Page 4 | AIBU to think this isn't normal behaviour for a 5 year old

(97 Posts)
BergamotMouse Sun 19-Sep-21 19:02:24

Mostly posting here for traffic. Sorry if long.

My DD (5 years old) has such a lot of energy. Assumed it was normal but her calm 2 year old brother is making us question this a little.

She cannot sit still! Will rotate in her chair at meal times, cutlery clattering to the floor, drinks knocked over etc. If watching TV she will often be bouncing or be upside down, suddenly diving across the sofa for no reason.

She still has really big emotional outbursts, cannot control herself and will try to hurt us, she almost appears to shake with rage. These can last an hour or so.

She will not stop talking, interrupts frequently. Will often say 'mummy' or 'daddy...' to start a question with no direction and then just find something to fill it with.

She has issues with the toilet, constipation (on medication for this), will still have damp pants and is very against being told to go even though she's dancing around clearly desperate.

But on the other hand she is a fantastic big sister, patient most of the time with her brother and very kind. Plays with him intensely. Likes make believe but neither of them really play with toys.

They have very little screen time, Half an hour a day or so, sometimes none and we try and have them outside most of the day. She is absolutely fine when outside, we have no issues with behaviour then.

No issues from school, doing fine academically, I'm led to believe she's very well behaved. Ahead of where she should be with her reading, slightly behind with maths. She has some very close friendships (seems quite intense) but will be quite cold and distant with others. Children from school will shout hi to her in the park and she will give a brief wave, if that, and when I ask who it is she says she doesn't know.

I don't know what I'm thinking, Some kind of ADHD? Somewhere on the autism spectrum? I'm a teacher so don't say this lightly. Or is this just typical 5 year old behaviour?

OP’s posts: |
CanIPleaseHaveOne Mon 20-Sep-21 17:03:10

50ShadesOfCatholic

No, very abnormal to have a calm 2yo. Get him checked.

gringringrin

Snaketime Mon 20-Sep-21 17:19:58

Sounds very similar to my DD7, we are going for a consult at the hospital tomorrow but doctors think ADHD.

MrMeSeeks Mon 20-Sep-21 17:29:46

crazyguineapiglady

"Normal" is very wide and none of those things sound hugely abnormal except maybe the tantrums. If she manages fine at school then probably not ADHD and nothing screams autism.

It’s extremely normal with sen for kids to cope well at school and not cope at home… especially autism.
Coming from a woman with autism!

DuckbilledSplatterPuff Mon 20-Sep-21 18:31:10

Could it be excess energy? My middle son was very very fidgety.. He needed tonnes of daily exercise and turned out to be very good at any kind of sport. He'd also get very bad tempered without enough exercise and wall fallen when he was hungry, eg after school, he would be ravenous. If we kept those things well managed, he was fine. Some children do find it hard sitting still for hours at school.
He calmed down as he got older but is always up for something energetic now.

CottonSock Mon 20-Sep-21 18:34:59

Similar to my dd, who also had long issues with constipation and soiling. We suspect ADHD.

CottonSock Mon 20-Sep-21 18:38:17

- although my dd does struggle with reading, writing etc too. Otherwise I wouldn't be too worried.

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mathanxiety Mon 20-Sep-21 18:58:25

She may be masking at school. Hence the report of friendships, but if someone waves at her she doesn't know them. Girls mask better than boys.

The constant movent, listening problems, episodes of rage, plus problems getting to sleep warrant investigation.

At five, with parents sitting at the table and instructions to sit down to eat, she should be able to manage better than she is doing.

If you ask her what happened in a TV programme she watches while flinging herself around on the couch, can she tell you roughly what happened, who were the characters?

I am interested to know how the constipation problem began, what age, what sort of diet?

mathanxiety Mon 20-Sep-21 19:00:57

And is the 'potty dance' she does a case of repeated movement, like rocking, wiggling from side to side, or wild ad libbing? How long does it usually go on?

Tangledtresses Mon 20-Sep-21 19:02:39

Both my sons were the same and sleep very well and behave at school

Love being outside

Did interrupt alit but that's just part of parenting saying mummy is talking your turn will be soon
Etc etc

BergamotMouse Mon 20-Sep-21 19:57:32

mathanxiety

She may be masking at school. Hence the report of friendships, but if someone waves at her she doesn't know them. Girls mask better than boys.

The constant movent, listening problems, episodes of rage, plus problems getting to sleep warrant investigation.

At five, with parents sitting at the table and instructions to sit down to eat, she should be able to manage better than she is doing.

If you ask her what happened in a TV programme she watches while flinging herself around on the couch, can she tell you roughly what happened, who were the characters?

I am interested to know how the constipation problem began, what age, what sort of diet?


If I ask her about a programme directly she probably won't be able to tell me what happened but I wonder if it's more a case of that she can't be bothered. Her and her brother often play paw patrol with the phrases so something must be going in.

I feel pooing has always been hard work since potty training. She was potty trained since just turned 2 but would always hold poos in and wiggle. We often link the poorest behaviour with needing a poo. The poo dance seems to be more of a constant movement kind of thing, if sat down almost a grinding of her bottom back and forth into the chair.

OP’s posts: |
BergamotMouse Mon 20-Sep-21 20:04:54

I've reread last year's end of year report and she sounds like a model student, patience and attentive, a loyal friend, a little unsure of new situations but growing in confidence.

I'll keep an eye on it but I think it might be a case that she holds it all in at school so we see more extreme behaviour at home as she lets it all out.

We do have quite strict boundaries, we don't respond to her interruptions, but say we will come to her when we have finished our conversation and always do. But even when being very consistent with a that she just can't help herself.

With her reading tonight she just couldn't sit still. Ended up upside down often with her feet climbing the walls even though she was told if she did focussed reading she would get an extra chapter of her book at bedtime.

OP’s posts: |
ForPingsSake Mon 20-Sep-21 20:14:04

Your gut is telling you that there's something or you wouldn't be posting. Your description could well be of a child with ADHD. She could be holding it in all day at school so she has no control left by the time she gets home. It's hard to judge from a description online. If you have concerns my heartfelt advice would be to pursue them sooner rather than later. The road to diagnosis can be very long and the sooner you get on it the better!

themuttsnutts Mon 20-Sep-21 20:19:06

This was my daughter at 5 right down to the constipation.

She is 17 now and has been assessed for ADHD in the past. She was borderline but wasn't bad enough for a full blown diagnosis

MidSummersNightmare Mon 20-Sep-21 20:58:41

This sounds exactly like my 5 year old. Apart from shes having issues at school and with friendships due to aggressive outbursts or controlling behaviour. When she has a good day at school she tends to explode at home.

She managed 10 days with no toilet accidents at the beginning of term but now it’s all gone to pot.

We’ve considered adhd, sensory processing disorder (she seems to seek sensory input) and autism.

Thethuthinang Mon 20-Sep-21 21:11:13

Sounds like my son. Won't stop, doesn't sit still, can't stop. He's a dancer. Not happy unless he's dancing. Give it a try.

BergamotMouse Mon 20-Sep-21 21:13:40

Thethuthinang

Sounds like my son. Won't stop, doesn't sit still, can't stop. He's a dancer. Not happy unless he's dancing. Give it a try.


She does ballet and gymnastics. Then spends the weekend showing me her gymnastics moves launching herself off the sofa onto a cushion that she's pretending is a trampoline 🤦‍♀️

OP’s posts: |
Rosebel Mon 20-Sep-21 21:23:41

I'm not sure. My DD has ASD and at one time she could hold her rage in at school and kind off explode at home.
The move to secondary school was a massive trigger and she had meltdowns at school too (she had a few in Y6 but Y7 was a whole different level).
It's perfectly possible your daughter just has a lot of energy but I'd keep in close contact with the school just incase she does begin having outbursts.

mathanxiety Tue 21-Sep-21 05:23:11

The poo dance seems to be more of a constant movement kind of thing, if sat down almost a grinding of her bottom back and forth into the chair.

That rhythmic motion on a chair sounds like a sensory seeking trait. Perhaps she holds onto the poo for as long as she can because the rhythm and movement that go with holding it off offer her more in the given moment than pooping would.

mathanxiety Tue 21-Sep-21 05:35:42

Have you tried weighted blankets to snuggle into at reading time?

What sort of fare does she watch on TV? Paw Patrol is quite innocuous as far as plot and character development go, but there are a lot of frames per minute, the action is fast paced, and it's very plot driven.

Look for programmes that are value driven, preferably not Nick jr offerings. Look for a slower pace and more conversation than Paw Patrol.

Oblomov21 Tue 21-Sep-21 05:59:01

I don't think it's normal. But many kids are almost hyper, just in the way they are, it's not dissimilar to ADHD. Some children are more meek and easy going.
Have you spoken to teacher?

ReginaGeorgeIsAFuglySlut Tue 21-Sep-21 06:37:44

Honestly this sounds like my son at 5. His teacher had him sitting on 2 chairs stacked as she thought his jiggling was because he was small and not able to see as well. It wasn't smile

He is 12 now and still struggles to sit still, he also needs far less sleep than his brother who is 18 months older. He needs to spend a lot of time outside or he tends to irritate his brother or myself. I had considered ADHD but to be honest he gets very good grades and has no issues at all focusing, so I don't think that really fits the profile. I might have looked in to it more but he is a happy kid with lots of friends, so I just figured this is the way he is.

DwangelaForever Tue 21-Sep-21 06:42:50

My nearly 4yo is the same, shows all the symptoms of adhd at home but is perfectly well behaved at school!!!!

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