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AIBU?

Is it my parenting or do all 5 year olds go through this?

27 replies

llamamaa · 01/10/2022 20:13

My DS is being stereotypically 'naughty', it's like he's had a change of personality since going back to school.

He's always been so good, but for the past few weeks, he's...

  • been snappy, had a teenage attitude, shouting, saying horrible things
  • saying aggressive things ('I'm going to punch you' to sister)
  • having emotional tantrums and getting angry when he's emotional)
    *always being backchatty and repeating annoying phrases
  • hyperactive, not listening to instructions, constantly 'messing'
    He's literally being a different child.

    I'm anxious that it's my parenting and I'm failing, and I'm stressed about the influence of screen time and the influence of SC.

    Hoping someone can jump on and reassure me that children can go through random difficult phases at this age and I'm thinking too much into the reasons why.
    I just feel like I've done something wrong.
OP posts:
NameChangeLifeChange · 01/10/2022 20:28

OP it’s not just you! I have a 5 year old and she’s generally well behaved but been a terror since school.
Whingy, grumpy, attitude 24/7. All the other kids seem so sweet and lovely mortified the way she speaks sometimes! We come down on it like a tonne of bricks and she knows her boundaries but my god! She’s worse than a toddler!

mnahmnah · 01/10/2022 20:33

Sounds exactly like my 5yo DS. To be fair, when I pull him up on it he quite quickly apologises and will be all kisses and cuddles and ‘ I love you’. Sometimes it takes longer. But it’s like he’s been pumped full of testosterone and E numbers! Luckily he’s perfect at school and saves it all for us at home…

IsleofDen · 01/10/2022 20:37

I think the pressure to be good and sit nicely and behave perfectly at school can be too much for kids. They spend the school day tightly wound and then relax the second they get home, leading to madness. It will probably stop once he’s used to the new expectations at school.

converseandjeans · 01/10/2022 20:41

He might be overtired from school? Does he have any issues with other children & he's taking it out on you all at home? Is he keeping up OK with the work?

Hymnulop · 01/10/2022 20:44

Thought it was just me! Had the WORST day today with my 5.5 DD. Took her to her hobby then her friends party and she's just been horrible to me all day. She keeps deliberately ignoring me. I've been shouty all day which I hate and I had to put her to bed early. Not the Saturday I was hoping for.

napody · 01/10/2022 20:46

Beginning of year one is probably the hardest transition in school. It's such a big change for them, so much more demanding.

LaPufalina · 01/10/2022 20:48

Following as mine is high-highs and low-lows too. Massive overreactions but I'm trying to hold her through them.

user1471550615 · 01/10/2022 20:50

My 6.5 year old is just the same! Unfortunately it’s not just at home but leading to issues at school/after school club. Not in quite the same way but real issues with controlling his emotions. No idea if something is troubling him but he won’t talk about it if that is the case.
So hard to know how best to address it!

YukoandHiro · 01/10/2022 20:53

My 5yo DD still has the most astonishing angry meltdowns and I admit I don't always handle them as best I could - I really notice that when I'm impatient with her because eg she's been trying to hurt her sister her behaviour gets worse. So empathy and lots of cuddles etc definitely helps.
But you're not alone and I don't think it's your parenting - my 5.2yo is the youngest in year 1 and I do think school is an exhausting environment for them and we get the brunt of the emotional response to that

Beginningless · 01/10/2022 20:55

I know these kind of behaviours are so challenging, but I’d say try to remember that behaviour in children is how they communicate with you. He is showing you, especially given the change, that he is struggling. It doesn’t mean you don’t have boundaries, of course he’s not allowed to behave aggressively, but I think it helps to build this into your understanding of him, so that your boundaries are made with compassion rather than anger. This is ideal world stuff and I know they push our buttons, so don’t be too hard on yourself. But I’d be trying to explore what he’s feeling about school and using books about feelings to try and have helpful discussions.

MissMaple82 · 01/10/2022 20:57

It's not you, my child goes through challenging, and very challenging phases and then back to gloriously well behaved. Its just child's growing, developing and learning. Kids also have off days like us

GG1986 · 01/10/2022 21:20

My 6 year old is a nightmare after a day at school, they have to behave in school, but home is their "safe" place where they can release any built up emotions from their day. It can be challenging, but just roll with it.

Whatinthewonderingfuckisthat · 01/10/2022 21:38

The thing that really helped me realise was that all children get overwhelmed and show it in so many different ways.
Crying, being upset and hanging on to you, being overly affectionate, anger, hitting out etc are ALL emotional behaviours. Yet we seem to go easier on some of these behaviours than others (I know I did! )
To make it easier for yourself- imagine him being tearful and hugging you when he’s upset- because he’s having the same emotion as a teary child would- he just presents it in a different way.

We are so used to being told that “emotion” is just crying and feeling sad- and then pass that on through generations but all emotions are relevant at a young age.

So act like you would if he was crying and hugging you. Give him time, compassion and sympathy. Tell him you understand he’s tired, hungry, cross etc and ask would he like a hug, a snack, to talk or some time by himself.

When he first gets out of school, give him a hug and a snack and don’t question him about his day- let him have some down time or quiet time for a while(screen time/ time in his room and time to just decompress)

It’s a massive thing for young children to start school- extremely draining to have to interact, communicate, stay still, listen etc. for huge amounts of time that they have never been used to. It does get better though!

Elfrazzle · 01/10/2022 21:58

My 5yo has just started year 1 and has regressed back to whiney toddler like behaviour. Most of the parents in her class I spoke to have said their kid is struggling with the step up - reluctant to go in. Remember this kids have not had a normal toddler/pre school experience due to covid lockdowns so it's likely extra hard for them.

MuggleMe · 01/10/2022 22:25

My summer born 5yo is stuck on winge mode ATM and so so sensitive. Stropped during a playdate and only snapped out of it when it was dinner time. She has been saying how tiring y1 is compared to reception.

Seashor · 02/10/2022 06:40

I teach this age group and if I had a pound for every parent that came to me exasperated with their 5 year old I’d retire early.

Please rest assured that everything you’ve described are very common behaviour patterns for this age group.

Mol1628 · 02/10/2022 06:46

Both mine did this as well. They’re just tired over simulated and overwhelmed.

I stopped punishing it because this made it worse. I was just overly nice! Eg I can see you’re getting frustrated let’s get a hot chocolate and watch some TV together. (Hard when they’re being little sods to you I know!)

Correcting the behaviour never worked because their brains were just in a state of stress I’d never get through.

sjxoxo · 02/10/2022 06:53

Was also going to say is he really really really tired… I imagine after a few weeks back at school they are like zombie tired. I don’t have a 5yo (yet) so can’t say about the age but sounds to me like he’s frustrated and tired! X

Blahdeebla · 02/10/2022 06:54

I don't have a 5 yo yet but I teach reception. I can't tell you how exhausted they are this time of year. We often have them falling asleep on the carpet while they wait to go home. They're usually MUCH better after October half term.

sjxoxo · 02/10/2022 06:55

Mol1628 · 02/10/2022 06:46

Both mine did this as well. They’re just tired over simulated and overwhelmed.

I stopped punishing it because this made it worse. I was just overly nice! Eg I can see you’re getting frustrated let’s get a hot chocolate and watch some TV together. (Hard when they’re being little sods to you I know!)

Correcting the behaviour never worked because their brains were just in a state of stress I’d never get through.

@Mol1628 I’d like a hot chocolate and to watch tv please 😄 you sound so nice 😂☺️ I’ll try your ethos with DS when he’s older! X

Mol1628 · 02/10/2022 06:58

sjxoxo · 02/10/2022 06:55

@Mol1628 I’d like a hot chocolate and to watch tv please 😄 you sound so nice 😂☺️ I’ll try your ethos with DS when he’s older! X

Hahaha don’t get me wrong I lose my shit sometimes!! But really, really try not to!

ListenLinda · 02/10/2022 07:09

Oh wow, thank you for this thread OP! I thought it was just us. DD is also just into Year 1 and her behaviour and attiude has been dreadful. We discipline but within a few days, she is back to being rude and mean to her 3 yo brother.

KOKO, and let’s hope this too shall pass.

llamamaa · 02/10/2022 07:15

So thankful that it isn't just us and feeling so reassured and more equipped to handle it!! Thank you so much everyone.

OP posts:
switswoo81 · 02/10/2022 07:18

After school restraint collapse. I teach this age and have a 7 year old so have been through it. I speak to the parents at the welcome meeting about it. They have conformed to expectations all day and then the person they love most in the world who they know will be there for them no matter what comes along and they just unload .
As pp said cuddles on the sofa and hot chocolate are exactly what's needed

Leakingroofagain · 02/10/2022 07:20

My dd did this. We moved her bedtime 30 mins earlier (it had crept) and it stopped. It was like a different child.

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