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2 Bumps

Will she ever stop!?

My five year old is driving me nuts! Time outs don't matter lately! Taking tv, etc. I'm running out of ideas!

She argues with me about everything, from what we eat, to everyone has more than her and it's not fair!! Tattles constantly, complains about other kids, whines. I ask her to do something it's a battle to get her to do it. She constantly asks for food even though she gets three snacks and three big meals. Every five minutes it's something! She gets one on one time, lots of love, discipline, etc! We are all wearing thin right now! I've never been so challenged! It's been about a month of this! Does it ever stop?

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Musicmom80

Asked by Musicmom80 at 1:36 PM on Jun. 30, 2011 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

Level 36 (80,428 Credits)
Answers (13)
  • Yes hun, it does stop, but then when their hormones kicks in, it starts up again. When my kids were arguementive, I would just send them to their rooms. I didn't yell or lecture. I would just tell them that I wasn't going to argue and they could go somewhere else. Also at the dinner table, if the kids started acting up, they were excused from the table and they didn't get anything else. Some days it worked, others...not so much lol. Bless your heart, I've been there. It's taxing. I kept a bottle of jagermiester in the freezer for such emergencies lol.
    Zakysmommy

    Answer by Zakysmommy at 1:39 PM on Jun. 30, 2011

  • What about a reward system for good behavior? We use a marble jar at our house for our son, granted, not a miracle cure or anything but it seemed to really help him want to help and listen if he knew it meant losing a jar - 10 marbles = 1 prize, we gave marbles for just about everything in the beginning for him to get excited and now stretch them out a bit more but it does seem to work better than constant yelling and time outs which I felt I was doing SO MUCH of..
    maxsmom11807

    Answer by maxsmom11807 at 1:41 PM on Jun. 30, 2011

  • I would take everything away that you've bought her and not give it back until she shows you how much she appreciates you. EVen if that means holding on to her things til she's 18.
    Imogine

    Answer by Imogine at 1:41 PM on Jun. 30, 2011

  • Yes. It will stop. Hang in there. It's her age. She's pushing the limits and growing up. My dd has gone through phases like this. I know it's hard, but be patient and talk to her as much as you can. I talk to my dd all the time about different things, friends, family, how to treat others, being grateful, etc.... It will pass, but it's important for you to keep calm and keep the communication going. Good luck.
    Ashoonik

    Answer by Ashoonik at 1:52 PM on Jun. 30, 2011

  • When my 4 year old, and sometimes my 7 year old, try that crap with me I tell them: "I DID NOT ask you to argue with me, I TOLD you to do _____________, now DO IT" That usually ends THAT particular whine/fuss/tattle/argument.
    Rosehawk

    Answer by Rosehawk at 1:54 PM on Jun. 30, 2011

  • I would bet it's safe to say that she feels as lousy as you do. She is not having fun. She's "acting out" how miserable, unhappy, out of sorts she feels (and it sounds like a convincing & affecting performance that has you feeling the same way!)
    There is something that is off for her, or that is going wrong. Something about your interactions is unsatisfying. She keeps trying, and probably escalates things (such as, I'd imagine when she DOES get what she wants, she still feels off and so her demands escalate or things get more "ridiculous." Would you say she is "hard to please"?)
    I think you guys are misfiring, which is why she remains dissatisfied & then tries again. For me, shifting my approach/response to "reflective listening" has helped very much. Instead of engaging the topic or the comment (whether it is a request/demand, a complaint or tattling), reflect it & connect with the her that is wanting something, unhappy about
    girlwithC

    Answer by girlwithC at 6:29 PM on Jun. 30, 2011

  • (cont)
    something, or feeling irritable. The idea is to see & acknowledge her, through really hearing her. Instead of taking her complaint/arguing (over what's for dinner, for example) as something to engage in dialogue, either agreeing with her or else disagreeing & explaining/reasoning with her about it (such as about why your family can't ALWAYS have one of the two things she "approves" for each meal, or arguing with her about how she DID like this particular food a month ago--I do realize these scenarios might not be true for you guys, just examples), simply take it as communication. You don't have to answer to it or for it, simply GET that she is saying it & expressing a feeling & an opinion. When you reflect, you are giving permission instead of struggling against. This is validating. Validation is not agreeing with; it's simply seeing how something makes sense from that person's point of view, and acknowledging as much.
    girlwithC

    Answer by girlwithC at 6:36 PM on Jun. 30, 2011

  • Instead of trying to point out how not everyone has more than she does, that it's a perception that's not true, or how you can't let someone else's lifestyle or values/decisions dictate how YOU live (which all is essentially trying to talk her out of her feelings on this, or else telling her that she's wrong about it), you simply reflect what she is communicating. Ideally, you do this in your own words, but it also is okay to mirror back to her what she says (or a mix of both.) This is from a connected place; not a detached emotionless disengaged "parroting." It's just really GETTING her point of view.
    Her complaints & issues are not problems for you to fix/solve. And you don't need to offer rebuttals or debate the things that you won't address, in order to convince her that they are not problems after all (i.e., she's wrong or unreasonable.) Think of it as communication, sharing, not a ball she's passing to you. All you have
    girlwithC

    Answer by girlwithC at 6:42 PM on Jun. 30, 2011

  • (cont)
    to do is hear her, "get it," & accept it. Allowing it to "be" is how you accept it. In other words, you accept by not fixing (or else explaining why it doesn't need fixing.) You accept by not arguing or protesting, or implying that she is wrong for how she feels or that she "should" feel something different or do something different. You can accept her as she is by acknowledging her (this is the reflective listening, or reflecting back to show you get it) & allowing her expression to stand without trying to change it, answer it, make it better, or stop it/punish it.
    I think it's likely that this (being seen & accepted for who/what she is) is what she needs, & this need is what keeps getting frustrated in your unsatisfying (to both of you) interactions. I wouldn't go so far to say that she recognizes this need! (If you asked her what she needs/wants, she'd likely focus on the CONTENT of her complaints or demands.) But, I
    girlwithC

    Answer by girlwithC at 7:52 PM on Jun. 30, 2011

  • just think it's likely that this is what she really needs, whether or not she could articulate or even know it.
    So, if something "typical" might be her asking if you guys can go out to eat, being told no, then whining about why not, that you "never" go out (which might result in you jogging her memory about the last three times in recent history that you DID go out, or do something she wanted/requested), then reflective listening would be acknowledging her request by recognizing the wish it expresses. If you forget & simply treat it like a request (and answer it), then you can start reflecting with the whining part--just reflect her disappointment & frustration, her sense that you never get to have fun or get anything good to eat, acknowledge what would be fun or gratifying about going (of course you can hold your limit; you just aren't focused on getting her to accept & adjust to not going. Rather you're validating the wish.)
    girlwithC

    Answer by girlwithC at 2:48 AM on Jul. 1, 2011

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