To think my ds has PMS???(17 Posts)
This whole last week has been a MARE! He comes out of school, grunts at me, demands food,demands ice cream and has ACTUAL tantrums on the way home (he is 6!!).
I know that after school he is bad tempered, due to the fact he WONT go to the toilet all day, and he barely eats or drinks anything, but even after I have marched him to the lavs, given him a sandwich and water, and tried really hard to be cheerful, his incessant rudeness wears me down.
I got up this lovely morning and ds asked me to do him a picture of Spiderman (he likes to colour my pictures). I started doing it, and it was WRONG, the legs are WRONG! He actually shouted "All I want is a picture of Spiderman! How had can it be!"
At which point I told him that I would not be spoken to like that and to draw his own Spiderman, followed by 10 mins of proper tantrum style screaming (which I ignored).
Now he is obsessing because the green T-shirt isn't in his drawer, and he has to wear the green t-shirt NONE OF THE T-SHIRTS ARE THE RIGHT COLOUR WHY? WHY?"
I want to leave home.
Why won't he use the school toilets?
Why isn't he eating or drinking properly?
Why is he so anxious and obsessive to this degree?
Why is he so stressed?
Is this a newish thing with him?
Purplerayne is asking the right kind of questions.
I'm back. We were going to go to the park but I actually couldn't face any more tantrums in the street, so we did drawing and cutting out instead, which was nice, until I said I need to make lunch (he is going out with Nanna after lunch so I had to get on with it) and that it was time for him to tidy his room.
Room tidying is every Saturday, and pocket money is dependent on it being done with no fuss.
half an hour of screaming and complaining later, room still a tip, pocket money off the table, and I am hiding in the kitchen.
The THINGS that come out of his mouth, I cannot beleive.
I tried to help with the tidying thing by saying, OK, just put everything in 4 piles-books, toys, drawings and clothes, then I will come and help you sort it.
At which point he launched himself at my legs and wouldn't let go until I said sorry...
At this point I lost my temper (and I had been calm calm calm) and said, that's it! No pocket money!
Cue screaming, crying..etc etc etc
He has been like this before but not this bad for a long while.
Why wont he use the school toilets? No idea. It has been this way since nursery. I have tried ignoring it, bribery, reward charts the lot. The teachers dont seem to think it really matters, but I don't see how he can even concentrate at school.
Eating/drinking-he has never drunk much. He eats slowly and talks a lot during lunch (I have been to school and seen this for myself) and so never has time to finish.
Anxious and obsessive. Hmmm. Genetic? Those are traits that run in the family, but he has always been incredibly single minded and stubborn, and very very focused on specifics.
Stressed. My fault prolly, I am stressed r.e money, so I am sure it rubs off. My patience is tenuous.
He does worry about stuff I don't get though.
Like, I have always been quite silly with him, and we used to really enjoy making each other laugh.
Now he has become so anxious about "what people will think?". The other day I was doing a silly run on the way to school and he got sooo embarrassed.
His age, I know, but he cares so much about rules and the way things look, which I don't get because I am not like that.
He also doesn't seem to believe anything I tell him, which upsets me because I never lie to him.
If we are walking somewhere and I try and take a short cut or something he will get borderline hysterical and say "this isn't the way!" When I explain that I know where I am going (honest) he doesnt believe me and gets more and more upset.
I don't know. I am by no means a perfect mum, but I am trying so hard to be understanding and patient,
instead of strangling him.
Six is very young. Some thoughts:
You're obviously very concerned and picking up on your son's unhappiness. I'd be inclined to turn detective for a couple of weeks:
Quietly observe his reactions in different situations (make notes for yourself);
Get him talking to you about all and everything (you need to be accepting of whatever he tells you, in a calm loving, genuinely interested, way, he needs to trust you);
Have a discrete word with his teacher (arrange an appointment if necessary) and ask about his behaviour/mood in school, especially their opinion on the toilet thing;
When he is having a major meltdown, he won't be able to process what you are telling/yelling/asking. Try waiting until he is calming down and then get down to his eye level, offer a hug, and then just say gently something like: 'you sounded angry/very unhappy/so sad' (whatever fits - you're just giving a name to his feelings). Then listen. Carefully.
I think these pointers will help you to fill in the gaps on whatever is going on, and then you can think where to go from there.
Thanks for the advice Purple.
I will do the things you suggest, although since it is just him and me I feel like he already talks to me all the time (often about various stuff he likes but also at bedtime about stuff he has done at school)
He says he loves school, so I don't think it's anything there.
I have a meeting with school next week, so will get more idea of what he is like there, although I think they would have told me if there were any problems.
Usually they say he is quiet but has good friends.
I am concerned I suppose because I have had some bad times lately-in the last couple of years I have suffered bereavement and redundancy, followed by depression, and I worry that it's affected ds, even though I am much better now.
Good luck, keep an open mind about things and try not to jump to any conclusions :-)
PurpleRayne has some good advice - but if the looking at him to talk is not working, go for some walks together - walking side by side so he doesn't have to look at you to see if he opens up a bit (this and talking whilst in the car - again not face to face). Try and ask him when he seems calm and relaxed how he is - that you have noticed he is very angry /cross recently and is there anything he wants to talk about. Again maybe not immediately after a tantrum when his emotions may still be very raw.
My DD, also 6yo recently went through a very angry patch like this. Eventually she told me that she was worried she would never see her best friend again (we have moved recently - well 6 months ago and she will move schools at some point but not imminently). It was really upsetting her even though school move not imminent. So all I had to do was point out DH & I still see our old school friends and that leaving a school does not mean you do not see each other anymore. Also invited best friend to playdate. Reassured her and lot of the behaviour gone.....anyway, sorry, waffling.
You're handling it really well IMO, all the things you describe don't look to be giving him the idea that how he behaves it acceptable, or that it'll work.
His behaviour sounds excessive, but 'normal', although the tantrumming for half an hour solid must have taken a lot of effort to keep going.
Do you think he really is that angry/frustrated or could he be trying to use it as a tactic to make you feel bad and do as he says? The way he's talking to you is a bit shit, but unfortunately it's what they do, the main thing is to not let him think he can get away with it.
Some of the other bits make me think he's insecure and likes the comfort being able to predict how things will play out can give him. Like walking the same way as usual, they're just getting to grips with the 'rules' at 6 and see them as black and white, not understanding there are grey areas and it's OK to be flexible.
You've been through a lot, give yourself a break.
Love the silly run
Aw thanks Agent That means a lot, as I tend to beat myself up a bit.
Ds is vairy wedded to a routine. Once it changes and he sees it's OK he relaxes, but any change, even really tiny ones, seem to freak him out.
I do thing it is a bit of a control thing, but to be fair, we have moved twice in the last 4 years.
I do know that when I manage to stay calm, he is better, so I need to focus on that I think.
Sometimes I think that the relationship you have when it is 1:1 can be so intense; no-one to dilute it, and I can't just say to (imaginary) Dh "I've had enough-you deal with it" which would be nice when I feel frazzled by it all.
Thanks too fishfingers. We do talk on the way to school a lot, although are usually rushing!
I did mention to him that I though it would be good if I got some rollerskates so I could skate to school while he scooted.
He was apalled!
Come to think of it, that is a damn good threat for ensuring better behaviour.
On the plus side, when not being
mental challenging ds is very funny and affectionate, so not all bad.
Just a thought, if you have had money stress following your redundancy and he is then threatened with losing his pocket money is he getting angry/stressed about money. BTW I don't think/am not saying is a bad thing to threaten...just wondering if he has heard something at school/got some mixed message about money....could be anything..not true/distorted..you get taken away from your mum if there is no money...who know? Just a thought. Maybe start a little notebook on when he is at his worst...see if there is a pattern.
Just reminded me I need to talk to school about my DS who has just started reception...he has had horrid tantrums as soon as I pick him up on 3 occasions..And as soon as we get home he has a poo and is fine. I need to find out if he is holding onto poos and to remember if he act up to ask if this is the problem.
Hearing good things from school and being amazed at the contrast with the brat you have to put up with at home, is the sign of a good parent
I delude myself thinking I've been led to believe
I'm not good with change either because I've got OCD, which is about control and anxiety as well (not suggesting your lad has it or anything), but controlling stuff is a bit of a security blanket, it's trying to predict an unpredictable sometimes alarming world.
When was the last time you moved? Could it be a remnant of that which will calm down in time maybe?
Just one little thing about not using the toilet, is he too shy to ask to go?
Only my eldest DD found asking her (male) teacher if she could go to the toilet horrifically embarrassing. In the end we devised a little code - a tiny penguin ornament she could put in her desk, which was a signal to her teacher she needed the loo
Oh God, yes, lots of OCD and neurotic people in my family Agent, so I am sure ds leans a little that way, as do I.
We moved nearly a year ago, so I dont think it can be that.
Ther toilet things winds me up no end. Even at nursery he wouldn't go. He is funny about going at other peoples houses too.
Basically, I think he is just uptight, and needs to feel relaxed to go to the loo. At school other children might be in there, and he wouldn't have privacy, so he holds it.
He never wets, so school don't seem to think it matters, but he looks so awful when he comes out of school it breaks my heart.
I have suggested that he ask to go during reading time, or other quiet time, but you are right freddie, he is very unlikely to voluntarily speak to a teacher to ask for things.
Apparently he has trouble asserting himself at school. Oh the irony!
If I was a teacher of a child like that I would just tell him "off you go for a wee" half way through the day, but I think that's against their policy of children taking responsibility for themselves blah blah.
In fact, ds is annoyingly bad at taking care of himself.
Doesn't drink when he is thirsty, wants to wear a T-shirt even when it is freezing and his arms are blue, wont wee when he is desperate.
Drives me MAD, and he knows it.
Maybe it is just passive aggressive behaviour because he HATES ME!
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