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sometimes when I reprimand my six year old he says I am a useless piece of shit

(46 Posts)
iamworkingonit Fri 24-Jun-16 06:52:36

My son is an articulate and fairly sensitive child. He can come across and outgoing and confident. He is one of the tallest and biggest children in his class and is quite often the instigator of ideas for games and ideas.
He is warm and loving and I love him to bits.
Recently when I tell him off or lose my temper he has come back with 'I am just a useless piece of shit'. I have talked to him about this and asked him what he means. He is not really able to articulate what he means. Although it has been tempting to say to him that is not true I have attempted to give him a time to reconsider or explore what he means by this. I am deeply upset when he says this.
What do other people think................

LIZS Fri 24-Jun-16 07:05:34

Where's he learnt it from? You need to reiterate that it is unacceptable and offer an alternative phrase to focus on what he is actually upset by so you can help.

Roomba Fri 24-Jun-16 07:07:12

Your SIX year old says this? About himself? Where has he heard this expression?

If I've got this scenario right, you need to first and foremost reassure your son he is NOT a useless piece of shit. I cannot believe anyone would not do this and would just let him 'have time to reconsider'. He is asking for your reassurance here!

Secondly - you need to find out who has been telling him this! Six year olds don't just come out with this - he has been told this by someone or has been exposed to inappropriate films/TV/similar. Unless he has heard someone in your household calling someone else a useless piece of shit? hmm

ImperialBlether Fri 24-Jun-16 07:09:26

Read the Op! He's saying SHE is!

Where has he heard this?

Roomba Fri 24-Jun-16 07:39:01

I have read the OP, thanks.

In the first post OP quotes her son as saying 'I am a piece of shit'. Not 'You are a piece of shit'.

Perhaps you could clarify here, OP?

iamworkingonit Fri 24-Jun-16 07:43:27

I have very definitely not led my child to think that I think there is anything useless or unworthy about him. As I said I love him to bits. I tell him this and he knows I love him.
As (unfortunately) and this is one of the things that makes be apprehensive about posting on mumsnet there are people who are only too quick to make sweeping assumptions. I would never in a million years reinforce my child's statement. What I said although perhaps not clearly enough was that I want him to discuss his feelings as opposed to dismissing them and not exploring them. I am seeking constructive ideas and feedback.

FinallyMadeIt Fri 24-Jun-16 07:45:16

Maybe you should stop using bad language or tell those who do use bad language to stop.

He is 6 and he shouldn't be speaking like that.

iamworkingonit Fri 24-Jun-16 07:50:46

I don't and would never use language like this.I regulate and monitor ipad use etc as I sound I am after constructive feedback not sweeping assumptions.

QuiteLikely5 Fri 24-Jun-16 07:55:20

Tell your son he must not swear and give him a punishment every time he does is. No point in dwelling on it for too long. Bad behaviour = consequences is all he needs to know

Penfold007 Fri 24-Jun-16 08:13:39

Your DS has been exposed to that language and phrase. Who has previously told him he is a 'useless piece of shit'? That's where your problem lies.

BertrandRussell Fri 24-Jun-16 08:17:02

Where did he hear that? Who has said it to him?

iamworkingonit Fri 24-Jun-16 08:19:49

No adult I know would ever speak like that to my son. I have just spoken to him and he says he thinks he heard it on Scooby Doo.. I have told him never to say that again and we have agreed he will say 'I am not proud of myself at the moment' when he is this upset about something.

SoupDragon Fri 24-Jun-16 08:25:43

Your DS has been exposed to that language and phrase. Who has previously told him he is a 'useless piece of shit'? That's where your problem lies.


And he absolutely didn't hear it on Scooby Doo! He is either mistaken or doesn't want to tell you.

Penfold007 Fri 24-Jun-16 08:49:59

Scooby Doo!!!!!! No he didn't hear it there and he's avoiding telling you who said it to him. What is his family set up?

BertrandRussell Fri 24-Jun-16 09:51:45

He absolutely did not hear it on Scooby-Doo.

Your priority is to find out who said it to him. Honestly. It's really important.

Scarydinosaurs Fri 24-Jun-16 09:53:28

You can't fix this until you work out where he has heard this.

FeckinCrutches Fri 24-Jun-16 09:57:27

Well he's heard it from somewhere and you need to find out.

Kleinzeit Fri 24-Jun-16 10:44:19

He only says it when you reprimand him? Then I would say “You made a mistake (or made a bad decision or did something wrong). We all make mistakes(…) sometimes. And now you are putting it right by (saying sorry, picking up the clothes, doing the homework, sharing your sweets, whatever). So that makes you a good person.”

When you reprimand him do give him a positive way forward so he isn’t left feeling he’s done something terrible and let you down and there’s nothing he can do about it except feel bad. Even if it’s just saying sorry to you, then you can say warmly “That was a heartfelt apology and I know you’ll do whatever-the-right-thing-is next time”. Because even if he seems confident and outgoing he is only six and a serious reprimand from mum or even really her losing her temper can be pretty scary to a six year old!

KingLooieCatz Fri 24-Jun-16 12:27:40

As above, my DS gets plenty of reprimands and reacts badly but he has never used language like that. I think if he had heard it he would. It is not normal language for a child of that age. I suspect you don't want to share your thoughts on where it might have come from but you know as well as we do that it was not Scooby Doo. I'd be digging into that at a quiet and loving moment. You must have some idea who there is in his life who might have used this language?

KingLooieCatz Fri 24-Jun-16 12:29:03

FWIW though it sounds like they way you are handling it is fine, or at least it's what I would do i.e. I'm not into brushing things under the carpet that need to be explored and understood.

iamworkingonit Fri 24-Jun-16 17:15:12

I spoke to a friend who works as a play therapist who thinks I am handling things well. I have absolutely no idea who the phrase comes from and if it didn't come from Scooby Doo I do not have some secret of violent adult in my life who would be saying this..........Honest!
The point is I asked for help in good faith about a serious and upsetting problem instead I got assumptions and judgey nasty comments from people including insinuating:
a. I speak to my child like this
b. I have some secret and potentially violent adult in my life who speaks to my child like this
c. I am fantasizing about what is said possibly in children's programmes
Has anyone out there ever honestly ever watched Scooby Doo. I have.
One respondent ( a not very clever troll) calling him/herself @ i'm working on it@ even used a name I used in the past
Shame on you.

iamworkingonit Fri 24-Jun-16 17:17:55

And by the way I have reported ' I'm Working On It, so if you intent to continue you sad career in
trolling I suggest you hide behind another alias.

meowli Fri 24-Jun-16 17:23:38

Sadly, It wouldn't surprise me if he had heard that phrase used by another child at school.

TheUnseenAcademic Fri 24-Jun-16 17:24:38

Could it be from another child?
Anyway, sounds like you're doing the right thing- maybe try more positive phrasing as an alternative too- e.g. 'I'll think more next time' or 'I'll try my best to do better' etc

downright Fri 24-Jun-16 17:25:09

I don't get the pearl clutching about the word "shit"

If you really don't know where he's heard it, and you don't think there's anyone actively saying this to him ie calling him a piece of shit then firstly I would be very firm about him finding some other way to express himself. More gently I would address the self esteem issues separately.

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