Posted by: R | 2013/02/06

5 Year old again

HI Doc,
My 5 yr old and his behavoiur problems again - his teacher said he did very well at school yesterday, much to my relief. I think he realises this is all serious now. I let him know I am very proud of him, but I have also not lifted the ban on TV yet. He has until Friday to maintain this good behaviour and then he will be allowed watch his favorite programs. I''ve explained it takes more than oneday to get through this.
Am I treating him too much like a grown child? He understands very well why all this is happening.
I also found he tends to ignore me when I talk to him. Yesterday, while having a shower, he completely ignored what I was saying and continued talking about school. I said to him at least 3 times to finish up in the shower and then we can sit and discuss his schoolwork properly, but its like doesn''t hear what I say and just carries on, until I eventually shouted. Only then did he listen. I believe he has been having this same attitude toward his teacher.
His teacher moved our meeting to the end of term, to give him time to adjust and focus more in class after this weeks issues, as she was pleased with him yesterday.
Last night I could see he was very troubled, and not really relaxed in his sleep. He eventually came to sleep with me, and I knew he just wanted security. I know we were very hard on him the other day, and my shouting yesterday was not a good thing.
Suddenly I feel I myself am seeing things in my child I may have previously seen as normal, like eg unnecessary attention seeking, and am now trying to rectify the wrongs.
I never know what is the right thing to do, but he does get a lot of love, attention and affection, but I realised I also let him get away with a lot of certain attitudes unacceptable in a 5yr old. He''s not a rude child, I always teach him to say please and thank you at home, do not scream for me from another room, come find me and talk to me properly, pick up after yourself, help me to tidy up, etc, always from a young age, and I''m trying to find where I''ve really fallen short.
I believe his behaviour at school could be attention seeking and am wondering if having been in creche from such a young age could be the reason he''s like this now? I have no choice but to have my children cared for and creche was a good option as there was no one reliable I could find to care for them at home.
The fact that he is quick to hit out at other children still boggles me and I once again wonder if there was a lack of control at creche when he first did this.
I''m certainly not making excuses for him, he cannot and will not get away with this behaviour, but I''m not sure where to start.
His father leaves to work in another country next week, so once again I''m alone. He will be back in 6 months. I''m worried that this will affect my child too.

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Our expert says:
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Purple's probably right. It's easy to over-think, though underthinking might be worse - but he sounds like a normal, lovely and good child, who may be puzzled why he's not accused of doing something wrong without being sure what it was. Some teachers indeed do over-react, especially when they sense a nice and caring parent. He sounds like he's been normal and well cared for by you, all along. Relax !
Hitting other kids is unacceptable ( though tempered by what the other kids may have been doing ) but let him relax and be a boy

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Our users say:
Posted by: R | 2013/02/07

Thanks Purple, and I agree. This week was tough on me emotionally, as I moved him from his old school due to these problems, and the principal could not accept when I did finally sit down and give them my views and observations. I was just disappointed that it is happening again in a new school with new teachers and friends. And wonder if my child is really that bad when I''m not there to see.
I feel guilty as it is as we''ve had a tough week among us dealing with all this.
And I will do what you say in future - Just say we working on it, if these complaints remain the same.

Reply to R
Posted by: Purple | 2013/02/07

In my experience, some teachers over react hugely to fairly well behaved children, but completely ignore dificult children''s behaviour as those parents are often not cooperative.

so the child who eats everyone''s lunch, punches children etc never gets the parents called in, but your child sips his water bottle when its not water bottle sipping itme and the end of the world has apparently come.

One day I just sat back, realised that my child didn''t have the personality for being a delinquent and was probalby going to be a sprorty but chess playing, choir singing, maths loving nerd and that I would just smile at teachers and say " yes, we''re working on that"  unless they raise something of serious concern. And if they do, then I''ll investigate the matter first before taking any further action. For example, if a fairly passive child suddenly beat up another child, I''d check what the other child was doing to the usually passive child.

Reply to Purple
Posted by: R | 2013/02/07

Thanks Purple, that''s good to know. I wonder if I am over-thinking things too. I don''t expect the perfect child, and I don''t push him to perfection, but all this difficult for me as I only know him as an obedient, well-behaved child at home.

Reply to R
Posted by: Purple | 2013/02/07

Your child sounds pretty normal for a 5 year old.

Reply to Purple

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