Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Rep Power: 0
Children: 2 girls - ages 5 and 6 weeks
Problematic 5 year old.
This is my first post, and I hope I'm not covering topics that everybody else is already covered. I guess I'll explain my story.. My oldest daughter (5 years old) for I'd say the last year, has just seem to go downhill as far as behavior goes.
Her mother and I have lived together since she was 2, and up until about a year ago, she was really a great little kid, she still is, but this last year has been rough. Basically, she was about to turn 5, up until then she never really had a problem wetting the bed, and then out of nowhere she started wetting the bed every night, usually 2-3 times a night. At first we thought maybe she had a bladder infection, but after a dr's visit, that theory was put to rest. I know it's something that kids grow out of, but this really came out of left field, we've resorted to having her wear pull-ups at night, which has worked out well, but even though we've told her so many times that wearing a pull up is only for in case she has an accident, she seems to think it's just a way she can wet the bed and not get in trouble, often we will make her wear a pull up when we go out (We live in Los Angeles and are often stuck in the car for periods of time) and we'd ask her if she has to potty, and she'll reply with "no, it's ok, i have my pull-up on" and proceed to wet herself. She does this often, she either doesn't tell us she has to go, or she tells us when it's not possible for us to make it to a bathroom, because she says "i have to potty" then, just goes.. Also, for example we take her to the mall to play and such, and there are times that she'll wet herself while playing, and it really seems to us, and from her responses, that she simply didn't want to stop playing, so she just went. Which sometimes leads me to believe she's just lazy. She doesn't have this problem when we're at home. It's only when we're out, and/or when she's asleep. Also a problem, she refuses to sleep in her room anymore, no reason, she just doesn't want to.. She kicks and screams and fights over not sleeping in there, and it's not one of those things that we can just let her cry, and eventually she'll get over it, she doesn't stop, and if she does, it's only so we go to sleep so she can sneak off and sleep in the living room on the couch, the bedwetting started months before this started though.
A few months after the bedwetting started, she started kindergarten, she was only 4 at this time, and both mine and her mothers feelings were that she wasn't ready for it, but her school insisted we put her in despite what we were telling them, about a month later we had our first parent-teacher conference. Her teacher, basically told us, she was holding the class back, and that she couldn't deal with her. She said about half way through the day, every day, she'd throw a fit, and that she treated school more as a social time than a learning time, and she was frequently disrupting her class because she didn't want to sit still and pay attention. At this point, they told us to pull her out of kindergarten, and put her in a pre-k program, however this was now not a possibility as she had already turned 5 and state law says they have to be in school. So, instead they put her going to school half days. Even with the half days, the problems continued, she had at least 1-2 big fits a month, resulting in her getting sent to the principals office. This ranged from just not listening, to talking back to her teacher, to drawing on other kids, throwing dirt in other kids face, all building up to kicking her teacher, and fleeing from the classroom.
Her academics were failing as well, she couldn't tell me one thing a week that she learned in school, and it was taking her so long to get things that finally by the end of the year, she was just not getting things they were doing at the first of the year. Still to this day, she can't get through her alphabet, even though it's something we try to go over with her every night. To this day, a year later of trying to get her to understand, she still has very little letter recognition, has no sense of sounds letters make, for example, she only knows how to spell her name, from repetition, because she's done it so many times.. not because she knows the letters or the sounds. We had to start driving her to and from school because after the 2nd week they wouldn't walk them to their buses anymore, and she couldn't remember/recognize that her bus was bus #25.
She seems to have serious attention issues, when it comes to things she's not interested. For example, her class had what they called "sight words" they were to learn every week, my daughter didn't learn a single one of them. I can recall one week that I was going over the words, and she really seemed to finally get it.. the words were "my" and "go".. i sat there with her for a good hour, sounding out the words, telling her the letters, when finally she got "my".. we reviewed it a few times, and moved on to "go" after she got it. Not two minutes later, we went back to "my" and she'd forgotten everything that we went over, when I pointed to the M and asked her what letter it was, she would just randomly go through letters, taking wild guesses at it. It was frustrating me as much as it was her.
About a quarter of a way through the school year, we took her to a doctor, because she was showing signs of ADHD, of course, she's somewhere else, she's on her best behavior, the dr. dismisses it, but gives us paperwork for us and her teacher to fill out. Practically everything that applied to her as a 5 year old, was a yes on the paper, even with our checklist and the teachers, nothing ever came out of it, and we're currently searching for a new doctor.
This is just the school part.
Around that same time, her behavior took a turn for the worse as well, and has been declining throughout the year. She just doesn't listen to anything, she gets in trouble frequently, and her mom is just about to have a break down sometimes I feel because she doesn't know what to do with her. She does things she knows she's not supposed to do, jumping on her bed and stomping around our apartment (we have neighbors below us that complain and almost got us evicted) writing on the walls, getting up in the middle of the night and eating entire bags of cookies, stuffs her wet underwear behind couch cushions, she talks back so hatefully, and just doesn't understand that she's not the boss.. granted, she's a 5 year old, and I understand she's going to be stubborn. We've tried everything to curve the behavior issue, we've tried time-outs, spankings, taking away toys and privileges, everything... and nothing has worked so far. Every time I punish her, I always tell her why I'm punishing her, because she seems to think we're punishing her for no reason. We try to show her better choices she could have made to not get into trouble, and it just doesn't stick with her, she stands there and looks me right in the eye, and doesn't understand a single word I'm saying, because five minutes later, she's at it again, or if I ask her a few minutes later, what we talked about, she can't tell me.
Part of her problem is her attention span. She has no problems paying attention, but only to things she cares about. She can't tell you the 1 + 1 = 2 or that George Washington was the first president, but she can tell you every word to every episode of Dora the Explorer, or recite any Disney movie you can name off the top of her head, but it concerns me, because we're approaching another school year (they told us at the start of this past year, she would have to repeat) and she's made no significant improvements over last year. A few months ago, they started testing her to see if she needs Special Ed. classes, so odds are next year, she'll be starting in those, because I really don't think she needs it. She's a smart girl and picks up things fast, as long as she's interested in them. Her behavior, I don't know what to do. My mom says we should take her out to do things more, that she's just bored. We try to take her out as much as we can, but a lot of the time, we feel we would be rewarding bad behavior if we took her out to the park or to the mall or something, because it's literally one thing after another all day, it rarely stops. When it does stop, she's the sweetest, cutest girl there is. We try to tell everybody else these problems, but she behaves so well for everybody else, it's just us and her teacher that she misbehaves. My parents or hers, she's a perfect angel. So we mention all these problems and issues to them, and they think we're crazy because they see none of these things.
My girlfriend, who has a lot on her plate, because we just welcomed a new baby into the family, is at wits end with her, and I can tell it bugs her having to discipline and be so strict and whatnot to her, because she loves her to death, but I feel sometimes that she is literally driving her crazy, and it's a stress on all of us. So, anywho.. that's my story. Any advice would be great! Thanks!
Last edited by exbest182; 04-23-2008 at 11:38 AM..