at end of my tether. Help!
strugglingwiththepreteenbit · 06/07/2012 16:37
I'm having a hard time with my dd. She's entering puberty and really struggling with her temper. I've kept her off school and not gone to work today myself because she lost it; screaming, kicking and crying.
I'm ready to talk to the gp about the need for some help from child mental health services but DH is worried about her "being labelled" and that her behaviour isn't too far from normal...
What does mumsnet think?
KatherineKavanagh · 06/07/2012 17:11
I think taking a day off work is ridiculous! And also, this notion if 'pre teen' is odd. It's a newish thing and seems to be used as an excuse
How about it's nearing the end of the school year and she is knackered?
KatherineKavanagh · 06/07/2012 17:11
I have 3 teens and they all burnout at this time of year
bigTillyMint · 06/07/2012 17:13
I agree, DD will be 13 in 3 weeks and is knackered. How old is your DD OP?
strugglingwiththepreteenbit · 06/07/2012 17:27
she's 11, and I agree, both with the ridiculousness and the notion of being burnt out. She is, however, too physically big to be tucked under my arm and carried into school these days. Her response to discipline, which I used to be good at giving her, has become to physically lash out and disolve into tears. Taking the day off is far from something I am in the habit of doing and am resolved not to do so again. DH has been instructed that if this happens again he will be summoned home to deal with it.
strugglingwiththepreteenbit · 06/07/2012 17:35
Initially over not being allowed to go to a friends after school because the invitation had not been extended by the friends parents. It subsequently became a refusal to wash, dress or do any of the other essentials to get out of the door in the mornings.
strugglingwiththepreteenbit · 06/07/2012 17:40
She's basically showing me that "I can't make her" do anything. And physically I can't! I've told her, (and will see through) that I will be docking her pocket money for several months to make up for the days pay I've lost. She's also spent the day shut in her room without access to electronic devices. (Save my showing her an episode from an old channel 4 series called Brat Camp on youtube as an illustration of what can happen to youngsters who do not accept their parents' authority.)
bigTillyMint · 06/07/2012 17:48
Is she Y6? It can be a dificult time with all the uncertainty of changing schools, etc, never mind hormones. But that doesn't excuse poor behaviour!
Does she regret her actions this morning now?
KatherineKavanagh · 06/07/2012 17:51
What did school say? A word from attendance/truancy officer might make her think twice again
So now she is bigger, you need new tactics
strugglingwiththepreteenbit · 06/07/2012 18:53
Yes, she's year 6. She's apologised, but not backed it up with actions. We had another big strop over going out to collect her sister, (which was where the Brat Camp video came in.) She did go very quiet after that.
I left answer-phone message to report the absence and not given a reason besides "unwell," so it's not, yet, been discussed. I like your idea about the truancy officer KatherineKavanagh. Though I need her to behave in all areas, not just school attendance.
I've posted to get a feel for how other parents of similarly-aged children distinguish between age-appropriate temper tantrum and clinically-significant problem.
bigTillyMint · 06/07/2012 19:01
Is it a new thing or has she always had tantrums and it's got worse?
My DD has turned much more stroppy and whiney and shouty at home some of the time. If she is rude to me/DH in tone or what she says, she is told that she is being rude and if she doesn't stop, she gets sent up to her room. We remove her laptop if she is really stroppy and/or no TV. She has never been violent towards us. Yet
I have used the threat of talking to her school about her behaviour when I have been particularly pissed off with her. She would HATE for school to think she was rude/had a tantrum!
strugglingwiththepreteenbit · 06/07/2012 19:07
She's generally been a sweet, well-behaved little girl. This is new! There is certainly a significant hormonal part to all this. (I'm needing to have conversations about clothing and hygine that she doesn't want to hear just yet.) She is generally very well behaved at school, and would hate her teacher to think she had been rude, so I'll add that one to the arsenal, thanks:)
bigTillyMint · 06/07/2012 19:33
It doesn't sound like it's a clinically-significant problem - sounds horribly normal to me.
I think you need to clamp down on any behaviour that you don't like - nip it in the bud. That doesn't mean that you have to get all shouty and angry, just calmly and assertively tell her that she needs to stop doing x or she will have to go to her room. If she continues, she goes up and doesn't come down until she has calmed down and apologised. If necessary, take stuff away, for a day/week/whatever and she has to earn it back by remembering to use a polite tone of voice, etc.
However, you also need to be reasonable about what you allow her to do (if her behaviour is up to scratch, of course) - she should be starting to arrange her own social life now. Is she allowed to walk to and from school/other nearby places on her own now?
I think it may have been worse today as she is completely knackered? The day off will hopefully have done her some good
strugglingwiththepreteenbit · 06/07/2012 19:45
Maybe! She does generally go places on her own and meet up with friends, including walking to school with her sister in the year below. There is some history with this particular friend inviting her over without her parents knowing about it so I was suspicious. Thanks bigTillyMint:)
bigTillyMint · 06/07/2012 19:47
In that case, once your DD has assured you that the friend has asked, the onus is on friend's parents to ensure that their DD doesn't ask people round without checking
Joiningthegang · 08/07/2012 21:10
My 10 year old sounds similar - normally lovely, helpful, as sweet as 10 year olds get. BUT one week a month we have bad behaviour, meltdowns and tantrums which are loud aggressive and unreasonable. I marked it on calendar - definite hormones - so when I know it's that, I can react calmer than when she is just plain rude.
My dh has said she might have mental problems - nope just pmt already
NanaNina · 10/07/2012 20:38
Sounds very normal to me too. Could you not have phoned the friend's parents to check it was ok for her to go, and maybe avoided this unpleasant scene. You mention hormones, and you are so right - hormone surges can change a young girl's personality (or a boy's for that matter) and everything is so intense at that age. Pick your battles or you will be totally worn out by the time she is coming to the end of this adolescent phase. Interestingly I was reading the other day that puberty can often be 2 years earlier than it was 30 years ago. Not sure why.
She will come out of this phase but it may take longer than you'd like!
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