Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

2 Bumps

Destructive Child

I have a destructive child that loves to get into everything. Her wall is torn apart because of her, and her bed is officially broken so she can't play. Nap time is a horror, and bed time is very difficult as well. If I let her skip nap time she is grumpy and hits and screams and is evil after we get to 4:30, I don't know what to do, she can get out of her room, play with the light and climbs on everything. Sometimes she hurts herself in the process but lashes out at others without it. What would you do if no punishment worked.

Answer Question

Asked by kbishop8688 at 2:55 PM on Aug. 17, 2010 in Toddlers (1-2)

Level 16 (2,730 Credits)
Answers (10)
  • How old is your child? Is she calm as she is being violent? And has she been tested for autism?

    I would definitely talk to your pediatrician about this.

    My suggestion until you can talk to pedi is to download the M-CHAT at: , then you can discuss her behaviors as they relate to autism if this is a concern for you. Some of the behaviors you describe could definitely be related to autism but I need more information.

    Answer by Glamourina at 2:59 PM on Aug. 17, 2010

  • Sounds a little like my dd who is 5 now. She is still into everything. I have learned how to deal with her in a calm manner...most of the time :) She is hard to go to sleep and is usually making a mess somewhere.

    She is mildly wouldnt even know it if I didnt tell you, but I think that is where this issue comes from.

    Children like this can really make you a better parent. I know you dont want to hear that right now...but I also think of it like I must be strong and patient for God to give me this child. Like I am being complimented by having a "difficult" child. Know what I mean?

    My only advice would be to limit arguments and frustration. If you know something is a problem try and avoid it.

    Answer by mom2twobabes at 3:00 PM on Aug. 17, 2010

  • well, she is fine until she gets tired really, we can calm her fine if it's just that she wants something and didn't verbalize it. My daughter is extremely brilliant, she is well advanced for her age, but is a grumpy horrible ranting child when she gets tired. You lay down with her and she retaliates with hitting, kicking, pinching and sometimes biting, she screams at you to leave and go, but man of man there is no controlling once she gets to that point. She can sit and play for hours at a time calmly, loves attention and loves to show you when she has accomplished something, she can watch a movie and interact with it or just sit there dazed. My biggest worry is that I am due in Feb and she won't be over this problem by them, i don't want to have to worry about both of them in one room at the same time. ESPECIALLY if she is tired.

    Comment by kbishop8688 (original poster) at 3:04 PM on Aug. 17, 2010

  • My dd could read when she was 2 and loves to be the center of everyone's attention. Just letting you know those things have nothing to do with autism lots of times.

    Not saying she has this, I have no idea! But a few of the things you mentioned sound autistic in nature.

    if not, then she is controlling you. If she is under the age of 2. You should be able to control her at bedtime. Maybe you are letting her get "overtired" and she is not able to calm down b/c of overtiredness.

    Answer by mom2twobabes at 3:09 PM on Aug. 17, 2010

  • have you tried puttign her in a schedule i mean she isnt being hrorble because thats how she is, she is mostly doing it because she is tired. what you should do is try putting her in a schedule lets say she gets really fuzzy by 4 because shes really tired then what youshould do is make her take a nap at 3 so you avoid her getting over tired. make her get in a routine but you need to be consistant. also sometimes they get very distructive and very agresive if they are bored you should take her for a walk everyday to the park the store or just wlaking outside. you can do this right before the naptime take her for a wlak and when you come back she can take a nap. the only thing i you have to be very consistant with this. now if she is always like this then i think you should contact yoru doctor making sure theires nothing else there there can be adhd, autism you can ask your doctor sos he can give yousome advice on what to do GL

    Answer by Alejandra10 at 3:13 PM on Aug. 17, 2010

  • Try getting her interested in music. Watch music videos with her. My grandson has horrible eczema head to toe and has problems falling asleep. We will watch music videos and when he is starting to get real sleepy I play James Blunt and he will fall asleep then. I hold him while he sleeps. No way you could put him in a room and expect him to take a nap or go to bed. He would turn himself into a bloody mess and destroy the room. Instead we enjoy some music and I get to hold him while he sleeps.

    He likes Owl City's Fireflies, Jack Johnson Upside Down with Curious George, James Blunt Goodbye My Lover, Colbie Caillat Fallin For You, Train Soul Sister, and lots of other songs. He has a play list and points to the songs he wants.


    Answer by Gailll at 3:14 PM on Aug. 17, 2010

  • Regardless I would still talk to her pediatrician. I'm not saying YES she is autistic, but it's a concern. That was the first thing that popped in my head to be honest. But if she's okay until she gets really tired, is there not a way to help soothe her?

    The answer is prevention, pure and simple. Once she gets to the point of hyper-exhaustion you just get her home and to bed, as fast as you possibly can. Tomorrow, try and prevent this from happening again by giving her more time for rest and sleep. I know you cannot 100% avoid the scenario of an over tired toddler, but if it happens frequently her routine should be changed to include more and longer quiet/sleep time.

    Things to help when it begins: See is shes hungry, redirect to a quieter activity, take her outside to burn off excess energy, avoid over-stimulating things, lay down for a nap, and if nothing works, leave. If you're at a restaurant or other public place leave.

    Answer by Glamourina at 3:17 PM on Aug. 17, 2010

  • I wish there was a simple answer. She loves music but not to the point of being calm enough to sleep. If I hold her she talks and plays with my arm or anything she can reach, we have a routine, I lay her down every day at 11am for nap time if she sleeps she sleeps as long as she needs or wants, and every night I lay her down at 8 for bedtime after a bath. She gets water before bed, and eats about 2 hours before bed. At night if we watch a movie before bath she can zone out in a daze because she is tired, but I don't want to lay her down at 6 because she will wake up at 9 with energy, especially if she didn't take a nap. I will talk to my Dr. about it, however he finds that there is nothing wrong with the concerns that she has. On her fathers side ADHD is in the family along with bipolar. These are all things I plan on testing when she is old enough, but not now because I feel she is a child that doesn't need labeling

    Comment by kbishop8688 (original poster) at 3:37 PM on Aug. 17, 2010

  • Bipolar symptoms are frankly not going to flare up only when she is tired. It's going to be an around the clock at random thing. I was diagnosed as bipolar and then it was changed to chronic PTSD after more evaluations so trust me I am very familiar with it. You distinctly said it only happens when she is tired, so I am really not sold on that being the issue. However, here is a link for "toddler bipolar" things

    I really think taking her to a counselor that is able to assist you and possibly doing some home visits around the time she starts acting violent would be beneficial... As well as a very long conversation with her pediatrician. GL!


    Answer by Glamourina at 3:59 PM on Aug. 17, 2010

  • I don't think that she is bipolar, i mean there are instances during the day, but she is very easily calmed so it doesn't get to a state of what is wrong with my child, more like she wants attention, we told her no to something, or she wants something and isn't verbalizing it. But I guess I should mention that if my husband is home he can sit in the room with her and read silently and she will stay in bed and fall asleep within an hour usually. However, he works a 4-1am shift, so during the day he needs to get sleep and when she is put down for a nap that is what he does, and then about 2:30 he is up again to get ready for work. I think that a schedule change for him will help the whole family adapt to a different way of doing things, but am not sure what to do until that can happen. Thank you all for your input!

    Comment by kbishop8688 (original poster) at 4:29 PM on Aug. 17, 2010

Join CafeMom now to contribute your answer and become part of our community. It's free and takes just a minute.