Help! I don't know what t do about my daughter's behavior!

Jasmine - posted on 07/31/2014 ( 2 moms have responded )

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So I haven't been with my 4 1/2 year old daughter's dad since she was 2 and hardly talking. I live with my fiance now and my daughter gets to go to her dad's over weekends. Every weekend.

Recently she has been asking for new toys every time she comes back. The minute she's in the car.. "Did you get me a new toy?" If the answer is no... "I want a new toy."

I bought her a new toy a few weeks ago and she played with it for half a day and then asked for another new one. My fiance and I spend so much money on things for her. she has a room full of toys, even a tablet! Her dad only gives me $20 a month in support.
Today I got fed up and took all her toys away because she asked for the 15th time for a new toy.. after I gave her a million explanations as to why she couldn't

- You have plenty of new toys in there.
- If you get all the new toys now. Santa won't have anything to bring you on Christmas.
- Why don't you go play with this?

She said, "I don't like those toys they're old.. My dad's house has new toys!" (I can confirm this is absolute bs) So I proceeded to take them away since she hated them so much and she threw a fit and said she wanted to go to her dad's. Just like she does every time she's in trouble..

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Chet - posted on 08/03/2014

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Cycle the toys. Pack a percentage of them away, and rotate what is out and available to her. There are two benefits to doing this. One is that an old toy can be new again when you haven't seen it in a long time. The other is that kids often play better when they have fewer toys and more space.

Look up crafts and activities online and help her make new toys. There are lots of easy toys you can make together out of everyday objects from around the house. Make play dough. Make bubble solution and a joy stick for blowing giant bubbles. Make a bean bag toss game. If you do this enough she'll get into the habit of learning how to re-purpose things and how to use objects creatively.

I would also explore the possibility that she wants people to play with her. If she hasn't seen you in two or three days she may just want to talk to you and spend time with you, but not know how to approach that other than asking for things. Even if you don't have time to play you can ask her to "help" you with things around the house - matching socks when you fold laundry, washing carrots in the sink for supper, etc.

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Jasmine - posted on 08/04/2014

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Thanks for the suggestions! They're all really great. I have noticed that maybe I've been doing too much buying and not enough playing or paying attention. Sometimes I catch myself doing a lot of things I said I wouldn't.
Lately I've been trying to limit tv and time on her tablet and play a game with her instead (hungry-hungry hippos or candyland)

I've thought about crafts before but it keeps slipping my mind! I'll have to make a note somewhere.

It has crossed my mind that she might need kids her age to play with. She gets to play with her cousin (also 4) when she's in town but it isn't often. I had wanted to have another baby but at the time didn't feel it was appropriate so I know any siblings she has won't be good company for quite a while.

I love the idea of helping with laundry and chores.. She loves to help. Sometimes I'll let her help make cookie dough or with dinner but I'm not always sure what her limitations are sometimes.

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