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#1 of 14 Old 09-16-2006, 01:48 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Need some ideas for a misbehaving 5 yr old at WalMart.......help!

Touching everything even when told to keep his hands to himself. (knocking things down too)

Running down aisles instead of staying with us.

Constantly asking for this and that, even when I made it clear that we were not getting anything that wasn't on our list. (We are on a strict budget.)

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#2 of 14 Old 09-16-2006, 02:03 AM
 
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What time of day was it? Was he hungry, tired, etc?

I ask because our son loses ALL self control when he is tired and/or hungry (esp. hungry). If that's the case, then sometimes I find it easier to simply stop shopping and go home to get something to eat.

A positive way to deal with it is to give him things to look for or to ask him to push the cart (my 5 year old can do that, I don't know if yours can). Basically something to keep him occupied and positively engaged while you shop.

I give my kids permission to touch almost anything, as long as they do it with one finger (it's hard to break something with a single finger!). That sometimes makes it less appealing to touch everything. If they knock something over, they help pick it up. If they can't control themselves enough to touch with one finger or to help me pick things out, then I ask them to ride in the cart or walk holding the cart. If that doesn't work, we leave. It means that he is so overstimulated that he can't control himself, so I need to control his environment for him.

As for the asking for things:
"oh that is really cool, isn't it?" (sometimes all they want is acknowledgment that something is neat)
"that's something we can put on your gift list"
"well, if that's something you really want, you can think about spending your 'spending' or 'saving' money for it" (we give $1 a week allowance -- 25c goes into spending, 25c into giving and 50c into 'saving' for big ticket items, like $30 garbage trucks that I refuse to buy because we already own 3!).

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#3 of 14 Old 09-16-2006, 02:08 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LynnS6
your 'spending' or 'saving' money for it" (we give $1 a week allowance -- 25c goes into spending, 25c into giving and 50c into 'saving' for big ticket items, like $30 garbage trucks that I refuse to buy because we already own 3!).
Love this breakdown!!! Could you elaborate on this a little? The giving specifically but all would be nice too. I have been thinking of ways to implement allowance for my DS.

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#4 of 14 Old 09-16-2006, 02:56 AM
 
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My dd is a little younger than your son, but it seems to help her to be able to choose a couple of car toys to take into the store with her.

Would you son consent to riding in the big part of the basket and "managing" the items your buying?

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#5 of 14 Old 09-16-2006, 11:08 AM
 
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I have pretty much narrowed down the time of day that shopping of any kind doesn't work for my kids. As somebody above posted, when they're feeling hungry or tired or haven't had enough one on one contact time with me during the day so their a little (ahem) more sensitive.

If I do find myself in the store during one of their bouts of misbehavior, I make no qualms about putting things back that we've already started shopping for and leaving the store.
That's only if it gets really bad.

To curve it from getting to that point I tone my voice down. I find that going within myself to that place of inner peace really allows me to connect with them. Asking them for help is amazing, too. My 5 year old can't read, but he knows what we get. I ask him to help me by picking out his own fruits (if we're grocery shopping), or toilet paper, or whatever object is familiar to him. I'll also try to find something entertaining for him in the store right off the bat. A toy for the hour or so.

Also bringing along a snack for mine to eat while shopping works well. This way they're distracted, sitting calmly in the cart, eating, being happy, and with my engagement we can usually make any shopping experience a pleasant one.

I don't know if you deal with bribery, but if you told him that if he can make it through the shopping trip, maybe you could take him to the pet store, or a book store to read a book with him or something.

We all have or have had or will have kids that can get out of hand during a shopping endeavor. Just breath, remain calm and don't worry about what the people around you are thinking about what you all are doing. Everybody is going to have a comment, both positive and negative, but it's not their child, shopping trip or life.

Good luck. In a couple years or even months, this will be a thing of the past, and you'll wish you had to worry about a small child acting up in the store!!!

Warmly,
Emily

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#6 of 14 Old 09-16-2006, 01:07 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you for the ideas.


The truth is, he acts like that no matter what time we go to the store.

I like the pushing the cart idea, and it worked for his older brother, but Jack will use his opportunity to slam the cart into shelves, clothes, displays, and will tease the 2 yr old in the cart seat.

Giving them a snack to bring into the store is a good idea! Something in a clear baggie, so no one thinks we have stolen it from WalMart!

I have let them bring toys into the store (i.e. their own Matchbox cars) in the past. But I've had to refuse that lately...... either they lose the little cars or (more annoying to me) they drive the cars all over the shelves or the floor, knocking even more stuff down and running into other shoppers.

I did put the five year old in the cart basket for a short time, but when it got too crowded for him, he jumped out and started telling me what a mean and stupid mommy I was. I'll be honest, I just walked away.

I did the whole shopping trip without yelling....only raised my voice once to call out Jack's name (he had run about four aisles away)


Before we went to WalMart, we had gone into the library to pick up some books I had on reserve. The boys were not obedient in the library....running up the stairs, turning lights on and off..... (We were in the library less than five minutes.) When we got outside the library, I reminded them about parking lot safety. Well, they ran and climbed all over the benches on the library's gazebo. I told them, "It's time to go." They looked at me and ran back around the gazebo, so I sighed and walked toward my car. I started to put our toddler into his carseat.

An elderly gentlmen backed out his car, opened the window, and gently told me that he was concerned about how my kids were acting. He was not mean and I could tell he was genuinely concerned about me and them. He said he saw how they acted in the library, and in the parking lot, and was concerned that they didn't listen to me and would get hurt. I gently told him that it's difficult becaus their daddy doesn't make them obey and I was having a rought time with them. Then I got into my car and drove to Walmart.
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#7 of 14 Old 09-16-2006, 02:24 PM
 
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The gazabo was outside in a grassy area? Sometimes when our day is going like that I let my dd run in a safe area like that. It's a little hard because then we don't stay on scheldule but it does get her energy out.
Also, sometimes errands just have to be called off. Somedays, even though the plan was to go to Wallmart, you change plans and go to the park where running and touching are appropriate. Wallmart is hard, I think, for little guys and their parents. I find that everyone really has to be in the giant crowd kind of mood because there is no getting out of my Wallmart in a hurry.

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#8 of 14 Old 09-16-2006, 02:39 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theirmomjayne
Need some ideas for a misbehaving 5 yr old at WalMart.......help!

Touching everything even when told to keep his hands to himself. (knocking things down too)

Running down aisles instead of staying with us.

Constantly asking for this and that, even when I made it clear that we were not getting anything that wasn't on our list. (We are on a strict budget.)

:
A few things
1) make sure hes not overly tired or hungry
2) get him invloved if hes reading give him a list if not them tell him what's next have him help its a good learning oppurnuity.. (we need 8 bannana's I need to find green apples etc..) that gives him the ability to touch
3) have him ride in the cart if trips to big places like walmart are too much and his safety (running away) is compromised then make riding non negiotable
4) leave sometimes its not the right time going home doesn't mean hes "won" but that its necessary to regroup and try again maybe after lunch and a nap.

Explain the rules before going in have a list and tell him we are only buying whats on this list at home he can help you create the list, if he thinks it wa his idea to put cereal and apples on such list getting those will excite him. Remind him of your expectations, expect to need to remind and stay calm.

Wife to DH since August 01 mom to a bubbly girl October 2002 and our newest gal March 2010
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#9 of 14 Old 09-16-2006, 05:34 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theirmomjayne
Before we went to WalMart, we had gone into the library to pick up some books I had on reserve. The boys were not obedient in the library....running up the stairs, turning lights on and off..... (We were in the library less than five minutes.) When we got outside the library, I reminded them about parking lot safety. Well, they ran and climbed all over the benches on the library's gazebo. I told them, "It's time to go." They looked at me and ran back around the gazebo, so I sighed and walked toward my car. I started to put our toddler into his carseat.

An elderly gentlmen backed out his car, opened the window, and gently told me that he was concerned about how my kids were acting. He was not mean and I could tell he was genuinely concerned about me and them. He said he saw how they acted in the library, and in the parking lot, and was concerned that they didn't listen to me and would get hurt. I gently told him that it's difficult becaus their daddy doesn't make them obey and I was having a rought time with them. Then I got into my car and drove to Walmart.
It sounds like there is more going on then difficulties at stores.

I think I'm hearing two issues: First, the children don't listen to you when they are out in public. Second, DH is part of the problem because he is not supporting the discipline plan. Is this right?

Does your 5 year usually listen to you well in other environments? The picture I'm getting in my head is that he is not able to listen or follow direction in any environment, but its particularly bad when you're in public because other people are affected by his behavior. Is this correct?
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#10 of 14 Old 11-05-2006, 06:55 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Sorry, we have had computer problems for several weeks.

Yes, you are correct. He is incredibly uncooperative.

I wish I'd had access to this board the last several weeks. I feel like a failure.
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#11 of 14 Old 11-06-2006, 11:51 AM
 
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You're not a failure. If things are not going the way you would like them to, it's never to late to re-evaluate how you are doing things and start over.
I think it is probably most important to first come to an agreement with your DH on how you two want your family to be. If you need help, find a counselor, or someone whose family operates the way you'd like to see yours and ask for thier help.
Then, put the plan into place. That WILL probably involve some unhappy kids temporarily, and very well may interfere with your current routine. But remember that is temporary, and what the goal is. Consistancy with your plan, bounderies, limits and consequences is the absolute most important thing. It can be done.
But again, don't think of yourself as a failure. We ALL have done things whether parenting, or anything else that has not worked out the way we thought it would, or found ourselves in a place we dont' want to be. You are looking for new ideas and looking for help. That is not a "failure."
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#12 of 14 Old 11-06-2006, 04:19 PM
 
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One of the things I can think of with regards to being out at a store is expectations.
Tell your dc what the expectations are (ie -- not to knock things down, to listen when your talking to them) have them come up with their own expectations (ie go to the toy section, use a code word when they really want your attention). Then go over consequences. If you do X then Y will happen and follow through. This is something that will need to be repeated since it's new, but you have to follow through, it's the most important part. I would even set up some 'fake' trips so that you don't leave frustrated b/c you've not been able to complete your shopping. This way your dc understand that you will follow through with what you have said; you have come up with fair/age appropriate expectations and shared them with your dc. They will test your boundries, so that's when the 'fake' trips come in handy, also lots of praise when they do listen (praise can also be in the form of more time with you doing things THEY want to do...)
I hope this helps,
Good luck!!
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#13 of 14 Old 11-06-2006, 04:48 PM
 
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Here is what I think I'd do-- I hope it's helpful!
Does he like going places? Would your dh's schedule allow you to run errands without the kids in the evening or on the weekends? If so, I would sit your son down and explain to him that you cannot keep him safe when you take him places if he doesn't listen, and so if he wants to go places like the library, etc..., he needs to start listening or you won't be able to take him anymore. Then, if he agrees to behave better, but then goes back to the usual behavior once you're out, end the outing immediately and calmly, and wait some amount of time before trying again (at least a day-- perhaps a week). I would also spend some time talking about how their behavior affects other people-- maybe you could play "library" and "store" at home for practice?

I'm afraid some people might think keeping him home is a punishment, but I think its a natural consequence.

Good luck!

ZM
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#14 of 14 Old 11-06-2006, 05:03 PM
 
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You're not a failure. Your kids are challenging. That's okay.

Do they listen at home? Are they calm at home? Are there other places that they're calm?

Do they get lots of exercise and opportunities to satisfy their need for touch and moving their bodies?

My kids find Walmart overwhelming - bright lights, busy colours, stacks of product in the middle of the aisles to be stocked, row after row of aisles...they also find one of our libraries overwhelming (why did they paint it garish yellow-green and put bright lights in??).

I use the many suggestions above - explain expectations, consequences (we cannot stay in a store if we're disturbing others etc). Some days nothing works and we just go home.

Mom to a teenager and a middle schooler.

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