13 answers

My 6 Year Old Complains Alot

Hi..my 6 year old daughter seems to complain alot lately. My husband who is off today, told her and my 4 year old daughter he was going to take them to a parade (MLK day). My 6 year old asked if there were going to be beads and candy and he said he didn't think so. Well, she got whiney and said this isn't going to be any fun, no beads/no candy. My husband is getting tired of this behavior and thinks/says she is acting very spoiled rotten. We don't feel like we spoil our kids very much (maybe a little, but we are not rich and the girls have to go without, etc). We take them on errands all the time (without trips to the playground), we take them shopping and don't always get them something. We do usually have our weekends booked with something, like a birthday party, or movies, or the like. Even after a birthday party, my 6 year old will ask what are we going to do next, and if I say well, we will go home and rest, watch tv, etc. she complains that it wasn't a fun day. What's going on? Thank you!

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

I just love this mamasource! It is a great comfort to hear other moms tell of their experiences. I shared with my husband some of the things mentioned and we both feel a little better knowing that she is pretty normal. I will try some of the things mentioned. She is all-in-all pretty good, just need to get through this phase...thanks everyone!

Featured Answers

She is a kid and that's what kids do. They are never satisfied. They always want more, that's part of being a kid.
My daughter is 12 almost 13 and she's still that way. We call her the high maintenance one and she has been since conception.
It doesn't mean that there is anything wrong with her, she's just a kid. So don't read too much into it and tell her that she's not always going to get what she wants in life and she needs to look at the good and fun side of what she gets to do and not what she's missing out on.
Good luck and hang on it's going to be a bumpy ride.

1 mom found this helpful

More Answers

She is a kid and that's what kids do. They are never satisfied. They always want more, that's part of being a kid.
My daughter is 12 almost 13 and she's still that way. We call her the high maintenance one and she has been since conception.
It doesn't mean that there is anything wrong with her, she's just a kid. So don't read too much into it and tell her that she's not always going to get what she wants in life and she needs to look at the good and fun side of what she gets to do and not what she's missing out on.
Good luck and hang on it's going to be a bumpy ride.

1 mom found this helpful

If she fusses about going some place, tell her she can't go then. when you get back make a big fuss about the fun you had.
TELL HER YOU DON'T WANTT HEAR her complaints. Tell her to write them down the best she can and you will reads them later. Or tell her sorry you didn't enjoy it but we sure did, she keeps complaining tellher one more time you had fun. Then tell her you don't want to hear about it any more.She can either drop the subject or go to her room to fuss. She has the right to fuss,but you have the right not to hear it.

I think this is pretty normal behavior. Children do not become completely accustom to having consideration for others until age 7. Until then they are the center of the universe. While they may be great at saying please and thank you, the reasons behind manners aren't made obvious to them until they're at least 7. (The age seven has been often mentioned in psychology texts as the age when children become empathetic and can grasp certain concepts that they couldn't when a younger child. With that said, try setting a few hours a week when it is "all about" each child, individually. Maybe you could take the 6 year old and your hubby could take the 4 year old (or vise-versa) and take them to the beach, park, hiking. It's free. Just pack a lunch and go and then at least you know that every week the kids are getting your undivided attention and you're not breaking the bank to do it. Kids express their disdain by whining or being aggresive. They aren't mature enough to say "Hey Dad, you work too much lately, pay attention to me". I hope this helps. Remeber, the fact you care enough to ask means you're doing the best you can and are a loving parent! Good luck!

My post isn't really to give ideas to help, more to say I understand what you're dealing with and to talk about my own situation and thoughts. I know, a bit selfish, but maybe someone can relate. I also think talking about things can sometimes, bring about important problem solving ideas for issues like this.

I have a 5 yr old who whines, moans and complains so much about every little thing, that I sometimes wonder if there is something wrong with her. Some of it sounds like the whining of a spoiled brat who always gets her way, but as you said about yours, she doesn't always get her way. We try to be very adamant that there will always be times that she won't or can't get what she wants. We try to push the ideas that we all have to help each other out, need time away from others, need time with others, need to treat everyone with courtesy while still sticking up for ourselves, need to be patient, need rest time, need to respect opinions of others, etc. We frequently withhold things she wants because she needs to learn to live without, or we just don't have time resources or energy, or are busy with other things. We try to be respectful of her also, letting her know our plans in advance, asking her opinion on things, discussing why or why not her ideas may or may not work in a given situation, and just plain talking with her (not just too her) about important and even unimportant issues. We remind her frequently that no one is perfect, we all make mistakes because we are all human (including mom and dad), and that doesn't mean mistakes make a person bad only that the choices made were not good.

Maybe a bit much for a 5 yr old to ingest, but she has a pretty large vocab and has a good grasp of abstract ideas. Still, she often whines if anything is slightly out of place, doesn't happen right now, isn't just how she wants it, isn't fun, doesn't go along with exactly how she thinks it should, isn't entertaining enough, and the list goes on. I know that little ones tend to be very egocentric and have trouble seeing things from another's point of view. Some of her frustration seems to come from that narrow viewpoint, but some of it seems to come from an almost perfectionist point. Like she thinks that everything has to be perfect (her view of perfect), or she gets totally bent out of shape (this also seems to be rubbing off on my 3 yr old boy). That just drives me crazy, because I can't stand that kind of unbending perfectionism, and I really can't stand the whining and negativity that stems from it. Though I try to do the best I can in most situations, that is the one thing that I don't seem to have any tolerance for. I react in the worst way, which I know isn't helping anyone, and is likely causing a great deal of her overreactions because she sees my overreactions.

I guess I went a little off into left field. These are just things I frequently find myself struggling with. I like to consider myself educated when it comes child behaviors, but these things really bug me, and I don't feel like I deal with them well at all. It's like I'm fighting over what I know in my mind is appropriate or inappropriate based on education, and what has been ingrained in me from past issues that are far different from that education. You know, the old ideas that children must respect their elders(no matter what), stay out of adult conversations, do what they're told, don't know enough to be included in adult conversation, must deal with whatever they don't like, must listen to adults talk to them rather than with them, etc. There just seem to be so many things that were common place when we were growing up, but are not considered appropriate by early childhood standards today.

Many of the things that have changed I never agreed with growing up anyway, yet I still struggle with not treating my children in the same way I hated being treated when I was young. Why is it so hard to stop these things when I never agreed with them in the first place? I guess judging from what I've written I feel like my child's attitude is because of my actions, yet I am mostly at a loss for what to do about that! I also acknowledge that some of her attitude has to be from her age and just the kind of person she is, but it still drives me bonkers. It would be nice if we both would just tone it all down a few notches. Part of me feels like I am the adult, and I should be able to adjust my own negative behaviors and tolerance thereby helping her adjust her own, yet part of me feels like she shouldn't be getting so bent out of shape so easily when she knows I don't like it and never react well towards it. I realize it has to be some kind of balance, but were to begin, and how to adjust my own negativity seems to be beyond me.

Buy the way I do tend to post very long posts like this. I am just always analyzing things and feel like I get better results if I go over everything in my head, and maybe get input from others as well.

OMG, you must be raising my daughter's twin!!! LOL. My daughter is also six and I could have written your post. Lately everything is boring to her, although she has fun once we can convince her to do something. I will be interested to read what other people say because I am losing my mind between her complaining & sassiness. It must be the age!

You've had many good ideas here,,sometimes it's our perception/responce as adults. (kids complaints,whinning and lack of appreciation can get to us, especially when we are tired.)I agree with rewarding good behavior, when my older boys were young I used a token system with a jar -( I used poker chips) each color was worth a certain amount of points. I would "catch them" doing good things and using the right tone of voice when they spoke and reward them. I also agree with recording them and also role play can help too. Have her respond to your complaints/whinning after she invites you somewhere. Have her hear what it sounds like and also what a good tone of voice sounds like. The other things I did and still do is ask my kids to tell me three good things about what we just did or where we went...it helped them focus on the positive.
Good luck and God Bless

I need some advice as well because I have the same problem with my 7year old. He always seems to have something to complain about or something he wants. He's never hapy or satisfied. He seems to only think about his needs and negativly at that. He isn't spoiled and gets just enough. My husband and I are divorced and this seems to be a character trait that he picked up from his dad.
Any advice anyone?

Hi K.,
I just wanted to tell you that spoiling your children is not done by just buying them everything, it is also done by letting them get away with everything. My son has pretty much everything b/c his "rich" grandmother spoils him to death by buying all the toys and nice clothes!!!! but he has good manners (pleases and thank yous are a must) and is very polite and respectuful. He shares his toys with all of his friends and plays nice. So he has a lot of material things, but he is not a spoiled rotten child.

I can feel the pain .. I have 3 kids (8 yr. and 5 yr. old twins) and generally one of them finds a way to complain about something in life -- it drives me CRAZY .. but sometimes what works for me -- is I tell them what we are going to do, and always they know that we need to be flexible with the schedule to certain degree -- and if you don't like it -- too bad too sad -- stay at home and others will go and have fun -- or all of us will go and I make sure that complainer is NOT HAVING ANY FUN .. and I tell him -- you want to complain and so I am giving you a reason now .. Another thing I do sometimes is tell their siblings .. we can only go if all of you behave ..so there is peer pressure (they do get along well with each other most part of the times).
I guess it is just being kids ... my kids can complain even in Disney -- lines are long .. I want to buy this or eat this (and they know I never buy anything on the spot if they ask it and we have not negotiated it before,.. they can not even use their own money to buy it ), so I let the other two children go in the ride and stay with my third one ...and most times that works. It is hard .. and I can not understand why they need to complain and whine ..in school and with others, they are very nice/happy/cooperative kids .. but when it comes to Mom, they think they can just complain. Anyway... if you do get some great advice, please share it with me.

Man all I know is when I was a kid my dad would have said fine, if you want to complain then you can stay home. And he would. Let me tell you what, when I was a kid we learned not to complain with my father! He taught us to appreciate all we have and to look at the good side of things. My son is only 3 so I do not know how I am going to handle things like that in the future, but I do know girls seem to be higher maintenance :) Oh yeah, we had a niece who was a whiner, and I mean MAJOR. She moaned about everything. She was the kid no one wanted to be around because she was such a pain, you know that kid! Anyway, we recorded her and clipped it all together so she could hear what she sounded like. Not to embarass her, but to let her know how she sounded. It really worked, she would still whine, but all it took was a look and she stopped immediately. I dont think how bad she sounded. Good luck hun, take care.

it could be ADD/ODD attention deficit disorder/oppositonal defiance disorder they tend to go hand in hand. have her evaluated.

Its a faze she will grow out of it and if she keeps wining just ignore her and eventually it will stop or just tell her the hash facts of life and that people dont always get what they want it worked for my kids they stopped it good luck

We have a just turned 7 yr. old girl & 5 yr. old girl(and 3 yr. boy). Your 6 yr. old sounds like our little girl. We ignore as much as we can. But I did start a "positive" chart. One of the four habits we have on there is "mannerly & positive"........our 7 yr. old wakes up cranky most days! Lack of sleep isn't the issue -- just the way she is.
Our goal is two stickers a day. It is somewhat of a hassle to remember the stickers -- and we don't give a sticker for every moment (the other habits "play nicely with siblings" -- "listen to mom & dad" -- "finish chores." Anything we were going to do on the weekend for fun -- we now attribute to a number I set for the stickers. It does seem to work, especially for my 7 yr old. They count the stickers daily. And it reminds them of the four important ways to act (according to mom & dad). Oh, we can take stickers away -- which is very traumatic -- so we try to avoid that & use time-out. But the idea of taking the stickers away is there. Our school-aged children really like the chart because in school they have a similar idea.
You'd be suprised if you keep the chart going (our chart has been up almost 2 mo.) -- it does mean a lot to them. And it reminds me to focus on the good that they do -- rather than always telling them "do this or that."

Tara O.

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.