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My son is aggressive. How do I teach him to be nice?

Posted by on Jan. 30, 2014 at 9:23 PM
  • 10 Replies

Here is where I need help. I am already planning on seeing a play therapist, but I still have to figure something out at home now. My son, 4 years old, can be the sweetest, most thoughtful and helpful boy at times. He is extremely independent. He loves to play together with me and do fun things.

At school his behavior turns aggressive. He tells me no one is playing with him; although he tells me that at home sometimes when I have played every second with him... No chores or anything. He is a smart kid but he wants everything his way. I talk to him about it, but he still doesn't get that he has to let others do what they want. He hates rejection and he hates being told no. He will push or hit or hurt friends to get what he wants, and he will then kick the cabinets and growl if he still doesn't get what he wants.

As I said, I am getting him checked in case it is a bigger issue than I hope it is, but does anyone have a kid like this? Any suggestions of how to fix it? We just started a sticker chart, but it is not making a difference at school, and he has actually earned a lot of stickers on the school how do I get rid of agressive behavior?

Advice please,


by on Jan. 30, 2014 at 9:23 PM
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Replies (1-10):
by Member on Jan. 31, 2014 at 10:52 AM
I am kind of in the same boat with my 5yr old. For now I have been giving him a chance to correct his behavior (as they do in school). Most of the time it works. If it don't then I just tell him he needs some cool off time and I will talk to him when he has calmed down. Most of the time he will stay in his room by himself for like a half hour and then come out in. A better mood. Kids feel stress like adults, but they don't always know how to deal with it appropriately. I get better results if I let him calm down before I explain anything to him.
by Silver Member on Jan. 31, 2014 at 12:17 PM
Read books about not hitting, about making friends, and about being nice.

Reward him for being nice to others, getting a good report from his teacher, etc
by on Jan. 31, 2014 at 1:33 PM
I always told my kids take a deep breath and tell me what is bothering you then i can help but i can't if you act like that we also watched A LOT of Ni Hao Kai-Lan i now sounds crazy but it helped
by Member on Jan. 31, 2014 at 1:34 PM

 What does he watch on TV? How do you and your DH behave? We have had to modify our behavior because our DS was learning it and expressing it in a 3 year old way.

by Member on Jan. 31, 2014 at 3:21 PM
Communicate: What makes it hard to _____?
Teach, demonstrate, model, re teach, and check for understanding.
Use encouragement: I have faith that you learned from yesterday's mistakes.
Praise when he behaves: You did it!

I also agree about reading books to help him understand.
by Max on Jan. 31, 2014 at 6:17 PM

I think lots of kids are like that. 

Do you ever do play dates or activities outside of school?

He could benefit from some closely supervised playtime. 

by New Member on Jan. 31, 2014 at 9:23 PM
1 mom liked this
With my son who is developmentally delayed and nonverbal at 3 years old what I have done is when he gets angry I bring him in his room and I sit on the floor silently while he tantrums. I do nothing while he screams, cries, bangs on the door, kicks, ect. Sometimes this can last 10 min. When he stops, I talk to him. If he hit me, he gets a time out after the tantrum is completely over (usually one minute on the step). Then we both go back to whatever activity we were doing prior to the tantrum.
by Member on Feb. 1, 2014 at 9:13 AM
My dd is like that with her brother. My son is only 6. We are working together to make her realize she cannot bully people. She asked him for juice and told him now. He ignored her and she eventually said please. The biggest part of her problem was him always giving in to her. Hopefully it helps nip this bossiness in the bud.
by Member on Feb. 1, 2014 at 9:36 PM

Sounds like ODD. My daughter spent a long time learning how to get her needs met without aggression. Pre teach how to ask for play time from other kids....puppets work. Teach the steps for accepting 'no' 1. Look the adult in the eye. 2. Say 'Ok' 3. Then do what you are told. For every need there are different ways to get those needs met. And also, it would be good to teach what to do if you have to play alone...writing notes (graphical ones until he learns to write with the alphabet). I just know because my DD is 8 and I've gone through every behavioral therapy with her and teaching her not to be aggressive and accept no.

by Member on Feb. 2, 2014 at 3:38 PM

my 15 yr old son used to hit and kick when he was 4. he even gave his aide (hes autistic) a black eye. i made pictures and they went everywhere with us.. nice hands/ no hit /hugs /no punch.

we'd hold his 'bad' hand and rub back of it and it helped relax him from his anger and frustration. try to get him to express why he was upset or how to speak his anger instaed of physically showing it. good luck

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