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Bonding with a 6 year old?

I took a live-in nanny position about 3 weeks ago. It's for a 2,6,and 14 year. The oldest and youngest are great, just normal kids issues with them. But the 6 year old drives me insane! I can't stand her. She follows me around and if I don't respond to every single thing she's says she keeps repeating it and repeating it. Every thing she owns, or wears, or draws, she asks me over and over if I like them? Are they pretty? She doesn't listen, she fights with the 2 toddlers. Her brother and my son. I don't want to lose my job bc I can't stand her but I don't know what to do! I have never met a child this annoying. She is ADHD and on meds for it.

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Asked by Anonymous at 1:20 PM on Dec. 26, 2009 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

Answers (7)
  • You should have spent time with them all before you took the job. This won't get better. The ADHD won't go away and this is how they act. My grandson drives all his sitters nuts but me and my other daughter. Good luck but I wouldn't settle in for a long term situation on this one.

    Answer by admckenzie at 1:24 PM on Dec. 26, 2009

  • I don't have any first hand experience w/ADHD so I don't know if my advice applies or not, but it sounds to me like she is starving for attention. I would try showering her w/praise and affection to head her off at the pass! Tell her how pretty everything is before she asks etc and see if that helps. She might just still be trying to figure out if you like her or not and kids are very intuitive about this kind of thing so if you chage your attitude and actions towards her maybe she will too... If not, try the "fake it til you make it" approach! A smile, kind word and hug, even if you're not feeling it, can go a long way. Good luck!

    Answer by momrocks1000 at 1:38 PM on Dec. 26, 2009

  • I was a live in Nanny for a family with 3 boys (ages 1, 4 and 7 when I started babysitting them) for 5 of the 8 years I worked for this family (while I was in college and 3 years after graduating). I LOVED those boys mostly because I felt sorry for them as they were pretty much ignored by their parents--except they "bought their love" with extravagant gifts and family vacations (which I also went on).

    It was my job to provide the stability they craved and attend to their wants/needs as a "surrogate parent." I was given the authority to reprimand them as if they were my own. I'll bet this is where the "attitude" is coming from with your situation. They're testing you or know you cannot punish them! I'd discuss the childrens behavior with the parents, and clearly establish your role and "rights." I think if the children understand this, you will have an easier time. Establish house rules if there aren't any and stick to them!

    Answer by LoriKeet at 1:43 PM on Dec. 26, 2009

  • This can be a tuff situation. Children with adhd are hard to take care of if you don't know anything about it.' Even if you do it's tuff.The parent obviously needed the help, thats where you come in.If I was you I would look up adhd on the computer, at the library and ask qestions, thats how you will find out how to start figuring out what is going to work for the 2 of you. You also need to remember thats your job.I agree with the ," FAKE IT TILL YOU MAKE IT." seems like it's worked for other people.Any relationship with anyone can take effort and understanding.I think you have to really make sure thats where you want to be.

    Answer by Anonymous at 2:21 PM on Dec. 26, 2009

  • It actually sounds like she is craving attention. She wants someone to pay attention to her. Children with ADHD are NOT hard to take care of, they are just like any other kids you just need a little more patience. My son is ADHD and I have worked with a lot of kids with ADHD and they are just like anyone else. Try spending some time with just her. Make her a deal, she does things on her own and doesn't follow you around and you will spend a certain amount of time with just her. Read her a book, play a game, do an art project. It really does sound like she doesn't get any attention and that is all she wants. Her need for attention has NOTHING to do with her having ADHD. Do NOT use that as an excuse to ignore her or let her act any differently than the other kids. My son does NOT get to use his ADHD as an excuse for anything.

    Answer by tyfry7496 at 6:35 PM on Dec. 26, 2009

  • Sounds like middle child syndrome. Give her lots of attention and make a fuss over her. Praise is needed, but she also needs to know she can have her own interests, hobbies and talents. When she does something, have the other children watch her and cheer her on and when they do something, have her cheer them on. This way she knows she is just as special as the youngest and oldest.

    Answer by momx3gx1b at 7:24 PM on Dec. 26, 2009

  • sounds like a mix of attention and ADHD. my sister is the same exact way- gotta be ALL up in your business! lol its definitely annoying, plus she's not on any meds so nothing calms her non-listening butt down! either way, i'd go crazy on the praise with her.. maybe do a little role reversal.. wear something pretty one day and just continue to ask if she likes what you are wearing "do you like my dress?- do you like my earrings?- do you like my shoes?- do you like my hat?- do you like my pants?- do you like my socks?- do you like the lunch i made you?" etc. she might back off , or she might LOVE that you value her opinion and respect when you need a moment. Also- know that since she's at that age, she's stuck between the big kid who knows everything (14 y/o) and a baby who knows nothing but still gets fussed over (2 y/o), she's not sure where she fits in-- she doesnt need the parents as much but she's still dependent on them

    Answer by Shy_Dia at 7:43 AM on Dec. 28, 2009

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