I'm not so sure it's personality. He never was much of a tantrum-thrower or negative kid before.
Here's the situation. 5.5 year old DS is not happy with ANY outing I choose. If I say we can go feed the ducks at the pond near our place, he wants to go to the one clear across town and sort of out in the country.
If I say we're going to "X" park, he wants to go to "Y" park.
If I say let's go to the zoo, he wants to go to the YMCA.
You get the idea.
I've gotten SO SICK of it that i have actually said "You know what, I don't *HAVE TO* take you *ANYWHERE*. SO either quit complaining, get your shoes on, and appreciate that you get to go ANYWHERE today, or you can *stay home.*" Or "If I hear *one* complaint about where we are going when we get in the van, I will let you stay home with Grandma." (I am *not* going to make the other two, who are happy and would be sorely disappointed, miss out.)
Just to clarify--there are times I ask where they want to go and they'll agree on something. There are times he's had a suggestion, phrased politely rather than a *demand*, and I have said "Well, if you'd rather do that, we could." (when nobody else has their heart set on option A, and they usually really don't, they just want to go someplace.)
But there are times when it's a *demand* or when we're doing it because it's near somewhere else we are going, or times that the gas budget just does not support going all the way across town where we have nothing else to do but this outing--that I pretty much just have to say NO.
And it's just not fun to take someone who is complaining non-stop.
He seems to understand I'm serious though, he'll stop when I give him the option of stopping or staying home.
Here's the other thing--with 4 kids soon, I'm SURE eventually the younger ones will have an opinion. And there will be times where one or two might not be getting what they wanted--THIS TIME. They need to realize this is ONE outing, shape it up, and try to at least not make the outing miserable for everyone else.
We also have been talking about that--I've said things like "I know you really wanted to go to XYZ and we couldn't...but did you have fun anyway? or it looks like you had fun anyway to me..." and he will agree he did.
it seems to be S-L-O-W-L-Y improving this way, but it is still crazy annoying.