So, I should give a slight back story. Our daughter is 5. Hubby joined the military and has been gone about 6 weeks. She is very close to him (total daddy's girl) and I expected his absence to effect her behavior greatly.
It really hadn't. For the first 4 or 5 weeks he's been gone, she's missed him, but we talk about him, write him letters, etc. And she's seemed to understand. This past week and a half or so, her behavior is changing. She's gotten in trouble at school, which never happens. She's been blatantly disobedient at home- also never happens. I don't really discipline her, because honestly I never really have to. We have a positive reinforcement type of household. We do something extra fun on Friday night on a normal week. If she has a "sad week" we don't. It's been effective up until now and I never have problems with her behavior.
The other day, I asked her not to do something, and she immediately did it anyway. I asked her why she made that decision to not listen to me. She responded "I had to. I was doing it for daddy". Her teacher has told me that she gave her a similar excuse after being disruptive in class.
Daddy is definitely stricter than me, though he has never really had to "discipline" her either. So, it's not unreasonable for me to think that she is misbehaving because she hopes that this might make him come back. My question for everyone is, how should I approach this? I've tried talking to her about him being gone and how he wouldn't like the sad decisions she's making, but it hasn't helped. I'm not sure I should start to punish her though, if she's hurting. I don't want her to think she's not allowed to feel sad. Any help would be great