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How do you get an unrulely child to behave and stop hitting his mother?

I have son who is not yet 5. Every day I watch him and his 7 year old sister; so their father can work. After his sister goes to school I have nothing but trouble from him. I hear from his lips " I hate you" " your stupid" " go away". His father and I are divorced and cause of reason I will not give I had to move back in with them. It is a consent fight with him and I am tired of fighting. I feel as though I failed as a mother. I am reaching out in hopes that I might get some help from other mother eithe in Indiana or around the world.

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Asked by waterwiccan at 1:04 PM on Oct. 16, 2008 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

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Answers (7)
  • Do not give up. He is taking his frustration out on you. Don't react when he says those things. Try not to get upset and just explain to him thats not nice/good to say. Discipline him when needed. Don't be afraid to be "the bad guy". If hes already saying those horrible things then thats the worse that can happen. He needs to pass this phase and not make it a lifestyle. Make the father support you. This is unacceptable, do not permit it. I am so sorry you are going through this, I know it feels horrible. This does not reflect on you, it is his emotions manifesting in a horrrible way.

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:27 PM on Oct. 16, 2008

  • He may just be upset about something and can not really express it in any other manner but through ugliness. When he tells you ugly stuff just tell him that you are sorry to hear that and let him know how much you love him. Children mimick and learn through others so if you want him lavishing you with respect and love, well, lavish him with it. It isn't too late. Also do not be a push over. Hitting is unacceptable and discipline is needed. Some children correct themselves with a verbal correction, solitude, taking a favorite item away...I don't know what works for your child but you should always start with, "It is unacceptable to hit and hurt others. Now you will need to (fill in the blank)..." Leave no room for a discussion on the punishment, do it, get it done, with, and talk about it afterwards. "It is not nice when you (fill in the blank) I hope you can make the right choice next time. I love you."


    Answer by BoobooHealer at 3:15 PM on Oct. 16, 2008

  • If he thinks he can get what he wants by being abusive, he will continue the behavior. You hit you go to your room. You hit, you loose toys, or other privileges.

    A good answer to "I hate you" would be "I'm sorry you feel that way, but you will not speak to me in that tone of voice. You can sit in time out until you can think of a better way to speak to me."

    Draw a line, stick to it. This is how we act in this house. If you do not act in accordance with this, then you will not have the benefits of participating with out family. You may sit out until you can act right.

    Don't make excuses for him because the last year or so has been hard. He's already exploiting that, and will only get better at it. Especially if he has seen an abuse successfully manipulate you and is emulating that behavior and disrespect. Demand the respect that you deserve. Your house, your rules.

    Answer by Kestrel1 at 3:17 PM on Oct. 16, 2008

  • Seek professional help, he could have a disorder that is fueling his behavior. There is help out there, Good luck.

    Answer by stephanie1076 at 9:25 AM on Oct. 17, 2008

  • This sounds to me like a child in need of lots of unconditional love. Can you add more structure to your day and plan in some quality time activities with him? Take him to the park, sit and read with him a lot. Build blocks with him etc.

    At the same time you need to set clear rules and stick to it. Make it clear that he is not allowed to hit you and have set consequences for it. Kids who do not have clear boundries set are often insecure. It is like they are constantly "acting out" to try and get the adult to lay down the law so that they can feel safe.

    You need to be a benevolent dictator!

    Professional help at this point would be really good. He is only 5 now. If this behavior continues as he gets older you will have really big problems!

    Answer by maggiemom2000 at 11:43 AM on Oct. 17, 2008

  • My son used to do the same thing at that age but it really only lasted a month or two. It was unusual because we are incredibly peaceful at home but I guess he was expressing his frustration and di not know better. I started by telling him not to do it but he was not grasping it so, I would explain to him what the punishment would be and I enforced it. (no TV all weekend or no video game all week, etc). Sure he would cry but I never let down and every time we would talk about why he was being punished (so harshly LOL).

    Eventually he stopped completely and used words instead of hands. He is a saint - honest!

    Answer by Avon_Calling at 9:19 PM on Oct. 17, 2008

  • he knows that you went back into a situation that you shouldnt be in and he is taking it out on you.
    kids know a hell of alot more than we give them credit for.
    the least you can do is talk to him - ask him why he says those things and why he hits you - getting to him now asking him what is wrong - thats what he wants ... he wants you to care about whats hapening

    Answer by vakatia at 6:03 PM on Oct. 18, 2008

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