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World's stroppiest six year old

(18 Posts)
Newyearnewbrain Mon 20-Feb-17 12:10:13

Anyone else got one? DD1 is amazing in so many ways but she has perfected the art of tantruming. I had hoped this would have stopped by now but no, she's just thrown another wobbler over homework.

Punishments don't work and I'm not convinced reward charts send out the right message. Is this a phase? Tell me this is a phase. Doesn't help that her younger sister is laidbackness personified.

xStefx Mon 20-Feb-17 12:15:30

Haha I told my 5 year old when she went to stay up her grans the other night

" if I hear you have been naughty I wont be happy"
Her reply: You cant hear me from there

AAAHHHHH kids aye, I cant help you sorry OP I have no idea what to do with my own lol

Newyearnewbrain Mon 20-Feb-17 12:19:46

They've got a bloody answer for everything. It's bedtime in this part of the world and she's supposed to be asleep. No chance.

I have a theory that first born children are def the more sensitive, highly strung ones. Totally bears out with her.

wineto those dealing with this today!

SteppingOnToes Mon 20-Feb-17 12:32:20

What are the sequences of misbehaviour? Punishment/telling off will never work, give real consequences and you will nail the issue.

Eg DSS6 and DSD fighting over TV, partner tells them off, and nothing changes. I then turned the TV off for half an hour and told them they could have half an hour each when it was turned back on. Despite the telly being turned off there wasn't a tantrum and when it was turned back on we had harmony for a couple of hours until the next issue

Newyearnewbrain Mon 20-Feb-17 12:52:10

This evening it was over spellings, something she hates doing. I try and make it fun but doesn't always work.

Once she's going she can't stop herself, she gets herself really worked up. Some of it is for attention I'd say. We don't give into whatever demand it is that often goes with the tantrum but I've given up threatening her with consequences, they just don't seem to work. I guess the thing to do would explain the consequences after she's calmed down and make it really tough.

I'm pretty fed up with them. They're not even that frequent but when they happen it drives me bonkers. She has always been a bit of a tricky customer!

MarklahMarklah Mon 20-Feb-17 12:56:14

Be interested to hear answers here. We try consequences (results in worse behaviour) and rewards (short-lived). I know that emotionally DD is at the same level as her peers, but she speaks and acts relatively maturely, which is what makes it worse - the comprehension is there, but the ability to manage emotions is not.

mikado1 Mon 20-Feb-17 13:04:43

Self-regulation, according to a really good book by a practising child psych I just read, will come with time (neural development ) and will be eased with you helping her through if now-not punishing it but accepting and staying calm. Some children find it harder, as with anything. I have that same theory about firstborns as newyearnewbrain!

So in the moment accept it, empathise and when calm, back to the task she goes. To make it easier, talk about expectations in advance, describing the sequence of events after school, predicting her difficulty and reassuring her and reminding her she'll still be doing them and you'll be there to help. Had to do this for four (painful) morning after Christmas to get ds back in habit of dressing before breakfast but he got it. Later you can point out how she got them done much more quickly today leaving more time for X and reminding her it will be the same tomorrow and will get easier. Hth. Good luck!

mikado1 Mon 20-Feb-17 13:07:09

MarklahMarklah the book I mentioned disagrees with both, which is interesting as you found them ineffective.

MarklahMarklah Mon 20-Feb-17 13:13:49

Stickers work for a while, but not long-term. When you're six, a day is a long time, and what happened an hour ago seems irrelevant to the reward (or lack of) at the end of the day.

Unfortunately at the moment, I think I'm in the peri-menopause so my hormones are all over the place and pretty much anything annoys me. It's very difficult to keep it all in check when I feel like screaming and running away myself! smile

mikado1 Mon 20-Feb-17 13:18:48

That's hard going!!

My post might have been misleading- I meant she disagreed with the use of both rather than disagreed with you. She really emphasized parents' calm and compassion, getting on your child's side.

Newyearnewbrain Mon 20-Feb-17 14:28:26

Marklah have a brewcake for being in the same boat as me.

Mikado I think me and DH are arriving at exactly that conclusion. Not often but sometimes I do lose my temper and it never ever helps. Calm will be the way forward.

What do you all think about a consequence after the fact? Seems so counter intuitive to let rude behaviour slide.

MarklahMarklah Mon 20-Feb-17 14:50:19

I did ask her yesterday (after she'd answered rudely several times, and done a bit of foot stamping and screaming) why she was so angry. Then there were tears and 'sorry'.
I've asked her to help me with writing new 'house rules' about how we all must behave, and I'm going to have a chat with her teacher soon to find out what they do to reinforce positive behaviour.
mikado do you have a link to that book/paper? I'd be interested to read it.

mikado1 Mon 20-Feb-17 15:11:29

If she's 'out of control' as such though it's not intentional, rude behaviour. If she's asking you for something rudely I would say 'Lets try that again' but test the mood for this as it could up the anger. You can always talk to her after the fact about saying things you don't mean when you're angry etc. It will take time. The author likens it to a child being in physical distress e.g. ill or after a fall-she sees emotional distress similarly i.e. help her. I really find the 'You might be annoyed and that's ok I can help with that' incredibly helpful, no 'I don't want you to get upser' - let her know you're ok with her feelings but you'll still hold the line on the task - calmly. It's as if you've oked that feeling and they almost deal with it in advance and are ready for you to help and hold firm. Author talks about the no/I know combo-limit plus empathy.

mikado1 Mon 20-Feb-17 15:12:04

It's Dr Vanessa lepointe, think she has a blog will have a look for you.

mikado1 Mon 20-Feb-17 15:14:12

MarklahMarklah, I find there are tears at sorrys here too when I've accepted the feelings and not reacted. I just give a big hug and say I understand and remind him of correct behaviour next time, to which he agrees and she says that's the way to get him to register it, in the calm, warm moment smile

eversoslightlytired Mon 20-Feb-17 22:08:33

Hi - we are in exactly the same situation. DD is six next week and she is having some amazing tantrums and we get a lot of foot stamping, screaming, putting her hands over her ears so she cant see us and she is brilliant and completely having to have the last word. She is also a red head so is a right stubborn and fiery so and so. I had a total hysterectomy at the end of November so I am in the menopause and am totally not patient at all! To be fair to her she's had it tough as her brother was in hospital for four months last year as he had a brain tumour and we are still going through a lot of things for him and she feels that everything is about him. However, she will strop about the silliest things but straight after when she has calmed down she will sob and tell me how much she loves me. It is very frustrating but I do remember my DS kind of being the same when he turned six.

Newyearnewbrain Tue 21-Feb-17 02:46:17

How much of this do you think is school? My DD's school is pretty homework heavy and I think she gets tired pretty quickly. In fact I don't push to do homework half as much as they'd like, but that's a whole new thread on The French school system!

Just in general, I wonder how much is outside forces and how much is personality.

I feel pretty bad about losing my temper yesterday because she mimics that and sees that as the way to deal with feeling angry and of course it's not. She knows exactly which buttons to push, it's uncanny!

MarklahMarklah Fri 24-Feb-17 12:38:41

Had a fantastic talk with the school earlier in the week. I am told that this is common behaviour, particularly with girls. Generally girls tend to 'behave' at school, whereas boys are a little more unpredictable.
I am informed that at school, DD is very well-behaved - not to the point of being an annoying "goody goody" sort, but the sort that participates in activities, asks sensible questions, completes tasks properly, follows instruction and is kind and helpful toward other children.

It was suggested that if she starts answering back/shouting, it is up to me to be the adult and set the standard for behaviour. In school they use the tactic of saying "I am going to ignore you whilst you are talking/acting like that. When you can speak nicely/calmly, then we will talk about [whatever it is]." Once you've explained this you can reiterate that this is not the type of behaviour you expect and that if it continues you will leave the room until they are calm. DO NOT SHOUT.

Secondly, having structure and routine can be really helpful. I'm going to try this. At school they have a daily tasks planner. So it'll say 9am - assembly, 10am - phonics, etc. There are words and pictures and the children put the pictures on daily. This gives them a feeling of control over the tasks, and it's easy to point them to the board and say "What should we be doing now?"

Tiredness is a problem for us too. DD has a very active brain. She is always asking questions about how things work, why things are what they are, trying to make sense of the world around her. That's great, but it's constant. She can't switch off. It doesn't seem to matter what time she goes to bed, or what the routine is before bed. She just keeps on and on. It was suggested to look at mindfulness techniques, so I'll be doing a bit of research on that later.

I'm not expecting miracles. I've been trying harder with how I react since I spoke with the school. As I said to the teacher, I'm not asking for an angelic little child, just the option of not arguing about stuff every day.

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