4 year old and defiance - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 4 Old 06-01-2003, 08:56 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm new in this forum, so please be gentle

I'm having a hard time with DD, 4 being defiant with both DH and me.

Example, DD asks for her 3rd yogurt of the day. I tell her no, she needs to eat some fruits or vegetables. She insists on yogurt. I tell her no, she needs to choose something else, how about grapes or carrot sticks. She refuses again. I tell her no yogurt, and she must not be hungry after all. She then waits till I go to the bathroom or to change little brother, and she sneaks into the fridge to get yogurt herself.

I'm sure this is a power struggle thing, she refuses to pick up toys, even after the warning that the toys will be taken away.

She'll look me in the eye and pinch her brother immediately after my telling her not to.

She's been such a sweet, good mannered child, this is a whole new ballgame to me!

What do I do???
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#2 of 4 Old 06-01-2003, 09:06 PM
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Let's trade for a day. My 4 year old son told me, EMPHATICALLY, I couldn't be in the "boy parade" because "You don't have a penis. Only Daddy and Reilly can be in the parade. Vaginas are not allowed."


No advice, just a funny little story.

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#3 of 4 Old 06-01-2003, 09:52 PM
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Well, if there's not a specific reason that she can't have 3 yogurts in a day I personal;ly woudl let that one go. If there's some reason (like that you woudl b eout of it the rest of the week, or it makes her sick if she eats too much) I would explain the reason why you woudl like her to choose something else and then let her make the choice and deal with the natural consequence.
Around here, we have a daily menu on a write on-wipe off board. What's written is what's for meals/snacks and only fruit/veggies are eaten between.
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#4 of 4 Old 06-04-2003, 11:18 AM
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Sounds like a typical four-year-old to me...sorry if that isn't too encouraging!

I think there are two issues here - meeting your child's growing need for autonomy and also teaching her that she needs to follow the rules you set.

As far as meeting her needs for autonomy, I would try very hard to pick your battles wisely and allow her to make decisions for herself whenever possible.

For the times when you do have to lay down the law, it helps to give an explanation and involve her in the rule-making, too. I've found that making an inanimate object, such as khrisday's menu idea, responsible for the rules rather than yourself works really well.

When she deliberately disobeys you, that's another issue. I find that simply expressing my disappointment, and sometimes imposing a logical consequence, works well.

Good luck...
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