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    Need Advice
    Anon_29408 posted:
    My DD is 4 years old and for the past two weeks she has pushed every button possible for my husband and I. She gets into these fits where she just whines and yells all the time! We cannot figure out what is triggering these fits but they seem to only happen at home since she behaves when not at home. We have tried to sit down and talk with her about what she may be feeling when she gets into these moods. We put her in time out for 4 minutes and try to calmly talk to her about why she was put in time out and what she needs to work on to stay out of time out. We have tried doing a Reward Chart. We have tried to take things away from her. We have recently found ourselves starting to spank since we are just at the end of our ropes. We do not yell or spank when angry to please do not say that I am abusing my child. We do not want to spank her and are trying to find other alternatives. We turn the TV off during dinner and we all sit down and talk about her day and have tried to explain to her that the dinner table is a safe place for her to tell us anything without us getting mad at her for anything but I think it is not a concept she really gets.

    Any advice would be helpful!
    momuv4girls responded:
    So, has this behavior only been in the past 2-weeks? up until then, she was more happy and content?

    I have heard rave reviews about these books for helping a difficult child.

    Way back when, I was known to swat my daughters on their tush from time to time, but honestly with my 4th daughter I discovered it didn't work and actually made the situation worse.

    When you have a child that tests your patience daily, it is tough and you need to find out what is driving her behavior and how to help.

    I bet she has no idea why she acts out either - 4 year olds have a hard time articulating why they are unhappy.

    Are both parents her biological parents? Does any one else live in your home? Does she go to daycare, or are you a stay-at-home mom? Are there any siblings?

    A bit more info. would be helpful in giving some more ideas.

    Thank you,
    JanetPl responded:
    I feel for you and your husband, and for your daughter! My daughter has gone through whiny stages (I just discovered I'm not sure how to spell whiney/whiny. Like your daughter, she only did it at home -- not at school! My first thought is always to make sure nothing is happening to her at home or day care that I need to know about. But most of the time, I think it's just a phase. She still whines frequently -- I tell her calmly "I can't understand you when you talk that way. Please talk like a big girl so i can understand you."
    Don't know if that helps, you've probably tried everything, but I want to commend you for working so hard to help her. Hugs -- this too shall pass! Hang in there.
    JanetPl replied to JanetPl's response:
    I meant at *school* or day care. If something was happening at home, I'm sure you'd know!
    RS11518 responded:
    We are going through something very similar with my son (he will be 4 in Feb. He also cries a lot, which is very frustrating. We too are trying a reward chart with very little success. One thing that has helped is instead of time out, we put him in his room and tell him he is not allowed out until he calms down. Just like using time out, we often have to put him back in his room and its best to not say much to him. He screams, sometimes bangs the wall and eventually (10 or 20 minutes later) comes out a different child. And once he even fell asleep, which is obviously what he needed. My son also doesn't talk about his day with us, tells us very little about what happened in school. We also try our best to ignore the fits. It is really hard, but the less you say, the calmer you will be, thus less likely to spank. And then you are not giving attention to the negative behavior.

    That being said, he still blows up almost every day. I can probably count on my hands how many days he hasn't cried from birth until now. I am just very thankful that my second child is much easier because I don't know how I would handle both if she was anything like him. I hear that this behaviour is very common and that this phase could last for quite a while. And by the way, I'm pretty certain that he has not once cried or exploded at school. And it almost always happens in the house. It could be much worse! He is a total sweetheart to other kids (and adults), and I know he will eventually grow out of it.
    Ramona317 responded:
    Thank you all for your responses. To answer some of your questions...My DD does live with me and my husband full time and we are her biological parents. She goes to a private in-home daycare and the woman who runs it is AWESOME! We do have another DD that just turned a year old.

    I have talked our daycare provider about DD's behavior and she has provided some guidance to us. Some of the behaviors that we do not condone we have started to ignore and not allow her to get a reaction out of us. DD has noticed this and the behavior does not go on as long as it used soon as she notices we are not going to give her the attention she stops on her own. When she does something good we do make it a point to tell her that whatever she did was good and make sure we acknowledge her good behavior.

    My husband and I speak nightly about DD's behavior that we experienced that day and talk about things we noticed that worked and didn't work. We are working on a game plan to try to find out why she is acting out so much. We do read stories to her every night and talk one on one with her before bed every night. We try not to make it a negative experience but do try to get her to express her feelings but at age 4 it is hard for her to put her feelings into words.

    Please note...she just turned 4 at the beginning of November.

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