Saturday, July 6, 2013

A New Attitude

Can you help me?  My four year old has suddenly turned into a sassy 15 year old and I am at a loss.  Here's a quick rundown of a few recent episodes to paint a full picture.

This morning, we sat down to do our schoolwork.  Our morning work consists of a workbook page for reading readiness then a story with a game or activity.  Depending on his energy level, this takes around 30 minutes to complete.  This thirty minutes suddenly feels like a death sentence to him.  "I HATE school!" he said vehemently as I laid out our game for the morning.  I tried to act nonplussed.  "Oh really?  I'm sorry you feel that way but you still have to do it," I told him.  "Fine," he said.  But it wasn't fine.

He took his workbook page and, while I helped my two year old get settled, he colored the whole page red so that you could barely see the activity.  I was seeing red literally and figuratively but I tried to maintain calm.  "That's a shame you ruined your page.  It's going to be a lot harder to do now that you colored it but I'll wait with you while you finish it," I told him.  Since yelling and ruining didn't work, he decided to try whining.  "But Mommy!!  I don't want to do the page!  I want to play!" he said.  

This always hits my button because I am the oldest and very sure that my way and my timing are best. I fight with the fact that I want them to have lots of time to play (they do) but sometimes they have buckle down and do what I ask them to do.  It's a ying and yang balance; I try to give time to both work and play but they, like all kids, fight tooth and nail about the work.

This awful behavior continued all day.  We went to a movie and he tried to yank his brother up the stairs.  Upon correction, he said, "Mommy!  You don't make the rules.  I can do what I want."  Afterward, I was buckling him into his car seat and he refused to hand over some candy that I had told him he couldn't have.  He clenched his little fists so tightly that they turned white.  Meanwhile, he told me I had no business taking the candy from him.  It was his.

Now I've been through periods when my children have tested me before and I know that this will pass. The problem is that he is really getting to me.  He's nasty and disrespectful and I can't stop taking it personally.  My husband and I are sitting him down to tell him what to expect in the next few days.  Any helpful pointers? How do you help your kids to keep their sassiness at bay?

1 comment:

  1. Sorry to say it only gets worse :) My 7 year old can be very sassy about his school work too! Luckily they are cute!

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