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Another schizophrenic mom of a 4yo here! I think in my case it's because I really haven't commited myself completely to GD principles.
: I still am afraid, somewhere deep in my soul, of raising a brat. I don't have a chance to see a lot of GD'd kids, and the one or two I do see sort of annoy me. :LOL GD (or at least positive discipline) FEELS right, though, so it's what I try to practice most often. But then DS will backtalk or not "do as I say" and I flip out on him, threatening and yelling. Arg. It's hard, it really is.

The self-checks in the stickied thread help me, and reading books about GD, and really connecting with my DS through activities or play helps... What helps the most, though, is trying to identify the behaviors that are pushing my buttons, and then trying to decide (in a calm moment!) if they are something that my DS and I need to work on together, or something I need to let go. For instance - maybe I want him to go potty before his nap. He says he doesn't need to. I (in my bad moments) see this as defiance, but if I reflect on it, I realize that he's almost 5 years old, and has been pt'd since 28 months - if he feels he doesn't need to go, then I should respect that. But in another instance - say he wants to visit a friend, I say no, he rolls his eyes and says, "WhatEVER."
: - I reflect on it and decide that no, that kind of disrespect will not be tolerated, and is something we need to work on together. KWIM?

ANYWAY, you're definitely not alone. I love this age, but I don't so much love the way I deal with its hardships!
 
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