Wits End

We are at our wits end with our son. It has been happening on and off for the last couple of months that he will get really really angry when things don't go his way. Just yesterday he punched his cousin in the nose because his cousin wouldn't play a game the way Elliot insisted that he play a game. I didn't see it though I can believe it happened. Though I do have to balance Elliot's behaviour towards his cousin (who is 5 years older than him) with the fact that his cousin will sometimes mercilessly tease him.

When I spoke to Elliot about his behaviour he was angry with me for talking to him about it. It seems to me that he just doesn't like his behaviour to be questioned by me at all particularly if he knows he is already in the wrong - so how do I bring it up with him?

He back-answers both P and me nearly all the time when we say that his behaviour is unacceptable. He usually likes to blame other objects and people for his bad behaviour. One night he told me if I gave him a different dinner than he would behave better. When I explained that he was in control of his emotions and behaviour he insisted that I controlled him. I replied if that were true than he would be a perfectly behaved boy all the time.

He says that I get mad at him every day - which is probably true much to my regret.I replied that it is because he misbehaves every day. I think the reason I do get mad with him is because of the fact it is so difficult to talk to him about his behaviour - he will argue black is white to the very end and never acknowledge fault and try to blame everyone and everything including me.

Tonight was very very hard - we felt we couldn't keep doing anything nice things for him when it appears that he does not appreciate our efforts. We talked to him about his behaviour being disappointing and that we wanted to be proud of him like we usually are. To this Elliot says he is an idiot - he is stupid and his teachers says his homework is bad. We told him that saying things like this is absolutely ludicrous. We know he is a very good reader, his last report was fantastic, he gets well done stickers on his homework, our parent teacher interview went very well, he was voted class captain in his class which is a composite class and is predominantly made up of year 2's and he is only 1 of 8 year ones - so we know he is held in high regard by his peer. Plus he has always told me he would never misbehave like other boys and girls at school.

Perhaps he makes such an effort at school to be good that he stores up all of his bad behaviour for P and me at home - maybe the fact that he is six at the end of the year is too much of a strain as well given that most of his class are up to two years older than him. When I pick him up from school it often seems that every kid in both grade one and two makes of point of saying goodbye to him in the afternoon. It appears to me that he is very friendly with older boys who are quite sporty and do well scholastically does this make it harder for Elliot given his age? Is this why he denigrates himself to us because compared to the older children he feels inadequate?

I have decided that before we consult a child psychologist or behaviorialist I will try a book on raising boys. Perhaps P and I do not understand what a young boy needs - more empathy more sympathy less of one more of the other.

I have spoken to him about learning hard lessons being a good loser, a good winner, jealousy, I don't think we have done unfairness and natural justice and persistence we have such a long way to go.

(Damn it I just can't listen to that little man and his victory speech tonight! I just switched him off)

At the end of the evening I had a quiet talk with El before he went to sleep and asked him if he actually liked us - this made him cry - which wasn't the intention of my question. I asked him to think about improving his behaviour and trying and thinking before he acts or speaks and if we can see he is trying we can start giving him back some of his privileges . I also told him that Mum and Dad need to try everyday to be good parents and sometimes we make mistakes too and that no matter what arguments we have that he is our son and we love him.

If you have two parents who love each other and their two children and there is no alcoholism, no major arguments (yes to disagreements) no drugs or violence in our family - can we still really go so wrong?


At 11:52 am, Blogger OLS said...

If you have two parents who love each other and their two children and there is no alcoholism, no major arguments (yes to disagreements) no drugs or violence in our family - can we still really go so wrong?Short answer? Yep.

But it really depends on what you mean - apparently parents only influence their children's behaviour significantly until they hit school, then peer pressure comes in and teachers and peers start to have a much greater impact than parents or family. So it's not uncommon for kids from "good" families to still "go wrong".

I know that I came from a family with no problems and two parents who love each other to death, but I think my parents still thought they'd gone wrong somewhere from when I was about 9 until I was 16. But I turned out alright eventually, and that really came down to the fact that they did their best to instill some values into me.

Sure they made mistakes and there were times that they managed to completely mishandle the situation, but I always knew they loved me and now I know that they like me as well.

And that's all I need to know. ;o)


At 8:26 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I spoke to my friend F with the 3 boys we concluded that Elliot is like one of her sons. He gets glowing reviews from school and his friends parents but is quite awful to the family when at home. It is probably the only place they get to vent their feelings of frustration and being family well it takes alot before they disown you I guess.
We also discussed the other influences theory and that he will probably learn alot good and bad from school and will see other kids venting in a physical way and while he doesn't agree with that sort of behaviour at school will come home and express it here instead - Lucky us!


Post a Comment

<< Home