Negative Attitude?

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-02-2003
Negative Attitude?
11
Mon, 08-11-2003 - 3:51pm
Last week, I took a couple days off work so the whole family went to the mall and goofed around in the play area. Then we stopped at one store that Sean wanted to visit only to find that they hadn't bothered to open (though it was past time for them to). Robert told Sean they'd go back next week, so the matter was dropped. Then we went to another store and picked up a couple small toys for the boys and something to drink. Unfortunately, Sean couldn't find the drink he wanted - a lemonade, so he picked a water instead. So far, so good right? Wrong!! By the time we're out in the van, he's sullen and pouting. When we ask him what's wrong, he says that he's upset because he's having such a terrible, rotten day. What terrible, rotten day? He didn't get his lemonade and the store wasn't open.

Forget that we all had a great time in the play area, forget that we'd bought him something. He was having a terrible, rotten day because he didn't get lemonade and he couldn't window shop where he wanted to. (I admit that I was more than a bit put out by his attitude, in case you couldn't tell from this post LOL.)

I was talking to a friend whose daughter is almost 10 and she tells me that the same thing happens with her daughter. Is this a common reaction to not getting their way or things not working out exactly as they want? I had just assumed it was only Sean, for some reason. True, it could just be Sean and my friend's daughter - but now I'm curious.

TIA!!

Best Always,

Sherrie

Sherrie Rainbow

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Avatar for cl_janetlh
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-19-2003
Mon, 08-11-2003 - 7:11pm
Oh, yeah, BTDT, LOL! Sounds like Rachel. She gets in a snit over things like that, too. I also get quite annoyed by it. This too shall pass...

Janet

Janet


Jewish Family Life

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-02-2003
Tue, 08-12-2003 - 12:17am
LOL, I know it will pass; sooner rather than later I hope!! I guess what really got to me was that I'd just been reading some tragic news stories and all I could think was "He calls not getting his lemonade a terrible day?!?!?!?!? It doesn't even compare." Thanks for commiserating with me, I needed it.

Best Always,

Sherrie

Sherrie Rainbow

Avatar for cl_janetlh
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-19-2003
Tue, 08-12-2003 - 10:30am
I definitely need to comiserate on this one. I think what makes this behavior so annoying is that we can understand it in a 3-4yo, but by 10 and 11yo we expect them to not act like a 3yo ;-) Rachel was in a snit all Sunday morning because there were no more choc. chip bagels, and she thought there was one more and who ate it? She let this ruin her entire morning. As you said, with what's going on in other kids' lives, I didn't have the patience for this silliness at age 11.

I guess they are still quite self-centered at this age, and not as mature about little things as we'd like them to be. It's improving, and I try to respond patiently, and tell them things like "It's your choice to let your mood/day be ruined by this little disappointment." I can acknowledge the disappointment without excusing the bad attitude. It's not easy though. I have very little patience for this although I try.

Deep breath....

Janet

Janet


Jewish Family Life

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Tue, 08-12-2003 - 11:43am
Well, you may add mine to that list! I thought it was a "female thing". Good to know boys get this way too. I do think there are some kids who are rarely "in a mood"....but mine is not one of them.

Yesterday was the first day of school. SHE had a bad day...SHE got too much homework (yep homework on hte first day) SHE isn't sitting by any of her friends (she's sitting next to the boy she has been friends with since birth...He said "Thanks a lot!") HER best friends are in other classes...HER old friend is an "All that girl" now...waaa waaa waaa. I keep telling her "Misery loves company, but company does NOT like misery" translation :Go away, or quit complaining!

Now I might be more sypathetic....except that there are two other kids from my day care in her class...then I have another day care kid in another 5th grade class. They had no complaints. I hate complaining!!!!!!!

How do I turn her attitude around?????????

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-02-2003
Tue, 08-12-2003 - 12:26pm
Sorry, I have no suggestions for turning the attitude around. Though I liked Janet's comment about acknowledging the disappointment but explaining that they had a choice as to whether or not it "ruined" their day.

I have a Groucho Marx quote that I try to live by taped on my computer here at work - maybe I should take it home to show Sean. It says: "I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. I can choose which it shall be. Yesterday is dead, tomorrow hasn't arrived yet. I have just one day, today, and I'm going to be happy in it."

Best Always,

Sherrie

Sherrie Rainbow

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-02-2003
Tue, 08-12-2003 - 12:35pm
Exactly, I can and did have a lot more patience with it when he was 5 and even 6, but now in my mind I'm thinking "Come on, it's not the end of the world". ITA about being self-centered. That's one of my favorite nags LOL - "you know not everything is about you". Yes, I too need more patience with it, because Sean can be and has been amazingly generous and giving at times - then he'll do a complete turnaround and be a self-centered pouting child again. UGH LOL - deep breaths, count to 100 {good} {good}

Best Always,

Sherrie

Sherrie Rainbow

Avatar for cl_janetlh
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-19-2003
Tue, 08-12-2003 - 2:41pm
This is a really tough one. Since you asked for suggestions... Are you doing anything inadvertantly to "reward" the complaining? I try to acknowledge with "that's a shame" "I can understand your disappointment" and then get them to move on, or if needed, brainstorm solutions if it's a problem that needs solving. If the complaints continue, I say something along the lines "We've talked about things you can do about the situation, now it's time for you to try to solve it or to let it go."

I also sometimes say "The complaints department is closed!" And, as I said in my note to Sherri, I'm trying to teach them that we can't control everything that goes on in our lives, but we do have some choice in how we react to it.

I'm not sure how to word this one, so *please* don't be offended: She's coming home with other kids, who are her classmates, that you watch after school, right? Is she somehow competeing for Mom's attention with the other kids? Obviously, you have responsibility for all the kids coming through your door after school. Is there a way you can have a "private" time with your dd each day? Even if it's after the other kids go home, if she knows she'll have your undivided attention for a few minutes each day to hear about her day, would that help? Again, I may be off base on this one, and am not in any way implying she's not getting enough attention, just that she may feel some competition.

I hope she was just venting 1st day of school stress. Good luck in turning this around!

Janet

Janet


Jewish Family Life

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-18-2003
Fri, 08-15-2003 - 3:21pm
This is an AWESOME CONVO!!!!

I have a 9 yr old son and an 11 yr old daughter. Their father is one week from moving to Arizona with his g/f and her parents. *snicker* thats a whole other story.....

I know that's the underlying issue to most of her anger and "bad day" issues.So we are all working hard on trying to help the kids through this issue.

One major thing with the young kids is, when they're disappointed with something not going their way or getting what they want, they react to it by how they are taught. By adults. It may not be a big deal to us, but to them, its the most important thing at the time. My daughter is a classic drama queen, i love her for the power in her personality, but sometimes it gets out of control. AND her father has made it almost impossible for her to share her feelings about his move. He tells her she's being childish. HULLO!!!! He is walking out of their lives for a woman and moving clear across the country! No wonder she's so confused. I try and stop the whining first of all, then tell her...."hunny i know it stinks right now but......" instead of getting impatient and blowing up about her not getting her way. I know you all are talking about little things ie. candy, lemonade, etc. But kids today are so "spoiled" by all the good stuff, that I try and point out that there are kids, probably right in their school that can't even afford a pack of gum or other simple pleasures that we all take for granted.

I'm happy to have kids that understand i CAN'T always get them things. Im a single mom and times are tough, especially when half my checks go to daycare. HURRY UP SCHOOL, ARRIVE!!!!!

I guess i got off track but hopefully my point is still in there somewhere.. LOL

Avatar for cl_janetlh
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-19-2003
Sat, 08-16-2003 - 3:21pm
Welcome! You made some good points. You and your kids are dealing with a lot right now. I'm glad you found our board and jumped in. Hope to see you often!

Janet

co-cl

Janet


Jewish Family Life

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Sat, 08-16-2003 - 10:39pm
Ok I havent read anyone else's posts but I am going to. I just wanted to say that you have just described my 10 yo to a tee. (ok he'll be 11 in Oct.) I often wonder what his idea of a good day is or what he would consider a really bad day.

It's gotta be the age.

Julie

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