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WHEN will DS learn to cope with the baby? I may go mad...

(7 Posts)
ProjectGainsborough Tue 07-May-13 20:59:13

DS (3.9) did not cope well with the arrival of baby DD. People said it would get easier after the first year and it did, briefly, but he seems to have regressed and keeps bumping and knocking into her. It's not just DD - he has an 18 mth old cousin who he has a habit of knocking over. sad

I'm not sure if there's something going on here as he has been uncharacteristically aggressive at nursery too. I can't think of anything that has changed to unsettle him recently.

In terms of what I'm doing, I try to encourage positive interaction and if that isn't working, I try to stay calm and give a warning (if the first incident isn't a major infraction) and then give time out. Sometimes I end up shouting because I'm so fed up. I've seen DD jump when he comes into the room which breaks my heart. It's so hard. I love him, but I really don't like him when he's like this.

Marthanoooo Tue 07-May-13 22:56:03

Sorry to hear this.. It is very hard.

If you do the time outs consistently, don't they help? if not then i would come down like a ton of bricks. Removal of privileges, time out in another room, etc.

On the other hand I would ramp up the one on one attention as much as you can and shower him in attention.

And I think encouraging positive interaction is great too.

I am sure he will grow into his role as a big brother!

Marthanoooo Tue 07-May-13 22:58:21

Basically you lay down house rules and you'll call him on any break of these rules. Everything calm and without emotion. And then the above... Hoping this helps, have a similar situation..

SirBoobAlot Tue 07-May-13 23:07:07

I disagree with the above actually. Coming down like a ton of bricks hmm on a 3.9 year old will not achieve sod all. They haven't got the memory span or understanding. And, if he's currently angry / feeling frustrated / isolated with regard to his younger sibling, enforcing that isn't going to help.

Have you tried time in, as opposed to time out?

Beatrixpotty Wed 08-May-13 10:23:16

I sympathise,DS1 is the same age but has 2 younger siblings.He was awful to the middle one for ages although most of the time they play really well now.To my surprise he is an angel with his 8 week old baby brother.When he is mean to DS2 I usually do time out,or take a toy away if he is teasing him with it.I do agree you need to be strict about bad behaviour towards siblings and at 3.9 they certainly do understand but may be too impulsive to always remember.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Wed 08-May-13 19:35:37

I agree DS is still smarting over his sibling's arrival. DSis or DBro he probably would have reacted the same. He feels excluded or pushed out and is more assertive/aggressive at nursery too.

They used to liken it to us finding DP has brought home a new partner - no good telling you that she loves you, or you'll love her! You have to share DP now, and she's not here to visit, she's permanent, and everyone who comes to the house adores her!

It sounds confused but when DD is down for a nap or off with DP, can you really focus on doing stuff with him? Not saying you don't already, but lay it on thick. I know, it sounds like risking making him feel good when she's absent when you want to foster good relations between them, but he could respond well.

You mention he did perk up and behave nicely for a while when DD was around 1. Has he begun playing up again now she's mobile and toddling? Is he being territorial and possessive of toys? Is he sly, pinching, or is it physical barging when you are present?

ProjectGainsborough Wed 08-May-13 20:59:27

Thanks all for the responses. i think it's a bit of both, it's definitely barging when I'm present, so I guess the reaction is worth something to him. But he will also push her when I'm out of the room.

I'm really not sure what's triggering it – she is more mobile, but pretty independent, so I don't think it's jealousy over toys. I think he wants attention 100% of the time. I feel awful as I had depression before I got pregnant with DD – probably for about six months. I wonder whether it's something to do with me having not been tuned into his needs over that time and then being pg/occupied with new baby. Although most of what I did at that time was child-centred as I had given up work to be a SAHM.

Although even now when I try to do things with him, it generally turns into a bunfight. I tried to do some planting with him today and it ended with him throwing soil all over the place and then having a massive tantrum because I said he couldn't dig any more. It's exhausting.

That aside, I think I will try and schedule some mum/DS play dates when DH is home. If it is attention seeking, then that's something I can focus on.

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