I would first of all try to find out the why of the change in behavior. Has there been some trauma in his life? Has he not been getting enough attention for behaving so that he feels the only way to get attention is by doing something bad? Is there something that he feels he really needs and has been asking for but hasn't gotten? Sudden changes in behavior almost always indicate an unmet need, and so the first thing I would want to discover would be that need and then I would want to meet it, if I could. If it turns out to be something that's impossible right now, then he and I would have an honest discussion with my telling him that I understood his need and would love to be able to meet it. He needs to know that someone understands him and where he is coming from. If he's hanging with the wrong crowd, that needs to be changed. If he's watching the wrong things, that needs to be changed. He's 9 so he needs to learn!!
at 12:54 PM on Aug. 5, 2010