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6 Year Old Lacks Empathy. Should I Be Concerned?

Posted by on Apr. 13, 2010 at 12:42 PM
  • 28 Replies

 I've taught my 6 yr old daughter to share, but she CONSCIOUSLY chooses to behave selfishly, even cruelly in my opinion. If I her a muffin and ask for a bite she refuses, or if I take a small corner of a cookie or whatever she'll snatch it back. The other day a friend of mine asked her if he could have one of "her" cupcakes and she said NO (there were plenty). And scarier yet is if she does something she knows has hurt me physically, she'll do it again anyway and laugh. I worry that not only does she NOT care about others' feelings - she enjoys having that power over people. Has anyone else had this problem? Will she outgrow it or should I seek help while she's still young?

by on Apr. 13, 2010 at 12:42 PM
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Replies (1-10):
hatinnd
by on Apr. 13, 2010 at 12:45 PM

A six year old should have already outgrown that kind of behavior.

 

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wishbearmom
by on Apr. 13, 2010 at 12:47 PM

 I think so too. My older children were NEVER that way. I know she's the baby of the family by a mile, but it is still socially unacceptable! And when I try to teach her how it feels by asking "what if I didn't share X with you" she goes ballistic!

Quoting hatinnd:

A six year old should have already outgrown that kind of behavior.

 

 

Idiosyncratic
by on Apr. 13, 2010 at 12:48 PM

she's trying to see how much of her world she can manipulate.

she might just have an alpha type personality, just keep up the Consistency that you're the boss and you won't back down...

Q0112
by on Apr. 13, 2010 at 12:49 PM

 i think that's behavior for a younger child..aged 2-4. I think you need to talk to her doctor. When she goes in for her yearly checkup, her doctor should ask how everything is going and if you have any concerns. I think you should bring this up.

wishbearmom
by on Apr. 13, 2010 at 12:50 PM

 Her dad is horribly controlling and manipulative (which is why I finally left him). I  imagine that's contributed to this problem, but it still doesn't make her behavior ok.

Quoting Idiosyncratic:

she's trying to see how much of her world she can manipulate.

she might just have an alpha type personality, just keep up the Consistency that you're the boss and you won't back down...

 

SassyPainter
by on Apr. 13, 2010 at 12:51 PM


Quoting Idiosyncratic:

she's trying to see how much of her world she can manipulate.

she might just have an alpha type personality, just keep up the Consistency that you're the boss and you won't back down...

Right.  Don't let her manipulate you.  It sounds like she is learning that that brings power.  Don't let it give her any power.  I know some adult females who operate this way and it is very scary, almost sociopathic.  Please don't be offended by that--I'm not saying that is what your daughter is.

krystlzd3
by Platinum Member on Apr. 13, 2010 at 12:53 PM

I'd seek help

wishbearmom
by on Apr. 13, 2010 at 12:54 PM

 No. I'm NOT offended; I'm worried! That's why I'm asking!

Quoting SassyPainter:


Quoting Idiosyncratic:

she's trying to see how much of her world she can manipulate.

she might just have an alpha type personality, just keep up the Consistency that you're the boss and you won't back down...

Right.  Don't let her manipulate you.  It sounds like she is learning that that brings power.  Don't let it give her any power.  I know some adult females who operate this way and it is very scary, almost sociopathic.  Please don't be offended by that--I'm not saying that is what your daughter is.

 

hoping4number3
by Bronze Member on Apr. 13, 2010 at 12:55 PM

at first when I read the title I laughed and thought..what 6 yr old has empathy lol (I have twin 6 yr old girls)..who..fight on quite a regular basis. BUT then I read your post, and it's way out of line IMO. It's this age I'm sure. But I have to pretty much demand respect out of my twins right now. I KNOW they say respect is earned, not forced. Which..is true..for adults! lol Children seem to need that constant reminder of "who are you talking to!?" lol My daughters quite frequently will pull some remark like "WHy did you make potatoes for dinner mom, you know i HATE potatoes"...to which I....grab them by the shoulders, look them dead in the eye and say "this is what you should say..." mom, you sure have worked hard on dinner, looks great!".  They need to be trained how to act socially...it doesn't come naturally! You are her authority. Train her how you want her to respect other authority figures (cops, teachers, etc)

As far as sharing goes, if it's hers...dont make her share. If you had something you REALLLLY liked, and someone made you share it..you'd be upset too hehe Maybe just remind her of others feelings, and how you have so many anyway, but still leave her the option :) GOOD LUCK! 6 yr old girls..are kinda hard to handle!

faeryfrog
by Silver Member on Apr. 13, 2010 at 12:58 PM

I would seek help. It couldn't hurt, even if nothing is really wrong.

I have a 7 year old in my Sunday school class who lacks any kind of empathy, she's a VERY scary little girl. We even had to hire a help aid to be just with her.

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