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10 year old daughter behaviour.. HELP!

11 replies

Gemsie1984 · 01/06/2018 12:35

Hi πŸ‘‹

My eldest child is 10, just turned in March. She's kind, funny and lovely however in the last four months she has morphed into a moody, argumentative, disrespectful nightmare. I hate writing negative things about her but I am truly at my wits end regarding what to do with her. She lies a lot, about silly things and she steals also, mainly spare change and she has raided her younger brothers piggy bank. She will frequently fly off the handle if asked to do something she doesn't want to and I often get the door slammed in my face or "I hate you!" I confiscate her phone and her iPad when she's being naughty and on occasion apps will get deleted if she's really pushing it but as soon as she gets her privileges back, her attitude returns.
She has had issues with keeping friends at school and has been physically attacked twice in 6 months by two different boys. The school dealt with it internally, but not enough was done IMO as my daughter was left with bruising etc. She's bright and is achieving highly in all subjects at school, but she has no motivation for school and it's a trauma every weekend to get her homework done (not unusual I know).
Most of the arguments with my DP centre around our daughters behaviour. She (my DP) tends to be very authoritative towards our daughter and it seems like they argue back and forth. It drives me crazy and I don't think it's conductive of anything being sorted as it just starts more arguments. I have lost my temper a lot at my daughter and shouted but it doesn't do anything. I'm almost 13 weeks pregnant now too and the continual stress is doing no one any good. We've tried rewards, punishments but still the behaviour continues. My daughter has a brother who's a year younger than her and her attitude towards him is terrible also. She'll goad him and say nasty things until he retaliates and they end up physically fighting. It's sometimes like trying to referee two feral cats.
My daughter is close to her grandad and they have a special bond however he refuses to see any negative aspects of my daughters behaviour and when I try and broach it with him he will excuse it.. either using school or some other issue. I get that school might be part of the issue but I don't think it's that 100%. He'll undermine mine and DP's authority in front of our daughter and I think that this is contributing to the issues that we're currently having.
I know this is waffling but I'm just petrified that this will escalate. I love my daughter with everything and I only want what's best for her but I can't carry on like this.. it's so destructive.. πŸ™

OP posts:
malificent7 · 02/06/2018 22:51

Welcome to puberty.. In many ways your dd sounds like mine and her granpy also undermines me at times..
Advice needed as I'm clueless too

SadieHH · 02/06/2018 22:56

Yep, I have one too. Total Jekyll and Hyde time. One minute she's lovely, the next she's a screaming banshee. Lots of fun...

baylisbaylis · 02/06/2018 23:03

My DD is 9 and I have the same issues... I realised that telling her off/shouting etc didn't work, so I sat with DD one day and asked her about it. Why does she do it? What is she feeling? How can I help? In her case she said she hates it when I shout at her and it only makes her angrier hence less likely to listen and behave.
She said instead she wanted a hug.

So when she is losing control, that's what I do. I bite my tongue and I give her hug, we call it a 'naughty hug' and I say out loud so she knows. And you know what? It works. Sometimes the realisation of her own behaviour is so much that she bursts into tears.

Don't know what will work for your DDs but just in case it helps, I thought I'd share.

SadieHH · 02/06/2018 23:16

I do a similar thing, I ask her if she wants to carry on as she is or have a hug. Nine times out of ten she'll take the hug. The only problem is remembering to ask before she gets on my last nerve and I lose it!

Gemsie1984 · 03/06/2018 03:53

Thanks for the replies. We had a meltdown yesterday again over her going out to play. It resulted in her screaming she hated me, slammed doors and her brother having a massive hand mark on his back where she had slapped him. Must admit when whey hurt each other without provocation it's like red rag to a bull with me and I was spitting feathers. Which is just what she wanted of course, more ammunition. It's ridiculous that I'm reduced to this, seeing it as a war.. with a 10 year old..
I did calm down in the the end and tried to talk rationally to her about her behaviour and just asked.. please explain why you feel the need to behave like this. I want to help you. I don't want to fight with you all the time. She just shrugged her shoulders and said she doesn't know why she does it. Cue her iPad and phone being confiscated for the rest of the day. She surprisingly did handle that better than I thought she would.
Myself and DP are going to sit down tomorrow morning and go through some rules with our daughter, so she knows exactly what's expected behaviour wise. These will be in place until we see some kind of improvement (hopefully). I will definitely try the hug when things kick off again and see if she's responsive to it. Sometimes she's so angry when she's in one of those moods it's like asking a viper snake for for a kiss, but I'll give it a shot.
I am just praying for the day when these hormones calm down a bit.. hopefully she'll start her periods soon as it's like living with someone who has PMS 85% of the day. It is truly exhausting.. my poor son, living with three women πŸ™ˆπŸ˜‚

OP posts:
SadieHH · 03/06/2018 06:43

We have the violence too although her sister (6) is just as bad. Sometimes they're covered in scratches or red marks and they're very contrite afterwards but nothing I do or say makes any difference when they're in the middle of one of their spats. I can take the backchat and the attitude but I really struggle to stop them attacking each other.

baylisbaylis · 03/06/2018 08:08

I hope the new rules help Gem. I find the nasty behaviour towards siblings very difficult to handle too. Sometimes I completely forget about the hugging, and just fly off the handle. All credit to DD there are times she reminds me herself, effectively using the technique back at me.

fleshmarketclose · 03/06/2018 08:32

Is she being bullied? You say she was attacked and left with bruising twice is there more to this and is it going under the radar?
She sounds pretty unhappy tbh. I don't think we should automatically assume puberty just because she is ten.
Having five dc myself what I've learnt is that all behaviour is communication and if what we are doing isn't getting results the answer isn't to press on with harsher and more severe it's to look again and try a different approach.
I wonder whether being attacked has left her feeling scared and vulnerable and angry because she'd be completely justified. Does she hurt her presumably younger and smaller and weaker sibling because she's angry and she felt powerless and she's practising fighting in case it happens again.
Does she butt heads with your dp because her treating her harshly seems really unfair when she is feeling vulnerable and makes her feel small and powerless again like the boys who attacked her?
I don't think she needs harsh rules and severe punishments I think she needs to feel safe and secure and certain that the adults in her life have got her back.
I think you need to give her lots of warmth and kindness, an opportunity to talk and let her pour out all the hurt she is carrying and then solutions. Could she take up a self defence class or martial arts? Can you speak to the school? Have they noticed any issues? How can they help her over what must have been a trauma? Have they ensured she knows she is safe in school? Let her see that you are on her side and I think you can work this out.

Gemsie1984 · 03/06/2018 09:36

Again, thanks for the responses.
In regards to bullying she does have issues with a certain group of girls in her year. There's often name-calling and my daughter will come home on occasion and say that they've said mean things to her. Of course we let her know we're on her side. When these incidents happen we go to the school and speak with her teachers but the story is it was six of one, half a dozen of the other. We ask our daughter to stay away from the girls, not to play with them but she will gravitate towards them again as they're the popular kids in the year (the boys that attacked her are friends on these girls) She does say she hates school and I'm sure that there are things that make her unhappy. Her father lives in South America and she only communicates with him on Skype. I think she has mixed feelings about him as sometimes she'll say things like she misses him and of her times she'll say she never wants to speak to him again. We have reasoning and talking during outbursts but quite often she's non responsive to it and it is hard to keep your cool when it's a power struggle for hours on end. School have referred her to CAMHS and she does have a school counsellor who she sees on an ad hoc basis..

OP posts:
fleshmarketclose · 03/06/2018 10:09

Well if she's been referred to CAMHS then I'd say you need to treat her gently until you have some idea of the difficulties. I have two with autism and have learnt there can only be a power struggle if both people are willing to engage. It's often easier and more productive to walk away and let emotions subside before having a chat from a different angle later in the day and never ever start a battle that isn't worth the cost of the fight.

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