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how do i deal with a 5 yr old that is ungrateful?

my son is 5 and has a 9 month old bro, no matter what we do for him or get for him its never enough and cries that he wants more all the time. we ground him and take things away but its not working any suggestions?

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Asked by monkeyboy2 at 2:53 PM on Jun. 21, 2009 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

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Answers (10)
  • Yeah, give him nothing for a while...a long while. Sounds like a pretty spoiled kid to me. Unless this behavior had begun since the 9 months old was born. If have a hefty case of sibling rivalry going. He doesn't need 'stuff' he needs you and Dads attention. When kids crave attention and aren't getting it they will take any attention they can get. Good or bad.

    Answer by Anonymous at 2:55 PM on Jun. 21, 2009

  • i agree with Anon. or you could aslo,

    Take everything away. EVERYTHING. in california the only things required by law is a mattress on the floor and a change of clothes. That's it. ...i wouldnt take it THAT far. But i would deffinantly take away the majority of his toys. and any other luxory items he has in his room.

    But also, remmeber that he is probably acting out because of the new baby. It might be a good idea for Dad to take him to the park every weekend for a while. Or for mom to spend some special time with him out to dinner or something. GL

    Answer by outstandingLove at 3:00 PM on Jun. 21, 2009

  • HE'S 5!!! To a 5 yr old the word revolves around them, meaning that they still do not fully understand that you do not walk into a room where they are specifically for them, that there are consequences for things, and the thing they dont get until around age 7 is conservation (realizing what they have is enough and dont need more). This is not unusual behavior for a child especially for a 5 yr old. Explain simply why he cannot have more, be firm and consistant each time, and try putting everything into preportioned baggies (he wants a cookie he only sees one in the bag not a whole bag full so he doesnt see there is more)....oh and grounding a 5 yr is just rediculous

    Answer by ReneeLRS at 3:01 PM on Jun. 21, 2009

  • Renee. i agree with you to a certian point.
    At 5yrs old they are not as self centered as you described. They DO understand other peoples feelings and emotions. They DO understand that not everyone needs or wants the same things they do. They DO understand about some of the importances of the adult world.
    You are right about the conservation thing. But i think you are taking it to a different level. Knowing and realizing that he has a closet full of toys at home but still throwing a fit about wanting one more toy at walmart is not a conservation issue. ...if that is infact what is going on here.

    Answer by outstandingLove at 3:07 PM on Jun. 21, 2009

  • I have been having this problem letely with my children. I will get them something and they will be like "But I wanted such and such" So very calmly I explain..."I understand that ____ is what you wanted, but I got you ____ and if that's not good enough then you can have nothing." ONCE the continued to whine so I took back the candies I had gotten and threw them out...Now when the whining begins I tell them its that or nothing....So far so good....Good Luck!

    Answer by KaylasMiracle at 3:31 PM on Jun. 21, 2009

  • Begin by giving him less so he can appreciate the things he has. Put some of what he has up and get it back out in several months. Usually when kids see it again after not playing with it for a while they find a new appreciation. Also read him books and talki about giving, being grateful for what he has, and those who are less fortunate. He is young, but there are books on this subject which are written on his level which can help him begin to understand.    It should not be an ongoing coversation. 


    Answer by momjs at 5:58 PM on Jun. 21, 2009

  • I think its a phase... all 9 month olds require a lot of time and most 5 year olds are self-centered... put them in the same family and its a headache. My guess is the thing your son craves is time and attention which if you are like us is more scare than money!! :) They old saying is at 5 kids do not know the difference between positive and negative attention. I am not saying spoil him or anything, but try and see if even 15 minutes of one and one time (without interruption) helps.... Good luck to you!

    Answer by teampalmer4 at 6:42 PM on Jun. 21, 2009

  • Take everything away and let him EARN his toys.

    Answer by tcarter1981 at 7:18 PM on Jun. 21, 2009

  • uggg i have this same problem, everything i have tried BIG FAT FAIL, i am beginning to think it will pass soon enough, just like all the others.

    Answer by jbirchard at 7:25 PM on Jun. 21, 2009

  • Quit giving him ANYTHING, and if he wants something, make him earn it! At 5 years old he's plenty big enough to do chores around the house.

    Answer by Bethsunshine at 7:53 PM on Jun. 21, 2009

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