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Question
Posted by: Lilian | 2010/08/19

6yr old cries

My 6yr old cries about silly things. I find her behaviour inapropriate for her age. To me this is how toddlers behave. If she can''t find something, she cries, if she doesn''t want to wear something she cries and most of the time there is no tears. She is a bright little girl. Doing well in school. She is loved and given plenty attention. We listen to her when she tells us something. She also tends to get up to a lot of mischief, like wiping the kokie pen off her hand onto the couch, or by putting lipstick on and kissing the tv screen or couch. If we ask her not to do someting she tends to do just that when we turn our back. We use the naughty corner as discipline. She has a younger brother whom I am scared will pick up her bad habits and 2 older siblings who never behaved like her when they were younger. Can you give me some advise?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Try the parenting forum, as well. And I'm sure other readers should be able to contribute some of their fine experienced advice.
Your observations are perceptive, and I'd think this is indeed age inappropriate for 6. At times kids can be nearly insatiable in desiring attention. You say she gets lots of attention - but is this, still, maniplative behaviour, designed to get things her own way ? I'd be tempted to try out-manipulating her - when she starts the crying without tears response on not getting something she wants, I'd be inclined to very seriously say, "Oh dear, if you CRY about this, then I really can't even think of giving it to you - not if this upsets you so much." And then leave her to gerself.
And also, tie it in to your other discipline. "Sorry, but remember how yesterday you did X, which I'd asked you not to do, when I looked away ? Well, because of that I can't give you what you want, now."
What do others think ?

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Our users say:
Posted by: Purple | 2010/08/20

Children this age are very defiant. Her behaviour is perfectly normal. You are lucky your older two weren''t so bad (or have you just forgotten?).

I''m with the others on this.

My son, and plenty other boys on play dates (they''re all 6) also cry about things like this. I tell them I know they are upset but that crying isn''t going to change it. Then I walk away.

For behaviour like wiping koki off hand on the couch, kissing hte TV with lipstick on etc, I''d give her a cloth and make her clean it off. Then warn her that if she does it again she will lose a privelege - e.g. a favourite toy will be banned for the day, or an outing will be cancelled or there will be no TV etc. You might have to do this two or three times, but the penny will eventually drop.
She will then start to think before she does these things agian.

Reply to Purple
Posted by: Anon | 2010/08/19

Maybe she''s just a sensitive child? Chances are, by the time she gets to highschool, she''ll be fine. I was and I was a very sensitive child and I certainly don''tcry about everything anymore!

Reply to Anon
Posted by: Visitor | 2010/08/19

Have the same problem with my sisters girl, now 5. She visits me alone most weekends and the rule with me is if you cry for or over something I don''t listen. It works very well, till her mom arrives then her mom gives in or it becomes a screaming session.

Reply to Visitor
Posted by: Lillian | 2010/08/19

Thank you all for your advice. I will give them a bash.

Reply to Lillian
Posted by: Lin | 2010/08/19

You can start taking away some of her privelages. Say she writes on your wall. Warn her the first time (if you haven''t already). The next time she does it - no t.v for a day or 2.

When she cries - ignore her. Turn your back on her aand leave the room. Let her cry. If she cries for no reason, don''t comfort her.

Reply to Lin
Posted by: cybershrink | 2010/08/19

Try the parenting forum, as well. And I'm sure other readers should be able to contribute some of their fine experienced advice.
Your observations are perceptive, and I'd think this is indeed age inappropriate for 6. At times kids can be nearly insatiable in desiring attention. You say she gets lots of attention - but is this, still, maniplative behaviour, designed to get things her own way ? I'd be tempted to try out-manipulating her - when she starts the crying without tears response on not getting something she wants, I'd be inclined to very seriously say, "Oh dear, if you CRY about this, then I really can't even think of giving it to you - not if this upsets you so much." And then leave her to gerself.
And also, tie it in to your other discipline. "Sorry, but remember how yesterday you did X, which I'd asked you not to do, when I looked away ? Well, because of that I can't give you what you want, now."
What do others think ?

Reply to cybershrink

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