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Where do I go for help?


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#1 ECsMum

Posted 22 May 2019 - 09:48 AM

So I have one 8 year old DD who by all accounts is a model student, who is academically at the top of her class, a pleasure to teach, an example to her peers etc etc etc BUT what I have at home is a kid who switches between being a lovely caring person to a defiant, stubborn, swearing, hitting things not very nice individual.

I feel like I am failing her as a parent, I can't cope with this behaviour on top of being a sole parent and working full time.

Where do we go from here for help?

#2 CallMeFeral

Posted 22 May 2019 - 09:51 AM

You are being a great parent. She's holding it together at school and it's all coming out to the person she trusts and feels comfortable with, which is you. Sucks for you, as you get the worst of her, but it doesn't mean you're a bad parent. It means you've taught her well what appropriate behaviour is (that's why she can behave when out) but that she feels comfortable with you to let it all out.

Which doesn't mean you have to just lump it, however. Do you have the means to see a child psychologist?

#3 JoanJett

Posted 22 May 2019 - 10:11 AM

I would second a psychologist, or an occupational therapist to work on emotional regulation and creating a common language around it for you to help her at home. Little kids get big feelings that they can't always handle alone.

Don't ever think of behaviour as parental failure - it's your child's means of communicating, and you're doing the right thing trying to work out what she's communicating, and how you might help her.

This was my second son last year (at 7).  It's taken a year for things to really fully settle down, and he's still pretty firey at home, but the frequency and duration of outbursts have reduced.  Things that have "clicked" were us realising how much he was taking on board the frustrations/stress of some things at home (including coping with a brother with ADHD), and how much he was having to control his frustration with the slow pace of things at school last year.

#4 Tyrannosaurus

Posted 22 May 2019 - 10:40 AM

Im going through this with my year 3 son. At school he is perfect and obedient etc. At home if he doesnt get his way he goes crazy and doesnt want to follow instructions. Its constantly a battle at home. He is very loving as well and he just ignores us when we tell him to do things and has no fear. He doest throw things, he just annoys his brothers by showing us he is upset and then the whole house is chaotic because he didnt get his way.
I dont know if its a phase but this year has been the worst.

Edited by Tyrannosaurus, 22 May 2019 - 10:43 AM.


#5 laurs

Posted 22 May 2019 - 10:46 AM

Another vote for the psychologist. It sounds like anxiety is a possibility - high performers often place a lot of pressure on themselves and as pp have said, hold it together at school only to let it out in the safe environment at home.

#6 José

Posted 22 May 2019 - 11:20 AM

i also recommend seeing a psychologist.

good luck.


#7 ipsee

Posted 22 May 2019 - 12:04 PM

We are dealing with this too. My DD is also very very quiet with strangers, so I've thought about a psycologist, but I can't imagine her actually talking to one.

GP suggested I could go alone and try to get some tips. Her behaviour has actually improved recently, so I'm back to hoping for the best...

#8 Ayr

Posted 22 May 2019 - 12:31 PM

This is us with our 8 year old girl. We have seen people and all they can tell us is its all linked to her anxiety. It doesn't help that none of their strategies help us help her though...... I keep thinking she'll get better as she gets older but I've been holding that hope for years and it's getting no better.

#9 CallMeFeral

Posted 22 May 2019 - 12:34 PM

View Postipsee, on 22 May 2019 - 12:04 PM, said:

We are dealing with this too. My DD is also very very quiet with strangers, so I've thought about a psycologist, but I can't imagine her actually talking to one.

GP suggested I could go alone and try to get some tips.

Yep, at a certain age the therapy is likely to be more to teach the parents than the kids. You'd still need someone who specialised in kids (or parenting, etc) but it wouldn't necessarily be her who should go.

#10 Sincerely

Posted 22 May 2019 - 01:00 PM

OP, it must be difficult because you work full time, but does she have a sport, hobby or activity that she likes and can focus on? One that you are able to support with your limited time?

Whilst it's true that at that age they are learning to regulate emotions and behaviour, it probably helps to have something positive to go to. Hopefully will also provide an opportunity for self development & self motivation.

#11 ECsMum

Posted 22 May 2019 - 06:34 PM

She has just started a team sport which she was apprehensive about doing but is really enjoying it - well other than when her team looses she gets upset once we are back in the car away from the teams.

#12 Grrrumbles

Posted 22 May 2019 - 07:09 PM

We are going through this with Mr almost 9. We are seeing a child psychologist but he is a slow to warm and trust type personality so no results yet.

I am interested in those who used OT, did that work and was the child more accepting?

Our psychologist uses games in the session but it is intense for a child that isn’t really chatty with adults.

We went through some big issues as a family a few years ago but that is starting to settle and he is big problem now, life is so hard. It could be delayed trauma from that period, and there is anxiety too.

#13 limakilo

Posted 24 May 2019 - 07:05 PM

We have seen a psych since about 13. Best thing ever.
Apart from it affecting you, she needs the skills to be able to manage her own behaviour. That's a life skill, to be able to feel anger or dismay and be able to deal with them in a way that doesn't hurt others.

In the mean time, can you change anything at home? Earlier bed time, a bath or shower as soon as she gets home, it's great for de-stressing.
Essential oils in a diffuser. Vitamin B and Magnesium.
A diary to write in. Less screen time?

ETA: We went to our GP, talked about what was going on, got a referral to a psych, and got a mental health care plan so it's subsidised, that we have renewed when needed for 6 years now.

Edited by limakilo, 24 May 2019 - 07:07 PM.


#14 kass87

Posted 26 May 2019 - 10:37 AM

This is totally our 10 year old son. He's getting worse at home. No one wants to help.

#15 José

Posted 26 May 2019 - 12:09 PM

View Postkass87, on 26 May 2019 - 10:37 AM, said:

This is totally our 10 year old son. He's getting worse at home. No one wants to help.

what do you mean no one wants to help?

#16 kass87

Posted 26 May 2019 - 12:10 PM

We've been to drs and they say oh it's a stage he's going through. But he's getting worse

#17 nom_de_plume

Posted 26 May 2019 - 12:21 PM

You’re describing my middle child. We saw the GP for a referral to a child psychologist and have just had the first session. In our case it seems to be anxiety.

We felt like we’d failed our child at first too :( you’re doing the right thing by getting her help though.

#18 José

Posted 26 May 2019 - 01:15 PM

View Postkass87, on 26 May 2019 - 12:10 PM, said:

We've been to drs and they say oh it's a stage he's going through. But he's getting worse

if you feel like you need help, keep asking.

sometimes peole go to the GP hoping if they describe their concerns the GP will understand they want a referral to a psychologist.
if its a referral to a psychologist you are after then explicitly ask for one.
if your GP refuses, try another.
also, you can see a psychologist without a referral. although you must have a referral to get a rebate.

other sources of potential support might be school psychologist or a helpline like parent info line.

#19 SplashingRainbows

Posted 26 May 2019 - 01:57 PM

We have a similar issue with a similarly aged child and are getting some help with a psychologist.

I am finding validating the problem/feelings is helping a lot. I was acknowledging the problem before but not validiating it, and that wasn’t getting through.

Eg it totally sucks when things don’t go right. I feel disappointed when that happens to me too. Or I’d be super angry if that happened to me too. Or it wasn’t nice behavior from your sister and I would have had hurt feelings also.

After the validation he is more open to hearing ‘but it’s not helpful to hit/yell etc”.

#20 kass87

Posted 27 May 2019 - 01:19 PM

We have booked our son in for a mental health plan. People say he's just like this due to being in a large family with special needs kids. It's more I just know




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