23 answers

Is My Son Going to Be a Wimp Forever?

My name is S. and I have a 6 year old son Devin and he is such a sensitive boy. He gets upset REAL easy and he cries and has hissy fits and he even does it at school. Kids call him a cry baby. He is redoing kindergarten because of his behavior. Academicly he is way above average. He seems to associate better with kids either younger or older(7-10). But older kids find him annoying and he talks to much. I don't want to discourage him from talking but I try to explain to him that not everyone is able to talk to him, and he just doesn't get it. I wish my oldest son would play with him and teach him things but he is to busy doing teenage things. What should I do? Can I do anything?

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Hi S., did the teacher recommend holding him back in Kindergarten? Sounds like he might be humiliated from repeating the same grade. Sometimes kids can pick on others when they find out things about them. Since he is above average in his academics, have you had him tested to see if he qualifies for the Horizons program (gifted and talented)?
Talk with the counselor. Regards, Deborah

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I love it when you find someone else going through the same thing...I don't feel so alone! I learned so much from the other responses. My son was raised by my mother and I for his first 5 years and his natural father and I just got married two years ago (he just turned 8). We are having a tough time transitioning b/c Dad is a very "macho man" and our son is, like yours, VERY sensitive. I think that is one of the major issues my husband and I fight about. He wants him to "suck it up" and is always really hard on him, which makes him cry, and I always feel the need to "rescue him" so that he can feel like it's not bad that he is a sensitive person. He cries at school when things go wrong and he's so empathetic that he gets in trouble for excessively worrying about others. I saw the post about why you would want him to change and I must say that from my perspective it's not a matter of wanting him to NOT be a sensitive person...it's a matter of teaching him how to have self control and find a balance with his emotions. I know that my son will not be the "macho man" that his dad is but his uncontrollable outbursts are affecting his schoolwork and his "credibility" with friends and teachers at school. That is what I think we are both trying to accomplish in seeking help. Just as an angry kid acts out and gets labeled...so does a whiny kid! He has to learn to manage that to a "socially acceptable" level.(I HATE that term but can't think of a better way to say it). Anyway, I'll keep checking back here for more great advice and hope you have much luck with your son. Feel free to get in touch if you just need some moral support!!

2 moms found this helpful

Some boys are more sensitive then others. Its easy to make excusses for thier behavior and assume that its weakness or wimpish behavior. BUT I believe that there is always something more to it. You should help him to gain confidence and self-control. Some sports may be able to teach these things in the average boy but not all boys enjoy sports and it might make him recent himself or you. Martial Arts classes, like Karate, help boys and girls learn self discipline, self confidence, self control and a few great DEFENSIVE moves to protect themselves in fights. I'd recommend these classes as well as some minor family counciling. Alot of people believe that talking to a counciler or a shrink is something you only do when things are really bad, but I disagree. You can get alot of pointers from a professional that will help BEFORE the problem becomes life changing. Plus if your son has serious underlying issues, medically or emotionally they might recognize it. Seek help and second opinions. Don't just allow the schools to make the choices that will effect your childs entire life either. Going to couciling may also help your older son to see the issues his brother is having and might be more inclined to help.
Communication is a must in all families. People think they are communicating when they talk to thier kids, but they sometimes fail to listen too. Learning good communication skills might be helpful. This is another good reason to visit with a family counciler.
Some important questions for your son to ask a professional:
1. Is his behavior normal?
2. Could is behavior be signs of medical or emotional problems?
3. How can we promote social enteraction that is possitive?
4. Should he have been held back for his behavior?
5. What devices can he use to learn self control? (by devices I mean methods, mental games, or um...well mantras sometimes help people too)
6. What can we do as a family to communicate better?
7. What are some activities my older son will enjoy doing with his younger brother?
8. What can we introduce to the school to help him to stop getting teased?

If you don't want to go to the family counciler, I would recommend at least looking some information up online or calling someone that can answer your questions better. It seems obvious that this isn't your parenting that has "caused" this behavior or all your children would have these issues, and I think that you will have a lot better understanding if you speak to a professional.

1 mom found this helpful

Hi S., did the teacher recommend holding him back in Kindergarten? Sounds like he might be humiliated from repeating the same grade. Sometimes kids can pick on others when they find out things about them. Since he is above average in his academics, have you had him tested to see if he qualifies for the Horizons program (gifted and talented)?
Talk with the counselor. Regards, Deborah

I just want to say that my son is kind of the same. He is acedemicaly advanced, but behind emotional it seems. Maturaty will come in time. But I also think in this day and age, a sensitive male is maybe a good thing. I think we all seem to worry to much about our boys being BOYS!!! And girls being GIRLS! I hope you know what I mean with that. I raised my son on my own for 12 years, so I know I have made him somewhat of a wimp, but I also know that I am proud of him and that he would do anything to make me happy. SO I decided to stop worrying about his wimpisms, and realize that some day he will be a man, and I would give anything to have him back as my baby!

Hi S., I have to say that I am going through the exact same thing you are. For the first 2 years of my sons life he was raised by me and my mother. I think that might have played a major roll in how he is today. He is extrememly sensative and I am always worried about him being the "wimp" or "cry baby". He is getting better at it. My husband and I have put him into football, which he loves, it seems to help him out with his sensative issues. We are try to teach him that he doesnt have to cry when he is angry, frustrated, or anything. We try to show him how to express his feelings without crying and it seems to be working. Try giving your son some lessons in how to deal with his emotions. My son is still very sensative but now he doesnt cry as much. He takes his frustrations and angry out on the football field.

My son is also very smart, he is in the second grade but he is in a gifted program. I would have never held him back because of his sensativity. If it wasnt your decision to hold him back I would appeal it. Before my son was in the gifted program he never had anything to do in the normal class room, so he got in trouble for talking a lot. He was bored and had nothing to do, they are just kids. Now that he has more challenging things to do he doesnt bother kids in his class anymore and he is learning a lot and he enjoys that.

Good luck

S.,
My oldest son, now 9, was the same way. Very emotional, sensitive, and cried over everything! But since he started 4th grade he has grown up so much and is turning into a sensitive, caring, and sweet little man. Just a wonderful combination :) I would definitely get your son put back in the grade he's supposed to be in and enjoy him as much as you can while he's little because he will grow up way too fast as I'm sure you know.

Hey S., you sound like a really busy mom. Maybe he is acting out for your attention. His in the middle right now and maybe he feels left out b/c you are spending so much time with his sister. Nursing, potty training and so on. I have three my oldest son is 8 and my two girls are 2 &3 and boy did he act out more. I would suggest one on one time with just him. If you can't get away ask your husband, brother or other male influence. Above all never let your son think he is a wimp or let anyone tell him that it well scar him forever.
Hope this helps,
L.

Why is your son repeating kindergarten if he's academically way ahead? it sounds like he may be gifted, and should be in gifted classes, not being left behind. Have him evaluated, find the right enviornment for him. Not all kids fall into the same categories, can't always be pigeonholed. Have you looked into Montessori? They have scolarship programs for tuition. Remember you are his advocate, it's up to you to find his place for him.

Hi S.,

I also have a son like yours and I am not going to tell you that someday society will accept him because that is not answer that can ease his or your pain right now. I would suggest putting him in Sports or something like Karate to where he can burn off some of his energy and build up some muscle. We put our son in Soccer about a month ago and it has really helped him alot. This is just my advice but like everyone else it is just an opinion and it may not work because every child is different, Good Luck.

I completely understand, as my son is also academically above his class, but has been a bit behind emotionally - complete with extreme sensitivity at times. My advice - don't stress about labels (autism, ADD, etc.). It seems that everyone is so quick to put labels on children these days, get them counseling, give them drugs. Most of the time, I believe kids just need attention, guidance, and patience from their parents. My son is 7, and he has made amazing strides just this past year. Some kids just take a little longer than others to grow up emotionally. And that's okay. School and his social world will teach him to reign in his sensitivity, or at least hide it when he needs to. Especially since he is so smart. Don't worry - he will eventually pick up the cues. One thing that helped my son tremendously, was that he made a friend that was in his grade, but was also at his emotional level. They have since grown apart, but it was a wonderful stepping stone towards his maturity.

Be patient, and always be your son's champion. Support him, and build his self-esteem, and he will be fine. Oh - and find a sport (maybe non-competetive, like through a YMCA) he's good at. You can't beat the team-building experience, and it will also build his self-esteem and confidence around others his own age. Good luck and God bless.

M. B

Hi S.,

One thing that stood out to me was that he's way above acidemically, but being held back due to behavior. Perhaps some of his behavior is that he's board and not challenged. It's frustrating for anyone not to be understood. I have a child that gets into a subject and just won't leave it alone. (I think he has mild aspberger's)

Would your teen feel different if he were able to earn some sort of allowance by playing board games with your younger son? (I don't know if I'd make it so transparent to the younger boy that's going on) But maybe once a week for an hour, (slide the older one a $5) and let them interact and teach the younger one how to be "cool" with winning/loosing at a game. Twister, domino's, connect four are easy and even enjoyable for teens.

I wouldn't worry so much about his "wimpy-ness". Someday a woman will really find that endearing. I bet by then, he will have learned to tune it down some!

I hope this has helped, I certainly have been there! (heck still am, but my son-almost 11) is getting better at social skills. It just takes lots of practice, and maybe the big brother could be the ticket to "cool-ness road" !

S.

Hi S., I agree with the other moms, about him needing more attention. I know you give him what you can. Whhat about DAD? Autism is a very serious disorder,my son is autistic, and believe me, these are not symptoms. If he had it, he wouldn't even talk right. It would be more noises and mumbling he did. He is so young right now, that wimpiness will end. My boy is wimpy, but my husband tells me it's because he is mommas boy. If Devin is mommys boy, then maybe dad needs to start spending that quality time with him. Hope everything turns out good.

My 6 year old went through this same thing. But he didn't have a father figure around for a few years. Now that I am married and he has started to think of my husband as his father he is starting to act more like a boy. My husband comes home from work and all the boys and him go outside and either ride bikes or play sports. Ever since my husband got the new job and can be home at a reasonable hour the boys seem more like boys. Your son might just need to spend more time with his dad or his brother and they need to do boys things. You could even try to get him into sports. My boys are in baseball and football and they love it. They want to play it all the time. If he is with you all the time and not with other men then he really won't know what other boys do or act like cause you are his mother and you are the norturer, not the sport playing and wrestling type. So I would talk to your husband and your son and see if they can plan at least two days a week to go do boys things with Devin. Don't worry though, he will grow out of this phase and then there will be another one to over come. And about the talking, that probably will never stop, my 6 year old talks all the time, if he starting to tell you something and you tell him to be qiuet or wait, he has to finish it even if he gets into trouble. So the talking might not stop cause I have been trying and it hasn't stopped for me yet. Good Luck and remember they are just kids and they are going to have their wimpy moments.

I agree with Peggy. Maybe your child is acting out because he is bored with what he is being given to do. He may be needing more challenge in his assignments, something that catches his attention or makes him have to work a little harder.
Jennifer also had good advice. I agree with these other moms.
I wish you patience and luck.
It will all work out. He's still growing and maturing.
Hang in there,

I have to agree with the rest of the moms..Sports may seem to do the trick for the "wimp" Part. Kids can be very mean in school but you have to teach your son to stand his ground.
I cant speak from experience because I have a 3 almost 4 year old boy and hes all boy he like everything that a typical boy would like...But he is very smart and I am worried that kids are going to pick on him for being so smart, but I have to teach my son even at a young age that you have to stand your ground or your going to get ran over everyday of your life..
I think you need to look into your son maybe skipping a grade to get with the older group of kids if he is really that smart and he gets along with the older group that might be the answer..Good luck to you and your son!!

Why is it so important for him to change? One of my brothers was exactly like your son. He is now a happily married, proud father of 2, with an excellent job. He never played sports, he never had more than 2, 3 max friends at a time, and he was nothing like me at the time, but he was happy. There is nothing wrong with being sensitive and definately nothing wrong with being smart!

Hi S.! I am so sorry to hear that you are having a difficult time with this. I was in a similar situation and would like to share some info with you.

There were a couple of things that happened last year that seemed to help and not all good. He got into his first fight with another child who continued to bully him and he got into some other situations that did not make me happy either. Learning from those experiences gave Nick confidence to be adventureous and attempt to make new friends. He also learned that he could not be everyone's friend and that he needed to "shop" for friends. Maybe this is what your son needs to do. Shop for friends. Friends that compliment his personality as he will compliment theirs.

I don't think he is a wimp. I think he is simply testing the waters to see what limitations are. I think you probably do not need to give in and baby him if you are. Be a bit more stern when these outburst occur and simply be an observer rather than participate. I think he should know that this behavior is not appropriate for the situation and that there are better ways to deal with these situations he find himself in. Hope this helps a bit

S.,

What a beautiful young man you have in your possession!!! Boys these days are not in tune with their emotions and tend to bottle them up because they have to be little men ya know!! Your son will grow up and be the kind of man every woman wants to marry. I'll bet he'll do dishes, laundry, cook and sew or mend clothes. Very metrosexual and attractive to females when they are older.

I would go to the school and hang out with him whenever you can. These kids who are bullying and picking on your son have issues themselves and having an adults attention and talking to them may help alleviate the bullying.

Sweetie....please get your son promoted and back to his "normal" class. Please trust me in this!! So many kids are told they need to be held back or parents are advised to retain their child in their current class for one reason or another. But I can tell you that this actually hurts the kids mainly because once they are labeled a failure, they see themselves as failures no matter what they accomplish later in life. I've seen the devastation that holding a child back can cause. So, please do whatever it takes to get him promoted...even if you have to have him homeschooled!!

Been there and done it.

P.

My baby brother had many of those same issues growing up (he's now 12). While the "wimpiness" didn't last that long he has probably will always be a "rambler". This is very common amoungst kids who are gifted. They go through one of 2 extremes....either they are very withdrawn and you will have problems getting them to even speak up for themselves (which was me as a child) or they are constantly talking to kids about things that most children in their age bracket have no interest in hearing about. You may want to look into Magnet or gifted schools in your area that would be willing to focus on your son's strengths rather than his personality quirks. Holding him back when he is gifted is really dangerous; it could and probably will damage his already weak self-esteem and he will just continue to be bored and unchallenged.
Stop worrying so much about him being a "wimp" and see how you can culture his gift into something he will use as opposed to something he feels he needs to hide. He will make friends eventually he just has to meet some kids that are on the same level as him...you'll see...Good luck!

S.: My ten year old was exacly like your son, gets upset easily cries, but you have to reinforce to controll his temper, to be strong when somebody tease him at school,that do
not take it to hard and ponder his anger or frustration to himself. tell him that you love him and God love him too. hope
this will help

Hi S.,
I agree with Sherry. (I feel out of place cause my name is C.....lol) It would seem to me that holding him back due to his behavior would be denying him his rights under IDEA. He deserves and INDIVIDUAL education plan, not a cookie cutter plan. I suggest you start by checking out a website to begin with
http://www.brainplace.com/
when you get there, click on the button that says brainplace

I am not a doctor but the basic symptoms you describe sound like and autism spectrum disorder. I suggest you find a behavior specialist (BS) yesterday to work with you and your son. They can make a huge difference in his life. I have a good one and she has clients all over the place. I am not sure where you live but once the initial consultations with you and the school are over, the majority of things can be discussed via email or phone so it is easy to work with her like that. Email me privately if you would like her website. The BS will help you get a plan in place at home and at school to help your son be successful. They will serve as an advocate to make sure he receives the services through the school he is entitled to by law. They are intimately familiar with the IDEA and believe me, I cannot tell you what a difference that makes. My son's BS has made a tremendous difference for my sanity level as well as my ability to deal with the school. If he is intelligent he will be bored with the repeated curriculum and and you may be seeing the manifestation of that now. It is not emotionally good for a child to repeat a grade. It is a huge social stigma to be left behind all your peers. At the very least, call a BS or email me for the info on mine and get some help for the future. Boredom in school is not a good thing. It leads to behavior issues that can set your son up for failure instead of success.
C.

Hi S.,
I have two boys and one has a really difficult time socially, while the other does not. It can be heartbreaking to watch your child long for connections and be seemingly unable to make them. One thing that has helped me alot is Re-evaluative co counseling. More than anything else it has shown me how important it is to allow children to really feel what they feel and emote, rather than shut down because through expressing their feelings, healing happens.
If you are interested in this practice you should check out the following link
www.rc.org
Good luck with your sensitive boy!
~A. mother of two boys Dominic (8) and Julian (6)

S., it sounds like you are very good Mother. I would make sure that there is nothing physical going on that is making him so sensitive. Maybe he isn't well in some way. Perhaps a different school where he would have a fresh start and where he would not be held back. I don't think holding him back would be good. A lot of people are turning to home schooling because of all the danger, teasing etc. at school. Maybe if he talked to a Christian psychologist. I would take him out if I were you and have some ice cream and see if he would tell you what would make him happy and what you could do to help his situation. God bless you and your little son. I would not allow anyone to call him a wimp...he is ONLY 6 years old!!

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