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Behaviour - is it just my child?

(11 Posts)
monkeytree Tue 13-Dec-16 16:10:03

My young dd is very bright and very strong, tall but lean her language for a three year old is fantastic - she doesn't say I did p.e she says I played on the apparatus for example

I have just had to extract her from a Christmas nursery party because of her behaviour.

It was held later in the day which did not stand her in good stead; I roused her from a sleep so that she didn't miss the fun.

Anyhow, she went on the rampage - snatching, about every ten minutes just taking a ball, doll you name it from another child. The other children didn't seem to stand a chance she has a firm grip and strong. Then the very small bouncy castle one of the mums commented dd deliberately jumped on him I was trying to staple a DIY party hat together and had been watching her up to that very moment, also there was a play leader near by. Other child bursts into tears. I did see this other kid shove her earlier on but his parent obviously didn't witness this event. More snatching. Then dd appeared to be playing musical bumps with the play leader (only 8 or so kids) so one of the other play leaders shows me her wedding photos (with one eye on dd, thought she'll be fine she's being supervised and looks like she's listening to the playleader. The next moment dd has apparently shoved one of the other children over and they're crying I made dd apologise to other girl feeling guilty because I was temporarily distracted. Dd also tried to jump over the side of the bouncy castle. There was arts and crafts laid on but she didn't want to do it. Anyway I ended up extracting her screaming and shouting (dd not me) with that feeling that eyes were boring into my back.

I've not had any really bad reports from pre-school but I feel as if dd has gained herself a reputation and it doesn't make me feel good. I already feel on the periphery of things as I don't live in the village and my elder dd goes to a different school. I know they arranged a night out and didn't invite me, I probably wasn't the only one who wasn't invited but I tried to make us feel more in with things by doing some fundraising and attending a committee meeting etc. The truth is I just haven't seemed to click very well with any of the other mums. There are one or two that I do get along with but who aren't always there and who have more demur children, I think any of them bar one or two of the boys is more demur than my dd.
I'm told this will stand dd in good stead as she gets older but right now I can't see it. I have evidence that I am not a bad parent; dd1 is excelling in all areas, drama, nice friends, fairly sporty, arty and just passed for a top grammar school despite being youngest in the class, I use this in my defence but wonder how to manage dd2.
It sounds terrible but I hate going to these stay and play groups/soft play etc, I find them a total nightmare much easier to drop dd off at pre-school and it's not for lack of trying but spending your whole time refereeing and apologising the whole time is not my idea of fun!
I would like to hear from you if you can relate, I don't want a critical analysis of my parenting, I think I do a good job; the best I can do anyway.
Also it's a horrible feeling when you feel you don't fit in isn't it? I have a few good friends but seem to prefer my own company; writing doing art or another project I'm working on but still I hate that feeling of not being accepted.

monkeytree Tue 13-Dec-16 19:29:13

Must be just my dd then x

carriebradshawshandbag Tue 13-Dec-16 19:33:29

I can imagine this is tough.

What sort of disciplining do you use? With respect to the snatching etc? Also how is she at home / with her sister? How is she at pre school?

Crumbs1 Tue 13-Dec-16 19:39:09

The answer is not to try and put a square peg in a round hole. Don't attend parties and groups you (and probably the child) hate for fear of missing out. Do stuff that is gentle with her. Go for lovely walks together to collect things like leaves and feathers to make pictures with, go swimming together, go to cinema together. Soft play areas are ghastly. Maybe consider a more structured activity for her such as learning violin (appeals to brighter children and can meet less PTA tiger mums). Local authorities often have weekend music centres.
If she is being a bullish and overbearing child because she can't cope with setting then don't force the setting on her.

Don't make excuses for behaviour - set expectations and sanctions and stick to them. Do not compare the two children. They are different.

monkeytree Tue 13-Dec-16 20:06:30

Wise words crumbs. No I no longer attend soft play we've had some awful experiences there which is a shame because we would meet some lovely people there. Sister is 7 years older and usually gives her what she wants; I always thought this was a plus because I don't have constant bickering. Yes I do the walks and this can work well, she loves to feed ducks and go out on her scooter. She has just turned 3 so a little young to learn a technical instrument. Pre school seem very good. Snatching issues there but lots of positives too (I did worry initially she might be expelled) but no not any really awful reports. Went through a biting phase but seems to have come out of that. She can easily dominate other children it is only some of the bigger boys that will stand up to her really. Tried swimming she kept getting out of the pool and running along the edge but she is due to start structured swim sessions after Christmas so we'll see how that goes. Only plus is that we no longer have to attend the stay and play group (was going for dd/me social interaction etc.) as dd will go to pre-school more regularly after Christmas. Tiredness of course does seem to play a major factor. Just felt as if other parents were judging today felt as if their eyes were boring into my back as we exited. We don't have to worry about party invites or play dates because we never get any! Just worried dd is getting a bad reputation there particularly if she goes to the school that is attached. You want your child to have friends, play dates etc don't you. It doesn't help that I haven't managed to really gel with anyone there. The social aspect is stressing me out ( I am a writer and spend most of my time on my own).

UnicornInDMboots Mon 19-Dec-16 10:50:31

Your DD sounds very bright indeed!!
It could well be that her behaviour at the party was boredom. If there isn't enough to stimulate them at their level, bright children can easily become boisterous and behave inappropriate (I'm a teacher, and specialise in behaviour and have seen this happen often ). Again soft play if there isn't a structure of something she can actually do to stimulate her she may well have been seeing it as an opportunity to let off some steam as she couldn't see something constructive .

As PP has said gentle activities with a clear goal for her - so if you go on a nature walk with her you could make her a little check list of things she needs to find to keep her focussed rather than running off.

Some baby groups I have been to (I know your DD isn't a baby but mine is still young so don't know about older ones ) have offered parents to take their children to the level up class even when their child has been too young. For example at a music class some of the babies who had already worked out how to play the drums where the rest of ours were still eating maracas , seemed bored and disinterested so the teacher offered the class up despite them being too young. Could you see if any classes or groups could do this if you thought a higher age class would suit her better - if it did work out the benefit would be maybe she could make friends with some older kids who could play on her level.

As PP has said you do need to be consistent with behaviour as I'm sure you will need to go to events whereby she might be tempted to behave like this. If she understands what apparatus is I am sure she can understand basic cause and effect... so if you push another child this will be the consequence. If she pushes another child in such a I wojld be tempted to give her one more chance after a warning and then if behaviour continues, take her away which is what you did but maybe give her less chances? At this age it can very swiftly become a game for some children of how much they can get away with and I always find its easier to take the lead and just take that option away. She won't like it and you may well have tantrums but she needs firm boundaries of what will happen .

My final point before I stop rambling and leave you alone!!! Is that your DD is young still. When children right up to the end of primary age at times get overexcited or overstimulated like you have described, even if they have a very good grasp of language and understanding, to be blunt... lose the plot! In heightened states of emotion, be that upset or excitement , they lose the ability to follow often simple verbal instructions or cues. Yes she needs to apologise however it is always best to do this if possible when your child has calmed down. Talking to them at that point won't work as they can't follow (even if they look like they are following what's being said!) If it's a party and she needs to apologise there anf then fair enough but make sure your instruction is 'you need to say sorry now please" . You can discuss the behaviour later when she is away and calm.

I hope this hadn't come across like I'm telling you what to do or being judgy! Absolutely not meant that way! As much as anything I'm trying to say what I can before DD wakes from her nap!!!

monkeytree Mon 19-Dec-16 14:32:24

Thank you Unicorn that was really kind of you to take the time to reply. It was an interesting post and I will re-read it and take on board your comments so thank you x

minipie Mon 19-Dec-16 14:54:13

Is this her first term of pre-school (guess so if she just turned 3)?

My DD was exhausted at this time last year after her first term of pre school. Like yours she is a bright and physical child and not at all demure!! She behaved badly too and I was despairing.

However a year later things are mostly much improved. First, I have learned to predict when she will be tired and not plan to do things then, or make sure she has a good nap before we go. Second, she is obviously older, she gets less tired and is more in control of herself when she is tired. We still have awful weeks when she is ill for example and gets really really exhausted, but mostly all the snatching type stuff is behind us (touch wood!)

minipie Mon 19-Dec-16 14:55:39

Sorry that was all me me me. My point was don't despair, it's probably a lot down to tiredness (it sounds like she does everything at full pelt like mine) and she will very likely grow out of it as she gets older.

UnicornInDMboots Mon 19-Dec-16 16:16:32

That's a pleasure it was a bit garbled but limited time, very tired and broken phone were all working against me !!!! If you need me to make more sense please let me know !!!

monkeytree Tue 20-Dec-16 20:56:28

Thank you mini pie that is very reassuring to hear x

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