I just hit my son(40 Posts)
I'm struggling and really need advice.
He's a lovely bright boy, mostly kind and funny. But he won't do a thing, a single thing I ask. Simple daily tasks have become a living nightmare. Things like.. Pls go brush your teeth. He will throw himself on sofa and repeatedly ignore. I'll ask a thousand times, shout , count to three and he will do it, but calling me names, muttering about how I'm a psycho, mean, unfair. Then on to the next thing. Homework, bed time, winding his sister up. He is provocative, and only happy if things go his way. I'm obviously crying. I pinched his ear today. Hard. He was calling me names on the way to school because he'd lost a toy under the fridge, we were in a hurry and I said we'd find it after school. He was dong the same yesterday, about something else.
I think he may have anger issues, and me too.
Oh dear. How old is he? Have you lashed out at him before, is he learning by example?
How did you hit him? Do you mean you pinched his ear? Tbh this is not the answer to your problems and I think you know that. Does he get on ok at school?
yes I pinched his ear. I'm so ashamed at my loss of control. I've not lashed out like this before, but tbh he's witnessed some arguing at home, and I'm anxious and definitely shout too much. I feel like my family is in a mess, and my son is angry. With me.
Has he always been like this? Have you had any other concerns about his development or behaviour?
He's always been such a good boy. I feel like this negative behaviour has crept in over the last year. Maybe I don't stick to what I say and cave in too often?
Well do not give in. Have rules in place and consequences if they are not followed, be consistent. As pp said it's not easy but can be done.
Maybe I don't stick to what I say and cave in too often?
There is your answer.
Never promise or threaten something you don't carry out.
As for pinching his ear, yes it was wrong but don't beat yourself up about it.
Not brushing teeth by the time I count to 20 in our house means no sweets / chocolate / sweet things the following day (or for the rest of the day if it's in the morning). It saves me having to go on and on. If dd chooses to not do it, I let her make that choice and move on. She really doesn't like getting missed out when chocolates are getting passed around so she usually does her teeth even though she rarely wants to. I would recommend finding something that you can do that puts you in the driving seat. Nagging / shouting doesn't really do that.
I would try not to show that you are wound up by the name calling thing. Just remind him (and stick to it) that it will not get him what he wants. Sometimes agreeing with him may take the wind out of his sails too. Try 'I know I'm such meanie'. 'Yep, it feels so unfair, I know'.
I'm not for a moment suggesting your son has PDA, but you may find some of the techniques, like giving a choice rather than asking a question/giving a demand will work for you both and change the cycle of behaviour you are both locked into.
Eeek my 9yo is exactly the same!
Everything is a battle. EVERYTHING!
And he is the loveliest boy, so popular at school, at friends houses, camps etc everyone raves about how funny/kind etc he is.
And he is a complete shitebag at home.
Yesterday I made him tidy the TV room up. It was spotless on Friday and he was the only one in there all weekend. It was full of used plates, PS games and controllers every where, he had been to a party and the contents of the party bag were strewn every where, wrappers, his shoes, his iPad, his ear phones, cushions everywhere...
And he was so cross because I was making him tidy up his own blooming mess!!
He was saying things like you do it, why should i, make the other help, that s all I'm doing you do the rest.
The cheek is unreal!
Anyway he was made to do it whilst DH stood over him, and then send to bed early.Again. He was sent early the day before for the same carry on.
The day before he had no tech for the same behaviour...
The when we have a cuddle and I tell him how its my job to make him grow up as a good adult, that I don't like the selfish/mean/rude behaviour, that we all have to do things we don't want, that I'm not his servant, and that I know he is a good boy why does he hide it away? He will say sorry and that he will try harder, last a few hours and then we are straight back to square one.
This is a link to books in parenting boys. Some of the principles do of course apply to both sexes.
His behaviour has only recently changed, so it would be good to get stuck into one of these books now so you can set a strategy for dealing with him and nip it in the bud.
If there is a lot of general argument in the house (presumably between you and your OH) then it might help to tackle that when son is in bed and find a way to try and reduce the general tense atmosphere that is caused by arguments.
Lots of good luck with all this - being a parent is never easy, but some of this stuff goes in phases.
The first thing I learned when becoming a teacher was to always mean what I say. Only ever threaten something you are prepared to carry out. It is all about trust and respect. If you keep your boundaries children know where they stand and know they can't push you. If you are always allowing those boundaries to change they don't know where they stand and know with s little bit of pressure mum will give in anyway, so why not push.
It'll get harder until they know you mean business, because they will push that but harder and try you, but it will be worth it.
Your post could have been written by me last year.
Don't panic. There is a way out of this cycle. It won't happen overnight, but you can reset this behaviour pattern for both of you.
If you haven't read it, I recommend The Explosive Child book - in a nutshell, it explains that wile parents get annoyed because their dcs seem to be deliberately being a pain, the reality is that some kids just developmentally are still learning how to handle situations they find upsetting and if we can forgive them and realise they're still learning, we can take the angst out of the situation ie not take it personally, but rather read the message behind the behaviour, ie your ds is upset.
Once you stop blaming/being angry with your ds, you can focus on rebuilding the bond between you, which is a bit frayed at the moment.
Apologise to your ds for the ear thing and make it clear your behaviour was wrong and you recognise that and won't do it again - he needs to trust you. But then move on positively. Try to show him as often and as much as you can that you love him, are proud of him, enjoy his company, like him for him whatever he does, even if he's naughty sometimes.
The change won't happen overnight. The key is forgiving him, and rebuilding his trust and your relationship. It does work - I promise.
It's no wonder you got so angry. You know it's not right to pinch him but tbh he's been severely disrespecting you and pushing you'd buttons. So I cam see how you lost control.
My son is 8 and if he ever called me a psycho or names he would be punished with loss of privileges such as his ipad for 5 days etc or playing out. Don't be too harsh on yourself, we have all let them get away with too much for too long at times. I would apologise for pinching him but explain that if he disrespects you anymore there will be consequences. Be firm and he will soon learn not to push your buttons.
It's an age thing too. Give yourself a hug and a cuppa - have a cry and work out how things can be different
Your human, we make mistakes. Tell him you are sorry when he gets home and give him a cuddle.
Practically I'd be putting structure in place. Electronics have to be earned for example. Brushing his teeth, getting dressed ect earns him 10 mins.
I count a lot. Mine have until count of 5 to do as iv asked or they loose tv time or bedtimes brought forward.
Do what works for you but always follow through, no empty threats.
If it means him staying in his room all wkend then so be it. If it's no tv or electronics then that's it.
But I'd also reward the food stuff. Perhaps pick something he really wants or an activity he wants to do. Then set him task of in bed every night when told ect
Use a bit of stick and carrott
In terms of you getting angry, as another poster on MN put it well, 'remember to distinguish between behaviour which is inconvenient to you, and behaviour which is actually wrong/naughty'. Sometimes dcs do something which is really annoying because it's inconvenient, but they don't actually mean to be naughty at all, so getting angry is the wrong reaction.
And as I said, you need to find it in you to forgive your ds. Then you can heave a sigh as you're late/you have to clean up another mess etc, but not have any urge to shout/hit/feel angry towards your ds.
Oh and no one can press my buttons like my like my 8 yr old ds
I was also going to suggest the book "Raising Boys"
OP consider buying/downloading it, it is a good read with some good advice.
So clear boundaries - yes, agree with other posters. But that has to be done in a positive way with lots of affection, so your ds can see the rules within a broader framework of affection in your home. Otherwise he'll just think you're 'against' him and the react against you.
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