Power struggles with my 5 year old

Amy - posted on 09/19/2009 ( 4 moms have responded )

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My usually cooperative 5 year old suddenly refuses to do very basic things and complains about everything. We're trying to punish her by taking things away, but I'm not sure if that's going to be the most effective way of dealing with this. Any thoughts?

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Nic - posted on 09/19/2009

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hay know how you feel. my five year old is pushing it to must be there age. i have found that taking things away didnt work. we praise the good behaviour and have a chart that he works towards getting a treat or goin somwhere. he gets stars if he is good and at the moment he has got to fill his chart with stars on the things i want him to do like going to bed well, brushing teath, getting dressed ect..so he can go to the fair on wednesday. i just draw a quick chart on a a4 paper. he is just starting to understand that if hes good he gets the things he want and even just the sweets from the shop. and yes he crys when he does not get his treat but i explain its coz he did not do the things he needed to. one tip is to do one day at a time to start with, so they dont have to wait to long for a lil treat. good luck hun let me know how you go.

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Amy - posted on 09/21/2009

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Thank you so much for all the supportive help. It's nice to know that I'm not alone in the power struggles. We're having good and bad days, but I'll be putting all of the ideas to the test to see what works best. I'll keep you posted on what works for me. Thanks again...and best of luck with your 5 year olds, too!

Melissa - posted on 09/19/2009

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it seems as if we're all in the same sort of boat with our 5 yr olds... i really have no major words of wisdom or advice. mainly just sympathy at what you're also going though. dh and i are having the exact same issues with our 5 yr old. it started shortly after dh's sister and her daughter moved in with us. she and i parent about the same, but our daughters were so different in the way they interact with each of us. after having her daughter here for a year, mine started to do exactly as hers did and that's just not acceptable for dh and i. it works well for her and her mama, but not me and dh. my sil and her girl have been moved out since the end of january but the major attitude damage was already done after living with them for that whole of last year. her girl was 5 when they moved in and ours was 4 so we got to start this a whole year early and are still delaing with it rounding to the age of 6. our rotten started just not answering or acknowledging that you were speaking to her at all. she stopped looking at you when you would talk to her. all manners went out the damn window and the whining has gone WAY over the top and so has the back talking and arguing. all things she picked up from the cousin. every time she doesn't get her way over something it's a major ordeal. we are either being mean to her or we just don't like her or she just pouts/whines. this whole year has been an experiment in hell. we found out we were preggo again back in late february and i have just been trying my hardest this year to make some sort of forward progress with rotten's attitude, but so far nothing we have tried has worked very well either. so here's what we have done in the last little bit to try to get some headway in that direction before the new one gets here next week. we started by cutting out nick and disney on the tv because she wanted to watch nothing but icarly and hanna montana crap and most of the shows like that are just teaching the kids how the be smarty britches and get away with sneaky stuff anyway and i hate that. way too old for a little person anyway, but that's what her cousin watched, so she wanted to too. anyway, we blocked nick and disney and if she gets to watch tv at all it's noggin or pbs. as of this week, her bedroom (which she stopped cleaning up as well) has become pretty much an empty shell. she refused to clean anything anymore and stopped obeying the toy rules (one set of toys at a time and put them away before getting something new out) so when i finally had to get in there this past week to clean it out, i made her help me pack it all up. some things dh and i kept and put up in our closet for her to earn back and others we made her help pack up for goodwill. we told her if she had only followed the rules and helped when we had asked her to, she'd still have everything but since she didn't and her toys weren't being taken care of, we're taking the left overs to goodwill for someone to buy for a child who will take care of them. right now the kid pretty much has books, a bed, and her big bird. now that we have gotten everything distracting out of the way, we're making a new house schedule and a chore chart for rotten. her chores are basic things such as bringing her dirty clothes hamper to the laundry room, feeding the animals in the mornings and evenings, helping set the table, helping unload the dishes (which she has always done anyway really) and watering the plants. she's going to be able to earn back the toys we kept, one or two weeks at a time depending on the toy. as far as our new schedule goes, it's going to take some tweaking. we add a new person to the mix next week, so it'll change and adjust a bit but some basic house rules will be installed into the schedule, like no toons before school, chores come before afternoon play and so on. we have always praised good behavior but treats are one thing we stopped doing because she started to expect that she would always get something just for doing and acting as she should. and that's not something that worked for us either. as far as punishment or discipline, spanking was never our thing and time outs seem to have lost most of their effectiveness. as far as the rest of it goes, we're just praying that spending more quality time with her will help in the long run and that her having some responsibilities with the new baby will help as well. good luck to you mama... i hope something works for you.

JeNn - posted on 09/19/2009

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Amy I have to agree with Nic...That it seems to be the age. I have a 5 year old girl who will be 6 this coming March. And boy oh boy does she challenge and push buttons. She's in kindergarten and they have something similar that they do at school. They have a green bear for being good and a yellow one for when they haven't been. At the end of the week if they have kept their green bear all week long they get a prize out of a treasure chest. It seems to be working for her at school and I am going to start trying to do this at home to see if it helps any here. Like you said taking things from them just doesn't seem to work out all to well, cause if the go to grandma and grandpas they get there way and they know this. I hope it works out for you like I am hoping it to work out for me with the behavior reward chart thing. Good luck.
JeNn

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