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Is it normal for five year old to behave like this?

(20 Posts)
Melmagpie Wed 24-Oct-12 13:33:49

dd was a very tantrummy three year old but has calmed down a lot. in reception she often flipped out on way home from school - I think she was tired and hungry and having been a good girl at school all day her frustrations and feelings of being overwhelmed would let loose.
Now she is mostly much better but still sometimes (almost always when tired/hungry) melts down like a three year old tantrum, including hitting me, screaming and screaming and generally being very tricky! it's often on way home from school and she quite quickly calms at school. It's triggered by her asking for soemthing I say she can't have. I never give in as think she must learn this behaviour can't win her anything but nor do i punish her as I really don't think she can help herself once she's off - in fact she's described it like trying to stop a wee - you just can't.

Also, when tired, she can be SO horrible, like REALLY horrible, to her brother and dad especially, not really to me. At other times she is lovely, sensible, wise, kind...

Is this normal? Is there anything I should be doing differently?

Yesterday she nearly went and I managed to calm her down before it escalated by reminding her of soemthing that had happened the day before (she had broken something...)

GoldenGreen Wed 24-Oct-12 13:43:57

I hope it is normal - my ds is 6 and has gone through several phases like this. I describe him (not to his face, obviously!) as 80% lovely, 15% challenging and 5% pure evil when he's going through that sort of thing. I have learnt a lot about how to head his tantrums off over the years!

I do lots of discussing the behaviour with him when he's calm (and he often responds very well to that), and sometimes we come up with a new rule or joint plan to put into practise next time we are in the situation,

lots of warnings and counting down to taking a toy or privilege away (he doesn't respond well to that so I avoid if I can but it's often the only thing I can actually do, e.g. if out in public),

saying "I'll be ready to talk to you when you've calmed down" and getting on with something else (used to utterly enrage him but he has got used to it and calms down very quickly now as he has learnt he gets listened to then)

QTPie Wed 24-Oct-12 13:46:13

I don't have a 5 year old (yet), but it doesn't sound abnormal: I bet it takes a few years to get used to the tiredness if school etc. sounds like you are doing all the right things, but need to stick with it...

Suggestions:
- take a portable snack (healthy cereal bar, apple, banana etc) on the school pick up with you. Also take a drink (some water or watered down juice). Try to cut off hunger/thirst straight away: the sugar boost (from a healthy snack) should also help fight the tiredness.
- do you walk home from school? Is it a long walk? If so, For the short/medium term (and esoecially the Winter) can you make it easier (bus/scooter/bike)?
- then some quiet time when she gets home for 30 minutes if so (reading stories with her or something)?

You are right to try to tackle the physical triggers, but stay firm with discipline. Tantrums are so tough to handle when out: I feel for both of you.

toysoldiers Wed 24-Oct-12 13:46:48

Do you turn up to school with a snack.

DS1 suffers terrible sugar mood swings. Banana or a sandwich can help matters no end.

In reception he was always starving when he came out.

It's half term next week. Don't try to plan very much, just let her relax however she wants to (TV/ park etc)

Alitoomanykids Wed 24-Oct-12 13:47:23

yes - it will pass, think calm thoughts and then brace yourself for the teenage years!

Melmagpie Wed 24-Oct-12 13:51:33

Thanks all. Yes I do turn up with a snack but sometimes the mood swings before the snack has kicked in! Not walking home sometimes is a good idea and yes, good idea to have a chilled half term.

Thank you - I think I know she's alright really but it can be SO upsetting when things spin out of control or when she's being just really really horrible!

fedupwithdeployment Wed 24-Oct-12 13:55:00

We have some moments with our 5yo (nearly 6 now) who is more "spirited" than his brother who is abnormally good. I think the meltdowns are almost always related to tiredness and /or low bood sugar. He can be a little horror, almost beyond redumption, and then 10 minutes into supper he is sweetness and light again....

Good luck!

toysoldiers Wed 24-Oct-12 14:04:12

In that case

1) take bookbag from child hands on exit from school
2) insert 3 haribo into child's mouth
3) continue snacks as normal

wink

Melmagpie Wed 24-Oct-12 14:26:56

perhaps I should ask teacher to insert said haribos 15 mins before end of school!

Melmagpie Wed 24-Oct-12 14:27:34

is it also totally normal to be absolutely horribly vile to your sibling when most of the time you are very lovely?

QTPie Wed 24-Oct-12 14:49:13

I would reckon that they are "horribilist" to those ths th love the most (mum, siblings....)...

pongysticks Wed 24-Oct-12 20:39:48

You have just described my DS aged 5 - he's dare I say pretty nasty when he's come home from school, sometimes in the car, he will lash out at his brother and is generally pretty awful. With him it's completely food related, so I always have a snack, in the car and a drink.

Then oven on a tea is done by 4.30 - 5 latest and then we have our lovely boy back until bedtime.

It's the same in the mornings especially on weekends, he needs breakfast before 9am, otherwise we get the morning meltdown!!

baskingseals Wed 24-Oct-12 21:47:49

toy soldiers - i like your style grin

will stuff my pockets with haribo forthwith

straighttohellymelly Wed 24-Oct-12 21:50:49

Normal, the whole post pretty much desribes my dd, also 5. Tired, missing you, still settling into school, and hungry. My dd has changes a lot by giving her a lot more affection when she's tantrummy rather than getting annoyed. has made a huge difference, so i say love and tolerance and this too shall pass should be the mantra for you now.

Melmagpie Wed 24-Oct-12 22:03:01

thanks straight, that's a really good point. will try it next time!

Fuzzymum1 Fri 26-Oct-12 20:54:18

I hope it's normal because you've described my 5 year old. Last night I told him off for something and he lay in bed screaming at the top of his voice about how much he hated me and how he didn't love anyone in the family. He is generally very well behaved and polite but is a real jekyll and hyde type of character.

Shakey1500 Fri 26-Oct-12 21:03:06

When you say it's usually when she asks for something that she can't have, can you make a big deal of the times she asks for something that she can have? In a "pick your battles type of way"?

DS used to tantrum at times like this and my sister gave me the "pick your battles" tip. As in really consider her request and if it's something that you can let go, or won't do any harm then say yes. Obviously not to a "can I have an entire jumbo bag of haribos for tea" type request. But possibly yes to a "can I kick some leaves in the park on the way home?"

Hope I'm explaining it ok! I know what I mean grin

addictedtolatte Fri 26-Oct-12 21:11:53

you have my child give him back lol i spend most of my days trying to convince my ds to let go of the lamppost and stop screaming. i have to come to school armed with food to keep him quiet. tis just a phase thank god.

Lavenderhoney Sat 27-Oct-12 05:18:01

My ds is like this. I arrive with food and refrain from asking him about hs day- we do that at tea time now. He is sometimes awful with dd who s thrilled to see him, and normally he adores her. I said ok, when you get home you have to have one time in your bedroom as you can't come home and behave like tht. He only did it once , but I have noticed he slinks off to his bedroom when overtired now.

Sagelyhaunting Sun 28-Oct-12 23:55:17

Toysoldiers grin
My 5yo is the same-food as soon as I pick him up has become essential to ward off tantrums. And quiet/chill out time when he gets home-tv/drawing.

Even after school activities are going to have to wait a while until the tiredness hopefully wears off!

Extra hugs help smile

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