Perfectionist kids... - Mothering Forums

 
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#1 of 3 Old 08-04-2005, 01:32 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Just hoping for advice from other parents of detail-oriented, perfectionist kids. My boy is 3.5, and so easily upset by little stuff. He adores playmobil, but the hats have to be on absolutely straight, the hands have to be on the steering wheel, the little people have to be looking the right way, or.... chaos insues. He will cry like his heart is breaking, throw his toys, scream. This happens several times a day. Not just about playmobil, but that's the first example that comes to mind.

It's wearing me down. The screaming really pushes my buttons. There have been some natural consequences for throwing toys (favorite toys broken, pieces lost), but it doesn't really seem to make a difference. I'm trying to sympathize, because obviously he feels awful. He's trying to control his universe via playmobil, and failing miserably. :LOL But by the end of the day I just want to tell him to chill the f out, get a grip. I want to hide all the toys which frustrate him easily. I want earplugs.

I want him to be an adult who can roll with things. Perfectionism can really drive people to do great things as long as they don't hate themselves when they can't create perfection. So, how do I help him get there?
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#2 of 3 Old 08-04-2005, 02:23 PM
 
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My oldest dd was like that at three. I remember these lines of cars she used to make-- all in the same direction, front to trunk touching just right etc.-- and her working on this line for what seemed like hours and then falling apart when it didn't "work". And the doll house set just so in perfect order. She is now 8 and has grown out of it. In fact now she is even a little messy in her play and art. More of a controlled chaos if you will. Maye you could invest in some toys that give him more manipulative control. I'm thinking puzzles, stacking cups, beads. Things that have a fit that is always the same. Or maybe go totally opposite and make a complete mess no order. I'm not sure the temperment of your boy, but my daughter always loved lots of paint. Good luck!
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#3 of 3 Old 08-04-2005, 03:30 PM
 
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At that age I found with my son is removing the project/game before he got overly frustrated.

Making him walk away and come back to the problem.

I would do things like offer a snack. DS you seem frustrated lets have a snack then go back and play. DS lets walk down to the corner (around the neighborhood). Got a timer and told him when it went off it would be time to put it up and move on.

At 3 your son does not completely understand the natrual consequences of throwing toys. At 6 what you are doing is letting them get broken. At 3 he needs more of your invovlement in helping him learn not throw toys in anger.
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