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4 year old and dressing self

(25 Posts)
MagicMonkeys Tue 28-Jun-16 06:36:10

4 year old ds is 4 months away from being 5! Every morning he moans and whinges and cries when asked to get dressed!

He currently is sitting on the floor saying how he can't put socks on, the whinging isn't letting up, is this normal behaviour, I know it's early right now but ds will do this at any time of day!

I thought by now they should be able to dress themselves without much problem

PolaroidsFromTheBeyond Tue 28-Jun-16 06:39:15

My 4 year old can dress herself.

However, she still prefers me to help her, particularly with slightly tricky items like socks/tights.

ButtonBoo Tue 28-Jun-16 06:40:48

A 4 year old whinging. Not unusual in my house. And whinging usually occurs over the most trivial things. I'm hoping this means that they'll get all the whinging over and done with before the hit the teenage years. But I doubt it. sad

blinkowl Tue 28-Jun-16 06:42:10

They're all different. My 3 year old can pretty much dress herself. My 7 year old needs help to stay focused - and if we are in a hurry I will help him put the clothes on - or it never happens.

What helped with DS (not completely, but made a significant difference) was setting up a reward system where he got stickers for good behaviour, including a specific thing we wanted to work on, and using some techniques from the book Calmer Happier Easier Parenting.

I have to go.do morning stuff now but will put more about how our sticker system worked later, it was really effective l.

MagicMonkeys Tue 28-Jun-16 06:43:54

The whinging never stops here! I'm feeling pretty irritated right now so decided to come on here!

Ds literally whinges the whole way getting dressed, it's annoying and lasts up to one hour. I know some of it is laziness, he'd rather I get him dressed then do it himself

gamerwidow Tue 28-Jun-16 06:46:35

My nearly 6 yo dd still does this. She is more than capable of putting on any item of clothing but can't be bothered. This leads to inevitable stand offs and wingeing in the mornings. Hopefully she'll stop at some point in the next 12 years hmm

ButtonBoo Tue 28-Jun-16 06:46:46

Can you race to get ready? Or find some way to make it like a game? We used to race but now DD gets too stressed and panicky so that doesn't work anymore.

cuntinghomicidalcardigan Tue 28-Jun-16 06:48:52

My 3.5 yo chooses her own outfits then gets dressed herself... unless I want or ask her to. The it's one big whinge from start to finish.

What works for us is on whingy mornings I'll say 'get your tshirt on while I do this then I'll help with socks' ... 'now pants then I'll help with the button on your shorts... '

I think she's just not really a morning person so if the day goes at her pace she's fine, if she has to be dressed on a schedule she gets cross and stressed and then won't try.

branofthemist Tue 28-Jun-16 06:50:20

My dd (now 12) insisted on dressing herself from about 3.5. Which actually just took longer but she would strop.

Ds (now 5 1/2) would let you dress him now and did strip if you asked him to dress himself until a few months ago. It's worse on a morning as he is takes a while to come round.

Not all kids are like this but I thinks it's fairly common.

Euphemia Tue 28-Jun-16 06:54:20

How does he manage at school? Does he have to change for PE?

DD (now three days off 14 - yikes!) started wanting to dress herself, and choose her clothes, at 4 years old. I encouraged the independence, even if the time it took her drove me bonkers!

MagicMonkeys Tue 28-Jun-16 06:54:23

Good to know it's common, racing sounds like a good idea too, will have to try some of these methods

SpaghettiMeatballs Tue 28-Jun-16 06:55:26

My DD was like this a few months ago. When it progressed to 'Daddy get me dressed' said with maximum whine when DH works abroad I had to tackle it. A reward chart worked surprisingly well for this issue.

We made it together, she chose the stickers and reward etc.

TheOddity Tue 28-Jun-16 07:01:33

They can do it, but prefer someone else. I am just letting nature take its course and I help. I know he can physically do it when there is no choice. So I peep it for him and he pulls it up/down, and I do socks. I set a timer and he is dressed in less than two minutes including shoes. Not worth the battle imo!

TheCrumpettyTree Tue 28-Jun-16 07:07:53

My 4 year old (pre schooler) won't get himself dressed. He can and sometimes does, but generally won't because he's too busy playing and doing boring things like putting on clothes disturbs that. And he couldn't care less if he was naked all day.

I have no idea what we'll do when he starts school. It can be infuriating when we're trying to get out. I can't make him focus!

Witchend Tue 28-Jun-16 08:28:49

They're all different. Dd1 dressed herself about 3yo, though socks escaped her until she was nearly 4.
Dd2, with only one hand, could manage socks by 18 months and barring buttons and starting of zips was pretty much dressing herself (and undressing herself if I had the cheek to put anything on for her in order to do it herself) by 2yo.
Ds is 9yo and still would prefer me to dress him and occasionally I do put socks on in the interest in getting out on time.

MrsBobDylan Tue 28-Jun-16 10:23:22

I just help mine when they want it - DS 8 gets himself ready but if he wanted help with his socks etc I'd always offer it. He totally doesn't want or need any help now though so it's not an issue. I can honestly remember being 4 and my DM making such an issue about me getting dressed myself and shouting at me to get a move on that I'd rather my kids went at their own pace and morning were calm and not stressful.

Glovebug Thu 30-Jun-16 01:40:43

My 4 yr old can dress herself but when she's in a bad mood she suddenly loses the ability to anything herself!

Porcupinetree Thu 30-Jun-16 08:04:37

Everyone develops differently; my two year old can dress herself except for buttons, so to me it sounds like a delaying tactic, is he not wanting to go to school?

dementedpixie Thu 30-Jun-16 08:08:53

I helped ds for years with socks. What about putting them on the toe area for them and getting them to pull them up.

whois Thu 30-Jun-16 08:22:16

Oh goodness my mum helped me get dressed before school until I was quite old! Like at least age 8! That's quite bad isn't it.

whois Thu 30-Jun-16 08:22:58

I do not dress myself... Except I'm still shit at rights <looks at laddered tights>

Believeitornot Thu 30-Jun-16 08:27:10

My 4 year old gets herself dressed pretty well. She's more dexterous than her brother was with very good fine motor skills so she finds it easier.

Ds - I just got him dressed. I knew I wouldn't be doing it when he was 15. He's now 6 and I can't remember the last time I got him dressed except when he was exhausted and wanted help with his PJs.

Pick your battles!

LittleLionMansMummy Thu 30-Jun-16 08:28:33

Yep. We resorted to all kinds of tactics with ds - bribery, racing, making some kind of game of it etc. He's been capable of doing it for ages but he's usually too distracted doing other things to do it himself - he's the kind of laid back child who does everything in his own time. Most school days we still need to help him to chivvy him along because left to his own devices it would never happen. At weekends it's usually fine to leave him to do it as we're rarely in that much of a hurry. He's 5.5.

My niece, on the other hand, has dressed herself since the age of 3.

MrsBertBibby Thu 30-Jun-16 08:35:25

You just reminded me of fights with my son at that age over dressing. What a waste of time. He just liked me dressing him because it was cuddlier.

I'd say enjoy it while you can, but he still lets me dress him when he's feeling sorry for himself, and he's 12.

Numberoneisgone Thu 30-Jun-16 08:38:45

I am heartened to hear this OP. DS is a disaster getting dressed and is only a couple of months behind your DS. He has ASD so it is good to remind myself that not all of his issues are the ASD and other neurotypical kids have similar issues. Btw we have started using a timer so he can see the trauma of having to get cold and dress himself will come to an end. That is helping.

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