behavior problems with 4 year old becoming a nightmare!

Brittany - posted on 08/28/2017 ( 9 moms have responded )

8

0

1

I'm a parent of a 4 year old little boy named troy, and a 9 month old. My 4 year old Troy has always seemed a little different compared to other children his age (I understand every child is different). His behavior has always been an issue since he was almost two. everyone has always said its his age and how kids act out, but as he gets older it hasn't gotten better, just worse. he has speech issues and we have a hard time understanding him at times, which he is in therapy for and Occupational therapy to help with his other issues involving light and sound. He has a problem taking directions, and listening. his tantrums are horrible. throws himself on the ground, even tries to inflict pain on himself. his behavior with kids his own age has progressed some but not much. he takes toys away from other kids, punches, bites, spits..you name it. but on some occasions ive seen him play well, or just by himself. we have actually got kicked out of a few daycares because the parents were upset with his behavior towards their children. the daycare provider couldn't handle his outburst and defiant behavior. he has also spit and kicked his teachers during preschool. I have run out of answers, I do it all. timeouts, alone time, take toys away, and if its bad enough I do spank him, (I believe there is a big difference between giving your kid a firm spank, and abusing them. so please do not judge) but even that doesn't work. I even do the corner, that doesn't work. my boyfriend, who is an amazing guy, is also out of answers. so my question is, what can I do to make this stop? I know it takes time and we try to work with him, some days are good, others are bad, some are worse than the day before. but it feels like we are getting nowhere with him. and I feel like I have failed. I love him so much and I often feel bad for him. not having friends, us feeling like we cant take him to certain places cuz we don't wanna be embarrassed by his actions. And I feel like he is never happy, because he is introuble more than he is not. it is taking a tole on myself and boyfriend and are stuck. any suggestions?

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Sarah - posted on 08/29/2017

10,202

0

26

Have you had an evaluation by the school and does he have an IEP? I know he may be too young in some districts. While public school must provide services for children 3 and up, not all districts have SN classrooms until kindergarten. Sounds like you are really doing a lot to help him cope. The reason I brought up ASD, is the speech delay and the sensory issues, but you are right that he may not meet criteria. I hate to even suggest it because I feel like there is an epidemic of worry over ASD recently. Whether or not he is or is not on the spectrum or is struggling to close a gap in his skills, he is getting your care and love. I hope you are able to find a combination of support to help him gain the skills to thrive.

Dove - posted on 08/29/2017

12,399

0

1354

Oh... and the 'whatevers' are for you to apply whatever words are relevant to the particular situation you are dealing w/ at that moment.... not that you just say 'whatever' to your kid. lol

Dove - posted on 08/29/2017

12,399

0

1354

And discipline... is guidance. You can hold him in a bear hug type of thing and talk to him... 'I know you are angry/frustrated/whatever, but you can not hit/bite/throw things/whatever because it hurts people/breaks things/whatever. I love you and can not allow you to act this way, so we will sit here together until you feel ready to play nicely/whatever.' That IS discipline.

Dove - posted on 08/29/2017

12,399

0

1354

Yeah, hugs. You aren't rewarding bad behavior by hugging your child... you are trying to diffuse a situation by comforting an already overwhelmed child. It enrages some children more than just letting them be, but can calm and redirect others.

And yes, therapy can help all of you. A good therapist will play act situations w/ him and hopefully give him some coping techniques... and also talk w/ you about discipline strategies and be a good back up support person for you as well. If no one is understanding the severity of the situation... get his behavior on video to show the therapist.

Dove - posted on 08/28/2017

12,399

0

1354

Getting a full evaluation and a diagnosis would probably be your best next step. It sounds like he needs more help than you can give him w/out getting some more answers and information. It would probably benefit him once he gets the evaluation to be receiving some regular counseling in addition to the current therapies and a good counselor will not just work w/ him, but w/ you as well.

I know you are frustrated and I don't blame you, but I have to add that w/ my own son who was quite a challenge... the only thing spanking ever did for him was make him MORE angry, MORE defiant, and MORE violent. Just something to keep in mind. He was actually 8 before I discovered the best way to deal w/ his behavior was to offer to hug and snuggle w/ him at the first sign he was getting upset. Didn't help ALL the time (especially since I was usually too upset w/ his behavior at that point to WANT to snuggle him), but on many occasions doing so diffused the situation entirely. Just another thing to keep in mind... might help, might not.

9 Comments

View replies by

Brittany - posted on 08/29/2017

8

0

1

Yes he does have an IEP for speech. when he was 3 or so we went through Help Me Grow, not sure if you're familiar with the program but they come to your home and help with your kids disabilities. Some speech, some physical therapy, just depends on the child. And I know I have named off the bad things about Troy, but compared to where he was a year ago, he has progressed. But I just don't want him to be treated differently. and I know that sometimes that is the case. when he gets older I want him to make friends and to enjoy common things. and I'm hoping with help, that he will maybe grow out of it or even get better over time or as he gets older. its just very frustrating at time because he's just a little boy, and I want him to grow up experiencing a happy childhood. I know all parents want that but its a fear of mine. actually a female coworker was explaining her son, who has autism and had early warning signs and as I was describing her troys similarities she encouraged me to look more into it. but like I said he was tested twice, but some say its hard to diagnose somethings until hes a little older. kinda like ADHD, Which I thought he might of had some form of that as well, but again a lot of 4 year olds are hyperactive so its hard to test that too. thank you for your kind words. its hard to speech to a lot of people about it because they look at me like I'm just complaining about a defiant 4 year old when its much more than that.

Brittany - posted on 08/29/2017

8

0

1

First off thank you Ally, for your encouraging words. I have felt really alone in this considering I've never met another mom or family with this similar situation. And we have tried the positive reinforcement a little, I was actually thinking about going back to that because I'm out of answers. I've googled my problem a hundred times and nothing has worked. And his OT therapy, this will be our 5th or 6th week now and I don't feel like it's helping. Only because it's only for 30 mins one day a week. -thats all they could schedule us right now. And as for his speech, it has gotten alot better since going to school. They had a speech therapist there too. And I'm not sure if that's why he's frustrated, I know that I can understand him just fine, only because I'm use to his words and knowing what he's trying to say. But I know as for other ppl who arnt really familiar with his speech do often get frustrated with him. So I can see that being an issue for him. He has been tested for autism twice now, once when he was 3 and when he turned 4. Some things he does, it would seem like he had some kind of form of it but they keep telling me he doesn't have it. He doesn't like loud sounds, he covers his ears and trying to cut his hair or fingernails bothers him so bad I can't take him to a salon cuz it's too embarrassing his meltdown. My boyfriend obviously isnt his father, his actual dad has never been a good influence in his life so he is not apart of it. My boyfriend really cares alot about Troy and is actually trying to connect with him. But he finds it difficult because more often or not he's disiplining him more than bonding with him. And a child therapist? I've thought about it but would it actually help? I have talked to everyone I can think of. Doctors, therapist, teachers, family exct... And no one is understanding the severity of the situation. And Dove, hugs? The only reason reason I'm skeptical to giving him hugs when he is bad is because I don't wanna baby him. Im not hard on him by any means, actually my boyfriend thinks I'm pretty soft when it comes to dealing with Troy. Only because my thoughts of failing as a parent are always in the back of my head, because some days, I feel like I have failed him. And I don't wanna disipline him, I know no parent wants to, but I just want more happy day with him.

Ally - posted on 08/29/2017

3

0

0

I am sorry you are having so much trouble! It sounds like this is a pretty long standing problem. I give you a lot of credit for the perseverance you have. You have tried a lot of good disciplining techniques (have you tried positive reinforcement techniques- i.e. a sticker for when he responds well.. once he gets so many stickers, he earns a toy or something?). I am glad he is seeing an OT. Do you feel that has been helpful? Do you feel a lot of his tantrums have to do with people not being able to understand him because of his speech issues?
I agree with the other posts, that maybe a child therapist could be helpful along with the OT. They maybe could help to give some answers of what is going on with why Troy responds to things as he does.
It sounds like you are providing Troy with a good structured home and have support via your boyfriend. I am glad you hear that! You are doing the best you can and you sound like an amazing mom. I am glad you reached out! We all need community sometimes for suggestions and/or just encouragement... good luck!

Sarah - posted on 08/28/2017

10,202

0

26

Has ever ever received a formal diagnosis? With a speech issue and sensitivity to light and sound, coupled with his inability to cooperate with other kids, not take direction well and have a short fuse; sounds like he may fall on the ASD spectrum. I do not presume to diagnose your child, but has he had a full assessment of speech, cognition, fine and gross motor and social skills? What country do you live in? I have always found the occupational, speech and behavioral therapist to be great at coming up with behavior modification plans.

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms