Anger Cycle (almost 5 yr old) - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 6 Old 07-31-2010, 06:40 PM - Thread Starter
 
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When my DD gets mad about something, we can't seem to keep it from escalating into a major tantrum lasting 30-60 minutes. For example, today was a nap day and in order to get a story, she has to go potty and lay down in her bed. Well after 5 minutes of dragging her feet, she lost her story privilege which pushes her into screaming/slamming door/falling on the floor. We (DH & I) took turns trying to calm her. After about 45 minutes, DH finally got her to sleep.

I guess I'm not sure what we are doing wrong. Explaining too much? Trying to be rational when we should just say 'here's how it is'. How can we diffuse her anger before she's out of control and no longer capable of listening?
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#2 of 6 Old 08-01-2010, 12:14 AM
 
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She's almost 5 years old and it's "a nap day"? I am not sure what that means. But is it possible that she feels overly coerced and frustrated? Of course I don't know your situation at all, but if you've got some kind of nap schedule but if maybe she doesn't physically NEED a nap any more, and then on top of that you take away stories....maybe she just doesn't know what to do with the giant surge of frustration?

Just guessing.

I mean, at age 5, why is someone telling her she has to nap and has to go potty. Wouldn't you want her to listen to her own body on that? Maybe I'm missing something and need more info from you to make a more helpful suggestion.
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#3 of 6 Old 08-01-2010, 03:41 AM
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My 4.5 year old hasn't needed a nap in a long time. We don't decide when she needs to potty either. We might suggest it before a long drive or hike. Also stories aren't a privilege around here. It does sound like a lot of parental control for a 5 year old.

My DD is having some anger issues. She'll be 5 in 3 months. Things just seem to make her angry more easily and she growls or yells. I validate the emotion and remind her that being angry doesn't mean she should be rude. She doesn't really have melt down types of tantrums but she is being more emotional lately, screaming or yelling abit more. I figure it's a phase and will go away in a few months. We comfort her if she seems to want it but we don't necessarily try to get her to calm down. It's ok for people to be angry as long as they aren't taking it out on others.
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#4 of 6 Old 08-01-2010, 10:14 AM
 
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What is she doing pre-nap time? Maybe it's not so much what she's melting down over as what is leading up to it?

DD is 5, and has been going to camp this summer, 9-3. They don't take a nap there, and they did at her daycare during the school year. The first two weeks of camp she had big meltdowns almost every afternoon and I finally figured it out it was because she was wiped out from camp. So now she has "quiet time" in her bed for 45 minutes once she gets home. She can have dolls or books, but she seems to need some time to decompress after camp. And she has fallen asleep a few times, so I think she is bushed.

One thing that has helped some is realizing that DD is really process oriented. She will lay down or do xyz as requested but sometimes she needs to finish her own thing first. And it might not be apparent to me that she is in the middle of something, or that she had in her head that she was going to do something next--but now I take a minute to say "It's going to be rest time soon--what do you want/need to do before that?" and that seems to help some.

My DD has similar tantrums--but less of them now. Once they start she seems to feed on the drama and just wants to keep going, so the only thing I can do is either try to figure out what that last thing she wanted/needed to do was and compromise, or sometimes just walk away.
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#5 of 6 Old 08-01-2010, 01:24 PM
 
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DD has horrific tantrums if she's had too much sugar, and minor ones if her schedule gets too wonky. I'd definitely take a look at what she's eating, and also at more consistency in her schedule (also wondering what a "nap day" is).

I'm also finding that I'm having a hard adjustment keeping up with her needs in terms of exercise, development, etc. since she's moved closer to, and into, being five. I tend to sometimes relapse into treating her like a younger preschooler, and her needs are much different now.

Finally, my DD reacts really poorly to lack of process, like Madskye's, and she also feels the need to be heard. A lot of times, she's saying something, and DH and I have gotten the point, and try to answer her, but she really wants the opportunity (the right, in our house) to finish what she's saying. It's hard, but if we expect her to "let us finish," we need to offer her the same respect.

Stacey teaching teens to read & write... Daddy plays ska, DD1 (7/05) loves trees & princesses, & DD2 (3/10) loves mommy-milk! Please get your kids tested for lead.
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#6 of 6 Old 08-01-2010, 01:42 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AZgirl2207 View Post
When my DD gets mad about something, we can't seem to keep it from escalating into a major tantrum lasting 30-60 minutes. For example, today was a nap day and in order to get a story, she has to go potty and lay down in her bed. Well after 5 minutes of dragging her feet, she lost her story privilege which pushes her into screaming/slamming door/falling on the floor. We (DH & I) took turns trying to calm her. After about 45 minutes, DH finally got her to sleep.

I guess I'm not sure what we are doing wrong. Explaining too much? Trying to be rational when we should just say 'here's how it is'. How can we diffuse her anger before she's out of control and no longer capable of listening?
Perhaps.

I do not what you should do but I have a feeling you are onto something (bolded). Think about it and try something different. Be firm, gentle and clear.

You are a great mama for wanting more input and advice on this.
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