Desperate for advice! Very difficult time with high spirited child. - Mothering Forums

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Old 02-26-2008, 03:49 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm having such a difficult time with disiplining my 3.5 yo. He has so much energy and is so intelligent, I know I'm going about it the wrong way. I yell alot to get his attention, because I know of no other way that works. It's making me crazy and I do not want to ruin my child. I know that what I do and say will make him who he is and I need to get a grip. I just don't know how. He and his very high spirited 20mo brother are alway at each other and I'm at my witz end, desparate, don't know what to do. I feel helpless and like a terrible mother because I can not keep peace in my household.

I really need advice here. I am involved in a preschool coop, and I notice the other mothers also not knowing what to do with him, and sometimes they do what I do and raise there voice (not yell) at him, sometimes 2 adults at a time, repeat his name over and over, and become visibly irritated with him (though i can tell they are not trying to let it show). He's the kid that if you hear a scream come from the next room, you automatically assume he did something to someone (uggggggg, how aweful is that???)

Like I said I don't want to ruin him, and I am not venting about the other Moms.......I was seeing myself in them. I want to ask them to stop, but I don't know how to direct them differently.......and looking from the outside in, I wanted to defend him.

He is not a bad child; his traits that are strong in him are amazing, I just don't know how to direct them positively.

I'm a mess......any help is grateful! I know I can count on you all!

Thanks in advance!
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Old 02-26-2008, 10:55 PM
 
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Have you had his hearing tested? If so have you tried walking up to him and putting your hand on his back and getting his attention. Also you may try to get him to run around and get out his energy.
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Old 02-27-2008, 12:25 AM
 
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I have a 3 yo ds and couldn't figure out how to get him to listen for a long time (I have 2 older dd's and never had a "problem" with getting them to listen) I got so frustrated calling his name or saying no over and over. Finally I tried holding his hands and getting to his eye level and that worked like magic! I joke and say boys have "selective hearing" from birth- but in his case I think it really is true. When I speak to him that way he looks at me surprised and like he honestly never heard me try to get his attention or say his name before.

Good luck.
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Old 02-27-2008, 12:32 AM
 
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Along the lines of the hearing difficulty, my dd is not hard of hearing, but she will get fluid in her ears after she has a cold. Sometimes the fluid will stay in her ears for a long time and make it hard to hear. It could be that her adenoids are also swollen and blocking her ears. Until I figured out that she couldn't hear me, I assumed that she was just ignoring me and it would really annoy me.

Ignoring is also pretty common at this age. My dd will often just ignore me or I'll have to repeat myself a few times because she's just lost in her own world.

If he's hearing fine, have you tried singing your requests? It sometimes works wonders for getting my dd to cooperate and it keeps me calm. Something about singing just keeps me from getting that angry edge to my voice even when I'm irritated.

Also, try making things into a game and see if he'll go along with you. A puppet asking him to do something may work better than your voice alone also.

I know sometimes I'm just not in the mood to play or sing or use a puppet. I just want her to do what I'm asking her to do! That's the time when I have difficulty and I'm still working on that.
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Old 02-28-2008, 05:18 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you all so much for your advice. He is not hearing impaired. When I try to get on his level, or touch him to get his attention or to look at me, he will pull away and scream "don't touch me" and make a big effort not to look at me.

I will try the singing and puppet ideas. They sound like great ideas to calm me down at least and not let my emotion be heard a.k.a. yelling.

Thank you all for your replies. I appreciate the responses!
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