overly emotional 5 year old girl...(9 Posts)
Hey new to the site and need a bit of advice...
We have a 5 year old girl (nearly 6), and she seems really overly emotional! She crys about everything- crys if she can't get her t-shirt on, if she puts her shoes on the wrong feet,if she doesn't win,if she doesn't get to sit by her friend at school,if she's not first in line... every little thing it's cry first..
Don't get me wrong I don't mean she throws a tantrum or anything like that..
She's not spoilt by any means and we even do things as a family where she doesn't win etc to try and help!
Is there something im missing- its been going on for a long time now it's not a new thing! or something else we could try ?
Any help gratefully recieved
(is there a 'welcome' type thread that I can introduce myself on...feel a bit rude joining and jumping straight in with a question )
How do you respond when she cries over something minor?
We have tried different reactions... she doesn't like being called a baby-so tried telling her that it makes her look like a baby..
We have tried ignoring her but that made it worse..
Where party games are involved- I've tried taking her to one side and saying- 'if your going to play and cry because you don't win, then maybe you shouldn't play, maybe be a helper instead... but of course she's a child she wants to play the games and really enjoys playing them.
She may just be a sensitive child. If she's not spoiled or tantrumming, she may just feel things more deeply than her peers. And that's okay. In the long term she will probably grow up to be an adult who's very tuned-in to how people are feeling, aware of what's going on around her, and good at anticipating problems before they arise.
If that's who she is, I don't think telling her she's acting like a baby will be much help. I was a sensitive child and my mother often told me off for being "too sensitive". This simply made me feel like there was something wrong with me without reducing my sensitivity one bit.
I think you're more on the right track with giving her options for managing her sensitivity, like being a helper instead of joining in. You could also try giving her brief validation before turning her attention away. "It's disappointing when you can't/don't [XYZ], isn't it? Maybe next time you'll be able to [XYZ]. Right, shall we go see what's going on over there?" I think it's important to hit a tone where you sound sympathetic, but not like it's huge deal.
I have a sensitive son (3.5years old) and this is how I approach it when he gets upset.
I cried easily as a child, I haven't grown up terrible, manipulative, or anything else. Don't be angry with her. Some of my saddest childhood memories are of my parents trying to make me stop crying by being angry or by belittling me (such as calling me a baby ...). They only ever succeeded in prolonging the tears as I was so ashamed.
Tears are a sign of emotion, please don't punish or make fun of her emotions. Says something like "you seem upset". Acknowledge. Never judge. Give her a hug. Read "how to talk so kids will listen". Understanding your child is the best gift you can give them.
Teach her how to calm and comfort herself, with practical techniques such as deep breathing, basic visualisation tools (breathing to the shape of a square, counting down from 10 eye), and lots of support, praise for using the tools and making tiny steps forwards. Like any skill it takes lots of practice to learn.
No belittling or shouting, which will heighten the panic and anxiety of not being able to stop / prevent self from crying. Kinda defeats the purpose, and will leave your Dd feeling embarrassed and like a failure, which is not what you want to be teaching!
I remember going to a wedding reception as a young child - the children who'd been present during the day had balloon animals but those of us who only came in the evening didn't, or maybe mine had burst or something? I don't remember the precise cause for tears - something dry trivial, from an adult point of view. What I do remember, very vividly, was my father (who had a horrible temper) sitting there smiling but clearly simmering, and my mother hissing through gritted teeth that everyone was staring and I was letting the side down, and just sitting at that bloody dinner table feeling hot and ashamed and miserable, but totally unable to stop crying, and hating myself for it. I can't have been much older than five. Flipping awful memory.
Now, 30 years later, I have learned to use my breathing to control myself (and also tend not to weep about balloons, even when heavily pregnant ) - teaching your daughter to do this would perhaps be an idea. Try getting her to take a deep breath in, then make a long 'haaaaaaa' sound on the out breath - and smile as she does. They're called magic breaths, which might also appeal to her. Get her to practice at a non emotional time, don't mention it's to stop her crying, then when you see her start to get emotional, leap in and do some magic breaths with her. Might help.
Thank you feel much better after reading these...I guess I let things get to me a bit!
Love the magic breath technic sounds right up her street will definately be trying this
Thanks again xx
(Must wanted to add that we never got cross with her- I knew that wouldn't help and make her feel worse )
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