DS is 4 yrs old. I am concerned that his difficult behaviour and tantrums, which have been around a long while, could be more than just normal kid stuff. I want to find out so I really know what I'm dealing with. I don't know how I'm going to cope with baby number 3 if this carries on. It's draining for all of us.
He's quite bright and language is great. When he's with me and DH, and my mum, he's himself. Which is chatty and playful but also many tantrums which we are not able to avoid or divert, and discipline makes no difference. He's very rude at the moment, calling us names (no swear words and he doesn't hear them at home), just silly stuff like "bum bum head" over the slightest thing even when we're trying to help him. His meltdowns are over food quite a lot...wanting something to eat but not knowing what he wants and rejecting every suggestion. Or just refusing to eat his dinner and asking for alternatives, which he doesn't get. Or just because he's in his sister's face annoying or hurting her.
When he's with other adults, including those he knows pretty well, he just doesn't want to talk to them. He'll ignore them and not speak or answer questions. Including at kindy. And also with his granddad who puts a lot of time and effort into having a good relationship with him and is hurt by DS's rejection and downright rudeness towards him. He's only himself with me, his dad and his nan.
With his peers he's pretty good. Talks and plays well at kindy and playgroup in small groups of a couple of kids. Just not to the adults there. They had an Easter parade on Wednesday at kindy and he was the only one who wouldn't wear his hat and join in. He hates group activities.
What do you think? For a long time I've thought it's all normal pre schooler behaviour. But at times its so hard I'm not sure and want some clarification.
Who do I see about this? GP for a referral to child psychologist? Or paediatrician first to rule out anything medical/intolerances?