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I have a 4 yr old girl who is somewhat acting rebellious what do I do?

recently separated from dad in aug 2010-he wasnt really around much when we were together but somehow im scared it may be affecting her.. she seems to have gotten worse in the past 2 or 3 months.. lexi has always been the whining crying type of course to get what she wants but now its gotten worse even though i have just started discipling her for stuff in the past month or so to straighten her up and not let it get out of control, im afraid i waited to late...what do i do if she is acting out on rebellious--sympathize with her or what?

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Asked by ashleyholloway at 10:53 AM on Feb. 21, 2011 in Preschoolers (3-4)

Level 3 (18 Credits)
Answers (7)
  • Just be consistent in your punishment whatever you choose, and don't let her see your weak side, they thrive on that, stick to your guns mom, it will pay off.

    Answer by older at 10:54 AM on Feb. 21, 2011

  • thanks alot

    Comment by ashleyholloway (original poster) at 11:01 AM on Feb. 21, 2011

  • I wouldn't punish a child for hurting and missing dad. At that age they can't express their feelings so when they hurt emotionally they act out. Just love her and give her the feeling of safety and security. She's probably scared you will leave her too but if you punish her she'll associate love with "pain". I'd worry she'd then grow up and marry a guy who hurt her. Show her what true love is and comfort her. Just be gentle and calm her down. She's trying to tell you something. As a mom we need to learn to listen. It's just harder to listen when kids don't know what to say.

    Answer by admckenzie at 11:03 AM on Feb. 21, 2011

  • Ages 3, 4, 5 are the ages of testing limits . . . . it is completely healthy and natural development for her to be "rebellious" right now. A good way to address it is through positive consequences. Make a start chart for her, and everytime she listens, cleans her room, say please and thank you, etc., she gets a star. When she fills her chart, take her to the dollar section at Target and let her shoose a prize. She is trying to accomplish some sort of independence. This whole exercise willl give her some control and teach her that listening and respecting can lead to rewards (both social and economical).
    I know it is so hard, the negativity is enough to boil your badoogan, but try to remind yourself to stay calm . . . yelling and other negative types of punishment can prolong the rebellion.
    Good luck.

    Answer by ImaginationMama at 11:05 AM on Feb. 21, 2011

  • Any kind of change in a child's life can be upsetting for them. Not sure however if this is the reason why your daughter is acting out. However, you still need to have control and your daughter needs to listen to you. Not sure what you use as punishment, but I have found that time-outs do work with consistency. Give her a warning when she acts up or does not listen. Then place her in a chair and tell her she is in time-out. The key is not so much how much time is spent on time-out but that you have control. If she gets up, place her back onto the chair staying calm until she eventually will tire out and sit there. When it is time for her to get up,get down to her level and tell her why she was on time-out, then give her a hug. . Making a behavior chart with stickers may help. Once she gets so many stickers than plan a day together going to the movies, or the park. Praise her for good behavior.

    Answer by Kellyjude1 at 11:14 AM on Feb. 21, 2011

  • Another thought is to allow her to talk about her feelings. Let her know it is okay to be sad, angry, etc. Hopefully talking out her feelings will help her to not keep things inside and she can feel comfortable letting some of her feelings out. Since she is only 4 it may be hard or her to express her feelings. Maybe go online and print pictures of sad, happy, angry so that she can let you know how she feels inside. I hope this helps.

    Answer by Kellyjude1 at 11:20 AM on Feb. 21, 2011

  • thank all of you for the answers i will do exactly what advice yall have given greatly appreciated..

    Comment by ashleyholloway (original poster) at 11:49 AM on Feb. 21, 2011

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