Our oldest of four is eight, and she has become more and more and more out of control and violent and just totally whacked out. We are a non-violent, organic-loving, peaceful and holistic family and always have been. Food allergies and intolerances are not an issue here. She gets enough sleep and exercise and has a great diet and friends, outings, etc, and her three siblings are kind to her and well-balanced and loving. She herself is talented and smart and CAN be loving and kind.
But increasingly, I am getting snotty back-talk and she will no longer do anything when asked, and her mood is angry, hostile, defiant, and enraged most of the time. If anyone asks her to do (or not do) ANYTHING, she will now fly off the handle, start hurting people and destroying property, yell and scream, throw things, kick, break stuff, threaten to "leave this family," and even has started to try to hurt the baby!! !!!!!! I have NEVER EVER seen an 8-yr-old act in this manner, and I am totally shocked and sickened and saddened by it.
She does NOT get what she wants by these outbursts. Instead, she generally experiences loss of privileges and her parents' anger. And yet, she continues in this manner and it gets worse with every passing week. This morning she had yet another blow-up, just like yesterday and the day before, and I was trying to drive to meet my husband at the coffee shop. Her blow-up was because I asked her to stop eating on the couch. She would not listen, so I put her food away and told her she could eat it at the coffee shop.
The whole drive there, she was standing up in her car seat and pulling my hair, hitting me, trying to scratch and punch me, and throwing shoes and books and everything else. This scene was not only dangerous, it was disturbing and embarrassing and totally totally pissed me off. I remained calm and pulled over when it became unsafe to drive, but by the time I got there, I was covered in scratches and totally exhausted. And NO, I do not retaliate and hit her or hurt her. Except if she is doing something dangerous, I hold her arms down and make her NOT hurt someone or get us in an accident.
It is like, we have had to stop living practically because her behavior is so out of control. Every day, to have these huge outbursts, holy crap, what should we do? She will not take no for an answer, she treats everyone worse than you can imagine, she listens to nothing we say, and she is vicious and violent and totally f-ed up. I am terrified she will do real harm to someone and need this to stop NOW. What should I do? Where do we start?
I have always always been against people medicating children, but OMG, I am starting to see why people do it. It's like, you don't want the whole family to get dragged down and sink because one person has gone LOCO, right? No, we would not medicate her, but I can see why people are tempted now.
Where do we start? Does she need a medical doctor? Does she need a counselor, psychologist, psychiatrist, family therapist, clinical social worker? Is she mentally ill or just behaving like a beast because she gets no real consequences for it? I don't know anything. I don't understand this. None of the parenting books are working and nothing is working. The damage she is doing to our family and way of life and peace is huge. We are running out of patience and ideas. We are losing our minds. I cannot take any more screaming or violence from her, and she is polluting her siblings with her ugliness. She is hurting them and they in turn are starting to lash out too. The others are 3 and 6 and they are really, really happy and sunny. It sickens me to see the oldest setting this sort of example. The others cannot realize she is perhaps mentally ill. They just see the behavior and emulate it. It sickens me.
PLEASE advise, anyone who has a clue!