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he is just getting so naughty, it's killing me

(20 Posts)
eeyore123 Sat 15-Jan-05 13:26:45

ds1 is 5 and a half and recently his behaviour has just got so bad it's making me tear my hair out.

I have just finished mopping up in the toilet and unblocking it after me put 4 toilet rolls down there. When I asked him why he said he didn't know. He is now in his room where he is supposed to be thinking about what he has done. Luckily we only have very cheap toilet roll so it must have broken down easily enough.

He has recently started getting very aggresive. Especially towards his baby brother. Little things like squeezing his arm and shouting at him. He wonds his poor sister up something chronic and always has her in tears. He always lies and is totally defiant.

Last night DH took him to McDonalds as a treat and when he got home he was worse than ever before. Totally ungrateful for the fact that even though we can't afford it, we managed to scrape enough money together for him to go there. (not that he understands the value of money I daresay)

I know you will all probably say that is usual boys stuff but it's driving me totally mad.

I don't think I ever really bonded with him properly when he was born. Even now, sometimes he doesn't feel like mine. (I know. bad bad bad mummy) and I swear he hates me. Thats why he does this to me. Sometimes I wish he would just go away. Yes I am a terrible mother. PLEASE help before I end up leaving home

amynnixmum Sat 15-Jan-05 13:33:27

{{{hugs}}} We all feel like that sometimes and I personally feel like it a lot so you're not the only one and you are not a terrible mother or you would not be beating yourself up about this.

Frizbe Sat 15-Jan-05 13:34:15

ummm, there is no easy answer to this one...he's pushing the boundaries, as now at school and learning more etc......Have you tried pocket money to teach him the value of money? if I were you I'd go down this route (we did with ss aged 6)
You could do this via a star chart system, and this doesn't have to cost you lots of money, as good things can be rewarded with your free time, where by you give him some quality time, with either you or dh (maybe his actions are attention seeking?) and then once he reaches the end of the week with say 4 out of 5 good stars for a day, he could get 1GBP, this way he get's 4GBP a month and can save it up and spend it on whatever he wants, comics, Mc'D's etc?
Just a thought?

Frizbe Sat 15-Jan-05 13:35:48

PS: Do this for all of the children, that way it's fair! you don't have to reward the younger ones monetarily, you could just give them an icecream or summat?

amynnixmum Sat 15-Jan-05 13:44:39

eeyore, just read your other thread{{{hugs}}}. My ds is 4 1/2 and often very naughty. I can only leave on loo roll in the toilet because he will also flush loads of it down the loo. He has also flushed a flannel! It really sounds like you need a break. Is there anyone who could come round so you could escape for an hour or perhaps a friend who could come to you and give you some support and adult conversation.

LIZS Sat 15-Jan-05 13:44:53

Keep an eye out for the Little Angels series on BBC3/1 as this scenario is so common when there are 3 young siblings. They are vying for attention and instinct is to protect the youngest and blame one, which just causes the behaviour to spiral. Positive parenting (which is the focus of many of these programmes), including reward charts and making a huge fuss of good behaviour and just being themselves, works both ways to improve the relationships and self esteem of the parents and children. There is a great MN tip about using pieces of pasta in a jar as a reward scheme.

Is he like this at school or just when with the family ? Can you go to his teacher or HV for advice and support.


shrub Sat 15-Jan-05 14:15:25

a big hug to you and i second amynnix' s advice . i have a ds who is nearly 5 and a ds who is coming up to 19 months. there is usually a crisis or situation most days. my ds's teacher has taught me a lot of coping stratagies that may help:
1. try not to take it personally
2. no child is intentionally naughty, try and see the world from their eyes - they are trying to make sense of the world, i have had the toilet roll thing happen - my teacher thought he was interested in cause and effect,plus the novelty of flushing it all away trying to understand where it goes etc. she advised getting him something like a marble run, things he could wind and unwind ie. old fashioned tape measure you can find in car boot/charity shop and/or lots of water play using old plastic bottles and objects that float, sink a waterwheel etc.
3. i was told that boys have a surge of testostorone around 4-5. this could explain his behaviour getting more challanging
4.try and model the behaviour you want them to copy. they tend to hold up a mirror to what is going on at school/home which as everyone shouts becomes a vicious circle. there was a interesting piece on fern and phil a few weeks ago when a mum through illness had lost her voice and had 2 young children, and could only whisper - she explained that the postitive to come out of that was that it had a dramatic effect on her kids, the volume went down considerably in her house and life is more calm and peaceful - iv'e been trying to do the same when i remember and it does help. it stops you constantly reacting and helps stop the situation blowing up macdonalds. kids don't attatch the same value onto objects/places/money that we do. they have to be taught. so maybe thats a good thing that he's still not materialistic. if he has loads of aggression or energy maybe swimmming/bike ride with his dad would be a way to help him use up that energy and at the same time learn to relax?
6.when he goes to squeeze his baby brothers arm. say stop and show him what his brother does like ie. stroke/cuddles/massage? when he shouts try and get him to turn it into a nursery rhyme/song lowering the volume and praising him if he does - its trying to subtley shift his attitudes/energy and behaviours into positives and reinforcing it with showing how pleased you/your dh and baby brother and sister are now he is giving them a cuddle/singing a song etc.
7. re: the bonding, all our kids can be strangers to us sometimes. you must be so tired looking after 3 - i'm having my third in april and everyone looks so shocked or says how brave when they hear the news...could you try and reclaim him , have some time together just the two of you, something that you both might enjoy - a train ride, trip to the zoo, make biscuits/cakes, a picnic, feed the ducks etc.
its so bloomin hard being a parent and just when you've found a way to deal with one phase a new one challange comes along!
hope you can turn things around and the weekend is happier for you xx

shrub Sat 15-Jan-05 15:03:29


eeyore123 Sat 15-Jan-05 16:14:15

Hi. Sorry for posting this twice. Thanks for your suggestions and replies. I will print them all out and read them properly later.

MIL came round (god help me) with chocolates and things for the kids. I told them they weren't allowed them til after tea, to which ds1 promptly threw them at me saying he hated me. MIL just sat there and laughed. she thought the toilet roll inceident was hilarious

DH wont be home for ages yet.

I refuse to do any more housework now. THeres no bloody point. It will be trashed again my the time the kids go to bed.

eeyore123 Sat 15-Jan-05 19:48:43

god everythings such a battle. he wont do anything i ask him to do.

LIZS Sat 15-Jan-05 19:54:16

There is a behavioural condition associated with continual defiant behaviour. Perhaps if he continues to behave like this you could have a word with your HV, GP or school to see if they would consider him worth assessing.

Lonelymum Sat 15-Jan-05 19:58:30

Eeyore, I posted more usefully on your other thread, but having just read what you have said, I would advise you shortly and to the point: send him to bed NOW!

yoyo Sat 15-Jan-05 20:04:28

Try and get him to bed as calmly as possible and put the day behind you. You are in no way a bad mother. We all have times like this - sometimes they last hours and other times days. You need to try and find a way to break the cycle and there are loads of great suggestions in the other postings.
If it's any consolation there are days when I wake up thinking "here we go again" and usually they go exactly as I thought they would. Other days I think "today will be different" and it is. I can't always make myself be more positive but I try as it has a more positive effect on the children as a result. Sometimes I think they see that I am trying to be more understanding and respond in kind. Hope some of this makes sense and things improve for you. Take care.

shrub Sat 15-Jan-05 20:06:26

too right about the bloomin housework - there was a lovely post on mumsnet last month who wrote the following:
'tidying up after kids while they're growing is like shovelling snow while its still snowing!'
it was a little insensitive of mil to undermine you with the choclate - maybe ask her next time to be a bit more discreet to avoid ds1 getting upset. its like the supermarkets which are stressful enough, then just when you are heading for the finish line....tons of sweets and choclates for them at the till for them to wail at!

shrub Sat 15-Jan-05 20:09:46

me thinks if mil finds ds1 so hilarious she can offer to look after all of them for you next weekend and you can get some much needed rest

onlyjoking9329 Sat 15-Jan-05 20:17:35

could his behavior be food/additive related ?
have you tried fish oils?

hercules Sun 16-Jan-05 13:34:46

I would tell your mil not to make a joke of it. It belittles everything you are trying to do. .

kinderbob Mon 17-Jan-05 06:39:47

Read "Fed Up" by Sue Dengate and see if any of it seems to ring any bells for you. The line that stood out for me was about getting worse after going to McDonalds. She talks a lot about how chemicals (naturally occuring ones as well as additives) can affect mood. She is particularly critical of the additives in some store bought bread. It's Australian, but there may be a British Edition.

ghosty Mon 17-Jan-05 07:15:07

eeyore ... you have my sympathies ...
My son is 5 and we have some terrible behaviour at times that drives us mad. I posted a week or so ago about his deliberate breaking of toys and how we handled it. It was awful (I made DS take one of his toys to a charity shop ) but I think he really learned a lesson.
It is bloody hard dealing with a 5 year old. I can honestly say that this last year has been much harder than the toddler and preschool years.
I also sympathise with you when you say you didn't bond with him when he was a baby. I found bonding with DS when he was a baby very hard too and I felt guilty for a long time. My guilt go worse when DD was born last year as I bonded with her in the first second of seeing her .... but a very very wise lady (a family therapist) told me basically to get over it ... she told me to lose the guilt and stop apologising for something I had no control over. She said that beating myself up about what happened in the past was doing DS no favours at all ... and if I wanted him to grow up a balanced person I needed to set the boundaries NOW for him AND for me.
I still have meltdowns when I feel that I can't cope (and then I come to mumsnet for tea and sympathy) ... like I did last week, but I find the best way to deal with DS when he is naughty is to remove him from what is going on. When his behaviour gets really awful I send him to his room and tell him that I am not prepared to have him around dd/take part in what we are doing/play with his friend etc etc if he is going to continue. That gives us a 5 minute breathing space where I calm down (so I don't shout) and he thinks about his behaviour and realises that he would much rather be playing than sitting in his room alone. Most of the time it works and things stay reasonable calm.
Some people say that 'time out' (we don't call it that) shouldn't be in their rooms as it is too much to do in there, or that their room should be a haven not a place of punishment but I don't always see it as a punishment, more a breathing space ... and to be honest I don't mind if he sits and plays quietly with his toys in his room while he is in there ... When he comes out I ask him if he is prepared to be nice/gentle/share toys/not hit his sister/or whatever ... he always apologises, we have a hug and we forget it and get on with life.
Sorry for the long post, I could write for hours on this ....

sarochka Tue 18-Jan-05 22:35:13

Eeyore I have been reading this thread as was looking for advice. My dd is 3 and her behaviour has just changed so dramatically - I am finding it really really difficult adn I feel really guilty. I work full time and I think this is causing part of the problem but she is so difficult. We bonded well and I wonder is it just the terrible 2s a bit late or is it her stressed at the situation. it is making me cry. She won't eat, won;t go to bed, won't get dressed - just shouts 'you can't do that to me' or 'leave me alone'. Is this normal ???
Thanks and good luck

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