. it all started in the am and has continued all day, the details arent really important though i will mention he has been acting out his frustration aggressively towords say; his spoon in his bowl (purposefully banging it loudly), or kicking the back porch wall ect. he is also doing these sort of cut my nose off to spite my face things, like if he has to share something hell say "fine, then i wont have it at all". its driving me up the wall.

i respond in various ways, usually i first try to empathize with him and explain that i understand he feels frustrated but that when he says or does x, y, z it isnt respectful, hurts feelsings ect. no response i have tried seems to help. even after he is done with one fit/outburst its on to the next not 10 minutes later. please help. i want to have peaceful interactions with my kiddo, you know? im just dreading the next problem he is going to have, it is so grateing dealing with someone who is crabby all day.
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#2 of 13 Old 05-22-2009, 11:56 PM
 
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Everyone has bad days--sorry you're dealing with one today!

It doesn't always work to calm down a crabby kid, but I would advocate taking a little breather with him if he's willing, maybe ask, "It seems like you're having a hard day today--want to take a few minutes to kick your ball/play with playdoh/snuggle on the couch with a book?" Give him plenty of love and affection and try to remember how much it sucks to BE cranky, as well as how lame it is to be the recipient. My daughter is younger--2.5--but this helps ME as well as her, because it reminds me to think past the immediate annoyance and empathize with her bad day, plus it often does help her behavior.
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#3 of 13 Old 05-23-2009, 12:02 AM
 
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p.s. Two other things:

1) do you have any idea what caused his bad mood? Sometimes people do just wake up on the wrong side of the bed but it could also be a fixable problem that's bugging him.

2) The other possibility, instead of quality time with you, is that he needs some space--you could also ask him if he would rather spend some time by himself. I think everyone needs that and sometimes it is the best way to avoid aggravating the whole family with a funk.
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#4 of 13 Old 05-23-2009, 01:39 AM
 
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I don't have any advice, but I'll be listening in because my ds (also 6) is doing exactly this kind of stuff. Every day. I think for him part of it is that he has one more week of school before summer vacation, and he's burned out. But his foul moods are making me insane!
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#5 of 13 Old 05-23-2009, 02:07 AM
 
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Two periods come to mind when I read your post. One was when I was debating whether dd should go to preschool or not. I finally decided, almost out of aggravation, to let someone else try getting along with her. She loved school and it was really good for her. (Overall.)

The second time, I don't even know why I said it, but out of nowhere I said, "If you don't respect me, I don't have to do things for you. I guess you're big enough that you don't have to nurse anymore." (She was shortly past her 4th birthday.) It turned out to be exactly what she needed, and totally different and much easier than earlier periods when I had cut back nursing.

In both cases, I think what she was pushing for was to assert herself more as an individual, less dependent on me. If I'd had to figure that out before I acted, I never would have.
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#6 of 13 Old 05-23-2009, 01:28 PM
 
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If this is going on a lot then I think you should try to figure out what you do to reinforce this. I know that with dd I often give in once she escalates to a point I can't stand her being at. I have stopped doing that the last few weeks because I realized I have been reinforcing her dramatic anger shows, which she didn't start to have until lately. It has really helped. I now just stick to empathy and then disengaging and leaving the room or having her leave if she gets to the point of hitting or throwing her things or saying mean words. I do want to reemphasize though that she has never had an anger problem, she has almost always expressed her anger in appropriate ways, and this is a stage she is going through because she has learned a lot of new ways to try to get what she wants from her friends at school and I have reinforced some of these things because it was such a shock to me at first.

If this is just a bad day, I suggest that you take him to the movies if you can or have a movie day at home. A trip to a park may also be fun. I read an article about a junk food picnic that seemed like a fun idea to, if it is something you do on very rare occassions it might jostle him out of his bad mood.
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#7 of 13 Old 05-23-2009, 09:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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thanks mamas, ds is usually a big sweet heart but these past few days are wearin me down. ive started just responding as simply as i can to the negativity, like if he says something unkind i say "i dont feel like you are talking to me nicely so i need to not talk to you until you are able to be nice". this generally seems like an ok response, it doesnt make him more mad, in fact it kind of makes him feel like acting nicer.
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#8 of 13 Old 05-23-2009, 09:42 PM
 
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Sometimes I think crabby kids need connection and such, and if the crabiness is not a general trend then it is okay for awhile because we all have off days, right? but sometimes I also think many six year olds in general are restless, not interested in playing "baby games" anymore but don't really know what to do with themselves.
In these situations, I always go back to our rhythm and does that need to be changed? Is the energy getting out? Is the food healthy? And most of all, does my six year old need REAL work to do -- sometimes a woodworking project, truly needing help in the garden, something that that six year old can really do and contribute to the household is really wonderful for jolting them out of that state, (even if they grumble a bit in the begining of it )
I think six can really be a transitional point for many children between being little and being school-aged. I am an attached Waldorf parent and find lots in Waldorf literature about supporting this "six year old transformation" as it is referred to in those circles
If you are interested, you can have a look see at my posts about the six year old on my blog www.theparentingpassageway.com

Just another perspective to take from what works for you and your family.

Warmly,
Carrie
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#9 of 13 Old 06-02-2009, 10:38 PM
 
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subbing to come back later and read.

wash.gif  Me  + bikenew.gif Dh =  broc1.gif  Dd1(9 yrs) + hearts.gif  Dd2(6 yrs) and blowkiss.gif Ds(3.5 yrs)
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#10 of 13 Old 06-03-2009, 11:55 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laurel View Post
I don't have any advice, but I'll be listening in because my ds (also 6) is doing exactly this kind of stuff. Every day. I think for him part of it is that he has one more week of school before summer vacation, and he's burned out. But his foul moods are making me insane!
Dealing with this too!

Wife to DH(15 years)and Mama to: Jacob(5/02)kid.gifribbonpurple.gif, and Alina(7/07)energy.gifI luxlove.gifbellyhair.gif
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#11 of 13 Old 06-03-2009, 12:09 PM
 
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Does he have enough responsibility?

Does he have enough alone/down/free time?

Is he getting enough sleep?
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#12 of 13 Old 06-03-2009, 12:19 PM
 
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Man, I have days like this! It just seems like nothing will make me happy and before long, I don't even want to be happy. For me, the only thing that works is ending the day (usually as early as I can) and trying for a do over the next day. HTH
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#13 of 13 Old 06-03-2009, 12:42 PM
 
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Sleep and food (blood sugar) are the first things that come to my mind if my 5.5 year old starts acting this way. Basically because, I can be a royal pain if I need to eat.

Sometimes getting out of the house works, but sometimes I just wind up with a grouch at the park, and I get to have no fun somewhere else instead which sux. Often I just try and carve out a few minutes where I can cuddle him on the couch, without interference, and tell him I want him to be happy and try and come with ideas together. Sometimes just the cuddling helps him out. He's super affectionate though, and cuddling works for just about anything with him.
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