HELP! I'm losing daily battles with my whiny 4yr old daughter!

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-20-2006
HELP! I'm losing daily battles with my whiny 4yr old daughter!
Tue, 04-05-2011 - 11:17am

I need some advice or ideas on how to handle my 4yr old's incessant whining-followed-immediately-by-crying-fits over everything from what she's wearing to school, what shoes to wear, what's for dinner, whether she can watch a cartoon, bathtime, bedtime, playtime, etc.

I work full time, so I get a few hours with my daughter in the evenings and mornings, and the weekends of course. I feel like lately those hours are just filled with battling! And they always seem to end with me losing my temper, and yelling for her to stop crying, enough is enough, go to the other room! It does not feel productive, and my reaction is obviously not improving the situation the next time around. I need ideas on how to COMMUNICATE that my answers are FINAL, she has some CHOICES, but other things are NOT UP TO HER.

I'd love to hear what other moms are doing. Just as a starting point for me. Thanks for any advice you can give.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-08-2007
Two words. Behavior Chart! OMGoodness! They made the BIGGEST improvement in my daughter (and me). And, like you already know, don't lose your temper. If you do, then they see it as a win for them.
I did a chart with our daily routine. Breakfast, getting dressed, going potty, brushing teeth, putting on coats, saying goodbye at daycare, dinner, picking up toys, bath, brushing teeth, stories, bed. Seems like a lot, but we seriously had issues with EACH one of those. Every time she did something on the chart without whining or fighting us on it, she got to put a sticker on the chart.
My Bro and SIL to a marble system with their kids. Good job? You get a marble...whine, fight, complain...they take one out. When their jar is full they got to choose to go some place special or pick out a movie to watch, or a toy.
Choices are GREAT! you can still give choices and still let it be "up to you". IE: Do you want to use your barbie toothbrush or your my little pony toothbrush? You pick out a shirt and I'll pick out the pants...
GL an HTH!!