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Is this typical behavior for 5 YO? (Long)

 
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MadameX









  


Post  Tue, May 15 2018, 10:39 am
My 5YO son is my first born and by his character, you can tell! He needs to feel in charge. He needs to win at a game at least once. He wants to wear what he wants. And at times, if he doesn't get his way, the tears will come! Now, as parents, we don’t give in. Rather, we try to talk and try to reason with him.

He has a jealous side. If he feels his baby brother got something better than him, he will be deeply offended. He will say, “you hate me!”

Now, to me, these seem like typical behavios for a 5YO first born. And since he is my eldest, I don't have what to compare it to. So the following behavios I am not sure if they are typical or not.

Some days before school he can cry all morning regarding what to wear. He wants to pick, but then he says he doesn't know what to pick. When I try to help, he doesn't like what I pick so I tell him to choose by himself. But then he says he doesn't know what to pick! Its a vicious cycle full of tears and yelling. I try to remain calm and composed throughout. He would say things like “this makes me look like a weirdo” and “everyone thinks my clothes are weird” (eventhough I shop at the same stores the other moms do). I ask him who says those things, but he has no answer. Which makes me believe that he's the only one saying these things. It makes me sad that hes talking so negatively about himself. My husband and I always compliment him on how handsome he looks. Is this typical behavior from him? To me, this was reminiscent of my teenage years. Not a behavior I expected from a 5YO boy.

Another thing, we had family stay by us for all of pesach. My son was on cloud nine with all the attention. Ever since they left, he has been moodier than usual. Crying everyday about different things, mostly school related. When I talk to him and try to find out if someone is bothering him in school, he beats around the bush and brings up small things from weeks ago. And after some time, he finally says that “school is boring” and he “misses us” and thats why he hates school. But he doesn't hate school.. he has a lot of friends that he plays with and has a good time. He even says that he has a good time in school after we talk to him and try to figure out whats going on. He’s just down because he misses us.
Now it is almost shavuos. Does it make sense that he is still feeling blue regarding Pesach? He doesn't mention those family memers anymore and how he misses them, but could it subconciously still be bothering him? He hardly ever complained about school and tell us that he misses us before Pesach, which leads me to believe that the two things are connected.

My son gets a lot of love and affection from both me and my husband. We take time eveyday to talk to him. We compliment him every morning before school on how nice he looks. When he does a good deed, we make a point on praising the good deed. We play with him everyday. Shabbos he gets a lot of love and attention. At times, he doesn't even want me to tell him I love him. He says, “please stop saying that, its making me nervous!”


I am hoping that some of you expert moms out there would be able to shed some light and tell me if these are typical behavious of a 5YO and if there are any tips for me. I know some moms may be rolling their eyes at this. But I love my son and if anything at all could be improved, I want to do it now. Sometimes its the little things that we ignore and brush off that could have a large impact on our children. I dont want to ignore anything if there is a possibility that somehing bigger is going on that I simply dont have the knowledge and expertise to see.

TIA
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aleph









  


Post  Tue, May 15 2018, 12:12 pm
Wow. That's really amazing, you've described many of my son's behaviors. The self doubt, the clothing, school, sibling jealousy, etc. He is the same age, but he is the youngest of 5.

I've noticed and worried about these traits as well, and I think you are correct to focus on any struggles you perceive in your child, nothing for anyone to laugh at, you are his mom, and you sound like an awesome mom.

I don't think I have any better techniques than you, I'll just give you my perspective as a mom whose been at this for more years.

I'm not sure if there is an issue of "normal" or "not normal" at play here. It sounds like your little guy is pretty highly sensitive. Sensitive in the sense of being self aware, and highly aware of other people's thoughts and ideas regarding him. If I had to guess, I'd say that he probably asks you all sorts of deeper questions about life (and possibly death and G-d, etc). Not that other kids don't, but these sensitive sorts seem to take it all very much to heart and almost brew over it.

I think the one way that motherhood has prepared me for this type of child is not that I worry less about any of it, but rather that I am able to recognize that he is who he is. With my older kids, I was very young and inexperienced and very much certain that any concerning trait I saw in them was the result of something I was doing wrong, or could do better, or hadn't done, etc.

Now I am more able to accept his personality and character in a way I couldn't with my older kids. That doesn't mean that I would never worry about something, or follow up with a professional, but that I would do those things (if necessary) while being aware that many traits are just innate and unique because he is himself, not just a reaction to good/bad parenting.

I'm not sure if I was able to express this as clearly as I wanted to.

I think a large part of the difference in me is that I respond to these concerns of his more the way I'd respond to an older person, in the sense of accepting that this is who he is and taking it from there.

As in, "he is feeling this way because he is sensitive and his feelings are easily hurt because that is his personality. Now let's address it!" vs "he's doing this because he is neglected /doesn't feel loved/ is not normal and I better deal with everything that I'm doing wrong so I can fix him so he won't ever be this way again! "
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Shendellah









  


Post  Tue, May 15 2018, 12:21 pm
My 5 year old daughter has a lot of these traits and she is the 2nd child. I don't have any advice but I found it comforting to hear that other children my child's age are experiencing the same things.
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Iymnok









  


Post  Tue, May 15 2018, 12:42 pm
For the clothing thing, you could put his clothes away in sets, you could offer a choice between two shirts, two pants, etc. you may start to notice a pattern.
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seeker









  


Post  Tue, May 15 2018, 12:47 pm
Most of what you describe is not abnormal but it certainly is extra challenging. Kids like this can really stretch your parenting skills to new levels Wink

I'm more concerned about his depressed behavior since Pesach. Could something troubling have happened with the guests, or in school since then? Or even in school before then? It's true that some kids are just sensitive and moody, and yours does seem to be one of those in general, but that you've noticed this change over a particular period of time would be a good reason to look for a trigger.


Last edited by seeker on Tue, May 15 2018, 1:05 pm; edited 1 time in total
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amother




Tangerine


Post  Tue, May 15 2018, 12:58 pm
It sounds like your little guy is pretty highly sensitive. Sensitive in the sense of being self aware, and highly aware of other people's thoughts and ideas regarding him. If I had to guess, I'd say that he probably asks you all sorts of deeper questions about life (and possibly death and G-d, etc). Not that other kids don't, but these sensitive sorts seem to take it all very much to heart and almost brew over it.

This probably true I'm also a parent learning on the job. But some of what you describe us like my dd that's a little older b"h no tantrums but sensitive, a deep thinker and very dramatic. Her first words were words that expressed her feelings So happy. I'm scared. People couldn't believe it. Validate his feelings but try not to put ideas in his head. To him getting dressed instead of saying beautiful he looks try to ask him if it's his favorite shirt. Wow you make such goid choices you pick out clothes that you love. So he doesn't have t worry what everyone thinks. Spend as much special time as you could with him he needs it, enjoy it. that could include helping you with supper. If he's jealous of his baby remind him of all the big things he gets to do with you that the baby doesn't get to do. I try not to give compliments all day long because than she needs those copliments to do things
Don't talk to him about what others will think of him or say about him. But if he brings it up switch it to be about him. How he feels about it. For my dd birthday she had chose her bags, and goodys she was upset it didn't turn out like her classmates and she started saying how no one would like it refusing to take it to school. She came back all smiles and I felt it was such a huge lesson for her to learn. I brought it up a few times as a reminder
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MadameX









  


Post  Tue, May 15 2018, 5:31 pm
Aleph,

You are totally describing my son!
He definitely asks me about death, G-d, and other deep things on a pretty regular basis. At night, he will need to sit and unload his day with us. He would then ask us about our day and truly *listen* to what we’re saying.

Thank you for calming me down by sharing your stories of like experiences. Being that he’s my first, I just wasn’t sure.
I appreciate all the tips and advice. I will reread them to my DH when he get home.

Thanks!!!!
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amother




Peach


Post  Tue, May 15 2018, 9:18 pm
Is he an only child?
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WhatFor









  


Post  Tue, May 15 2018, 11:25 pm
MadameX wrote:
Aleph,

You are totally describing my son!
He definitely asks me about death, G-d, and other deep things on a pretty regular basis. At night, he will need to sit and unload his day with us. He would then ask us about our day and truly *listen* to what we’re saying.

Thank you for calming me down by sharing your stories of like experiences. Being that he’s my first, I just wasn’t sure.
I appreciate all the tips and advice. I will reread them to my DH when he get home.

Thanks!!!!


Here's a highly sensitive child test. http://hsperson.com/test/highl.....hild-test/

You might find the related book useful as well.
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amother




Chocolate


Post  Wed, May 16 2018, 11:44 am
Wow, this is definitely reminding me of my daughter. She is also the oldest and she is 6. Not exactly the same situation, but some similarities. She is the oldest, and she definitely needs to be the boss and gets very upset when she loses. I feel like she's always very aware of the things she doesn't get and what's "not fair", but she doesn't realize that she does get these things some of the time. She's just drawn to the negatives. And she's a big cry baby. She dissolves into tears for any and all reasons. I would not say she's overall sad and moody, though. I've been thinking she has a very sensitive personality (I took the highly sensitive child test and got just below their threshold. She is also very physically sensitive to clothing, etc.). I am also looking for the best ways to parent this kind of personality.
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amother




Lemon


Post  Wed, May 16 2018, 5:11 pm
I do not have a child with these precise qualities, but sometimes my 4 yo daughter (who is a middle child) does throw major tantrums when it comes to getting dressed and can be overly stubborn and emotional at times.
. What works with her is:
1) offering incentives. For ex, if she chooses his outfit nicely, she can get a sticker or a jelly bean.
OR
2) I get her mind off the issue at hand and bring up something that is interesting or exciting so I would say something like "hey, when is your school party again? June? Wow that is so soon!"
(and then get back to the topic at hand. Usually she is more calm and rationale and can choose her outfit at this point)

Also, how is your son's sleep schedule? Is he getting enough sleep?

Does he eat breakfast first before choosing his clothes?
It might help for him to have a proper breakfast and THEN go choose his outfit.

Finally, it might help to have some one on one time. My husband started taking my daughter out for ice cream once a month, and I've found that the one-on-one bonding time has really helped her self-esteem and has boosted her general mood.
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LisaS









  


Post  Thu, May 17 2018, 7:27 am
I didn't know there were other 5 year old boys out there who are terribly self conscious about clothing!

There are many struggles that my son has, and many times a day that I expect him to be less rigid, so at least with the clothing I just give in. I take him to the store and let him pick out pants he'll be happy with (even though they are hideous to me), let him wear winter shoes in the summer, let him his older brother's school shirt, let him look in the mirror to check that he is happy with his look. I informed the ganennet that he is not chas veshalom neglected. His unusual appearance is his own choice.

He actually looks nice on Shabbat, so BH for that!
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