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I need help with child (3-4 yrs) discipline

i have a son he is almost 4 and is gonna be a big brother soon. He is having problems listening to me and his dad. basically he just flat out refuses to listen to what we say, he even ignores us. We have tried the time out stuff and it worked for a short time, next we took away his toys. Nothing seems to be working for us. He has even started hurting our animals. We are at a loss for what to do. His aggression and misbehavior has got to be stopped but we are hopelessly lost on what to do next... Can someone please help us.


Asked by sianniona at 10:37 AM on Apr. 11, 2011 in Preschoolers (3-4)

Level 9 (342 Credits)
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Answers (9)
  • My daughter is 4. She does most of the same things. She argues, she talks back, she flat refuses, she does her own goes on and on. I think your son's actions are part of the age, and part of the fact that *someone else* is going to take his mom and dad away. Adults see it differently than kids do. He's been the only child for 4 years and now, suddenly (to him) he has to share. I'd hate that if I were him. Instead of yelling and discipline try giving him lots of love and attention. Make it clear to him though that hurting animals is NOT ok (I'm CONSTANTLY reminding my daughter), but that Mom and Dad love him just as much as before the baby.

    My son was 3 years, five months old when his sister was born, we had some regression issues with him for a while too.

    Answer by Rosehawk at 11:07 AM on Apr. 11, 2011

  • First of all, if he is hurting animals, he needs to be seen by a psychaitrist (sp?)! That is very unusual behavior for any child. I normally would say to just spank him for every infraction he has for at least a month, but, this is bigger than just disipline. I really think your son needs professional help.

    Answer by A.Perry at 10:41 AM on Apr. 11, 2011

  • The jealousy about the baby is starting. But,hurting animals is over the line. Take him to the doctor,see what the doctor says.

    Answer by dancer at 11:02 AM on Apr. 11, 2011

  • How about trying to praise him on all the good things rather than focusing on the bad behavior.......I tried a behavior chart with my son......for a week I was telling him for all the things that are good he gets a "smiley" face on the "calender" and for the negative things he gets a "sad " face....It worked quite well......His goal was to earn more smiley faces than sad he could go to a toy store with daddy and get a new toy......I think it worked this way because he saw the "progress" on the paper and was encouraged to do well to get to the goal.


    Answer by MommyOK at 8:57 PM on Apr. 12, 2011

  • he sees a therapist once a week, he has been since september when he came home from living with his uncle. every time she asks him about hurting the animals he just answers her with " because i did"

    Comment by sianniona (original poster) at 11:01 AM on Apr. 11, 2011

  • you are right, he has been the baby for almost 4 years, his big sister lives with her dad, my ex, and her step mom so he has had me to him self for his whole life and now daddy and I are bringing another baby into all of our lives. none of his ill behaviors started until after he knew that we were having another baby and understood what that would mean. My husband and i constantly tell him that even when his brother is born we will still be his mommy and daddy too, and we will still love him just as much as we did before, but he just seems to get angry when we tell him that Aiden-Matthew is going to be here soon.

    Comment by sianniona (original poster) at 11:19 AM on Apr. 11, 2011

  • If he's hurting animal i would get him serious help. I"m sorry I don't know where but start doing some research. God call Dr. Phil if you have to. And watch him around that baby. Good Luck

    Answer by mlmsm928 at 12:53 PM on Apr. 12, 2011

  • trust me his dad and i are very concerned with his behavior and how he is going to be with his brother. he is already in counselling and we are not sure if it is doing him any good. we are thinking about changing agencies or at least workers if nothing seems to do any good with the worker he has now.

    Comment by sianniona (original poster) at 2:49 PM on Apr. 12, 2011

  • I am so gonna have to try that MommyOK. I honestly never thought of something like that. I know that charts work great for him too, so in this case it just might work. thank you for the wonderful suggestion. The praise we do, but maybe not enough. We are both going to have to try very hard to praise all of his good behaviors more..... Thank you

    Comment by sianniona (original poster) at 6:15 AM on Apr. 13, 2011