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So ashamed of my children today....

(75 Posts)
feellikerunning Tue 21-Dec-10 16:07:28

....and so many days it seems....

I have gone round and round in circles trying to work out what I have done wrong. They whine, they scream, they fight the WHOLE time. When we discipline them they hurl abuse at us. I just want to run away most days. DH and I sit there in exhausted silence most evenings when they are in bed.

It feels like we can't do anything normal. I dread social occasions. DD1 age 8 has been to a lot of playdates and sleepovers so I felt this week I had to reciprocate. I think we must have traumatised her friend yesterday. They fought and screamed at each other and when I sent 2 of the 3 upstairs after several warnings DS threw the laptop and DD2 screamed for an hour until she fell asleep.

Pretty much every day is like that. We wanted children and now we have everything we wanted and it's horrendous. I know that's a terrible thing to say and we're lucky to have 3 healthy children but honestly we can't cope with them.

This isn't normal is it? I just think we much have done something really wrong or can you just get 3 really challenging personalities?

JaxTellersOldLady Tue 21-Dec-10 16:09:45

how old are your DC? Are you consistant with your punishments?

I think we need more details, but you poor thing, you sounds absolutely crushed.

brimfull Tue 21-Dec-10 16:10:11

Do they do ANYTHING you say?
What punishments do you give for cheek or disobedience?
When they hurl abuse at you what do you do?

SOunds like you need to have strict boundaries and follow up with punishments.

scurryfunge Tue 21-Dec-10 16:12:27

Poor you sad

To a certain extent wrangling amongst siblings is normal, it is what you do about it that makes the difference.
What other sanctions can you use? If you send them upstairs,is that really a punishment? Don't have "several" warnings -just one and be rigid about the sanction. No deviations and they will know you mean business.

What rewards do they have for good behaviour?

mousymouse Tue 21-Dec-10 16:12:51

do they get enough exercise?
my kids are still little, but I used to work as an aupair with 3 kids that age and my rule was at least one hour of crazy running around outside a day whatever the weather.

kids are a bit like dogs in that respect, if they don*t get enough of it they go bonkers

feellikerunning Tue 21-Dec-10 16:15:32

I warn them not to hit/insult/whatever their sibling/another child then I send them to their room. DD1 would usually go and slam the door (I can live with that I suppose), DD2 will have to be "escorted" but will then stay there and scream for up to an hour, DS loses all control and destroys anything he can get his hands on and shouts the worst insults he can think of.

Everything is a fight. I've lost all ability to be a fun or creative parent.

They are 8,7,5.

BelligerentYhoULE Tue 21-Dec-10 16:16:21

The book 'Siblings Without Rival' is quite good (and also the first one, How To Talk So Kids Will Listen) - deffo worht ordering from the library to give you some tips on nipping things in the bud before they get out of control.

What happened to ds when he threw the laptop?

What do you use for rewards and punishments?

emsyj Tue 21-Dec-10 16:19:12

I've seen lots of recommendations on here for the book, "How to Talk so kids will listen, and listen so kids will talk" so am throwing that out there in case you haven't tried it. Seems to be suggested quite often on these threads about behaviour concerns.

Have no personal words of wisdom to offer tho as DD is only 7 months!

emsyj Tue 21-Dec-10 16:19:34

Oh, X-posts!

feellikerunning Tue 21-Dec-10 16:22:55

I have that book actually. I should know what to do.

DS denied he threw the laptop but I saw him. They always deny everything and try to blame someone else. I put him straight to bed and he missed the film DD1 and her friend were watching.

I tell them I love them and I'm proud of them. But often I'm just frazzled and worn down by the fighting. I think there must be things we could improve somehow, but I do think we are pretty consistent.

SilveryMoon Tue 21-Dec-10 16:23:46

My children can be a nightmare, they are both boys and are 22 months and 3.4yrs.
I have just ordered Raising Boys, How To Talk and Siblings Without Rivalry. Can't wait to get stuck in.
I have ued a number of things with ds1, I even have a time-out/naughty spot that I carry in my bag to give him the consistancy with the time-out punishment.
Over the past few days I have been sending him to his room when he hits ds2 or anything like that.
It's just non-stop fighting and ds2 has now also found his aggressive side.
I can't leave the room for a second or even divert my attention (they are pushing each other now).
I find myself shouting more than I'd like to which upsets me.
It is just non-stop, all the time.
The thing is, they are perfectly well behaved for other people.
the nanny never has any issues with them, so I know they can be good.
I too often wonder what I am doing wrong sad
You are not alone

feellikerunning Tue 21-Dec-10 16:26:20

Silverymoon it's a nightmare isn't it? I remember people finding the baby stage hard and I felt fine then. Well I'm certainly getting my comeuppance now.

COCAcolachristmasadvert Tue 21-Dec-10 16:29:48

I feel your pain, my dds (8 and 6) fight all the time . DD1 in particular is really hard to handle, she is only happy when she has a drama going on, everything has to be awful. We took them sledging yesterday and she screamed at us the whole time. So we took her home. We can't seem to have "family fun". Today we aked her to get dressed...she rolled around screaming that she didn't have any jeans for half an hour. We ignored her and eventually she got up and found a pair. We have the same routine for teeth brushing, hair brushing, bathing, home work etc. She wonders why we get fed up.

feellikerunning Tue 21-Dec-10 16:35:11

Cocacola that's exactly it, no family fun. I can't find any energy to try things after so many attempts which have ended quickly with fighting and screaming.

ShanahansRevenge Tue 21-Dec-10 16:36:29

Sending them to their rooms may not be working if there are plenty of toys in there...hardly a punishment is it?

My DD is 6 and she ha sme proper screaming tantrums...I take her fave things away...if she carries on I take really works on DD...

I only have 2 DDs I imagine the extra one really makes a difference to the chaos!

feellikerunning Tue 21-Dec-10 16:48:58

I don't think they would care that much abouttaking things away to be honest, if I thought it would work I would try it. They don't like being sent to their rooms as they usually end up missing something fun. But it doesn't seem to be making any difference to their behaviour.

Someone asked about exercise - normally they get plenty but with the holidays probably not as much. I think being around each other all day has the worst effect, but it's not always possible to separate them. I just wish we could enjoy family time, the way others seem to.

SilveryMoon Tue 21-Dec-10 16:51:22

This is going to sound really awful, but I agree with the whole room thing. I never wanted to send my children to their rooms, I want their bedrooms to be a place they want to go to and enjoy playing, not the place they go when they are naughty, but the past few days, it's been more for ds1's safety and my sanity! I've shouted at him "go to your room" before I have really lost my rag blush

(not that I would ever hurt him byt ykwim)

Megletitsnow Tue 21-Dec-10 17:51:02

Sympathy from me too sad. Mine are 4.1 and 2.3 and they are dreadful all the time.

Haven't found a solution yet, they won't stay in time out or their bedrooms, taking toys away doesn't help and the how to talk book hasn't worked that well - although I try and stick to it.

I'm often shaken and tearful by the end of the day as its been non-stop telling off and shouting.

SilveryMoon Tue 21-Dec-10 17:52:27

Meg Is so hard isn't it? I recently went back to work because I couldn't take it anymore sad

LaurieFairyonthetreeEatsCake Tue 21-Dec-10 17:55:25

I'm a big fan of sending to their room - it doesn't matter to me that there are toys in there, the point is to get them away from me so I don't yell too much. Anything they destroy it's 'theirs' and won't be replaced.

At that age I'd put them physically outside the back door, lock it and chuck their coats out the window. Then they can have a snowball fight til they're tired. grin

feellikerunning Tue 21-Dec-10 19:28:27

Laurie it has happened here too!

Thanks for the supportive words everyone. I feel a bit calmer now, it's been a particularly bad day. Once they are in bed I'll wonder how I could have thought they were so difficult, and swear tomorrow will be better.

I just talked to DH about how worn out I am. He agrees I need a break somehow. He also thinks the dc's are at a difficult stage (whatever that means) but that we have a duty to do our best to bring them up as best we can. OK...then he can stay at home and I'll go to work!

Tw1nkle Tue 21-Dec-10 19:38:02


My DD is only 2, so I don't have any direct experience.

I'd probably try a 'naughty' step/corner/chair, and stick to it (even if it takes all night to get them to stay on/at it.

Laptop?!!? Why are they able to get to a laptop, and have time to throw it?

Definately take away toys.

I'd try and make time for 'family time' - maybe decide on what activity they each like to do, and try and see if you and DH can split these activites so that each child has some 1-on-1 time? maybe they crave some 1-on-1 attention?

I hope things get better for you, as it's sounds pretty bad right now.

Nickoka Tue 21-Dec-10 19:43:44

Sorry you are having such a difficult time.

I bet your kids are pretty tired after the term at school. Mine are.

I wouldn't do any sleepovers for a bit, and really limit the play dates. Just chill until school goes back. smile

CarGirl Tue 21-Dec-10 19:49:10

End of term exhausation and pre-christmas over excitement are an explosive mix.

I would reread "how to talk" with your dh and discuss which tactics to use. I would also stick to a timed time out in a very boring place.........

You have my sympathies some times it is just such hard work you lose all hope!

LoveMyGirls Tue 21-Dec-10 20:02:46

I don't know if this has been said as I havent had time to read the whole thread (sorry).

I would start tomorrow morning with a chat about how things need to change and you all need to take part. Write down what you expect from dc's and what the rewards/ punishments will be - ask them to suggest things if you like.

I would avoid sending to their room as punishment because there is too much for them to do in their rooms I would sit them in the hall or on the stairs, 1 minute for their age as supernanny does.

You need to stick to it ridgidly so the dc's know you mean it, back each other up and praise the good as much as possible imo.

I would bring things back to basics for a few days as well, no phones, laptops, sleepovers etc until they have earnt them by showing respect.

I'm quite strict with my dcs and I think you have to be or they will run wild/ be disrepectful, children need boundaries, they need to feel you care enough to stop them doing things they shouldn't, they pretend you're a worse mum than their mates mums because you dare to send them to bed at a decent time or because you won't let them play out til midnight at the age of 10 etc BUT really they know it's because you love them, because you want to keep them safe and you want to protect them, you want them to get enough sleep so they can do well at school etc and eventually after many years they will eventually appreciate it. (I hope)

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