5.8 year old DD1 is driving me mad!

(8 Posts)

She is a very intelligent little girl and knows how to behave. But she is driving me mad with having to be told the same things over and over again and totally ignoring me. When she is told off she smirks at me and thinks it is a game. I would never have behaved the way she does but then I wouldn't have dared because I would have been smacked and was scared of my dad. She behaves wonderfully at school as far as I'm aware although her teacher is just as frustrated as I am that she gives up easily on anything that she can't do on her first attempt. She is by far our most attention seeking child, the most self centred and the least empathic (I know I shouldn't compare but she is the oldest and the difference is striking)

For all my moaning, I love her lots. I just don't know how to parent her in a way that is sensitive to her needs and the rest of the family.

lorisparkle Sun 20-Jan-13 13:32:54

what kind of rewards and consequences do you have for her. ds1 is very motivate by pocket money so I use this when really necessary. otherwise I use time out as a consequence and praise, special privileges for a reward. I recently bought the, calmer, easier, happier parenting book and now try and only ask once and only ask if I am sure he will do it or if i can follow through if he doesn't.

We do time out as a consequence and praise/special privileges as a reward as well. I know time out is controversial but not having anyone there to listen to her constant talking or give her attention probably is the most effective punishment for her. We don't do pocket money yet. I've heard it suggested that you should start pocket money just so you can take it away as a punishment. That sounds terribly manipulative to me! Is the book you mentioned any good at suggesting ways of parenting that encourage the child to make choices? I don't want her to behave because I said so but to have her choose to do the right thing. I think this would be the healthiest way to parent for future years but I don't know how!

lorisparkle Sun 20-Jan-13 17:04:27

I use pocket money as a motivator, e.g. he gets a little extra if he does something above and beyond. I do occasionally take a small amount away if he is really not listening or taking seriously how cross i am.
the book's aim is very much to make the right choice through specific praise, teaching independence and following through with consequences and reward. a lot of it is preparing them and the environment so they know exactly what they should do and have internalised it.

SocietyClowns Sun 20-Jan-13 17:12:42

Wish I had some advice... but I am tearing my hair out at the behaviour of my 5.7 year old dd1! Could have written your post myself!! Is there something about this age that turns sweet little things into monsters?

Celestia Mon 21-Jan-13 09:05:54

My dd is 5.11 and exactly the same! We're having a really tough time with her at the moment. We've tried lots of reward systems but none really had an effect....until we started using ireward on my iPad!

She loves my iPad and this seems to have got her hooked. You set the targets (I chose ones that I felt caused the most problems, eg, use a nice voice-no shouting, do as you're asked quickly etc). They get a star for good behaviour and they save them up for rewards, eg, 10 stars = extra bedtime story, 30 stars = movie night/new book, 75 stars = soft play/swimming/McDonald's. She's decided that she's going to save the stars for a new book about space. We try, through gritted teeth, to ignore anything else bar anything awful (she had a monumental tantrum on Saturday over a naan bread where she ended up hitting me so no Rainbows this week, which she was warned about).

So far so good. I've never seen her so motivated! I think it's because the expectations are clear as are the rewards.

SocietyClowns Mon 21-Jan-13 12:58:25

<puts ipad on shopping list>

Celestia Wed 23-Jan-13 17:17:55

You could easily do the same on paper with some shiny stars. I think the bit that motivated my dd is the rules being very clear (written down a la Super Nanny) and clear rewards.

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