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10 yr old morning rage fits. Need suggestions..

My 10 yr old niece has morning issues. Getting to bed on time is crucial, however, life does not always allow for a 9:00 bedtime. The problem she has though is her temperament in the mornings. She is absolutely a holy terror. She rages at her step-sister. Screams and throws a temper tantrum. These fits are often unprovoked, or are a total overreaction. Please give us suggestions. How to get her to control her temper in the mornings. How to calm her down. Help.

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Asked by Sunnysland at 11:39 AM on Apr. 11, 2011 in Tweens (9-12)

Level 3 (13 Credits)
Answers (9)
  • If getting to bed on time makes it any better, then that's what needs to happen no mnatter what. Maybe try setting the alarm 20 min earlier and let her have some alone time in the morning to wake up however she feels is best. Make sure she eats breakfast and has a snack before bed as low blood sugar can cause mood swings. If you can't figure it out get her evaluated.

    Answer by Kimedbs at 11:58 AM on Apr. 11, 2011

  • I agree with Kimedbs, I had the same problem myself particularly at that age, and my niece had the same issues.
    in the case of my niece, I started giving her something like a little piece of cheese or a scrambled egg before bed, fed her protein first thing when she got up and suddenly her 'bad attitude' issues got much better!

    also keep in mind there could be hormone issues, I started menstruating at that age.

    sometimes doctors just do a finger prick to get the blood sugar levels, that may not be enough. They did that with me for years and said it was 'fine'. I had a doctor do a four hour test where they draw a vial of blood every hour, and that determined the problem. My blood sugar goes up and down like a roller coaster if I don't eat regularly. So though I don't have diabetes or hypoglycemia, I still am subject to blood sugar 'spells' and imbalances. A lot like a diabetic would be.
    Good luck!

    Answer by ItsMe89 at 12:08 PM on Apr. 11, 2011

  • Depending on when she gets up she probably needs an even earlier bedtime than 9pm. My 10yo goes to bed at 8pm on school nights. She gets up around 7am. I can tell when she stayed up past 8pm because she gets whiny and throws huge fits in the morning. And I can tell if she stayed up past 9pm (usually because she sneaked her DS into bed and played it all night). Those mornings she is screaming at everyone, hitting her brother and sister and being a brat. This is the first year she has had an 8pm bedtime. Last year her bedtime was 7pm because she had to be up at 6:45am. When we tried 8pm she was a complete monster in the morning (screaming and refusing to get up or dressed, throwing things). The difference an hour makes.

    Answer by justanotherjen at 12:42 PM on Apr. 11, 2011

  • You are going to have to get the bedtime a priority. I know it is hard, but rountine is essential.
    Are you getting her up or does she get up at an alarm clock. I have found that having my dd get herself up helps the mood.
    I also try to make sure my girls are in different bathrooms. My little one 7 going on 8 uses my bathroom.
    The ladies at may have some more useful info on tween/teens.

    Answer by juliemomx2 at 12:55 PM on Apr. 11, 2011

  • I had hormones issues at that age tooo --- my fam's reaction was to stop talking to me - which i think was supposed to be a punishment but i very much enjoyed it - i still got ready for school on time - so see if they can completely not talk to or interact with her until she gets out of her morning funk.

    Answer by AmaliaD at 2:41 PM on Apr. 11, 2011

  • Thanks for quick responses. I like the idea of having food first thing. Give her a boost of energy to get through the hardest part of the day (for her morning).

    Problem with focusing totally on schedule and bedtime is she has to learn control, even when the schedule is disrupted. Like, she got home from her Dads till 7, then get organized for next day, bedtime routine, then to bed. Yes, later than her 8 bedtime. But that has to happen sometimes. Thats life.

    Her family does walk on shells around her in the a.m. Does not instigate anything that will set her off. But gosh, we hate the idea of managing it with a "don't rock the boat" attitude. Thats not a solution only a work around. And yes, we understand that learning temper control is a process, but what are some morning routines that help them to be successful?! Like I said, I like the idea of an energy boost first, before anything else happens.

    Comment by Sunnysland (original poster) at 3:13 PM on Apr. 11, 2011

  • I like the food first idea too but I'm a little concerned from the viewpoint that if her attitude cannot be controlled by her then it's really going to be bad as a teenager. I would set rules with consequences for not following them or rewards if she does. Sorry I have no specific examples but I'm sure you know your child's likes & dislike better than me, a stranger. Good luck & if you will, keep me posted! I have a 10 yr old daughter as well :)

    Answer by since_3.18.93 at 7:33 PM on Apr. 12, 2011

  • My question to you is what is she upset about? Is it about picking out clothes, rushing? If it is one of these things, you might try and make the mornings run as smoothly as possible by getting clothes ready the night before, or making sure there is enough time in the morning to sit down and relax and have a healthy breakfast. On another note, is there possibly something going on at school that may be upsetting or stressing her out? Maybe you can sit down with her and ask her why she is so grumpy in the am, then go from there and figure a way to remedy it.

    Answer by ilovepoms at 7:40 PM on Apr. 13, 2011

  • Start grounding

    Answer by christinahenry at 1:52 AM on Apr. 19, 2011

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