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27/11/2013 at 16:38
I swear to god my nearly 4 year is driving me demented just now - with everything, but eating is the worst. He has a tantrum every time I say a meal is ready. Before he gets to the table and sees his food he is screaming and tantruming that he doesn't like it. I literally hav to make him eat every fork full while he whines he's tired/needs the toilet/thirsty/full/needs a poo. Dinner takes approx 90 min a d he spends a large portion of that sitting on the stairs. Maybe every third night he ends be not eating 2/3 of his meal and I now don't let him have anything g else.
I tried setting my phone alarm to give him 30 min to eat a meal then binning what was left. He spent the time screaming turn the clock off mummy, screeching and not eating. I tried it for 5 nights. Then gave up.
I bought him an award chart the other day to try and improve his overall behaviouR. So far its caused more fighting than helping.
i am seriously at my wits end with him. Everything is a tantrum or a fight. He argues back constantly, wakes 4/5 times a night, refuses to even try dress himself, moans about every single thing
27/11/2013 at 16:51
Have you tried getting him involved with the cooking? O always eats better if he's helped and loves it. I also wouldn't push it for too long. If he doesnt eat it with encouragement/ pudding bribe I would give up. I usually find they give in once they realise they wont get anything else.
27/11/2013 at 17:24
I can't get through to him or get him to listen to even bribe him with pudding.
He's now in his room after stamping his feet, slamming a door in my face and trying to bite me. They are now both missing their martial art class and I'm missi g boxing which has been paid for. I'm soo soo angry with him and no idea what to do
27/11/2013 at 18:04
I remember once there was an episode of Super Nanny where a child wouldn't eat. She advised them to ignore him as he was craving the attention, as meal times had become all about him. She got them to put his food on the table and leave him to it. He only got (positive) attention if he sat at the table and ate. Otherwise he was ignored and didn't get anything else. Don't know if that would be worth a shot?
27/11/2013 at 18:12
Thank you both for your replies.
Figaro do you know if they gave the child a certain amou for time to eat? I can imagine L being there all night. He doesn't eat but if I threaten/take plate away he flips out.
I think ill be in the looney bin before this baby arrives. I dread having to deal with L, I now avoid taking him anywhere as I feel I can't control him. How the hell will I cope with 3?!
27/11/2013 at 18:20
I can't remember LR. I will see if I can find the episode on youtube. Hugs x
27/11/2013 at 18:33
I would do along the lines of what figaro said. From his perspective he is in control, he has attention at mealtimes (even if it is negative) and he is in control, he can see you losing the battle and how it's affecting you and probably your other child too. I would not say anymore that dinner is ready as you said that aggravates him; just put the plate down and sit down to eat, chat with your other little one and ignore the tantrums. I would probably give him until maybe 5/10 minutes after everyone else has finished and left the table as he may go to it eventually. It will probably take a few days to see a change but I bet it works in the end! You have my sympathy as I've been in a similar situation with a very 'reactive' boy.
As for getting dressed I would pick your battles, if you're going to go hard on him with meals I would go a bit easier with dressing and help him out then work on him when he is feeling more cooperative else you will run yourself ragged and everything can be more stressful when you're pregnant.
27/11/2013 at 18:44
Is there anything you could think that's disturbing his sleep? If he's tired he'll be irritable too.
Id do as the others have suggested and put the food on the table then ignore. Maybe make a general that you are clearing the table in ten minutes/five minutes but ignore him unless he is sitting nicely.
The dressing himself thing, take him to preschool in his pyjamas if he refuses to put his clothes on? Or am I cruel?!
27/11/2013 at 19:15
Thanks all. Ill try the suggestion of ignoring him unless its praise.
With regards to getting dress, I don't mind helping him but the last month or so he's refusing to even try. Same with shoes. He makes a huge deal, huffs and puffs then starts screaming he can't do it. This is literally before he has lifted the shoes.
Every little thing is a battle with him just now from getting dressed, getting in the car, a few weeks ago he was screaming going into nursery, now I can't get him out without a tantrum. It's very tempting just to leave him there!
His behaviour in my parents house is disgusting, he refuses to talk to or look at my dad just now. Won't look at him when he speaks to him, refuses to say hello etc. and it's getting worse because my mum then Punishes him for bei g so rude and cheeky.
I'm supposed to be at a baby shower on Saturday while my H is working but I really dont feel I can leave him like this with my cousin who has offered to watch him.
27/11/2013 at 19:25
It does sound like an attention thing. Maybe if he won't speak to your dad then you could try saying okay well no one is going to speak to you until you stop being rude, then you, your mum and dad just ignore him for a few minutes then one of you ask him if he would like to apologise and join in? And if he won't then go back to ignoring?
Is his behaviour okay at nursery? If so he might be okay with your cousin?
27/11/2013 at 19:27
And with the dressing, as long as he lets you do it then just dress him and don't ask him to help, he'll grow out of wanting you to dress him and start wanting to do it himself I'd think?
27/11/2013 at 19:37
As far as I know he's fine at nursery. They haven't told me otherwise. I have parents night tomorrow so will find out then.
Will try the ignoring him then as well - feels like I will literally be ignoring him all day lol
He is fine in the house, potters about and plays with his toys. Then as soon as we need to do anything structured or organised he flips. Yesterday I was doing housework while he played between his room and the livingroom. Came to getting ready to collect my dad for a hospital appointment, he refused to get shoes and coat on, wouldnt even say hello to my dad in the car. We dropped my dad and went to Asda to waste time (rather than try to amuse him in the car) he had a tantrum because he couldn't get sweets (I said no because he was rude to Grampa) I literally dragged him back to the car. We sat for 5 min waiting on my dad in the car park and he whined and moaned constantly about wanti g to go home.
Got home and he started annoying A as soon as she got home from school. Tantrum when dinner was put out, I was headi g to work so my mum took over. Said he was a nightmare but eventually ate then was put to bed for throwing the tablet across the room. He screamed for 30 mins before falling asleep and was still so bing when I got home at 9.
He was up 8 times last night so totally shattered today, which doesn't help his behaviour!
27/11/2013 at 19:59
Sounds tough! I'm sure you asked your HV for advice about his sleeping when he was younger but do you think it's worth speaking to them again?
27/11/2013 at 20:59
Yeah I did. Her advice was leave him to cry, can't really do that with a nearly 4 yr old! Never worked then anyway. He does go back to his own bed now without much of a fight but gets up again. Normal nights are 4/5 wakenings last night was more than usual for some reason.
I think a lot of his problem is tiredness but just have no idea how to fix that.
TBH I ha ent seen or spoken to a health visitor in years other than for his 30 month check.
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