How to deal with a defiant child?

Singapore
April 30, 2008 4:50am CST
Ok, so here is my delimma. My son will be 8 this yr. he has had problems in the past. Nothing I thought was too serious. Lately however, he has been behaving terribly. He will not do as he is told and normally his answer to me asking him to do his work is "NO". And its in a very angry tone. He plays rough with his older sister(a yr older) and she too is the same. Except for her, i can control her. For my boy, he just wont listen. Today i get a call from his teacher. She said they were having unseen dictation and he told her he did not know how to write (what was being read out). Next thing she knew, he got off his chair and started disturbing his classmates. He threw one of the girls bags into the dustbin! (i was horrified at this) Then she said normally when she asks the classmates why he did something he would get very agitated and start yelling. And she said its a very angry yell/scream. Then she told me he said he had no money (for his lunch)...which was not true as i had given him $2 and he had put it in his pocket. In the background i could her him say " but Alvin took it". I admit he has a MAJOR attention and focus problem. Sitting down for long for him is hard to do and he s constantly loosing his things in school. Almost everyday, he comes home with an empty pencilcase. I really dont know whats wrong with him. He says he has no friends but then, he also doesnt put in the effort to make them. He wants things done his way all the time and in the end, ppl shun away from him. I hope someone can give me some advice because i am at my wits end right now. If he is behaving like this at 8 i dread to think what would happen when he is a teen.
2 people like this
2 responses
• United States
30 Apr 08
First make sure it's not a health issue. Rule out all those, like ADD or ADHD. If he is just being a pain in the butt and a bit bratty use grim determination. Dig in and don't back down set a rule and make him abide by it. For instance..You tell him to do something shadow him until he does it. Not later now. Set realistic punishments for rule breaking and enforce them. Ask him why he gets so angry and frustrated and look for information in his answers. Good luck & Peace!
• Singapore
1 May 08
I have asked him before why he is always so angry and his answer is always " i dont know". He can be such a loving angel sometimes...and others like the devil! I usually shadow him when he is doing his work but he tends to still dream and i gotta remind him what he is suppose to be doing and he gets pissed. For ex, he does Kumon and i told him, if u manage to do it within the stipulated time u get a sweet. He managed the first time but not the rest. and got sooo angry i didnt give him the sweet. I explained to him that he had taken too long (1 hr for something that can be done in 10mins). He just doesnt seem to get things. He wants things his way and when he wants them.
• United States
1 May 08
I would talk to his doctor about this. I'd tell him what you just told me and see what he suggest. One of my nephews was like this and everybody thought he was just a brat, turns out he has Asperger's Syndrome and he has little control of his social skills and he is frustrated all the time which makes him very angry. Once he was diagnosed he started improving. The first thing that happened was the teachers stopped treating him like a brat, they had more patients and they made more effort to help him through his rough spots. We taught him some calming techniques and they helped too. I hope he feels better soon.
• Singapore
9 Jun 08
He will be seeing the school counselor when term starts in 2 weeks. I spoke to her when i went down for a school open house and explained to her my concerns. She too feels he might have ADD or ADHD. She said they would put him through a series of tests and his form teacher would be given a list of things to look out for. With the info gathered, it will be sent to a team of doctors to make a diagnosis. She said it could also just be a case of hyper activeness. In any case, she will sit and talk to him and try to find out whats bothering him. As for his focus, its getting a bit better. I told him he will have no tv or computer until he does his Kumon properly and within 20mins. So far, he has been doing it...with a little reminder every few sec when he starts to dream.
@barehugs (8986)
• Canada
30 Apr 08
Yes you have a problem! Do you make a rule and Always stick to it? Its very important to your child to know that no matter What, you will not change your mind. He needs this Stability in his life. He needs to be able to depend on you. When you say No you should never change your mind! When he says "No!" don't get mad, sit down with him and explain why? treat him like a small adult. At 8 years, he is old enough to understand what you need and why you need it. Make a deal with him. Tell him if he will do this for you, You will do that for him. Never threaten him. This tears down his self respect. Always treat him with respect. this strengthens his self respect. Kids are small adults and need to be treated as such. Hope this helps!