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My eleven year old is out of control and this is unchartered territory for me

(19 Posts)
Arisbottle Fri 02-Nov-12 21:51:26

My older children have all been something of a breeze behaviour wise but my 11 year old dd has always been more of a challenge and it is starting to get to the whole family.

She has what can only be described as tantrums. She screams and shouts if she does not get her own way, she will deliberately push and shove me and the shrug and say "what??" if she is pulled up on doing so and pretend that she has not done anything. She throws things in a temper.

She constantly mutters under her breath at us or will just directly be rude to us and then say "Did I say you were a bitch/ cow etc I meant something else"

Maybe I am just rubbish at the behaviour stuff because our older children have been so easy.

She also has appaling hygeine and I am constantly chasing her about brushing her teeth, washing her hair and having a shower. I tried to encourage her by taking her for a mother and daughter day and we called into lush and bought her some nice toiletries.

She is an angel at school and she can be lovely at home. I have been a little unwell over the past few days and the other day she made me cups of tea and offered to stay in with me rather than go out with her friends as DH was working away and she was worried about me being on my own. But then she can flip, yesterday she told me that i didn't love her, that I was the worst mother in the world and that she couldn't wait until she left home. Yesterday when she was having a tantrum and thowing things around I tried to hold her to calm her down and she started hurling herself about and shouting to my husband that I was hitting her. She has told her older sister that she could get me sacked from work by telling everyone what a bad mother i am. But on other occasions she wants to cuddle up on the sofa and she has said how excited she is to be starting the secondary school in which I teach. She had the option to go to a different school, which she did not want to do.

I am aware that my other children are unusually good, so perhaps I am being overly harsh. But her behaviour to me seems very extreme and out of control and I am not sure what to do.

Tisntme Fri 02-Nov-12 21:56:25

sounding impressively hormonal to me.

Arisbottle Fri 02-Nov-12 21:59:22

Thankyou for taking time to read all of that, would you persevere but accept that it is hormones? I work with teenagers so deal with a lot of hormones but of course it is much more intense when it is your own children. I think her behaviour is very extreme, to warrant professional involvement, but maybe I am over reacting.

crackcrackcrak Fri 02-Nov-12 22:03:26

Has she started her period yet? If not might be building up to that?

TheFallenMadonna Fri 02-Nov-12 22:05:07

I don't know if it is normal. My own lovely, lovely 11yo DS has developed some interesting behaviour recently, and I am finding it hard to adjust.

I am a bit concerned that she is going to go to the school you teach in though.

Arisbottle Fri 02-Nov-12 22:05:30

No, but she cannot be far off. She is physically very mature at a much earlier age than my other daughter who is a few years older than her. In fact we often get asked if they are twins as they are physically similar despite their being an age gap.

Is this the storm before the calm or will we have this every month?

Tisntme Fri 02-Nov-12 22:07:38

it is hard when the subject of your professional expertise turns up having a tantrum in your living room. Been there and got the t-shirt for it wink

what sort of professionals are you thinking? obviously there's only so much you can post, and without wanting to over-analyse or out anyone, I'm wondering whether you're thinking medical, mental health, behavioural, or what. TBH your gut feeling is more often than not right. The hormones comment wasn't flippant btw. If you read it all back, sounding like a preteen with fairly significant mood swings, it's not impossible to find that maybe a sudden influx of hormonal activity has made other anxieties and predispositions come out more than before. Is this all quite recent?

Arisbottle Fri 02-Nov-12 22:09:10

TFM I am also a little concerned which is why I gave her the choice of schools. I didn't feel that I could say to her that you cannot attend the school in which I teach, when her stepbrother went to that school and her older sister is currently there. She must be aware that she is different to the other children and I don't want to emphasise that further by saying you have to go to a different school. Whenever we talk about going up to secondary school she is always very excited about joining us.

I do not teach much lower school so our paths would not cross much in school for the first few years at least.

Arisbottle Fri 02-Nov-12 22:13:37

She has always been quite highly strung, even as a baby. We found her very difficult when she was about three/ four and DH and I asked our health visitor if we could go to parenting classes only to be told that they were not meant for people like us! Our GP also said the same. So we read lots of books, I exploited my contacts to get advice and we got through it. Around this time I also decided to stop my previous rather stressful job which required me to be away from home a fair bit, I think that had an impact.

But over the last year or so she has got worse and very personal in her attacks on me.

Arisbottle Fri 02-Nov-12 22:16:11

I don't know whether she needs to see a counsellor, she is so good at school that she does not want me to speak to her teacher and I respect that. So I would be happy to pay for a private counsellor rather than go through her school. I am not sure if she needs some anger management. When she gets angry she huffs like a horse.

When she calms down she usually apologises and says to me that she just gets angry. She can snap at her brothers and sisters as well, even the animals!

smugmumofboys Fri 02-Nov-12 22:18:06

We've had similar with ten year-old DS1 which also included threats of self harm. We went to GP and he referred us to CAMHS. Like you, we weren't sure if it was just 'normal', albeit extreme, hormonal stuff. GP was great, as were CAMHS and at no point did they dismiss us as over anxious parents.

Incidentally, me and DH are both teachers and I've put my school down as our first choice. All the more reason to get it sorted before he moves up to secondary.

Arisbottle Fri 02-Nov-12 22:18:43

TFM I don't think we have a choice now about schools unless we go private as she has missed the grammar school entrance and her application for a school place has gone in. I am not sure if the deadline has gone.

DH has wondered allowed if an independent school with firm discipline but also an avenue to allow her the ability to express her creative and sporting side would be good for her. I have said no to this, but it is a financial possibility.

Arisbottle Fri 02-Nov-12 22:21:30

There have never been any threats of self harm. DH who is not a teacher is very reluctant to get CAMHS involved as he is worried that we are labelling her and that she will grow out of it. I think that CAMHS should be able to work that out for themselves.

smugmumofboys Fri 02-Nov-12 22:26:52

I can understand his caution but we got to the end of our tether and called the GP. So far DH has been to CAMHS and they will be contacting his school. DS has an appointment with them in December.

I was very clear to the psych I spoke to at length on the phone that we simply want to help DS to manage his temper and to not be so angry and unhappy with his life. Much of his unhappiness seems to be related to sibling rivalry (DS2 is 8 and a people-pleasing sweetie) but his reactions are just so extreme. And draining.

Your GP might be a good sounding board? Ours was lovely.

Arisbottle Fri 02-Nov-12 22:30:24

Our GP did not want to know that last time that we spoke to him , she said he did not want DD to become part of the system because of a few tantrums.

DD would be heartbroken if her school were contacted by CAMHS. She is one of the golden children at school and she would not want to feel like that was being threatened. She takes it very personally if she thinks that someone is making out that she is naughty.

Funnylittleturkishdelight Fri 02-Nov-12 22:39:33

I think she sounds like she needs some therapy to talk through the way she deals with her anger- and for you to go with her for some sessions so you can talk through what has happened/how to stop it happening together.

smugmumofboys Fri 02-Nov-12 22:40:15

I'm hoping that DS won't know that they've been contacted.

He is also great at school (although not quite 'golden'). I still have reservations about going to CAMHS tbh but we just didn't know where else to turn. I'm hoping it does burn itself out.

Arisbottle Fri 02-Nov-12 23:27:12

I hope everything works out smugmum, thankyou for your advice.

smugmumofboys Fri 02-Nov-12 23:50:45

Thanks

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