Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Supermam

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Supermam

Article excerpt

We have two children, a daughter, eight and son, six. He is a bright, clever boy but he is very unreasonable, irrational and stubborn at home, but fine and well behaved at school. He is very difficult about what he eats, what clothes he wants to wear, what time he goes to bed etc.

We are finding his behaviour difficult to cope with and he constantly creates arguments. How can we cope with our son's constant demands and behaviour?

A THE great thing about your son's behaviour is that he knows how to behave well at school.

It seems that he is able to cope with authority, but is struggling with this at home.

You and your partner need to start acting as a team.

Focus on what part of his behaviour is the hardest to live with.

Start as you mean to go on. Allow your son a choice between two foods, don't allow any major discussion and tell him that is his only choice (make sure they are foods he actually likes).

If he refuses to eat his dinner or creates a scene ask him to go to his room until everyone else has finished. Be persistent, he will quickly see that he is not getting any attention for his behaviour.

Let him choose his own clothes from his drawer, clothes are not that important so it often isn't worth the stress to have an argument over.

With his bedtime routine, set the scene and explain what is going to happen. It will take some time for him to get used to the new rules, but if the two of you work together, your determination and control will soon sort him out.

Always give him lots of praise for his good behaviour.

Try not to compare your children, they clearly have different personalities and needs, so they will need to be responded to in different ways.

By working together as a team and regaining control in the house, the issues may not seem so bad. Remember, he is doing well at school.

Next week's question:

I am a widower and I have recently started dating for the first time. My 13-year-old daughter is very against me seeing anyone else, but my son, who is seven, is very supportive. …

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