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Concerned that DD's behaviour is linked to tension in the house.

(4 Posts)
FlatsInDagenham Sun 02-Mar-14 18:58:16

My 5.5yo DD has become very challenging lately. What is worrying me is that she might be expressing unhappiness. DH and I are going through a bad patch, neither of us are happy. She has to my shame, witnessed us being snappy with each other. She has always been very sensitive to people's moods.

These are her current behaviours:

-Not doing what she's told until she's been asked several times and we've got cross / threatened punishment.

-If we tell her to stop doing something she carries on, sometimes staring us in the eyes with a defiant glint, again until we've had to get cross.

-Constantly wanting to climb on both of us, sit on our knees, pull us around etc.

-Tries to control her little sister (age 23months), make her go where she wants her to go, or stops sister from playing with things, picks her up and carries her around despite being told again and again and again not to pick her up. (Should add that a lot of the time she is wonderful with her sister.)

-Absolutely will not wipe herself when she goes to the toilet. Her bum is constantly red and sore because she point blank refuses to keep herself clean.

-Has stopped asking for things politely or using please / thank you without prompting. She used to be really good at this.

-When adults are talking together at a mealtime she will sing loudly or tap the table with a spoon or shove her plate / cup around the table to make as much noise and disruption as possible. If we ignore this she just gets louder and louder until it's intolerable.

-Speaks insolently, rudely and deliberately to upset then claims she didn't know it was wrong (despite being told before).

She was never difficult as a toddler, has always been a joy to be around but just recently she has become very difficult and it does seem (last few days) to be constant.

I'm really concerned that she's reacting to tension in the house. DH thinks it's normal pushing the boundaries type of behaviour.

How do I deal with it?

antsypants Sun 02-Mar-14 20:21:32

I have to say, my DD who is 4.5 has started doing a lot of these lately, she doesn't have a sibling, but the insolence, the disruption, the clinginess and ignoring requests are all common with her at the moment... There is no tension in the home as it is just me and her, me and her dad are best friends, so no romantic difficulties.

So perhaps it is a bit of both, some of it normal challenging behaviour, some a reaction to how you are all feeling

TheGreatHunt Sun 02-Mar-14 20:36:51

I would say that she is picking up on it. My ds certainly does - I could recognise his facial expressions as being my own!

It was a wake up call so DH and I sat down and tried to work through our issues. We try and apologise to each other if we argue in front of the DC but try not to argue where we can.

Daisy2014 Mon 03-Mar-14 14:13:01

My ds has similar behaviours but is 2y 7 m old. He cries a lot and has temper tantrums about holding hands to cross the road etc. Mealtimes are mostly difficult occasions. Sleeping is a problem too. He has started waking about 5.30. Not good with a new baby. He is mature for his age and manages well with the unguarded fire and unfenced stairs. Are we expecting too much of him though? Is he finding things stressful because of our expectations. or is he just a normal toddler..???

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