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  1. #1
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    Default The witching hour? HELP

    I'm having issues with my DD3. Out of the blue, 2 weeks ago, she started to become very naughty at around 5pm in the afternoon. It's like someone would flick a switch in her mind and my little angel will turn into a naughty, disrespectful and violent child. I'm covered in scratches (that bled when inflicted) and bruises from her hitting and kicking. If she doesn't get her way she cries her eyes out.

    Part of the problem is coming from DH and I. When she's misbehaving, he asks her what she'd like to do, and then says to her "if you stop x y or z, then I will give it to you"...she'll stop, he gives her what she wants, then it's back to the same naughty behaviour. To me, that feels like he's rewarding her negative behaviour. She knows all she has to do is act up, then Daddy will give her that option. Granted it works for him, but not for me. It also doesn't help that the second she starts crying DH starts yelling at me and telling me what to do. His yelling gets worse the longer she cries, and the more he yells the more she cries. He seems to expect me to press a button and instantly stop her crying. If she doesn't stop crying, he'll get up, physically shove me away from her, and see to her himself....yet she'll then be crying for me.

    I know our behaviour is contributing to this....but we're both at our wits end with her hurting us, and breaking everything, throwing, being demanding, and naughty. Her diet hasn't suddenly changed...and during the day she truly is a perfect child.

  2. #2
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    does she have a rest during the afternoon? maybe if she's getting ratty about 5pm every day it means that she's overtired and could do with a lie down or a sleep earlier in the afternoon?

    also i don't know how old she is but you could try a reward chart and stretch the rewards out for longer, e.g. if she doesn't have a tantrum for two or three days in a row, not just immediately, then she can have x, y or z.

    and i'm sorry to speak bluntly but yes the anger, yelling and physical shoving between you and your DH is probably encouraging her behaviour. i'd have to say that until your DH stops that aggressive behaviour, your DD's behaviour will not improve, as she is picking up distressed signals from her parents and seeing/hearing the yelling and the shoving. i think you guys need to stop that before you can expect her to behave.

    sorry if i've offended, didn't mean to, i really hope things get better for you xx
    Last edited by aquarius; 05-01-2012 at 04:16.

  3. #3
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    Wow - he shoves you? that's so not okay to be physically (and verbally) aggressive towards you. I'd be addressing that issue first.

    As for her behavior - sorry if this is a little disjointed - ive been awake since 3am.

    What's her overall routine like? Could she be overtired? Could she have a rest or lay down at 4pm (read books or something?) could she be hungry? Can you offer her dinner at 4-4:30 and then a snack later (or snack & then dinner later?)

    What's her diet like? Sugars? Additives?

    Does she start playing up when dad arrives home, how is she during the day before he's home?

    Could you plan to go to the park or sonething at 5pm, seeing as its light till 7-8pm - Jasper's been ratty around 5-6 the last week so we just plan to not be home, we were at the beach at 6 last night (qld) shops for a walk around at 5 the day before and park at 6:45 the day before that. Anything to avoid that crazy, hypo, 'naughty' time - come home, dinner, shower, bed.

  4. #4
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    Hi OP.
    Firstly your DP shoving you is NOT ok at all
    Secondly I believe kids pick up on parents stress levels and anxiety, so the more wound up you and your DP are the more wound up your DD will get.
    Do you feel stressed and anxious when your DP gets home ?

    My DS is 3 and gets ratty when he is tired (he doesn't hit, just tantrums and sooking).

    What time dos she go to bed? Does she have a bedtime routine that is the same each night ?

    Perhaps you need to introduce a day time nap, even just half and hour at about 1pm so she can recharge her batteries.

    When she gets tired in the evening, give her dinner earlier and then a nice sooting bath followed by quiet story time then bedtime.
    And most of all you and DP have to try and stay as calm as possible, try not to react to her behaviour.
    If she does something wrong simply put her in room and tell her ''You can come out when you calm down".
    Then go back in a few minutes later, give her a hug and distract her with something such as ''lets go and do xyz etc"
    If she keeps going just keep repeating the process in a calm manner.

    Also if your DD is witnessing you DP shove you around then that could be contributing to her becoming violent towards you.

    I'd also look into her diet, some children are sensitive to certain additives in foods, some kids even have sensitivities to healthy foods like grapes and strawberrys.
    Google FEDUP.COM or SUE DENGATE for more info on food intolerences.

  5. #5
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    Agree with all of the perfect suggestions already written. I would say she is most likely tired I would be giving her dinner at 4.30pm then fruit plate 5pm followed by warm bath books and BED!! Allow her to snack on biscuits and cheese even more fruit during story time before sleep to fill her tummy more. Block out her curtains and bed at 6.30pm if need be. My daughter is nearly 5 I still have to adjust her dinnertime / bedtime if she is tired. Good luck xx

    Little blossom probably needs a few early quiet nights. Tea at 5pm is a routine I swear by for little ones...earlier if they're tired!


 

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