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4yr old driving us nuts! Appears to have regressed to having 2yr old tantrums!

(9 Posts)
curlycarla Thu 02-Jun-11 21:52:01

my son is driving us mad! He's 4, starting school in sept and for last month or so is behaving terribly. Grumpy, bad tempered and basically as soon as we say no to anything he has a fit! A proper 2yr old temper tantrum!
Bedtime has turned into a battle (he used to be lovely at going to bed), refusing to do what he's told...just can't understand it!

I seem to remember that when my daughter was 4 she was a bit of a nightmare the summer before she went to school, remember being desperate for her to start school, but can't remember what it was about her behaviour that drove me mad.

Anyone else experienced anything like this? Is it just one of those phases? I really thought we were past the temper tantrums!

StellaSays Fri 03-Jun-11 16:06:02

Maybe he is acting out because he knows a big change is coming up in his life and is nervous about it.

I would suggest that you do everything you can to make him excited about going to school. Both my younger siblings wore the uniform for the school for months before they actually went they were so excited. Take him shopping for the uniform, remind him of all the playing he will be able to do with his friends and how grownup he will be smile

Perhaps that will give him something to distract him from throwing paddys all the time.

NorksAreMessy Fri 03-Jun-11 19:51:43

You do know about the huge surge of testosterone boys get when they are four?
It may be as simple as that, he just doesn't know what to do with himself.
I found with my DS that a long walk or other exercise early in the day and another before dinner sorted it out to some extent, he just needed to physically rush about and shoot things with a stick or climb a dangerous tree or throw stones into the sea. School days are well designed for this if you can manage to walk to school and back home, even if you have to take a drink and snack with you and take faaaaaaar longer than you think is necessary, it did seem to work...I noticed that when he was hell at the weekends if he hadn't been swimming/climbing/judo etc
Worth a try?

MadamDeathstare Fri 03-Jun-11 19:54:28

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

curlycarla Fri 03-Jun-11 22:04:25

wow - no, don't know anything about testosterone at 4! You're right, he just seems so angry and frustrated and yes, like he doesn't know if he's a baby or a big boy...he's v excited about going to school and has also started becoming unsettled at playschool, telling the leaders there that he's 'too big' for playschool now....just swings from being all lovely and cuddly, then to chatty and funny, then to tantrummy nightmare!

NorksAreMessy Fri 03-Jun-11 22:13:57

The testosterone may well be to blame for the mood swings and not knowing who he is....just imagine how your own hormones affect your mood, and multiply it by LOTS!

The reason I recommend exercise is that it seems to have a direct and almost immediate effect. There may well be a lot of 'rough' play....but this is normal too at age four.

TBH four is a really daft age for little boys to start school. They are expected to sit down, conform and be 'good' when all they want to do is race about and throw stuff. Cannot recommend walking to school highly enough, it gets them 'in the zone' and at least a little more ready to sit down.

Good luck. As with all things, remember the MN mantra....'this too shall pass'

inthesticks Sat 04-Jun-11 16:53:36

He sounds exactly like my DS1.
In fact both of my boys were a nightmare at 4. We had a few toddler tantrums but at 4 they are professionals and have the stamina to go on for ever. I did know about the testosterone surge but knowing doesn't help you to deal with it.
I second the exercise thing. My horsy friend calls it lunging the children.
I also found it all got much worse when he started school (sorry). Tiredness amplified it all. We eventually brought his bedtime forward to about 6 - 6.30 and this helped a lot.
The good news is that by 5 both boys were much calmer.

twinmummy24 Sun 05-Jun-11 16:40:16

sound just like my 4 year old twin girls!
they do nothing but argue, fight, shout, scream and strop like a teenager at the moment, they to are starting school in september.
i always remember my mum telling me when i was younger that a child being horrible before a big change was its way of getting the parents ready for the seperation! the girls are being so horrible i cant wait for them to start school, no tears for me, maybe a bottle of bubbles in the fridge wine

killingTime Sun 05-Jun-11 20:02:34

I'm glad I found this thread. Our DS has just hit four and turned into what you describe - it's very wearing. I have spoken to other mothers in RL with similar aged sons - they've said the same they assumed it was a sign they were ready to start school - I assumed some hormone surge.

Have found picking him up from nursery - taking a snack and just let him round round the park with younger sibling couple of times a week it is making a massive difference. Makes his behaviour slightly more bearable.

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