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6yo very hard on himself, starting to hit himself :(

(12 Posts)
GrumpyOldTroll Wed 18-Jan-17 20:40:16

My 6yo has been occasionally down on himself for a few months now - I spoke with friends and a few said theirs were the same and it was normal and not to worry. DH also spoke with a child psychologist friend who said it was not unusual, and to carry on praising the processes rather than results. But he seems to be getting harder and harder on himself, gets frustrated when he doesn't achieve what he wants/doesn't win (we put no pressure on him at all and focus on participating not winning at the various sports he does, and neither DH or I are competitive), tells us that he is rubbish and that no one likes him. He's actually the opposite - very capable, very likeable and popular. He also says he looks rubbish. sad

More concerning now, in the last week, he has started to hit himself on his arm, hard enough that he leaves a mark (does soon fade).
Is this within the realms of normal?

The only thing I can think of which may have triggered this is starting a new sport where all the others were a few years older than him, and he is obviously not as capable as them yet. He's stopped that class now at his request, but is still saying how rubbish he is.
Advice welcome please.

uhoh2016 Wed 18-Jan-17 20:54:48

My 6yo is exactly the same always down on himself although he doesn't hit himself he has zero confidence in himself. I'm hoping it's a phase.

GrumpyOldTroll Wed 18-Jan-17 21:47:46

Thank you for replying, uhoh.
Sorry you have a hard-on-himself 6yo too. I am a bit comforted at least that they aren't completely alone!
Mine actually has many moments of being confident and proud though - and then he remembers that he's meant to be being down on himself and then he says he's rubbish/doesn't look good. Here's hoping it's a short phase.

elQuintoConyo Wed 18-Jan-17 21:56:47

Omfg you have just described our 5yo ds. We put him in judo classes, at school so he recognises most of the other students, mixed-age, just so he could build confidence. But he hates it and today was his last day.

He'll also make a noise when he is angry, like he is going to explode. And hits his head with his fists.

We haven't looked into it yet. Like uhoh2016 we hoped he'd grow out of it...

Shurelyshomemistake Wed 18-Jan-17 22:49:56

Describing my DS6, too. He is a puzzle as my other child is hugely confident. No tips but watching with interest!

GrumpyOldTroll Thu 19-Jan-17 11:55:06

Thank you both. I am feeling like it is at least normal then, or at least not uncommon, BUT, I'd really love some guidance re how to help them feel better. elQ, I forgot to say in my OP that my DS also does the noise thing like he's going to explode - he makes himself shake (mainly just his head), clenches his fists and his face goes red from the effort of it all. Horrible to see. sad

GrumpyOldTroll Thu 19-Jan-17 18:00:03


user1474026214 Sun 22-Jan-17 10:11:08

Can you find any books about this? Something like Bag of Worries but maybe a bit more specific to lacking self confidence?

user1474026214 Sun 22-Jan-17 10:14:50

I also wonder about school at this age. They are still so young but are pushed so much to sit still, read and write when many, especially summer born boys, aren't ready. Is school quite pressured at the moment?

GrumpyOldTroll Mon 23-Jan-17 12:49:34

Thanks, user. I would love some recommendations as to something specific.
He is home educated and has never been to school. We are relaxed and there is no pressure.
I actually wonder if a good chunk of his upset moments are a bit of an act, like he is fishing for compliments, but then he forgets and gets all worked up anyway. Anyone else identify with this? He is actually excellent at so many things, even when he's the newest/youngest, but still says he feels he is rubbish. We are not shy to praise him in the first place though, so it's not as if this was ever lacking. We also work hard at telling him life is not a competition and at his age he should just be having fun.

My husband spoke to a couple of parents at our son's class on Saturday and they both said their same-age sons were the same, and not their older daughters - it seems to be totally just a boy thing at this age.

GrumpyOldTroll Mon 23-Jan-17 18:28:50


GrumpyOldTroll Wed 01-Feb-17 13:51:38

I came across this article and found it absolutely spot on for our sons - right down to the growing pains. I feel a bit better about how my child is doing after reading it. And actually, since I posted first, he's really chilled out, for the most part. hth

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