How do I deal with my 10 yr old daughters attitude

Jennifer - posted on 01/27/2009 ( 8 moms have responded )

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My 10 yr old daughter is the BEST, but she has got major attitude. I know some of this is "nl" tweeny stuff, but how do I respond to her so that she doesn't think we "HATE" her (her words, about everything). Some of the things she says and does, I don't know where she gets it from! Also having huge issues being nice to younger sibs.

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Elaine - posted on 01/27/2009

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Your daughter is old enough to have a nice chat. Beginning about this same age my daughter periodically acted the same thing. Once she reached 17 it abruptly stopped. It's mostly hormone driven but that should not excuse disrespectful attitudes to you or other family members. For what it's worth, this is how we approached it: One or both of us would sit down with her and flat out state the obvious: your behavior and attitude lately is causing a problem. We don't think you are entirely aware of how you are saying things and what reactions it is causing and so we want to tell you what we are experiencing from this side. And we would tell her that she was slacking on chores which made it harder for all of us, especially mom who had to cook when she got home from work, etc. She was being snippy and cranky. We told her if you are in a mood that bad take it away from others, but do not take it out on any of us. She was affecting an attitude and talking to us like she might talk to another kid. That will NOT fly, I am not one of your school friends, I am your mother and you will address me with respect. My daughters favorite memory is me saying, "You don't have to like what I ask you to do, you don't even have to like me. But, you will do what I ask without talking back, and you will not make faces or roll your eyes or glare at me. You can say whatever you like about me out of my sight and hearing. LOL And I'm sure she did! My daughter is 22 now. We had to have this talk many times to bring her back into the realms of reality...hormones can cause horrible mood swings. She was very responsive when her behavior was pointed out. She was often surprised that she was perceived that way and we did allow that she probably wasn't aware of how she was coming across but the fact is she was offending us and we asked that she be more careful with her words and attitude. I hope this helps. God bless you! Elaine

Cassie - posted on 01/29/2009

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I have 5 children 16 - 7, my oldest and youngest are boys so I am going into this phase with my youngest daughter now who is about to be 10.  I am also a Girl Scout leader (and was for one of my other daughter's troops as well).  This is VERY common at this age and what they are watching on TV does have a huge impact as do their peers.  Most of the girls in both of my troops were doing this at this age as well.  I don't have any tolerance for this behavior.  I know that much of it is driven by hormones but I don't remember this being tolerated when I was growing up or in any generation prior.  I have done what Elaine suggested and also told my children what Tracy said about their siblings.  I absolutely put my foot down regarding this issue.  My children have always had journals which is a safe and private place to write their feelings and unless I feel something dangerous I won't read it and they won't be in trouble for what they write.  I find that it also helps to admit when I am wrong and I often tell my children that I am not perfect but I always do my best.  I have also told them that if they don't like me sometimes I'm not doing my job right... being a mom isn't a popularity contest and I'm not their friend.  I find that it is nice to get out a puzzle (yes I did say a puzzle) one of those big ones and start working on it.  They will inevitably join me and it gives us time to talk and their guard is down.  I have found many times that they open up about something that has really been bugging them.  I have never allowed the word "hate" in my house outsde of "i hate sin" or "I hate satan".  I tell my kids that words have power.  The Bible says to control our mouth.  For those who are scientifically minded... if you break neutrons, protons and electrons you find they are made of quarks (sound waves).  Sound waves are the smallest component of everything in the universe.  Why?  Because God said "let there be..." and there was.  Our words have power.  This was fasinating to my kids and is always something I could calmly remind them of when they were headed toward the boundary line with their attitudes.

Pamela - posted on 01/29/2009

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We have 5 children and every day is a new day...Here are some things I have tried ( I am a teacher) :



1. Go to your room and for every stimp I hear you are grounded that many days.



2. Writing bible verses.  10, 20, 30...



3. Write a paragraph about why you love your sister (or who ever she was mean to) then at dinner she will stand and read it aloud.



4. Your grounded!



5. Give her a journal to write her feelings in that you will not read.



6. Have "snuggle time" at night when you talk.



7. Read aloud to her at night ...she is 10 but still your baby girl.



8. Give her space...whether we like it or not she is changing and it happens younger and younger, she is in pre-teen mode and so it her body...talk to your pediatrician about the mood swings...I bet she is 2 yrs. max from puberty.  and when you feel comfortable you need to talk to her about all of this... Judy Blume's book Are you There God It's Me Margaret is wonderful and the book series Eleven, Twelve, Thirteen are fabulous...



I have a 13 yr old now with a purity ring that she had blessed by our Priest and I couldn't be prouder of her... Also we keep our daughters and sons VERY involved in church so that when these confusing feelings hit they remember who they are ....hope it all helps!

Tracy - posted on 01/28/2009

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ALL teenage girls have a certain amount of Drama Queen in them. So over-the-top reactions should not surprise you in the least. They often will think that you hate them, or the flip-side, they'll say they hate you, because you've taken a stand they don't like. They don't really hate you, or think that you hate them. I caution my kids not to say things they don't mean. I remind them of what my father use to say to my brothers & me: "Don't ever say anything to each other that you will live to regret if that person were to die today."



There has been a lot of great advice given already. For sure hormones are a big part of what is happening with your daughter, and maturity will deal with a lot of it. I like the advice regarding the use of the book of Proverbs. It's a nice non-confrontational way to give your daughter some good, time tested advice without getting preachy. But sitting down & having a chat may help too.



As for treating their siblings badly I have always made it clear to my 4 children that treating any of my children badly is a very good way to get on my bad side. I take it personally when they are unkind to each other because I love them all so much. But more importantly they need to make every effort as they grow up to develop their best friendships with each other. Someday the friends they have now may not even be on the same continent, but their brothers & sisters are their God-given friends for life. They are the people who will stand beside them & hold them together when the tough times come in the future. Now my kids are each other best friends & they already take care of each other.

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Winnie - posted on 01/31/2009

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I like the Proverbs idea, and the time she gets to write in her journal -great ideas :0)

Gayla - posted on 01/27/2009

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Hi Jennifer!  The bible says that we are born with a sin nature (Psalm 51:10).  Not to sound simplistic, but that is where she gets it from.  We all have that sin nature.  There are definate stages of growth that children go through, but the solution is the same, we are to pray that the Holy Spirit, through the preaching of God's word,  would regenerate their heart.  We have a 12 year old daughter and are experiencing some of the same issues.  My heart is heavy over her behavior at times, but in love we discipline her and try to shepherd her heart toward God and His word.  The example of not being nice to siblings reveals that they are not putting other's interests ahead of their own.  And the word of God says to do that.  I encourage you to speak the word of truth to her concerning her behavior and God will work on her heart to change it!  God bless!  And I pray you know you are not alone in this issue.  I will pray!

Undrea - posted on 01/27/2009

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Because your daughter is trying to find herself, she may just be trying to determine what her limits are...



Take notice of her good attitude as much as possible with very little emphasis put on her bad atttitude.

Liz - posted on 01/27/2009

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I know the feeling.  I just started reading Proverbs with my 10 year old daughter every night (a chapter a night for whatever day of the month it is - today is the 27th!)  I've seen a change in her and we just started this month!  I read a verse and then she reads one.  She's been acting a lot like the kid's on Disney TV.  She's reading to me and telling me about examples of her or friends from school who act out (and sometimes elbows me when it talks about a nagging wife ;).  We use & love the: 

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