My DD is 4 and has been whinning/crying over almost anything that doesn't go her away. We put her in a time-out chair until the behavior stopped and then she could come talk to us when she's settled down. However, it doesn't seem to be getting any better. She's worse now than she was at 2-3 yrs old. Not sure if it's b/c she sees her baby sister acting this way and gets our attention right away but we've talked/explained to her the difference. I'm at my whits end!! She was in time-out twice this morning for crying1) She didn't like that I picked out her outfit instead of her...no big deal if she didn't cry about it and 2) I pulled her hair a little while brushing it, sure it hurts a little but I'm super careful not to pull too hard b/c I remember my mom didn't care and just yanked at my hair. Anyway, after her 2nd TO I talked to her about how she can better handle herself during these things. She gets so emotional when things don't go her away that it's like she can't think like a big kid, she just starts crying! Any help would be appreciated!!
I feel your pain. We are still dealing with it in my 8 year old. It has gotten better, but not gone by any means.
We stop her as soon as the crying/whining starts and tell her we can't understand her, or that's not how she can get help with the situation. Since she is older now, we try and help her reason on how she can deal with the situation better.
I wish I could help more. I remember how frustrated I would get with her when she was around that age. Maybe someone else has good ideas on how to stop it.
I think it is normal and natural behavior for a four year old. She is still little. She is trying to assert her independence and taking on tasks that maybe difficult for her. Whining and crying is the way she is communicating her frustration and lack of control. IMHO, time outs are the wrong tact at this age. Like MWC said you should start to reason with her. You should also give her some control by allowing her to make her own choices good and bad with some controls built in your end. Bad choices should be discussed and help her figure out how to make better choices. Obviously, she should be told of consequences for not making good choices upfront before the bad choice and only after you have discussed why it is a bad choice and given her a chance ro make a good choice. We are still dealing with occasional fits over things not going Levi's way. It does get better.
I just recently read the Happiest Toddler on the Block because I've been really struggling with ways to handle Shae. What I've started doing when she starts whining is saying, "I can't understand you when you talk like that" or "That voice is hurting my ears" and then I say, "I'm going to go over here and I'll be back when you are ready to use a nice voice." Then I walk away and do something else for a minute or so. As soon as she stops or switches the way she's talking, I walk back and ask her what she wanted to tell me. It hasn't made the behavior disappear, but it's helped shorten the incidents and they're not happening as often.
When DS whines I tell him I can't understand anything he is saying and to use his normal voice. He then will talk with me in his regular voice. I do however think that he truly believes that I can't understand him when he whines I tell DD this now too. It works for the most part. I agree that maybe providing some choices for her she will feel more in control.
The baby probably does have something to do with her change. Give her as much praise as possible when she is making the right choices.
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