48 answers

Help with Whiny 7 Year Old

Please help! My husband and I are at our wits end with our 7-year old daughter. She has become excessively whiny. Anything that she is asked to do and she doesn't want to, she starts the crying/whiny thing and at times even ends up on the floor kicking and whining. We have tried everything, time-out, sending her to her room, spanking, taking away playtime with friends etc. She gets so upset and dramatic she can make herself sick. This behavior is saved for us only. She is the model child at school and with relatives. She could be the poster child for good behavior everywhere else. I thought maybe she was jealous of her 4-year old sister, but there are many times we are trying to do something for just the 7-year old and she starts this. The school counselor has suggested the book "Love and Logic", has anyone read it? I read some of the reviews and googled one of the authors, Cline, and now I have reservations about the book. Any thoughts or ideas would be appreciated.
Thanks,

4 moms found this helpful

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Thanks again for all the advice. I haven't bought the book yet, but am incorporating a lot of the ideas you all have sent. I have also given her an earlier bedtime, which seems to be helping alot, too. Thanks again!

Featured Answers

I love Parenting with Love & Logic. We are presenting the parenting class at Summitt Elementary in January if you are interested. Its just good, solid, parenting.
T.

1 mom found this helpful

This works for my 9th grade students as well as my 2 and 3 year old kids...When they whine or complain, I say..."is someone whining? I don't hear you when you whine." Then I ignore them completely until they can ask nicely.
You have to be tough and consistant, though!!!! Good luck!

It looks like you have a lot of good advice here--please forgive me if I repeat something you've already heard. It sounds like punishments aren't working at this point, so perhaps it's time for positive reinforcement. Sticker charts, a prize box, choosing a favorite meal, etc., etc., when she goes for 'x' amount of time without whining or having a fit. I find that reinforcing the behavior that I WANT my child to display is a more effective method than punishing the negative behavior. Sometimes all the child really wants is attention, and even negative attention will serve to reinforce the negative behavior. The other idea that I saw someone else has already written about is simply ignoring the behavior. Some parents have patience for this, others don't, so you have to be the judge, but generally if she isn't getting the attention she wants, the behavior will change. Finally, just realize that this too shall pass! Children go through a lot of ups and downs throughout all of the developmental changes they experience, so it sounds like she is going through a 'bumpy' stage right now. You will probably look at her six months from now and realize 'Hey! She's back to being her normal happy self again!' One thing I've learned after having 3 daughters is that the phases do pass, so we just have to weather the storm. Good luck!!

More Answers

In case you find that Love and Logic either does not resonate with you or does not work on your child, here are some other resources you may enjoy investigating:

The No Cry Discipline Solution by Elizabeth Pantley

Beyond Love, Logic and Consequences by Forbes and Post

Raising Children Compassionately: Parenting the Nonviolent Communication Way by Marshall Rosenberg

Kids, Parents and Power Struggles by Mary Sheedy Kurcinka

The Explosive Child by Ross Greene

I'm a parenting consultant, and many parents have told me that these resources have been powerfully effective when consequences alone did not stimulate lasting and positive changes in behavior. Some kids seem to need more help than others figuring out more socially appropriate ways to communicate and accomplish their goals...

4 moms found this helpful

Love and Logic is a great book. One of the suggestions in it is one that we use with our children, a 7 year old boy and a 4 year old boy: when they begin to cry or whine, we say 'I cannot understand that voice. Take a breath and tell me what is going on.' We just keep repeating it until they calm down. It actually works very effectively. We also have a very simple rule in our house: If you throw a tantrum about something, you automatically lose that something -- no ifs, ands or buts.
Hope this helps. Best wishes, Jenny

2 moms found this helpful

Hi, I hope things are going better for your family now. I read all of the replies Heather F.'s gave a good clue. She said the unwanted behavior often happened when she, herself, was already stressed. It (the stress part)reminded me of an incident that happened when our second son was two years old. We were in a small town, one with a "square" around the courthouse and we were walking along the sidewalk when he threw himself on the concrete......... I don't remember why. It was his first tantrum and I just decided to keep walking after I had told him to get up and he didn't. When I was less than 20 feet away he decided to get up and come after me. Later than day, back at his grandpatents home, he threw himself down again but this time he made sure he had a soft landing. He chose a mattress. I calmly told him that I thought he must be tired and said I would cover him so he could sleep awhile and that he could get up whenever he was ready. I gave him a hug. He actually went to sleep and we had no more trouble during the rest of our visit. Then, at home he woke up one morning and came into the kitchen grumpy and whining and I simply told him to go back to bed and rest until he could come back and show me a smile. It probably took less than five minutes for me to see that smile and we had a pleasant day. I have used this "rest" method on several children who have been in my care and it has worked every time. I had a day care center for eight years and sometimes the little ones were very tired when they arrived so I always let them snuggle in bed until they got a little more rest and were ready to get up and begin to participate in activities. When my niece had to come to live with us, she was very sad and missed her mother. On the very first day, I explained that I knew she was sad but that she would see her mother again and in the meantime, we were going to love her and take care of her. She had just turned eight and was on the verge of tears. I showed her her bed and suggested she lie down and cry if she felt like it, that it was okay. I said I will put some books beside you if you want to read later and that I would be back to check on her. You could tell that she relaxed. She loved the books and in a short while she was ready to come be part of the family. She was a child who needed an early bedtime and always loved for me to read to her before she went to sleep. None of "my" children ever saw the bed as punishment but more as a comfort because I always explained they were going there because they were tired or needed time alone.

Oh, and the bonus for me, while they were finding calm and safety in another room, I could go on with my chores and not become stressed myself.

God bless you.

B., mentor to moms and others

2 moms found this helpful

I love Parenting with Love & Logic. We are presenting the parenting class at Summitt Elementary in January if you are interested. Its just good, solid, parenting.
T.

1 mom found this helpful

This worked for me, can't hurt to try.

When she starts to whine, get down to her level and calmly tell her you can not understand her. Explain to her that you can not understand what she is saying when she speak like that. If she started to get loud, whisper in her ear, (this helps with crying to) she will immediately calm down to listen to what you are saying. Make sure both parents do this everytime she starts to whine, simply explain you can not help her if you can not understand what she is saying. When she whines across the room, calmly tell her again, I can not understand you. Do not sound sarcastic, sound sincere, kids know the difference.

I also talked to my daughter before I went anywhere, unsually in the car. I told her I would give her a notice when I was ready to go home. There would be no whining or fussing. I would give her a 15 minute notice then a 10 minute notice, then a 5 minute notice, then she would need to say goodbye to everyone so we could go. If she starts to whine, remind her you already spoke about this in a firm voice. Make sure your child knows your expectations. When she listens, make sure you acknowledge her positive behavior with a "Good Job, Name, we are so proud of you!" Another thing you can do is allow her to tell you how much notice she needs. My daughter wanted notice at 30 minutes then 5 minutes. She could not whine because, remind her, she made up the rules. But I would try this after you have already established the expectations not the first time.

Remember, children like bounderies. They like to know what to expect. They are very focused on what they are doing. Sometimes, just a little notice is all they need. Even if it is just to pick up toys or now in my case, start homework or clean her room.

1 mom found this helpful

When my son does that I tell him " I'm not talking to you until you can speak to me in a normal tone ". That may sound harsh but it works for me.
I mean seriously, that whining can and does get on our last nerve. lol
Good luck.

1 mom found this helpful

I have an "almost 7 year-old" and we go through the same things. I have some ideas. First of all look at how much sleep she is getting. You may need to move bedtime up a bit or have "rest time" after school so she can relax (its like how you feel when you get home from work). Look at her extra curricular activities...is she involved in too much and getting overly tired? One activity two or three times a week is usually enough for a child her age. Also snacks made a big difference. My daughter just informed me that she had a donut and pineapple for lunch because she didn't like the ravioli or green beans that were the main course. You never know what they are eating at school, so provide her a healthy snack when she gets home. Another thing you can do instead of talking to her and asking her to do certain things, is to create a chore chart. If the dinner table needs to be set, put that on the chart and have a time frame listed for when it is supposed to be done. Reward her with extra TV time, or stickers so that she can work towards a bigger prize or small allowance.

I notice my kids get the worst when I am stressed and need their bad behavior the least. How are things with you? Take time for yourself so that you are more relaxed as well. Take time out to talk with your daughter, sit on the sofa and ask her about her day before you jump up and focus on the dinner making, or have her help you do some prep work in the kitchen.

Kids her age feel things so much more overwhelmingly than we do and they are really sensitive. A lot of times they start saying (whether they believe it or not) "you don't love me." So take some time out with her to show and tell her that you do love her and I think things will work themselves out! Good luck, God bless.

1 mom found this helpful

Good Morning, T.B., I'm proud of you for taking action now--- you will be so grateful that you went into ''handle this'' mode now - as time goes on and puberty looms. The EXACT same things work then- just in a different '''language''. I have used Love and Logic for years and am so grateful for it. . I'll tell you a story- 5 year old grandson - lived with me - as did his mother - Brian got lots of negative imput from his birth father ( now out of the picture- thanks be to God)- and was a very dramatic, demanding little boy. So- we had a pattern - I took him to and from day- care and the ride home we went by a - store- Brian demanded 'take me for some candy' - I'd say ''' no - I brought you snack- we'll be home for dinner in 15 minutes - and he'd explode. So - after L&L - I said calmly ( when he exploded) ''don't be scared, I'll take care of you'' -- no response - more tantrum; repeated the calm, kind statement - '' do'n't be scared, I'll take care of you'' -- the 3rd round- he was silent for a full minute - then said - ''' I'm NOT scared!!"" To which I responded ''' Oh, well, when people are SO angry - I wonder if they are scared'' then the silence lasted another minute - then this little sad voice said ''' maybe there's a rock in my stomach, and it hurts- and that's why I'm so mad'' After being sure that we were NOT talking about a stomach ache- I said ''' wow, what can we do ?" He said ''' How can the rock go away?" I responded ''maybe we can ask God to turn the rock into water- and then you could pee it away-- it would be gone!!!'' ( never forget that children hold onto magic thinking well into their 7th and 8th year - and sometimes a bit longer - and for Christians-- well, for heavens' sake- God MADE rocks - He can certainly change them if He wants to) Again there was silence from Brian- then he said ''' would you ask God to do that now??''' So I'm driving down the road - asking God to turn the rock of this little boys' rage into water that could be peed away- --- . Now you might think ( quite logically) that Brian was WAYYYY too little at 5 to even begin to grasp what I'd said -- but several times over the years' since- he has asked me to '''ask God to make that rock go away again- cause it's back''' -- It was the insight of Love and Logic --and the authors tremedous respect and love for childrens' strength and wholeness that showed me what to do --- I could go on and on- but will have pity on your eye-balls,

Blessings,
Old Mom aka - J.

1 mom found this helpful

Dear TB, I recently had the privilege to hear Dr. Cline at our church this past weekend. He had truly great advice for situations as yours with your 7 year old. We are raising 2 boys and I found his information interesting and right on. We are already implementing some ideas into our home. He has many resources on the website. Sometimes we can't do it on our own....The website is www.loveandlogic.com Good luck

1 mom found this helpful

Hi- Boy have we been there! I think this has as much to do with birth order and sibling influence as anything... The older one is influenced downward (if you will), or younger and the younger one is influenced upward, or older, so that the pair together become very similar in some respects. Interesting stuff. My girls are now 5 and 8. When the 8 yo wants to break down and throw a tantrum (we call that mummy walking, because it reminds us of micheal jacksons thriller video where all the mummies walk with heavy shoulders), we tell her 'no mummy walking'. And she gets the idea that that is ugly and not what we're expecting or wanting. I'm not saying that's all there is to it, of course, but labeling and having a language about the behavior is good.
I think a seven year old is entirely capable of understanding you when you talk to her. If she acts like she doesn't, it just acting. Speak with her calmly at a time when there's not a breakdown happening- say dinner- we're always calling family meetings at dinner (we love them). We all sit down and one of us brings up a topic and talks about it, then give others the opportunity, and no interruptions, please. The discussion's not over until everyone has spoken- even if you have no opinion, you must say that- but that's rare. Anyway- start a family meeting (your four yo can understand this too- and will learn in the process)and say something like "I noticed that everytime soandso gets to pick the movie, you get all upset and start crying, even though you picked last time. We are trying to do things fairly- do you think its fair you get to pick every time?" Be specific, remember you can have as many family meetings as it takes...
This will help. It'll show you have some trust in them to understand and provide input- they thrive on responsibility and communication. They only want to know what's appropriate and what makes you happy, believe it or not.

Also I agree with another mom who suggested spending more time together- positive time where no one is upset. My 8yo and I cook together all the time now. She's become a real help in the kitchen (major bonus!) and she really enjoys learning about cooking and helping make decisions about food, and now she's cooking on the stove, using the toaster oven, and lots of other very useful stuff- next year I'm planning to let her use knives (only when I'm around of course). She thrives so much on the responsibility and pride, she's been a whole new person since we really started doing this a lot more. Now my 5yo whines because she can't do more, but I do let her help in ways which are safe for her. And I've always told them both you can't cook until you can clean properly. And you can't clean properly until you can reach the water faucet... So it's not me saying 'no' so much as me saying 'it's the faucet's fault'.
I've never heard of Love and Logic- we use our own brand of love and logic we didn't learn from a book. Go with your instincts in regards to any advice, even mine- eh? You're the mom and you'll know what's best. Trust yourself.
Best!
Jenn

1 mom found this helpful

T.B.

I know that you have received a lot of good advice from many moms. I just wanted to let you know that I have read most of the love and logic book and have taken two love and logic Classes it does work. No matter what method you choose it will only work if your husband is on the same page. I have that problem at my house hubby just want the tatrutum over so he gives in a lot. Their method is great. They basically give you ideas on how to teach children small consequence for there action while they are young so that they will not have to learn this same consequence when they are older and stakes are higher. They also teach you who ever is worry about something the most than that is who problems it is. For example if your child is late for school everyday and refuses to get ready for school and you are yelling and nagging at them and pull them out the door everyday. who problem is this? Not the child's she/he does not care it is the parents because they are the one that is getting upset about this. So in caring and love manner Love and logic will teach you how to make the child care about getting ready for school in timely manner. The book I have is love and logic magic for early childhood practical parenting from Birth to six years. Written by Jim Fay and Charles fay Phd. They are a father and son team. You do need to make sure you get a newer addition because they have updated a lot of there methods. hope this helps. M.

The Love and Logic book is good. With our 4 yr old we do what the book suggested. We tell her we do not hear whiney voices, we only hear big girl voices and then ignore her only to repeat what we've said. She will use her big girl voice and we move on! Works for us. They have a lot of good ideas, take what you need and leave the rest.

It looks as if you have a lot of good advice so I have little to add - but would like to share a little extra step that has really helped with my daughter. Assuming you have made clear to her that she needs to ask for what she needs in a normal voice and you will not respond to whining, when she does whine, make no eye contact and don't interact with her, but DO make loving physical contact while doing this - I rub my daughter's back while doing something else (reading, cooking etc). It can be brief contact, even intermittent. This way, she feels loved but still does not get what she wants. I find that if I do this, my daughter will stop whining and ask in a regular voice much more quickly as it does not turn into a power struggle.

Best,
S.

Actually the book is great. I have read more than once. Sometimes as parents we don't want to think we are doing our child any harm or think hey that is not the way I was taught. Try some of their ideas they do work. Be open about things. Remember you cannot be with your child 24/7. Also there was an article called A Nation of Wimps by Hara Estroff Marano from Psychology Today. That was good. Kind of a kick in the butt to many parents but a true article.

Ignore her. I mean literally act like she's not there. Talk over and around her. Don't set a place for her at the table. When she wants something, don't hear her. When she gets hungry or thirsty, block her and tell her that only people who act their age are allowed any priveleges. If that doesn't work (for either of you, because nobody really wants to deprive a little one of food, altho it might work once), get a high chair a bib and some baby food and tell her if she's going to act like a baby, you'll treat her like one.

My daughter had a teacher one time that gave us a real start. She just at the drop of the hat fell to the floor and threw a temper tantrum just like the kids do, kicking, pounding her hands etc. It also startled the kids. When all was quite she stood up and said that is what you look like when you do that is it nice? I do not think that it happen the whole time in the class again with any of the kids. May be it is something that you should try. Be sure that you do it in front of others though. Good luck it worked. Like I said it even startled the adults because we did not know before hand that it was going to happen. Got a good laugh though later.

See if you cant find the book at a used book store or amazon for a cheaper price or even the library for free. if it dosent work out then you can always resell it. Once i was baby sitting my cousin then about 5 or 6 and she wanted some juice with her food. as i started for the cup she bee lined to the fridge door and stood in front of it and whined and said in the most annoying whiney voice " i want juice" over and over again! i looked at her like she was crazy and asked her what she was doing? she looked around and i suppose realized she didnt need to be doing that but said nothing i told her i was getting her her juice and to go sit down and not whine like that any more. she never whined for me again. I would consistantly ask her what she is doing when it starts up if that dosent work then ask her to take that awfull whine to her room. if she starts a fit pick her up fit thrashing and all and set her in her room...wait outside the door and as soon as she opens it to come out point your finger and tell her to get back in there now. firm mom voice. you can do it. so sorry she is being like this but its because it is being allowed and consistancy is a must. i really feel bad for you because this is something i dread!!! hope you get some great advice.

Let's see where to start. Yes, the Love and Logic book is a very good book for all ages. What are your reservations about the book? For starters, your 7 year old is trying to get attention but in a negative way. It is a learned behavior. Do not give in and be consistent! Say things like "It looks like you are very upset. I will listen to you when you have calmed down" and then ignore her. If you send her to her room or do a time out say "I can't listen or hear you-it is hurting our ears. When you are ready to talk to me in a soft calm voice I will listen. We can't understand you when you talk like that" When she comes back and starts it again send her back out the minute she starts and continue to do that till she eventually stops. Then when she is calm say lots of positive praise. "You will get an extra story tonight for such great behavior", We really love it when we can hear your beautiful voice and we can talk",etc. etc. It is so difficult to stay calm in these situations but you have to. If not take turns and leave and take deep breaths. No spanking. It doesn't solve anything. Good luck be strong. Give lots of hugs to her and your husband.

She has her bluff in on you and her father. Let her get sick ignore the whiny/crying. She sees you're not buying into it anymore she will stop. If not! My mother would've spanked us hard. She would love us later, but she meant business. I’m baby of twelve, I have always said " I had the best mother God ever gave a child". God Bless. I pray for you'll.

Mother of 5 and GM of 19

I too had a whiny daughter, Have you tried

Sorry, I have no advice. I look forward to reading your responces. I have a 3 yr old with the same issues. I'm too am pounding my head against the wall. I can sympothize with you. Good luck. If anyone has figured this out, can you give a siminar?! Huge WAH opertunity. LOL

It looks like you have a lot of good advice here--please forgive me if I repeat something you've already heard. It sounds like punishments aren't working at this point, so perhaps it's time for positive reinforcement. Sticker charts, a prize box, choosing a favorite meal, etc., etc., when she goes for 'x' amount of time without whining or having a fit. I find that reinforcing the behavior that I WANT my child to display is a more effective method than punishing the negative behavior. Sometimes all the child really wants is attention, and even negative attention will serve to reinforce the negative behavior. The other idea that I saw someone else has already written about is simply ignoring the behavior. Some parents have patience for this, others don't, so you have to be the judge, but generally if she isn't getting the attention she wants, the behavior will change. Finally, just realize that this too shall pass! Children go through a lot of ups and downs throughout all of the developmental changes they experience, so it sounds like she is going through a 'bumpy' stage right now. You will probably look at her six months from now and realize 'Hey! She's back to being her normal happy self again!' One thing I've learned after having 3 daughters is that the phases do pass, so we just have to weather the storm. Good luck!!

Ignore the tantrum. Don't give in to her manipulative dramatics for attention. She is pushing her allowable behavioral boundaries and wants to see just how far she can go. When you react, she has won. When you see that is one of these little fits, ignore it till she cries herself out. At all times, speak to her in calm, quiet, even tones. Show no anger to her, even if you have to go to your room and scream it into a pillow behind a closed door. It will be hard and VERY nerve wrackiing to hold yourself in check, but in the end you will re-establish who is the mommy and who is the daughter. It may take 3 or 4 times but when she sees it's no longer effective, it will stop. Also, make sure that daddy will support your efforts and do the same (ignore the tantrumj, don't raise his voice) or else she will learn that she can try to pit mom against dad.

I know dealing with any child with these characterisitics is difficult. I have a daughter that has gone through some very similar things. There are a couple of things that seemed to snap her out of it. First I started spending a lot more time with her...I too thought I was spending enough time with her, but apparently she needed even MORE one on one attention. Then we started being much more positive. No more yelling, getting upset when she started doing her temper tantrums, drama queen acts. We calmly delt with her, and if necessary put her in her room and let her scream her way through her frustration. When she realized she was not getting the attention she wanted she eventually stopped doing those terrible whining, crying episodes. She still does them on occasion, but there has been a dramatic difference since we started implementing these very simple, but much more positive ways.
Hope this helps!

Ask the school councelor if they have any love and logic dvd's you can watch. I have two I'm watching now. It's much faster than reading the book. I have never read the book, but I would like to one day when I know I can finish it. I know people who have read the book and everyone is all thumbs up!

I'm having trouble with my kindergarten boy. His behavior is all about wanting and getting attention. I am visiting with the school counselor now and she has given me some immediate tools to work with at home. First, we acknowledge any and all positive behavior by letting him color in his happy faces (circles on a piece of paper taped on the fridge). After he has filled in all five happy faces, he can pick out his reward (ex: make a tent in the living room, eat dinner in the treehouse with dad, have a mini pizza just for him etc). Second, we ignore the negative behavior even though I want to say something, I don't. When he hits his brother, I say "oh, that is so sad" :-( and move on.

I am learning to give my kids choices and let them decide. This way they feel included in the process. For example, They have two choices 1) they can take a bath NOW OR 2) Go to bed NOW and take a bath in the morning. Nine times out of ten they choose "bath now" and do it.

I hope this helps.

I have read the Love & Logic books and absolutely love them! We started using the books for our 13 yr old daughter last year and have had a lot of success.

I don't know your family or what you've already tried; but I don't suggest ignoring your daughter as she may be trying to get your attention. Sometimes children can misbehave when they feel their not getting enough of our attention. Ignoring her could escalate her negative behavior.

For me, I know I've been guilty of talking AT my kids instead of TO my kids. That's usually when I'll start to see some less than pleasing behavior from them. The next time you're playing a game with her or if you're out running an errand with her (just her), I'd comment about how well behaved she's being and tell her that when she behaves well, it makes it easier to spend time with her. You may have to repeat yourself a few times before it starts to sink in; but I think she'll come around.

Another thing that worked well, for us, was an attitude chart. I used it to give praise and visually show my daughter when she didn't make good choices with her attitude. I didn't use it as a way to reward my daughter since that usually only worked for a short time; but I did use the chart as a way to start conversations. It also helped me see that she had several times when she made excellent behavior choices.

Just remember, it's just a phase that will pass.

You can also try Lehman's "Have a New Kid by Friday" is also very good. If you can be strong it does work!

The key is you (and your husband) being consistent in training your child.

Good luck!

Hi! I have four year old (soon to be 5 too) and six year old girls. My youngest sounds a lot like your 7 year old. I am no expert, and currently reside on 'bad mommy island' LOL but I have learned that a lot of these fits are power struggles and the only thing to do is ignore them. Case in point: My four year old threw a royal fit last night because I asked her to do something she did not want to do. She was also demanding that her sister move from 'her spot' (power struggle). She screamed. She cried. She threw herself on the floor and pounded it with her feet.I ignored her. Every time she demanded attention, I told her I would talk to her when she was sweet and not whiny. I read to her older sister and ignored her for a good 20 minutes. Drove me crazy, but eventually, she got up and did what I had asked her to do and nicely asked her sister to move. Power struggle over. I have just started trying this, but it proved to her that fits are not acceptable (and I told her this too). This might work even better with a 7 year old (maybe!). Good Luck. I have started the book "love and logic" several times, but I get distracted and stop reading it. I have tried a few of their suggestions but they never seemed to work for me for long (I have VERY strong willed girls - espescially the four year old). I do know that several of my friends who are teachers and counselors swear by it.

Ignore, ignore, ignore. It will be difficult for you, but you can't respond to her in any way when she whines. In order for her to understand that the behavior is unacceptable to you, she has to get nothing out of it. Right now, I know it sounds odd, but she is getting something out of it. Otherwise, she wouldn't be doing it. Tell her ahead of time, sometime when she's calm, that you will not tolerate it when she whines. Let her know that the consequences for whining will be that you and your husband will ignore her. If she wants to talk to you or have your attention, tell her she must behave politely and respectfully, and that does not include whining. Believe me, you are doing her and yourself a favor. She clearly knows her behavior is wrong, which is why she doesn't act this way with anyone else. She knows you and your husband have to put up with her, and she's testing your love and tolerance. Show her how much you love her by not letting her act this way. Your younger child will learn from her, so nip it in the bud now. If she whines, ignore her. If she continues to whine, tell her she is free to whine in her room with the door shut, but not around anyone else in the house. Tell her if she wants to talk to you, she will stop whining. Then ignore her. Responding by time outs and spankings is giving her attention. Don't give her any attention, and don't let it show that it bothers you when she whines. Just be very matter of fact that you won't allow it around you or others in the house. Good luck.

I read Love and Logic and think it is full of really wonderful ideas. The parent stays in control, calm and detached from the negative behavior,and the child gets the point quickly, especially one that is old enough and is only showing one negative behavior and only at home. You should give this book a try.
I did it a little bit for awhile, and need to refresh myself. I also like it because the parent does not get mad (my biggie) and the consequences are natural so mom or dad are not having to take the "bad guy" roles. That can really help your relationship with your child stay close just when they need you the most, when times are tough!
P. (mom to three boys ages 7,5,& 3)

I would suggest ignoring her when she acts like that. My almost 2 year old does this and she'll scream and throw herself on the floor for hours on end. But if I don't acknowledge the behavior it just starts to go away. Ususally it's an attention getting thing. So I say let her throw herself on the floor as long as she's not going to hurt herself bouncing off of things.

Now, I am not sure if this will work for you but you can try video taping her when she gets this way. Since she does not do this elsewhere, she might be surprise that she is doing this at home. When I was a teen, a friend came over and commented that my voice is whiny when I talk to my parents. After that, I noticed it and worked on stopping it. I think the whining just comes naturally because parents nag a lot because they make you lots of unfun things for your own good :)

I speak from years of experience when I say this: Sit her down and explain to her that she is receiving negative attention when she behaves that way and that she would receive much more positive attention if she would behave. My 14 year old daughter was very high strung as a child and used to through fits that would almost make her sick. If I was in your shoes, I would send your daughter to her room until she can calm down and tell her that she is still going to do what you asked, even if it is two hours later. She will eventually learn (as my daughter did) that her fits are not going to get her anymore attention.

As a teacher and a parent, I wholeheartedly subscribe to the Love and Logic ideology. I've got all the books, several CD's, and have been to two seminars.

What I love about it, is you don't have to do it all to get results. Jim Fay says this over and over--whatever you can do will help. Then, as you get more comfortable and it becomes more natural, then you can add more aspects, or try different "training sessions."

For me, there are two steps that are most important. The first is giving as much control in the little things as possible. It can seem almost silly, but it works. Once their "bank" is full from little choices, they're more willing to let you make "withdrawls" when you need to.

The second is having true empathy, even as you're giving them consequences. I'll never forget when I caught a student cheating. It could have been a big fight where she got all defensive and blamed others, but because I showed empathy first, she was so much more humble. She got the same consequences, but I think really learned from her mistake and showed real remorse.

I'm not sure what negative comments there are out there about Love and Logic, but I wouldn't worry about them. It's a solid ideology, that shows respect to kids while setting firm boundaries.

i have a 7 year old whiny boy so it happens with both sexes

I have been through the exact same thing with my oldest daughter. I agree completely with the posts that state that the answer is in calm response and more positive attention when things are going RIGHT. I also noticed my daughter was practically begging to make choices on her own and so I naturally began to let her choose between two offered alternatives... "would you like the red shirt for tomorrow or the blue one?" "do you want to spend 10 extra minutes reading before bed or drawing?" This gave her a sense of feeling more "privileged' than her younger sibling and also gave her some control. It also gave me something I could take away as a punishment... "If you do not ____ then you will not get to have your privilege at bed time." I have not read that book, but I agree that giving them some control and "power" over their choices gives them a feeling of pride when they make a good choice. Children with this type personality do want and need discipline, but they also crave positive attention and reinforcement that they are doing the right thing all along where other children maybe do not. The extra time put in BEFORE the whining is well worth it. We all get so busy, but there is nothing better than to watch the progress they make when we just take some time to sit beside them on the couch, ask for their assistance in the kitchen in a "grown up" way, or turn down the radio in the car and really talk with them about what is going on and let them know we have time for them. I know it worked for my daughter. I had to really look at the way I was parenting as much as her behavior.

Love and Logic is wonderful!
I use the principles with my 13 year old as well as my small grandchildren.
I recommend not just the books but the teaching CD's
You can order them from loveandlogic.com
There is a christian version using the same principles in seminar form.
The name of the teaching is Loving Our Kids on Purpose by Danny Silk
It is THE best most effective parenting information I have ever used.
Can be ordered at ibethel.org
This series is as entertaining as it is helpful and insightful.
Good luck!

I just wanted to sympathize a little bit with you about your daughter...my son is the same at 7yrs old, he is an ANGEL at school. And someone once told me that the kids go to school and we've instilled that they better be good...and they try so hard all day and then they come home and just let it all go. And of course I think, we'll it's gotta be something I'm doing right? And partly it is, I am just trying to learn to deal with his personality a little better..I think we're alot of like. LOL Someone at my church once told me that it's good that he's good for other people and not as good at home b/c that means that he is learning when I'm telling him stuff at home b/c he's applying it elsewhere. AND that if he was good at home and not as good other places, it just means that he's just learned to fool me. I think that makes sense. I have looked at the Love and Logic books for younger kids and some of it made sense and some I wouldn't do, but I think that's with all the parenting books. I would be interested to see the older kids book too. So thanks for asking the question, I commend you on putting it out there and actually LOOKING for help and guidance.

M.

My 7 year old daughter has begun doing the same thing! I don't understand it. It's like she's 2 all over again. I don't have the answer other than what I tell myself, which is: don't let her get away with it. Sometimes, it does seem as if she is overly tired? I don't know if I'm making excuses for her or not, but that is how it seems. Either way, tired or not, I can't have her throwing such a dramatic fit. I guess I need to sit down and have a heart to heart talk about why it's not acceptable and the punishments will only get worse with time if she can't learn to control herself. I'm rambling now...It's nice to know it's not just my child. I was getting worried. :-) Let me know if you find the magic trick.

This works for my 9th grade students as well as my 2 and 3 year old kids...When they whine or complain, I say..."is someone whining? I don't hear you when you whine." Then I ignore them completely until they can ask nicely.
You have to be tough and consistant, though!!!! Good luck!

My son is about to be 8 and he is quite dramatic also. He doesn't necessarily whine a lot, but gets grumpy or angry when asked to do things. It started getting better when I set up a schedule for simple chores so that he knew what to expect. He knows now that on Thursday he has to clean his room before he can play, he has to take out the trash each night, etc. It took a few weeks to get used to but has helped a lot. Also I set up a reward system so he gets a stamp for having good behavior each day and at the end of the week gets allowance based on the stamps. They just want some control over their lives at this age, so try and give her choices when you can too.
If she whines when you ask her to put her shoes up, try not to argue, simply say, "you cannot do anything else until your shoes are put away." Then walk away and ignore her. My son responded well to that...usually he would give up after a few minutes and do what he was told then I would say thank you and get on with the day. If he got too upset, then I would tell him to go cry in his room and come out when he was done, but I made sure to make him finish doing what I asked after he calmed down. Hope that helps. I know kids are all very different.

our daughter just turned 6 years old. she has done the same thing to me many times. since my husband got deployed to iraq a year ago, i have been dealing with her whining all by myself and i understand how you feel. after asking whats wrong with her, is she hurt or sad or upset or angry?...she would calm down to a point where i can hold her in my arms and talk to her about whats really going on.
i tell her that having bad days or being in a bad mood happens to all of us. But her acting up like that just takes away from the fun and family time we could spend together.
It sounds like you have tried to punish your daughter.At first, i did the same thing with mine. I ignored her, left the room etc...but, turns out what she really needs was a lot of love, understanding,talking about why she acts that way and finding out what we can do do help her. sometimes they dont even know whats wrong, u know, kind of like us.

When my child was young, he got on the floor kicking and screaming--basically just throwing a fit. I got down on the floor and threw a bigger fit than his. I told him that I could get on his level and do a much better job of fit throwing. That was the last time he tried that. Just a little suggestion that helped me.

I have posted this before, but I know what you mean.
Ah the whining.

Each time she whines, tell her to use her "regular" voice.
The other response is "I do not hear whining voices". The secret is to not back down. Each time she whines, just ignore her. If it goes on long enough that you want to pull out your hair, ask her to go to her room till she can calm herself and find "her regular voice".

When our daughter was young we had 12 girls in our neighborhood. All of us (parents) said the whining was the most annoying behavior and we all agreed on this response to all of the girls.
It worked great.

Give her a hug and thank her when she uses her regular voice, especially when she normally would be whining.

I have actually watched a video presentation by Cline and was impressed by his methods - they seem to give control back to the parent and make the child think about their behaviors. My son is only 9 months old, so I don't have this issue (and pray I never do), but if I need to, I will definetly refer back to this video. Best of luck to you and your husband!

Love and Logic works. I have two grown children to prove it. Spanking may or may not work, but what it does do, is make both your child and you feel crummy. Try the Love and Logic.

You've gotten a lot of great advice! I'm in the same boat with my 6 year old. She's a star student at school yet has break downs at home. Her 3 year old brother has no problems (yet). I have come to realize that she's just going to be our difficult one. I used to lose my cool and yell back at her and then I started watching 17 kids and growing on TLC. She is so calm (at least on tv) when talking to her kids when they do something wrong. And they are very well behaved kids. So that's what I started doing and it's really helped. Now, I can't calmly speak all the time though! My daughter has specific issues (getting dressed - she HATES tight clothes, going to bed and sometimes eating) so we've been working on that. I have her try on her outfit the night before and change it if she doesn't like it. I feel that it's not worth it in the end to make her wear something she doesn't like. But I do insist on not wearing flip flops everyday to school and things like that. Maybe you can find specific things that she's having a tantrum over and work on a compromise with her. I think they're at an age where they want to start feeling more grown up. My coworker also read a book that said the hormones are already starting at this age!!!!! I also spend a lot of extra time with her so she doesn't have ill feelings toward her brother, but on the flip side, I now feel like I'm not giving my 3 year old enough time. You can never win!!!!

I've read most of the book Love and Logic. I'm actually going to get it again from the library. The things in the book make sense to me but it is not a method for a lazy parent. It takes lots of thought, which as a mother of 4 I don't always do. I find myself yelling alot when I'm not thinking about a logical conseqence. When my drama queen (6) starts to throw a tantrum or get whiney, I just walk away and say when you are ready to talk and listen then we can do business. That seems to stop the behavior. Once she knows that I mean business then the tantrums have lessened and I'm not wasting my time with an unreasonable child. Also, does she get more whiney at the end of the day? or when she hasn't eaten for a while? I've watched my children and have noticed that when they are hungry they are extra whiney and they don't even realize it's because they need a little food. And as with adults, it's hard to think things through when you are tired. Just a few of my thoughts.

Required Fields

Our records show that we already have a Mamapedia or Mamasource account created for you under the email address you entered.

Please enter your Mamapedia or Mamasource password to continue signing in.

Required Fields

, you’re almost done...

Since this is the first time you are logging in to Mamapedia with Facebook Connect, please provide the following information so you can participate in the Mamapedia community.

As a member, you’ll receive optional email newsletters and community updates sent to you from Mamapedia, and your email address will never be shared with third parties.

By clicking "Continue to Mamapedia", I agree to the Mamapedia Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.