I’m an Idiot

I’m an idiot, a poo-poo face, meanie head, ding dong, mom robot, jerk… oh, the list goes on and on. Who calls me that? My lovely children, of course. Well, okay. Not all the kids. Just my middle child. My kindergartener turns six next month, but has a potty mouth like a 10-year-old.

He’s been on a war path lately. He’s happy one minute and the Hulk the next. He can go from angel to devil in two seconds flat. There’s an actual physical transformation: his jaw clenches, his blue eyes fill with rage and his hands ball up into tight fists. Sometimes his fists are pressed by his sides, his arms locked straight down. Other times, he puts one fist behind his head, cocked to hit someone, likely me.

This morning, something set him off. Oh, I remember. I asked the kids who wanted to get the newspaper. (See how that reverse psychology works? It’s freezing out and I sure as heck don’t want to walk out there. But, if I say “who wants to” before anything, they’ll fight to the death over who gets to do it.) My daughter and my kindergartener rushed toward the door. My 9-year-old got there first, so, of course, my kindergartener slammed her head into the door. Seems appropriate, right? Yeah… So, I go over to him and tell him to head to time out. He screams at me then stomps to time out. He’s not there long. He’s squirming this way and that. Oh, and he’s still screaming. So, I warn him to calm down so I can start the clock or he’ll be sent downstairs to his room. Then, the beast appears. He begins screaming and flailing. I carry him downstairs to his room where he starts the name calling and begins destroying. Everything. Good thing I’ve seen this episode of Super Nanny. I tell him whatever he destroys, he’ll have to clean up. I tell him to find some way to calm himself down: deep breathing, coloring, making a funny face or petting his stuffed animal. He throws more of a fit. I walk away. After a few minutes, it gets quieter. He says he’s ready to talk. He starts to walk up the stairs. BUT, since I haven’t told him he can come up, my 9-year-old rats him out. So, he screams at her. Back downstairs we go. He screams. I try to calm the raging beast within. And somehow, I stay calm. We take a minute and color and talk about his feelings. I try not to think about how hippy-like this makes me feel. He settles. We go back upstairs.

How do you handle the screaming, name calling and destroying? At what age does this phase pass? My daughter may have bouts of dramatics and waterworks, but it was never like this. Is it just a boy thing? Is this what I have to look forward to with my youngest?


3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Momx5kidz
    Sep 18, 2011 @ 22:14:23

    I have three boys and YES they are worse and it does go on for much longer!!!

    Let me share how lucky you are: My oldest son had severe behavioral problems and actually started attending a special school at age 4…he is Autistic (back then they did not have programs for Autistic children) and is Bipolar and has FASD (before you all judge me, he is adopted, by my husband & I along with 3 of his birth siblings, also with Special needs) He was calling me a “kunk” when he got really angry. Well, during a P/T discussion his teacher asked me if he was swearing at home. I innocently answered “No, he just makes up silly word to call me like Kunk”. His teacher burst out laughing (yes, we had a very close relationship) and told me there was kiddo at the school whose favorite word was “c$#t” and my son had picked it up from him! (he had no idea what it meant but did know it was really bad) I was livid, then felt really stupid that I had not caught on sooner.

    Next time…well, he lost dessert for a week! Mama don’t play that game! So, be glad for what your son is calling you now! : ) They get over it at about age 13…when the consequences start involving NO fun activities…Hang in there!


  2. Maria
    Sep 19, 2011 @ 23:33:50

    My little guy (6) is like that, but w/o the name calling. At least I can pick him up now and TAKE him to time out – or to his room, or where ever. What am I going to do when he gets bigger and stronger than me?!! AAAK! Plus, as a single parent I have to be careful of the consequences I give him, because I don’t want to ALSO punish myself or my other two. For example, I can’t say, “If you do XX then you can’t go to the movies with us!” Because then, WE can’t go to the movies, because I usually can’t find a sitter on such short notice, and PLUS, then I’d have to PAY MONEY for his misbehavior! Someone suggested I put him in the shower. Not a COLD shower, but shower nonetheless. It worked, once. I do make him apologize after his fits, though, to whoever was around at the time. He does feel guilty, too.

    Sleep helps. LOTS AND LOTS of sleep.


  3. Jenn
    Oct 22, 2011 @ 01:18:47

    My first son (who’s 5) was a wonderful boy to discipline. When he was a toddler, I would sit him on his bum, no matter where we were, for a time out & he wouldn’t be allowed out until he stopped crying. We would talk about it, hug & then move on. As he got older, I would annouce his consequence, count to three & then he’d do the time (talk about it, hug, blah blah blah). So naturally, when baby boy number two came along, I anticipated the same behaviour & discipline strategy. I was so, so, so, soooooo wrong!

    My second son (who’s 3) is a devil in disguise. Ever since he’s been mobile, he’s been hitting, throwing things, is the sauciest, most relentless little bugger going. I have tried sitting on the bum time outs; he squirms, inches, wet noodles & relentlessy cries until he gets his own way. I have tried “the naughty chair” with a timer; just a repeat of the later. I have tried sending him to his room, talking nicely, yelling, screaming & even broke down & spanked him (which actually brought him down a few levels but had me feeling like the shittiest parent alive). I am to the point where I might resort to seeing a doctor because I am at my wits end & have no other tricks up my sleeve.

    I’d be interested in hearing any suggestions that have worked for you!


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