Here some suggested organisations that offer expert advice on SN.
Dealing with 3 year olds anger(68 Posts)
Hi, my Son turned 3 in April. He is very angry, he has what we call 'normal' tantrums and then he has meltdowns which can last for up to 3 hours at a time. A normal tantrum being he shout's and throws a toy or something because he doesn't want to tidy up, I used the wrong bowl etc.These last 5 minutes.
The others can start from the same thing, and involve screaming at the top of his lung's,throwing himself around, banging his head on the floor, wall, anything that's nearby, he's also recently become very, very violent (with me & his dad, not anybody else as far as we know) so kicking, hitting, biting, nipping, he goes limp so I can't get him dressed, he spits. He makes every day a struggle. Today, he was upset at breakfast, upset at lunch, upset for his bath, upset for his tea then upset before bed, so it hasn't been hour's at a time today, just so many upset's that I barely had a minute where he wasn't screaming.
He recently got himself upset at bedtime and this resulted in him throwing everything from his room down the stair's, he also had his mattress and bed guard off the bed, he dismantled his plastic drawer's and they were thrown down. So he now has his bed and cuddly toy's in his room and that's all. It's draining and i really am struggling and don't know where to turn.
Sorry it's long, I had a previous thread last posted on in February but don't know how to link.
Poor little thing
It must be awful for all of you.
I know from a skim of the last thread that autism was mentioned. Have you ever filled out an M-CHAT - it's a toddler autism screening tool.
Has he had a hearing test and is there any possibility he's in pain?
How's his speech, language and communication generally?
Does he play?
How is his sleep?
My approach is to start by making life fairly predictable and 'easy', which reduces the stress and anxiety which often underpins this sort of behaviour.
Hi Polter thanks for the reply. No, we havnt done anything about any Special Needs as we think it's just alot of anger, and definately some anxiety.
He can be upset for up to 3 hour's now, I think it's got longer than when it first started, and he's definately more violent.
He hasn't had a hearing test do you think he need's one?
His speech is really good, it's come on load's recently. He's saying decent sentences and stranger's recognise what he's saying now, as oposed to just me and his dad.
He play's well by himself and with other's.
He love's his food and probably eat's way to much,he love's all fruit and probably snack food's more than meal's. That's on a good day though, on a bad day like today he won't eat and get's upset over everything. Won't sit at the table, throw's his cup, plates, Spoon, screaming and crying, banging his chair & his head until I have to get him down.
Sleep is pretty much the same as food,on a good night, he goes to bed between 6-7 and sleep's until 6-7. On a bad night he won't settle, up and down, in and out of our room all night, screaming and shouting, throwing what he can.
We use this phrase alot 'When it's good it's great, but when it's bad it's really,really awful'
He goes to nursery Twice a week where his behaviour is perfect.Most of the other time he's with me, or me and his dad.
Oh and I'll mention that the other thread started with me saying I shout at him alot, but I don't now, I talk to him calmly and quietly (90% of the time)
Anger and anxiety are worth investigating, what you describe doesn't sound 'within normal range'.
Sometimes people post things like you have and they want reassurance everything is ok, and will sort itself out, but I think this has been going on long enough, and you are concerned enough, to take it further.
I guess you've tried all the usual stuff and have run out of strategies. Now it might be time to find out if there is something 'more' to help you find the best way to help him.
'Special needs' aren't just diagnosable conditions (many disabled kids/people have no named diagnosis), it refers to any extra needs over and above their typical peers.
Oh, keep a detailed diary to help you spot patterns and triggers. You might be missing something!
Thank's Polter that's helpful. Yes,we are concerned over the length of time it's been going on, as it started around 16 months ish and has gradually got worse.
I think it's that whenever I try to talk to anybody in 'real life' about it, they say 'It's the terrible Two's, it will pass' So I tell myself it will, I just have to wait it out.
There has been incident's of bruising lately, where he get's angry and throw's thing's aiming at my head. Luckily I have quick reflexes and put my arm's up to cover m face, but I'm often left with bruised arm's.
Also wd had a family day out and he smacked his dad across the face. I didn't realise at the time but my mum saw, and she said she didn't want to interfere, and again, that 'It will pass'
I did notice when I did the parenting course that the people I related to the most, as in their children sounded similar, we're waiting on diagnosis'. But again I just put this down to 'Am I just seing something there that isn't, because I'm finding it tough.
Does anybody else's Child start a temper tantrum after doing something fun?
Today we've been playing Play Doh in the garden. It's One of his favorite thing's to do and we only do it when he's been really good. So anyway played lovely for an hour and a half, no problem. Put's it away lovely, no problem. Then it comes to washing his hsnd's and all hell break's loose as I need to help him because it's all under his nail's.
I've left him upstair's I've come down (To have a moan on here) and i dont know what to do. He's currently banging about in his room screaming, spitting and generally making as much noise as he possibly can. Hand's aren't washed as he went limp & I can't hold him up & wash them like that. I told him no more Play Doh as I walkyd away.
I now feel like the whole thing was a waste of time and wonder why I bother playing with him at all. I'm so disappointed when fun thing's end like this
Yes, being overwhelmed in a good or bad way can cause overland and meltdown.
I would say that if he loves it you should do it more, not less! I always made the washing bit into a treat not a chore, big bowl of bubbly water, sponges, cloths and brushes, a variety of receptacles to play with. Ds would spend more time cleaning up than the original activity. Or run a bath. For ds the minute something becomes a 'demand' he will resist, so making it desirable means he will do it.
Thanks Polter. He usually loves the washing his hand's bit so it's more frustrating when it turn's into that (he is a bit obsessive about having clean nails.Normaly)
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We are having bad day's again the last week or so. He actually started to behave really, really well since I posted last, and we actually started to whisper to each other that 'Maybe it's finally over' Nothing really changed that I can put my finger on, I am pregnant, but so far that hasn't seemed to upset him. We stopped using the buggy, as we had still been using it for long journey's, and he's been walking well, holding our hand, we even started to let him walk by himself for short distances, next to us, on quiet road's.
He loves being praised and he's been having so much praise lately as we've been so proud of him. We also bought him a wardrobe and Said about letting him have some furniture back in his room.
I don't know why the temper tantrum's have started again.It's dissapointing for us and upsetting to see him like this again.
Thing's are as bad as before, yesterday I couldn't get him to walk to nursery. He screamed at the top of his lung's the whole way down the road and it was a mixture of me trying to drag him by his arm, trying to carry him, until he kick's, hit's, pull's my hair so I have to put him down, then him laying on the ground screaming.
I don't know why I posted really, just out of frustration I think.
He's been put in his room today before breakfast as we do the 1, 2, last chance, 1 more naughty then you go upstair's'
I have to take the chair and the bed guard out when i put him in his room as otherwise they get banged/thrown about.
I personally don't think bedrooms should be used for punishment, they should be calm and safe places, not get associated with stress and whatnot.
This is a time when the tiredness and demands of back to school/nursery kick in, we get it every year to greater or lesser degrees! Jet ride it out. Stay calm, don't threaten punishments, just work through it with humour and distraction. Check up on PDA strategies for some ideas: The PDA Resource
Would he have gone/been better in the buggy? I really wish now I had used the buggy for longer and not felt pressured for ds to walk 'like everyone else'.
Thanks Polter. That website's helpful. Sorry for my ranting, i dont have anybody to talk to really in 'real life'
I didn't like the thought of using his room either.
We used to put him on the sofa as our version of a 'Time out' kind of thing, but that stopped working as he wouldn't stay on there, and our downstair's is completely open plan so he was still getting our attention. It just dragged thing's on and on.
The room thing is better for us as he settle's in there and calm's.He just need's that time to calm down and it wasn't working downstair's.
We've still got the buggy just in case, we didnt stop using it because of pressure from anybody else, but had gotten to the stage where I just felt like I was kind of pushing it about with us on long journey's, as he was never asking to sit in it. It was just being used for shopping, which was handy! Also, he wasn't keen on it anymore as he had broken the lay back bit during a tantrum and it doesn't fully sit up right now.
Yes, I was going to come back and get the buggy yesterday, but luckily it was right at the time his dad leaves the gym to go to work, (in the car) so he came and picked him up from the end of the road (it took 20 min's to do a 5 minute walk down the road)
He is exhausted after nursery day's, alway's has been. They are long day's for him.
Just having more of a read of that website, the bit about trying to get other's in contact with your child to understand the behaviour made me smile, a few month's ago we went to meet my Brother at a music day in the park.
We were an hour and a half late, as we had to wait for him to calm down, he was very anxious and having major meltdown's (probably as it was a new situation and he doesn't see my brother much, which we understand)
So.. We turn up late to my brother 'What happened, why are you so late?' Me 'Oh, he was upset, we had to wait for him to calm down a bit as we couldn't bring him out in that state and it wouldn't of been fair on him' his answer 'Next time just tell him to pack it in' Oh right yeah as it's that easy.
Haven't got lots of time at the moment and skimmed your post but a few things jumped out
Sensory ? Have a look at sensory problem that could set him off?
Also once we stopped doing the who super nanny approach of naughty corner etc and realised this was not working and making things worse we got a much better grip of the problem. You will prob make him worse and raise anxiety doing this. You will have to grow thick skin but that sort doesn't work and other ways do. The explosive child is a great book.
You have come to the right place as I don't have rl people either and there are some fab people on here so keep asking!
Sorry I don't have time to post more extensively but this sounds identical to my son at age 3. We did get an ASD diagnosis at 4.5 and now he is 6 and is amazing. Challenges are still there but those dark and very very angry days are behind us. One of the most helpful things for us was to bring his iPad everywhere. If noticed the rumbling signs brewing I would let him have it and he would retreat into his own world and space (especially helpful in a busy place) and this helped bring things down a level and reduce the likelihood of a meltdown. Randomly we had our worst recent meltdown after a day trip that he really loved. He got home and we had 90 minutes of crying and throwing and anger. He was just overwhelmed by his enjoyment or stimulation from the fun trip.
I would second giving the MChat a go.
And we used a buggy till he was 4. Massively helpful.
Thank's for your reply's. We havnt really got thr hang of when he will have a meltdown or not yet, sometimes but in general they do still seem to come out of nowhere, which makes me feel terrible as I feel that I should know, by now, what is going to set him off more often than not.
We let him play on his dad's phone if we are out and he is getting upset, but sometimes this work's and sometimes he is so angry he will fling the phone away, and that's when it's really hard, when all of his 'favorites' aren't working, and he doesn't want to be around us but also can't be left alone, as we are out in public.
It's so frustrating as he had been doing so well and I honestly can't see why this has all started again. We went out for breakfast the other day (first time in month's) and he was so well behaved, it feel's like a massive step backward's.
I still blame myself as I spend the most time with him. Yesterday I felt like the worst mum in the world, I mean, if I can't get him to nursery, how am I going to manage with school? And this guy at the parenting class, his word's keep repeating in my ear's whenever something like yesterday happen's, that if I end up calling on his dad then that takes all the respect away from me.
Hi, just looking for a bit of support, as we are still struggling.
Everything's the same as has before, but now we have really bad reaction's to him not being able to chose what to do, so, he will want to walk on the other side of the road, and if I say no, that's it, he's off on a screaming tantrum for hour's.
Today, he got upset as he didn't want to walk past the park on the way to the shop's. He didn't want to go & play in the park, he just didn't want to walk that way. Because I said we were, the tantrum started. Kicking, screaming, biting, stamping his feet, banging on his sister's pram, I finally got him out the front door and, basically, he calm's a little then it all blow's up again, and I end up dragging him back down the road, across the road, and home. And I mean dragging. He will lay on the floor until I pick him up. He will not walk.He hang's by his arm when I hold his hand. We crossed the road like this. I left him outside the house on the street while I took the pram in, then went back & picked him up. Im a terrible mother
It is definitely sounding like you may need to see some professionals.
Can I ask are you scared of a diagnosis or don't want him to have one?
I'm here if you need to talk
How does he interact with other children? Does he want to be in control of play? Does he get angry if another child interferes with his game? Does he hit or push over other kids? Do other parents get annoyed with you or him? Does he have any sensory issues such as problems with the feel of clothes or with having a limited diet? If he does, I'd be thinking about the possibility of ASD - It isn't always obvious at his age.
Thank you for your reply, one step. It's a bit of both I guess, but ultimately, 100% honesty, I feel that it's me, I don't know how to parent him, and never have done. I don't think it's that it's him I think it's me.
I had the HV round before and she never mentioned it being anything more, just about the parenting course, and of course, he acted like a perfect angel around her anyway.
Also, the HV we've had round since my daughter was born, has made comments like 'It's definately calmer without him here' and 'you clearly have your hands full with the Two of them' and he isn't even playing up around her! I tried to talk to her about him and she said to make sure we get out, change of scenery, which I do, every day, but obviously it's getting harder and harder to do, the other day in town he was banging his head on shop windows..
He is perfect at nursery, he is perfect around other family, it is me (well and his dad) so that's me at fault then, isn't it?
I see in my head being laughed out of the drs as he behaves perfectly well then.
Sorry Atom I missed your post.
He behaves brilliantly with other kids, we just had Parents evening at nursery, and they are full of praise and are shocked at the problems we are having.He is also caring and doesn't like seing others upset, apart from when he's hurting me. No sensory things apart from labels of clothes sometimes.
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