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unusual 3 year old behaviour?

(18 Posts)
satbatcat Wed 18-May-16 10:13:20

I've Name Changed for this as it may identify my DD.

I'm getting increasingly concerned that my DD is having some difficulties, shes 3 and 1 month. I think if i list what concerns me then it might be easier.

She's at nursery, has been since march, but doesn't interact with the other children.
She dislikes other children completely, we took her to a soft play and she wanted to leave because there were too many children there.
She's very sensitive to noise, hates the vacuum cleaner and will hide in her room when i vacuum.
She gets upset if i'm being silly and changing the names of things, like Lidl, if i pronounce it LieDell she gets upset to the point of tears.
She gets very upset if we try to correct the way she believes something is named, eg: if a book was called The Magical fairy and she believed it was called The Magic Fairy, if we try to tell her the proper name she gets upset and almost cries.

Most worrying, yesterday i'd planned a movie and duvet day. we got popcorn, crisps, cake and all manner of awful rubbish to eat and watch movies with. she decided that she didn't want to, she went up to her room and stayed there from around 11am until 5.30pm. we only saw her when she popped down for drinks etc. we tried to bring her down but she got upset.

The best way to describe it is that shes like a teenager and yet only 3. she cries very easily, hates being told no, can become inconsolable over insignificant things like not liking the food we've made her, which we always just say never mind and don't make a fuss about, and yet big things she takes in her stride. We went to the city a few days ago to go to Mcdonalds but it was closed, she didn't bat an eyelid, even though we only have one every couple of months and she was looking forward to it. Which reminds me:

On the bus to the city as i was talking to her she kept repeatedly telling me to leave her alone and not to talk to her. she does this at other times as well. or she says to stop looking at her.

This has turned into a long post and theres probably more besides this. but does anything ring any alarms for anyone?

Thanks in advance for any replies.

minipie Wed 18-May-16 11:33:40

I am no expert but would say there are some things in your post which sound very normal for a 3 yo (acting like a teen, crying over seemingly tiny things, telling you to leave her alone). However there are other things which are worth investigating further, in particular not interacting with other children.

The softplay - do you think she really dislikes being around other children, or is it lots of noise and busyness that she dislikes?

Have you raised any concerns with nursery and if so what do they say?

satbatcat Wed 18-May-16 11:41:15

we asked her about the soft play and she said there were too many children. She kind of stood in the ball pit and watched everyone running and having fun but didn't move, just stood there. eventually she cried and said she wanted to go home.

Nursery have said that she doesn't interact with the kids at all, she will stand near them and play but will do her own thing near the other kids rather than do things with the other children.

superwormissuperstrong Wed 18-May-16 11:45:21

Sound like the behaviours of my 3 year old DD also but I have never thought there was any need to be concerned.
They are learning about the world and developing their own views - sometimes they like something and then in the next breath they don't like it.
It's a time of boundaries and learning the 'rules' so yes will get cross if we then bend the rules at different times. Example - we insist on correct pronunciation of words so yes she does get cross if we then use the 'wrong' name for a toy or something as a joke. Yet other jokes she can understand and join in with straightaway.
I'm not worrying - it takes time to get the hang of the complexity of social interactions and she's only 3 - not even at school yet...

minipie Wed 18-May-16 12:17:12

Is she quite shy? I just noticed she's only been at nursery for 2 months, so may not feel comfortable with the children there yet if she is a shy person.

satbatcat Wed 18-May-16 12:22:06

shes not shy when with us, but more so when she isn't. she likes adults more than children and happily has cuddles from the nursery staff.

I'm actually glad i wrote all this out tbh, it's made me think i'm worrying for nothing.

JustABigBearAlan Wed 18-May-16 12:53:12

My ds was quite unsure around children right up until he started school. He's still on the shy side but has made friends now and is much better socially. He was always (and still is) a right chatterbox at home and with other adults -it's just his peers he's more cautious of.

So I wouldn't say that not making friends at age 3 in itself is anything to worry about. However if you are concerned that there are other behaviours that worry you - like perhaps the staying in her room thing and not interacting with the family- then it doesn't hurt to mention it to someone. What do nursery say?

lenibose Wed 18-May-16 13:00:38

My DS hated soft play. Still does. Was a very shy baby, hated loud noise, loud children. I had to socialise him in a very gentle manner. He was, as other mums would say, 'sensitive'. He is still sensitive at 4.5. Won't watch Frozen because he doesn't like the sad bits etc. Is a very well behaved child who likes sticking to rules and gets upset if they are broken. He has always preferred the company of adults (who are less noisy and more predictable) than children. But again, we've gradually taken him to groups/performances/stuff where I can break him in gently and now he's a very confident preschooler. Has loads of friends. Still says that his preschool is 'noisy' but he just goes to a quiet corner and reads a book. The only thing that struck me in your recounting was the staying in her room all day- that's very unusual.

satbatcat Wed 18-May-16 13:02:30

i havent mentioned the staying in her room to the nursery, maybe i should?
I can kind of understand her doing it, she has her toys up there, her bed, it's a cosier and nicer room for her than maybe the living room with all of the corners and things she can't touch.

I've just taken her to nursery and she cried again, it's 99% of drop offs when she cries, I try to reassure her that i'll be back at 4pm and try to get her excited about going but she still cries.

but then she never really gets "Excited" about anything, i've never seen her jump around and run about like i would expect an excited child to? even her birthday and going to the zoo, the seaside, mcdonalds, wherever, it's all met with a stoic "yes" or "that will be fun won't it?"

phoolani Wed 18-May-16 13:03:20

I wouldn't panic yet, all 3 year olds are bloody odd in their own sweet way. I know mine were. Ds had a noise sensitivity thing going on and would just cry at parties and want to go home as soon as the volume ramped up. I don't think it's particularly unusual and ds has grown out of it now which I don't think is unusual either.

Sparklycat Wed 18-May-16 13:04:35

Have you spoken to a health visitor/doctor? Some of the things you've said make me think you need to investigate further.

satbatcat Wed 18-May-16 13:06:42

the staying her room, it's not just that day either. somedays we dont really go out, the weathers bad or there's things need doing or what have you. I'll get her paints ouit, play doh, sands alive, the chalk boards, the drawing easel, the lego or wnything else she wants and all she wants is to go upstairs.

There are also times when i say,
"Would you like to go to the seaside today or the play ground?" and she'll refuse, she'd rather go upstairs.

I wish i could pinpoint a time or an occurance when something bad has happened for her to act this way. maybe if a child had been mean to her, or something awful had happened outside of the house, but i can't. we've done all we can to try and make her early years happy and filled with memories.

It's all rambling of a buffoon and i apologise most profusely.

Pagwatch Wed 18-May-16 13:08:38

I would go and have a chat with your GP and /or the nursery.

There are a few things which I personally would want to check out.

And that has nothing to do with 'panic'. Acting as if a child having some issues is an utter disaster worth panicking about isn't helpful.
If a child has some issues its better for everyone to get some support and advice early.

satbatcat Wed 18-May-16 13:08:51

I havent spoken to a Dr or HV as yet, it's why i posted here tbh to see if there is anything ringing bells for others.

Pagwatch Wed 18-May-16 13:11:48


I understand that impulse but to be honest, the things you have described are impossible to understand properly without actually experiencing them in context.
You could be describing my DD who has zero issue but you could equally be describing my son who has ASD.

It's far better to chat with someone who can ask you sensible questions while your child is present.

satbatcat Wed 18-May-16 13:27:34

thanks all, My DDs nursery is right next door to where the HV are based around here, i'll pop in and see if i can have a chat.

BotBotticelli Wed 18-May-16 21:30:08

Agree with others - most of what you've written seems to exactly describe my 3yo boy. The bonkers meltdowns about things being said wrong or not done exactly as e would like are standard here.

He is not bothered about noisy places with lots of kids because he is very boisterous. But my friend has a very sensitive 3yl who just cries around his mums legs at soft play so I think that's pretty average behaviour too.

Spending all day alone in her room seems quite unusual to me though....I think most children in my experience seem to want/desire/crave company, and audience, validation. Would maybe mention that to HV

waitingforsomething Thu 19-May-16 01:59:50

She sounds a bit like my 3 and a half year old. It's only im the last month or so that she's started to enjoy pre-school and talk about other children. She hates it when things are not as usual and she is a sensitive soul. she sounds normal to me - they're all different and it just sounds like a personality thing smile

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