How do I make the whining stop

(19 Posts)
HellsBellsnBucketsofBlood Tue 20-Sep-16 10:27:03

Please. DD is driving me crazy. She's almost 4, and nothing seems to get done in our house without us first having to listen to her whine and cry about it. It's like nails on the blackboard of my soul.

Everything sets her off - time to get dressed, getting out of bed, bath time, not bein allowed to eat her pudding before her meal. It's doing my head in.

I've tried ignoring it, I've tried reasoning with her, I've pointed out that if she just put her fuckingclothes on we would have time to play before mummy has to go work.

There has got to be something that will work. Baby 2 will be here in 2 months and I need to get this sorted or I'm going to go crazy. I've looked up parenting courses but there are none nearby.

cheapandcheerful Tue 20-Sep-16 10:31:54

My dd was like this on-and-off. Reward charts were always good for her.

Lapinlapin Tue 20-Sep-16 10:32:58

I feel your pain. Do you think she's got worse because of the imminent arrival of the baby? Children can be really insecure about these things but not good at expressing it.

How about positive rewards? So rather than nagging her, she gets a reward once she's done something well. So every time she dresses herself with no fuss, gets ready for bed well, has put her shoes on etc. You could do a sticker chart maybe and when she gets all the stickers she gets a little reward? Or a jar of marbles? I've not used this but heard of it and I think it sounds good. Every time she does something well you put a marble in a jar and when it's full she gets her treat. Of course if she's naughty, marbles can be taken out again.

HellsBellsnBucketsofBlood Tue 20-Sep-16 10:42:26

I was wondering if it was the baby causing it, but I don't think it is. We've been trying to make sure she doesn't feel pushed out, and she gets plenty of attention, and changes to things like childcare (we had to up her nursery hours a bit) were phased in carefully.

I just feel so out of my depth. I want her to be happy and confident, and to be sufficiently reassured when needed, but also to learn that whining won't get her anywhere. confused

We used to have a reward chart (toilet issues) but she lost interest in getting the stickers. Maybe switching for the jar idea will reignite things though.

claraschu Tue 20-Sep-16 10:45:35

I don't know if this applies to your daughter at all, but one of mine just started whining as a bad habit. I kept telling him about tone of voice, explaining that he had to ask in a "regular" voice or I just wouldn't do what he wanted. With my son, I just needed to make him aware of what he was doing and how ineffective it was (ask in a cheerful tone and you are quite likely to get your way, ask in a whine and I just say no and ignore him). He grew out of the habit quite quickly.

I can see that this won't work with lots of kids.

claraschu Tue 20-Sep-16 10:46:39

I also did lots of demonstrations of regular and whiny voices, which would sometimes make him laugh.

HellsBellsnBucketsofBlood Tue 20-Sep-16 10:59:35

Thanks. She definitely understands the difference between whiny voices and nice voices, as she does occasionally switch to nice if I ignore her or refuse to do X if she whines.

claraschu Tue 20-Sep-16 13:55:27

Then I think you just have to stick with that, and try to do it with a light touch. A bit of humour helps, as does allowing her to save face. I would do things like say: " OK why don't you whine 3 more times and then talk in a regular voice...Or do you want to make that 4 more times...etc".

I do think that coming up with ways to let stubborn kids save face is really important, as is reinforcing the message that talking in a regular voice will be a big advantage for her when it comes to wheedling things out of people (obviously you can't always give in, but you can try to say no in a more positive and friendly way when she is asking nicely.)

"Oh dear, I can't understand you with that whiny voice DD." Then ignore her.

By the way in my book, the opposite of "whiny" is not "nice", it's just "normal".

"Hmm I wish I had a girl with a nice normal voice here, I'd love to do xxxx <insert nice thing here> with her" and continue to ignore.

Sometimes worked for me! Quite often actually.

Aquasport Tue 20-Sep-16 14:07:59

Completely ignoring whining requests semi works here , easier said than done I know (two dds here)

Older one pretty much out of it now but younger dd - also 4 - I just say mummy doesn't respond to whining ask me again properly or we won't go out/have something etc....

Oh, I also had 2 other strategies that were kind of opposites of each other.

I stopped announcing things - time for your bath, time to get dressed, time for dinner - and just did it. Just started the activity, and ran the bath or plated up or whatever.

The other one was giving warnings for things. "10 minutes until we have to turn off the TV". If she whines about that, "fine it can go off right now, your choice DD." Setting the timer on my phone really helped too - oh, that's it, tv off now!

Mycatsabastard Tue 20-Sep-16 14:12:29

I use warning times with my dd (who is nearly 11 now but it still works).

So I say - DD you have 10 minutes to finish up playing lego/playing on your laptop and then it's shower/bath/pj time. If you are quick getting bath/shower/pj done then you can have more playing time after.

Ditto with getting ready to go out. 10 minutes until we leave, what do you need to put on?

I also try and make her laugh as that helps break the whiny/stropping attitude.

If it helps I remember dd1 going through a dreadful whiny/crying phase for about 2 bloody years at that age. OMG, it was awful. She grew out of though it returned in the teens stage as well.

Salmiak Tue 20-Sep-16 14:18:08

I read a book called playful parenting which despite being very Americany had lots of great tips on dealing with kids and behaviour.

Things like if your dd is refusing to get dressed then turn it into a game, 'ok I'll help you - give me your hand and I'll put your socks on it, now do these trousers go over your head? No?! Oh show me how you put them on then? Wow, that's so clever, you did it!'

Generally if I start being silly/funny my dc will end up being more sensible and do whatever I want them to.

Mol1628 Tue 20-Sep-16 14:24:42

Oh my almost 4yo is terribly whiny too. All. Day.

Ignoring doesn't work, he gets more wound up. I just repeatedly say 'when you ask nicely' or 'when you stop whining' and he is slowly getting it.

Warnings work too. In 3 minutes you have to come and get your shoes on. Also positive things like right we need to brush your teeth so they are nice and shiny for nursery, we need to put your shoes on, you can't go on your scooter without shoes. It's bloody exhausting and I'm hoping he grows out of it soon! He is getting better. Slowly.

MrsJayy Tue 20-Sep-16 14:30:38

Oh gawd the whinging <shudder> @ the memories . I did thats a nice voice you have Dd and no we dont do whiney voice it seemed to work but it was constant reminder drove me nuts i tried to ignore a lot of it but i feel your pain

HellsBellsnBucketsofBlood Tue 20-Sep-16 14:46:19

Time warnings used to work ok with her. Now I say '2 minutes' or however long, and she acknowledges, then still whines.

Oh god mycat you mean it returns later!?!

Flumpnugget Tue 20-Sep-16 15:01:36

When she starts, quickly video it, discreetly if possible.

When she's having a calm moment and in good spirits, ask her for a grown up chat.

Show her the video of herself and ask her questions about it (what was going on here for you? What is making you cross here, can you explain? Does making that noise help you when you are angry? Etc) and give her lots of encouragement as she answers. Write down together what she comes up with in a fun way- bright pens, drawings, whatever.

Work with her, once she has highlighted her main issues, to write out alternative responses, and see if she can come up with any herself.

Example might be; "I get cross when we have to get dressed because I like my pjs"
Alternative to whining about it might be;
"When I feel angry with you about having to get changed in the morning, I will do a silly dance and wiggle to get my energy out!"

This isn't a quick fix and she needs lots of time to practise her new responses- thinks weeks and months, not days.

But, you are a) acknowledging that there are things in her life she dislikes and b) helping her develop ways to deal with them without resorting to whining which doesn't help anyone or anything, and ultimately, she still has to get dressed.

You could use a reward system on top, but start really small, like- "you talked to me in a calm voice- here's an extra story / episode of Paw Patrol" etc

At 4, she is capable of accepting and understanding that sometimes things just have to be that way- but she is in the behavioural pattern of responding with a whinge & whine now- it will take a while to break it- but you can definitely do it x

Mybeardeddragonjustdied2016 Tue 20-Sep-16 15:12:44

I just tell my kids sorry I can't hear you when you talk in that voice. Walk away and get on with something and ignore them.

DoreenLethal Tue 20-Sep-16 15:34:25

Each whine would take a minute off whatever time they had left, or take a thing away from whatever treat they were expecting.

'Ooh I can't understand you whining, I think that you might need an extra minute to speak properly so lets turn the tv off in 9 minutes, not 10'.

'OOh another whine, lets make that 8. Gosh at this rate the TV will be going off really quickly'.

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