Really hit the depths of bad parenting tonight with 5yr dd

(17 Posts)
BabiesAreLikeBuses Wed 19-Jun-13 20:32:19

My dd was like this at 4.5 but at 5.3 is a different child, i say this to give you hope! I too realised i'd got into a negative cycle and she's a smart cookie and knows my buttons very well!
I decided to not engage when she raged. Made her rage more at first and she is a child who talks constantly through raging and crying. It was a breakthrough moment for me seeing her talk from 'it's all your fault you always say no and you don't let me do anything' to 'this is all my fault you are right, i'm so sorry'....
I have also talked it through when she is calm, eg when you tell me that black is white it makes me cross because i am telling you the truth. If you don't believe me can you say are you sure instead? Her new most common phrase became are you sure but it stopped me raging! She has expressed since frustration at knowing less than me - why do grown ups always know more than i do?
I also think sometimes she was just checking boundaries were still there. I too have been trying to give her more hugs and build a closer bond. She still has moments (and am expecting it x10 when she hits 13!) but they are rare now.
Good luck!

orangeandemons Tue 18-Jun-13 21:51:32

Awful other...I think you have my dd. she only ever wants me...there is no escape. Slams the door on dh and tells him to go away. He just returned from a weekend away and she told him to go back! She also thinks she is my equal too, and I quote " You can't tell me what to do". shock. Unfortunately it my many moments of despair I fear she is telling the truth sad

girliefriend Tue 18-Jun-13 21:43:45

There is also a book called 'the 5 languages of love for children' which is quite useful. The basic premise being that there are 5 ways in which children (and adults) know that they are being loved. I think they are

1. verbal - being told you are loved
2. acts of service - by the things that you do for them
3. Quality time
4. physical contact - cuddles etc
5. Gifts

This is useful because if you can work out which of the 5 your dd needs the most you might find her behaviour settles down a bit in theory

Not saying your dd doesn't know she is loved but i found this a useful way of thinking about what my dd needs in order to know she is loved.

Awfulmother Tue 18-Jun-13 21:34:55

Haha, thank you pancakeflipper I changed my name for this post as I'm so mortified by my behaviour. I know I'm not an awful mother, and that is what upsets me too..what is causing her to behave in this way??... she has a bloody lovely life apart from my occasional outburst which, it could be argued, are justified and she knows how I will react. And maybe that's it. She gets my attention and by god does she want that..she is and always has been a huge mummy's girl, very clingy, constantly tells me she loves me, still gets upset at school door in morns and whenever i leave her anywhere actually and is quite horrible to dh in blatantly loving me more ( she even tells him that) hmm I don't know why this is. My ds is not like this. I work 3 days a week and am always around in morns and evenings on those days. I spend more one to one time with her than I do the younger one simply bcos she is so needy, we do lots of reading and role playing together. She actually seems to think she is my equal though! Anyway, it's making my head hurt keep analysing her, I just need to focus on keeping my reactions to her calm and level headed. Tomorrow is another day x

girliefriend Tue 18-Jun-13 21:32:24

issynono - is your dd my dd? They sound like the same child!! grin

girliefriend Tue 18-Jun-13 21:30:24

Bless you total sympathy here as well smile

My dd is now 7yo but at 5yo I was pulling my hair out, she was so stubborn and everything was a battle. I have said to her in the past 'maybe you need a new mummy because you obviously don't like me very much' blush

She is better now but I am not sure what changed really <unhelpful> I refuse to engage at all when she is being obnoxious, if she is being a pain or having a paddy about something she tends to loose something of hers. I have so far found this to be the most effective form of discipline and normally now only have to give a warning that unless she sorts herself out she will loose her moshi monsters or similar.

By loose I mean they go on top of the kitchen cupboards for a few days grin I did read 'how to talk so your children will listen and listen so your children will talk' which I found really useful.

Don't feel bad, children drive you mad - fact!

Pancakeflipper Tue 18-Jun-13 21:19:44

Awfulmother - if you really were awful you wouldn't be on here asking for help/support and methods to use to help you and your daughter. It is really hard work and so damn easy to get into a negative cycle ( I have days when I feel myself rise to every little bit and have to pull myself back). I think you are lovely.

Sheshlob - I don't know. I cannot recall if I read it somewhere or it was suggested or I thought of it out of "I will think and try anything". If it was from " child rearing expert " will let you know.

Our word is actually parts of 2 words put together so it's made up and no-one else would use it every day. I think it is bonkers but it does work. Somehow it takes the sting out of his reasons for raging.

Sheshelob Tue 18-Jun-13 21:10:18

Pancake

I love the idea of a magic word! Shows such empathy and understanding. Were did you get the idea for that?

issynoho Tue 18-Jun-13 21:05:57

That's the thing - these qualities in an adult are fantastic! Persistence, single-mindedness, being utterly convinced their way is the only way. It's dealing with them in a child that is so frustrating. We just have to get them to adulthood without leaving them out for the binmen.

And you would not be expected to do this as paid work for more than 4 hours without a break or longer than 8-10 hours a day, so regular breaks and days off are in order whenever possible.

Please change your username too!

Awfulmother Tue 18-Jun-13 20:18:43

Thank you. I really have got into a negative cycle & need to break it. I will seek out that book. So disappointed in myself as didn't think I'd be this kind of parent.

orangeandemons Tue 18-Jun-13 20:17:58

My 6 year old dd is just like this. So persistent and stubborn. I often feel overwhelmed by it I'm a teacher, I can get a class of 14 year olds completely silent, but am in despair with one 6 year old.

Rewards work...sometimes, but sanctions are just a joke. I have never ever been able to get her to sit on a naughty step for longer than 30 seconds. I tend to take things away, but this can ake it worse. I had a perfectly behaved ds, and thought I'd cracked parenting, then I got the Tazmanian Devil...

Her persistence is awesome really. I don't know any adult like it sad

Pancakeflipper Tue 18-Jun-13 20:11:45

I have a 4yr old just like yours. Stubbornness is his talent.

I have also found praise works and breaks the cycle ( and sitting on the doorstep until calm enough to face him again without losing my own temper). We do a 'merit chart for good behaviour for rewards. And lots of hugs and positive feedback when good. Bit OTT but he does respond happily to it.

We also have a secret magic word that we use when his temper begins to start and I hug him and whisper it. That sounds really wishywashy. But it usually works and he just hugs him telling me why the world feels against him.

My sympathy and a very large glass of virtual wine. How they manage to push you to the limit is pretty remarkable.

issynoho Tue 18-Jun-13 20:09:46

Total, total sympathy - My DD1 is very sensitive and started her terrible 2s at 15 months. I have no miracle cure but she's 7 now and is getting easier. But it goes in phases. Her teachers look at me like i'm hallucinating when I ask if everything is OK at school - she save all her behaviour for home.

Maybe maturity helps them flip out less. DD hates being told what to do and moving from one activity to another, so morning are relentlessly grim. So at weekends and holidays I don't make her get dressed or do anything she doesn't have to. The path of least resistance...

I keep thinking about everyone being here to teach me something - she is certainly here to teach me patience. grin

And this thread is wonderful for reassurance.

Pozzled Tue 18-Jun-13 20:03:37

Sympathy here- that sounds really tough to deal with, day in, day out.

You have recognized that what you are doing is not right, and is not working, so you have taken the first step. Now you need to work out some strategies to deal with two things: your anger and your DD's behaviour.

It sounds like you have got into a really negative cycle with her and some more positive interaction would help. I would recommend having a read of 'Calmer, happier, easier parenting'. It has some good techniques which worked well for us- the main one was constant use of praise for all the little things they do right.

TeamEdward Tue 18-Jun-13 20:00:11

Oh, just read my post back. Not meant to be as preachy or judgy as it might sound.

TeamEdward Tue 18-Jun-13 19:59:26

I have a very stubborn DS2, he's almost 5. What is working for us at the moment is to love him more. We've had to really reign in the impatience and frustration he triggers in us and be calm, gentle and soft. "Hug it out" is a bit namby-pamby, but when he's being difficult we show him how much he is loved.
It's not rewarding the bad behaviour but building our relationship. He is responding really well.
For example, just avoided a bedtime tantrum when he wanted to play on the computer instead - I picked the screaming ball off the floor, hugged him until calm and we struck a deal (PJs on, 5 min more on computer, then straight to bed). He's old enough to realise that I'll do something for him if he does something for me, that relationships (even parental ones) are give & take.

Awfulmother Tue 18-Jun-13 19:52:25

Ok.. I'm shaking with anger. How can a 5 yr old provoke such a reaction?? I have just lost it completely and yelled at my dd that I am going into the school to tell them she needs a new mummy... Who says such dreadful things to their child. I am horrified with myself & was as I was saying it but am just SO desperate to get through to her. Here's the back story.. Always been v highly strung (dd not me hmm) & has thrown long & intense tantrums since age of 18 months. She WILL not give in on something once she has turned it into a battle.. Often coming back to things hours or days later until she gets her own way, albeit on a different thing/in different way. She has to win!!! In last few weeks this has intensified, would take forever to explain but I assure you it would push anyone over the edge.. I also have 2yr ds & can quite easily manage his tantrums.. But dd is really pushing me. I have grabbed her hard before & smacked in absolute desperation- it doesn't work of course. Nothing does -she simply won't respond to discipline when in this frame of mind. This is not all the time. She can be wonderful & at sch & childminders is super well behaved..so it's at home she lets rip. but I am not helping her or dealing with it at all well. I am too angry with her. Please help & try not to judge me. Does anyone else have similar children?

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