My 4yr old has recently became defiant! I tried everything I know! Any ideas?

Kandace - posted on 08/10/2011 ( 1 mom has responded )




I need desperate help with my 4 yr old. He just recently got out of control with me. he is being very defiant! He is REFUSING to do anything he is told to do. I told him to clean his room, I told him to clean his toys up in the living room, I tell him to stop jumping off my furniture. He refuses to sit in time out, even when I am standing right in front of him, he will get up and try to walk right by me over and over. That will go on for hours until I had enough and then tell him he can do 30 minutes in his room now instead of the 4 or 8 that he earned for timeout. And while he is in there he can clean his room. Well, he will kick and kick my door, punch it, throw his toys at it, keep slamming it. I live in a very nice apartment complex where they are always doing inspections. Example today: I had an appointment which I ha to cancel because he REFUSED to get dressed, eat, brush his teeth, or anything. So I recheduled it for later and he took my house key that I needed to lock the door with and ran around the house and hallway for 10 minutes sceaming it was his key and I was taking his key from him. Later at night he still refused to clean up his toys after days of asking him to pick them up. He went to bed at 4am when he deceided he finally passed out.He kept saying there was a ghost in his room and he could not be in there, yet I say ok then go clean it, he deceided the ghost was no longer scary.I don't ever hit him because he his my little angel from above who is always so gentle to me yet last few day been hitting me and snatching toys out of my hand when I take them away. He has never treated me like this except one time at the Dr. office that was very emotional for him. His father who is very emotionally abusive towards him about me and even himself. I mean the worst of the worst! I am not the mother to take the father away on any mom did that to me cuz my dad was an alcoholic and I hated her for it...I learned the hard way, so will my son. It sucks, but his dad also spends alot of time with him and has alot of good times together.Alot is also going on with my other son that he knows about and that may effect him.My son and I always went out everyday and did something fun! He asks...what are we doing fun today mommy...hmmm lets go swimming or to rockwell he says...HA...clean your not going no where mister until you do what your supposed to do...he still dont do it..I actually took out the orange spoon today and used it! I don't know what to do anymore. timeouts, taking toys away..special treats...activities..not working! What do I do? Any ideas?


Jodi - posted on 08/10/2011




1. If he won't pack up his toys, let him know that if you have to pack them up, you will be packing them in boxes and he will no longer have them to play with. The ONLY way he can get them back is EARN them back with good beahviour. Set up a chart where he can receive stars or stickers or something for positive behaviour, especially in situations where in the past he has shown negative behaviour. Once he reaches a certain number of stars he can choose a toy to have back. Yes, it could take him a LONG time to get them all back.

2. If he is going to kick and hit and slam his door, remove the door and let him know he can have it back when he can show how to behave. I am sure when they inspect, if you explain that you removed the door and why, they will be totally understanding. It doesn't leave any permanent damage to remove a door as long as it is put back properly.

3. If he refused to get dressed, eat, brush his teeth, in time for you to go out, take him in his pyjamas, hungry and with dirty teeth. Just pack a bag with his clothes and something to eat for him, because once he realises you are serious, you will be surprised how quickly he will change his mind and want to get dressed. Right now, by rescheduling, you are enabling his behaviour.

4. Look at his diet. Try to eliminate additives (colours, flavours, preservatives) and processed sugars. These things can cause behavioural problems.

How long has dad been gone? This could be a factor.

Anyway, that's how I'd start to deal with it. It works for me with my kids. It won't change his behaviour overnight, but essentially, you need to stop allowing him to control you and instead be in control of his own consequences.

You don't pack up your toys, you lose them and have to earn them back. You don't get dressed, you stay in your PJs. Kick the door, lose it. Make it clear they are his choices. He can choose which option then, he is totally in control of his own consequence. If he doesn't like the consequence, then he needs to make a better choice.

I am so glad to hear you won't hit him :) It really wouldn't help, and it certainly won't help with the out of control violent behaviour. There are MANY things you can try, and I am sure other mums will have other ideas that have helped with their children.

The key is absolute consistency. Whatever you try, you need to stick with it and be consistent for a period of time to see results. Don't try it once or twice and then determine it doesn't work. You really have to give it a chance.

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