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My daughter gets angry at the smallest things

JenniferUJenniferU Member Posts: 124 Courageous
This is from a mum in the Parenting Special Needs Magazine Facebook group:

"My daughter has CP. she gets angry at the smallest things and goes into a tirade of yelling and saying mean things to me. Does anyone else have this issue? She is 11."

Replies

  • YoungCarerOverHereYoungCarerOverHere Member Posts: 50 Connected
    My sister (and brother) also go into a RAGE MODE at the slightest thing too.

    She has not yet been diagnosed but we reckon she has some form of ADHD. My brother has autism and ADHD. You're totally not alone in this issue. My mum often gets really upset when she is constantly called the "worst mum ever" and my siblings say that they "would get new family if they could".

    It's difficult emotionally but my mum finds that the way to cope is to make a list of all the lovely things my siblings say. Then, she knows (underneath all the anger) they still love her.

    Best wishes
  • ParentingAdvisorParentingAdvisor Member Posts: 16

    I can understand how frustrated you must feel, with your daughter getting angry many times every day! Thankfully, there is a lot that you can do to change things.

    Some children are quite easy-going by temperament.  They do most of what they’re supposed to do without making much of a fuss about it, and they accept changes to their routine without becoming too upset. 

    Other children have a more extreme temperament.  They are more sensitive, which means that they notice and react to little things that another child might easily brush off.  Children like this are also often intense; they have big reactions.  In addition, children with an extreme temperament are often impulsive; they speak or act before they think about the possible consequences.  They may also be inflexible; if they expect something to be a certain way, they are upset when it turns out differently. I’m wondering if these characteristics describe your daughter?  And of course, any special need is likely to add a huge amount of anger and anxiety into the mix. 

    Unfortunately, there is no magic wand that will make a child with a trickier temperament suddenly become easy-going.  But there are many things you can do that will help keep your daughter’s mood and behaviour more stable. 

    1.       Getting enough sleep is very important; it will help your daughter feel better and behave better. Make sure that she’s going to bed early enough.  Most 11-year-olds need at least eleven hours of sleep a night, although they often don’t get that much.  If your daughter makes a fuss at bedtime, or dawdles, or if she has difficulty falling asleep, start the bedtime routine much, much earlier.  That way even with delays or time-wasting, she will still be getting to sleep at the right time.  

    2.       All children need daily, vigorous exercise to burn off their natural energy.  If they don’t get enough exercise they often become moody and irritable and resistant to following the usual routines.   I understand that your daughter’s CP may make it difficult for her to get enough exercise, but there is always a way to manage it once we realise how important exercise is for mood and behaviour.  If you’re wondering how to do this, I would be happy to talk with you about it. 

    3.       It’s been found that sugar and refined carbohydrates (especially any products with white

    flour) often make children more moody, angry and oppositional, especially children who are starting out with a more extreme temperament. My recommendation would be to remove all sweet foods and refined carbohydrates for a month and see what results you get.  If you’re worried about this, please do check first with your GP or specialist. 

    Low blood sugar is often the cause of mood swings and lack of cooperation.  Make sure that your daughter has a meal or a healthy snack every three hours throughout the day.  Each of those meals or snacks should include some protein and some complex carbohydrates for energy, but no refined carbohydrates.  

    4.       Too much time in front of a screen often makes children angry and uncooperative. For your daughter’s age I recommend no more than a total of one hour a day of leisure screen time  (television, computer, tablet, Xbox, mobile phone, etc.).  If your daughter often has much more than an hour a day of screen time, you may find that in the first week or two this new  limit on electronics will make her even angrier!  Stay strong because she will get used to the new rule, and soon you’ll see the benefits. 

    Children with special needs may become dependent on screens if they are not easily able to entertain themselves in more active ways. You may need to teach your daughter how to play by herself when screen time is not an option.  If you have questions about this, I can advise you. 

    5.       One of the ways to help your daughter be less angry is to give her a lot of positive attention.  By that I mean noticing and mentioning all the things she’s doing right, or almost right, or even when she’s not doing anything wrong.  This technique is called Descriptive Praise, and I explain about it in all of my books. 

    6.       Another important way to give your daughter positive attention is with a strategy I call Special Time. This means spending some time just with her, without any siblings around, every day if possible.  The emphasis is on having fun.  Special Time helps children to want to please their parents, and it helps children to absorb their parents’ values. 

    There are many more strategies that you can use to help your daughter be less angry.  I would be glad to talk with you in person if you feel that would be helpful.  You can also visit the Calmer, Easier, Happier Parenting website and browse our free resources for parents.     

  • ByDkevin30ByDkevin30 Member Posts: 1
    Generation of kids today, that kind of behavior is not so rare but I think it's better if u try to talk to her, in a serious manner that you show her that you have a authority as a mum to give her a lesson.
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