How to deal with my 7 year old with the attitude of a highly strung 14 year old(3 Posts)
DD is 7. Our eldest, we have DS age 5.
DH and I are running out of ideas on how to deal with her behaviour, specifically her attitude. She has always been feisty, she has a short attention span, doesn't really play with toys, doesn't really watch TV, she needs entertaining. She attends dancing, swimming, football, youth club and brownies in the evenings after school.
School report that she is a delightful, helpful child. She is academically where she needs to be, has friends, and is generally a happy child.
However, her behaviour over the last few months at home has been vile. Utterly vile. She hits out at her brother, torments him and goads him, humiliates him and taunts him. Some of this I understand is sibling stuff. But she doesn't listen to me when I tell her to stop. She is asked to stop, asked to apologise. If she does it again she is moved to her bedroom for 10 minutes. Yet, she doesn't learn, she comes back and just picks up where she left off, tormenting him.
I suspect some of it is down to boredom, like I said, she can't entertain herself, I feel like she goes around and is looking for trouble.
It isn't always towards her brother. She answers us back, she knows best, she will continue arguing with us when we issue an ultimatum or remove her to her bedroom. She frequently says 'this is the worst day of my life ever' and has said recently 'I want to kill myself' which I know she doesn't fully understand but it breaks my heart hearing her say that. She seems so full of anger and doesn't know how to direct it or deal with it. I've explained it's OK to be angry and suggested ways to deal with it (leaving the room to give herself a chance to calm down etc) but nothing changes. She doesn't seem to learn.
She seems to catty on doing things she knows she shouldn't be doing, she has a glint in her eye, so she knows she shouldn't be doing them, btu then she can't stop, it's like the point of no return. I can see it in her and I have previously given her the opportunity to stop, we can draw a line under it, forget about it and move on, but she is too emotionally immature to understand this and just goes in't self destruct mode.
Any suggestions as to what can we do. It is exhausting and I feel like I am constantly telling her off (which I am) and pouncing on her bad behaviour.
Anyone else with previous experience?
If she's like this now, what on earth will she be like when teenage hormones kick in?!
Get on top of this now, or the teen years will be hell.
The way it works in this house is you earn privileges, privileges are mainly anything with screens,
You only get to use screens if your behaviour in the previouse 48hr have been exemplary. If an individual creates any unnecessary situation, they then have to wait 48hr, if they create another situation in that period the count down restarts.
Be consistent and stick to the firmly to the rules, and you will be amazed at how fast they learn to control their own behaviour.
I have rather large pack, from 25 to 11 years old,
I take personal offence if I have to bother myself with addressing any bad attitude, I consider it very rude if someone does anything that requires me to spend time correcting behaviour, I feel that energy used on negative behaviour could be better spent else where, and the person who has created the situation is effectively stealing energy from the household.
If someone has to be asked to perform any necessary task and they even make a disgruntled face, they will be taken aside and asked if they need energy spending on them altering their attitude, no ones taken us up on that offer in a long time,
Have a calm conversation explain how it is going to work, ask if there are any questions, and make sure you stick to it.
Children actually hate feeling out of control, they hate their siblings seeming to get away with anything.
Omg- did my DD move to your house then?
I think a big part of the issues we have stem from the fact that she is an extrovert in a house of introverts. Will come back later after I've mulled it over.
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