4 yr old whines constantly

Stephanie - posted on 02/07/2010 ( 15 moms have responded )

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My son, Rowan, will be 5 in August. Recently; the whining is never ending. he whines about everything... Sometimes it seems like he never speaks using a regular voice. I have trieed asking him why he is whining; and asking him to use his "big boy voice". i have even tried ignoring him; hoping that he will figure out thhat i dont respond to whining... I am at my wits end. i dont konw what to do about it. any advice is absolutely appreciated!

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Lesley - posted on 09/24/2012

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I think young kids are frustrated easily - they're at the stage where their worlds are expanding so much and yet they don't have the power or skills or words to do everything they want to do. Like a toddler that wants to do things 'by themselves' and yet get frustrated that they can't.



I think with any behaviour we want to minimize you need to help them recognize they're doing it, help them with strategies to stop, and give reasonable consequences when they don't. When they start to whine, say something like, "You're sounding tired, frustrated, fed-up, (etc) and I can tell because of your whiny voice. What's bugging you?" ...if they're old enough to start to talk about it - often you have to fill in the blanks, then it becomes a joint problem that they can help solve. Tell them how to say what they want in as neutral a voice as possible. Let them practice that voice. Praise them when they improve. Notice when they're paying attention to their voices....ie. "You're really tired, I know, and you're not being whiny. Good girl!" Kids like to get things right! This process may take a long time. If they're slower to catch on, just say, "When you can ask nicely, I'll listen"...or "Your whiny voice hurts my ears. Try again."



Most issues take time and dedication to improve. We sometimes expect too much from our kids, but then our husbands continue to do the same things over and over that bug us! They slam doors and get frustrated too! Learn your kid's temperament and try to step in and redirect (even with a nap!) when you can see they're getting overwhelmed. Being a firm, confident leader is what kids need. :)

Kathryn - posted on 04/18/2010

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When my 2 and 4 year old start whining, I send the m to their rooms to find their "happy voices" it sounds silly but sometimes removing them from a situation can give them a minute to calm down and get over what is causing the whining or fussiness. Sometimes they come back in a few seconds with a smile and nice voice, sometimes they take a needed nap.
If they come back and say they can't find it, I send them back to look under them bed or in the closet. They will tell me where they found it when they come back.
I hope this helps

Emma - posted on 09/24/2012

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Completely agree with Lesley above and I treat my 4 1/2 yr old boy in a similar manner.



I always remember my Mum saying that children like to know what is happening next and they want to be understood/heard. I have always tried to communicate everything honestly with my son and try my best to listen to what he is really saying at the moment on bad whiney days, it's not always easy as another mum points out, particularly early in the morning! But I find that I can quite often curb whining really quickly by explaining that the way in which he is talking to myself or others is unacceptable and that he won't be acknowledged until he talks in a reasonable manner or by quickly identifying what he is really saying/whining about.



More often than not he is either very tired or very hungry but just hasn't quite accepted the fact. Naps and snacks help, but also I don't think we should be afraid to take a step back from pushing our kids and change tack sometimes.....for example if they are really whining about having a bath, let them skip it by saying, ok I can see you're really tired, let's skip the bath and snuggle and have a long story together or suchlike. My son loves unexpected turns like this and reacts really well to it, I guess it makes him feel valued and listenend to.



I also have to keep reminding myself that I have a 41/2 year old and not a 10yr old and that I really do expect too much of him at times!!!!



As an extra point I also have a 9mth old girl as well and I think sometimes we have to accept that the arrival of younger siblings can produce a little more whinging from the older child as they are fighting to be heard more :-)

Kathryn - posted on 03/12/2010

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Have you looked at what he watches on tv? I noticed my daughters whining a lot and realized they were picking it up from watching 'Calliou', Calliou's voice is very whiny. They also started mimicking Calliou's sister Rosie with broken sentences ( 'Rosie play', Rosie eat') which they never used before. They are not allowed to watch Calliou anymore and the whining is going away. I also tell them that Rosie doesn't live here and they have to use all their words. They are using full sentences again and not referring to themselves in the 3rd person. My girls are 2 1/2 and 4 1/2. Check what they are watching, you may find that they are copying a favorite character.

Donna - posted on 02/19/2010

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Andrew will be 5 in Aug 13. And yes, we noticed the whining has increased somewhat lately. I just do what I usually do once he starts whining and screaming and demanding, I ignore him. After a while he usually asks why I'm not listening and why I'm ignoring him. I tell him I will only listen once he calms down and can tell me what he wants properly. This technique works for me probably 80-90% of the time, sometimes he tells me he screams and whines because he is frustrated and I can relate to that too.

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Andrea - posted on 01/14/2013

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Can anyone help me? I have a 3 yr old little girl who is about to be 4 in March she is potty trained except for #2, she says she is scared. She will literaly go get a pull up from wearing panties all day and poop in the them. I dont know what to do at this point. You can email me w/ any tips at andrea_v79@yahoo.com.

Vanessa - posted on 01/11/2013

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My 3, nearly 4 year old daughter whinges a bit. I have found if I say pardon repeatedly when she is whinging, she changes her tone. Don't know if it will help you... but it certainly helps me... and as per usual, the more consistent you are the bigger the change will be... my daughter still whinges, but it is not as constant as it used to be!
Hope this helps!

Sarah - posted on 09/21/2012

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My daughter Ava is 2 and 1/2 years old. After the first and only time she told me "i hate you", i started watching movies with her and found out that Finding Nemo has a scene of where Nemo tells his dad he hates him. after that i took the movie away and she hasnt said it since,.

Amy - posted on 07/16/2010

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I have a 4 year old girl who will be 5 Aug. 1st and she is going through the same thing. Maybe it is just a stage. I have heard that the the last 4 months of any age group is difficult for the child because they are growing more and learning alot at the same time so they get easily frustrated. I find calm word and reassurance is my best friend at times like this. If that don't work usually a hug is best for us both!

Shannon - posted on 05/18/2010

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Hi you are def not alone,I have a 4 year old son who is 5 aug 14th,he whinges all the time sometimes i think he even forgets he is talking in a whingy voice,it drives us mad lol he gets sent to his bedroom aswell untill he talks properly he only does it at home and still does the carrying on in the shops if he wants something,i usually say daddys not going to be happy when he hears how you have behaved blake and he settles abit lol they are only little but being a parent is the hardest job in the world i recon anyway...

Lauren - posted on 04/17/2010

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I got to the end of my teather and found myself screaming at her all the time. Now I calmly tell her to stop and put my hand up. I then say you need to go to your room and think about what you want to say and how you sould be talking to me. When she comes back we are both calmer and can have a conversation.
It took a while and at the beginning I'd have to leave the room, but now she just goes and only takes about a minute to return.

Heather - posted on 03/06/2010

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My daughter Hayley will be 5 this August also and all she does is whine. It's horrible. If you happend to find a way to end this please let me know because I'm going crazy too lol.....

Erika - posted on 02/24/2010

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Hi Stephanie! I am going through the exact same thing! Maybe it has to do with the age? ? My son, Baryt will be 5 Aug.1st and he will be starting Kindergarten soon after that so what I have done that somewhat works is I tell him that if he continues to whine they will not be happy with him in K. and he wants to do the right thing so he tends to stop for the moment at least. I also just bought these wooden magnetic responsibility charts for both my son and daughter to encourage good behavior. This is the first day, but so far so good! lol I got them off Amazon at a great price! :) Just a few suggestions... God bless you Mama! :)

Cheryl - posted on 02/10/2010

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I'm in the same boat Stephanie. I've got b/g twins who will be 5 in Aug and my daughter whines ALL THE TIME. I don't even know what her normal voice sounds like. I'm sorry that I don't have any tips for you but wanted to let you know that you are not alone. Good luck! If I find a good trick I'll let you know.

Tracey - posted on 02/09/2010

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My girly is the same and the same age. Bless them!! It really does seem like the only form of communication! I get really cross then get cross with myself. One thign I have found that works is to make a joke of it. I whine back in a really exadurated( I know this is spelt wrong, just can't work out the right way, lol) way. We both end up laughing at ourselves and each other.

However, I do struggle to do this at 6.30 in the morning , when she has just woken me up!! Good luck!

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