17 answers

My 8 Year Old Daughter Is Having Tantrums Still.

My 8 year old daughter is a very intense child. If something does not go away she has a total violent tantrum. Yelling, screaming, throwing things, slamming doors. Her face gets bright red and I can't do anything to calm her down. No matter what I do or don't do the tantrum excalates. She only does this with my husband and I. She is a great student and friend to all. I've read book after book. We've talked about the feeling with her after. She says it feels like rain, then a storm, when its bad there is lightening. We have 3 other children who see this DAILY. I am worried. She is such a good kid, she is the oldest and has always seems mature for her age. She can not seem to control her anger. I don't want to punish her in a way that she becomes afraid of us. Any suggestions would be great!

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

Have you tried John Rosemonds books? He is AWESOME. You could google him and he has a website and you could also ask him what to do and he will reply to you...

I hope this helps,
J.

EMPTY HER ROOM EXCEPT THE BED.sHE CAN EARN THE STUFF BACK FOR GOOD BEHAVIOR. SHE STARTS A FIT PICK HER UP PUT HER IN HER ROOM WHERE SHE HAS TO STAY FOR 5 QUIET MINUTES. TIME STARTS OVER IF SHE STARTS FUSSING AGAIN IN HER QUIET 5. sHE MUST BE GETTING ATTENTION FROM YOU AND NOT THER OTHER ADULTS IN HER LIFE SINCE SHE ONLY DOES IT TO YOU

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Does your daughter eat refined sugar? Both of my children had horrid uncontrollable tantrums. When I got sick and had to cut out sugar, we cut off the whole family. With in the first week there was a noticeable difference and over a year later, they don't happen at all.

It's something that is in lots of foods even canned veggies, but it's simple enough to read labels and buy what doesn't have it. It was a simple fix for our family, maybe it will help yours too.

May God bless your family as you find answers!

M.

I would like to disagree with most of the other posts based on personal experience. When I was in 4th grade, so a little older than your daughter, we moved to a new city. I had never had a problem with temper tantrums. After we moved, I started crying a lot and throwing fits where I would throw everything in my room onto the floor, including the furniture. I would even run out into the street and my parents would have to chase me down and carry me home. It resulted from the very difficult transition I had moving to the new city. We ended up moving back home (not because of my tantrums), and I was fine after that.

If my parents had punished me, I would have felt even more lost and upset. I wasn't angry, or trying to be "bad". I was just upset and I didn't know how to handle it. Children are not as mature emotionally as adults are. I think your daughter needs love and understanding. I know I appreciate my parents love and support to this day. And now that I am an adult, I understand how angry THEY must have been, and how difficult that must have been for them.

Good luck, and I hope things resolve for your daughter.

I agree with Peggy.

She seems to have her "anger" controlled at school and with friends. Sounds like she doesn't yell, scream, throw things or slam doors at school or if she visits friends.

It seems that you need to push out some tough love. I think you need to stop worrying about her "feelings" because she isn't worried to much about you, your husband and the kids. The other kids are watching that she is getting extra attention. Stop giving it to her and start disciplining. Make her responsible for her own actions. She will get more abusive the older she gets if you don't act now.

Good luck.

The fact that she is only doing this with you and your husband should be a clear sign that this is a discipline (and not emotional issues).
Don't be afraid of her or what she might think--she should be "scared" of her consequences as long as you are calm (showing her the way to deal with situations) and follow through with predetermined non-violent consequences, you should not be concerned with her feelings. You are the parent and in charge and she needs to understand this.

The absolute key to stopping the tantrums is to not give ANY positive reinforcement. No bargaining, no special attention (good or bad)--she has to learn that behaving that way is not acceptable--and has CONSEQUENCES.
Set up these consequences ahead of of time--and stick to them. She is not too old for a time out--8 minutes of "reflecting." (until she can apologize for her behavior to everyone involved). She should also have to take responsibility for her tantrum which includes apologizing to all people involved and any items that may have gotten in the way-- which includes cleaning up her messes. On top of that if she is destructive to her own things--take those things away. IF she is destructive to others things--then she needs to "replace" those things with items of her own.
At 8, this behavior did not happen overnight and will not go away overnight. You HAVE to remain consistent and strong and NEVER give in. You are in charge and that behavior is not acceptable. I know you said you've read a lot, but are you following through, or just giving up after a week? Just because she does it in public doesn't mean that you should behave or respond differently either.

She sounds like a typical "strong-willed" child where methods that work on other kids don't always work..smart, artistic, monumentally stubborn? (I was one too)
Check out this book--it will give you a clear plan for handling her http://www.amazon.com/Setting-Limits-Your-Strong-Willed-C...
Setting Limits with Your Strong-Willed Child : Eliminating Conflict by Establishing Clear, Firm, and Respectful Boundaries

Have you tried John Rosemonds books? He is AWESOME. You could google him and he has a website and you could also ask him what to do and he will reply to you...

I hope this helps,
J.

One, have her checked for ADD or ADHD or another behavioral issue. Anger issues are often related to this.
Two, what kind of consequences does she get when this occurs? She needs to see the drawback of "loosing it". Maybe no playing with friends, no going on outings, no tv, video games, phone, etc. Ignore her and take all of the kids out of the house when she does it. Let her stay by herself while she is acting out. Let her know that you will not be frustrated by her actions and that the other kids will get to go outside and have time with mom and dad, but she will not since she has chosen to pitch a fit.
Also, the next time you see her begin to work herself up, throw in a distraction such as, "before you pitch your fit, just remember that you will lost this priveledge..."
Or you could say something like, "do you smell oranges? I smell oranges...Can you see if there are some oranges around here?" I know this sounds crazy, but I used to use it in a run away shelter that I worked at and it really worked. Kids would be starting a fight or going off and when you throw in something absurd, they tend to temporarily forget what they were doing. That gives you just enough time to change the subject.
Take Care,
T.

At 8, we had our second child evaluated by a psychologist, who then recommended us to a occupational therapist. Our son had trouble controlling his rage (among other things) . He would say it was like something took over his body (which scared me to death) He would say he knew it was wrong but he couldn't help it. Occupational therapy helped him deal with his rage in a physical manner, how to work it out of his system, and how to control it. It cost us but it was the best thing we ever did.
Help her help herself. The worst part is their own self-esteem. They know something is wrong. You don't want this to affect the rest of their life.

wow, I'm shocked at the feedback you have received to this question. I entirely agree with KZ: Punishment, so called "tough love", medication, reward systems, as a reaction, are so completely wrong/medieval, I wonder if these are bored 14 year-olds playing a joke on you. If they aren't, I really feel sorry for their own children.

That your 8 year-old does this to you is not a sign that you give them too much unnecessary attention, but that your child feels free around you. That is a good thing!!! And be comforted by that.

I have a very intense little girl as well. When she is happy, she is extatic. When she is sad, the world breaks apart. When she is playing, she disappears in her own world. When she loves, she is drunk with love. This is also a good thing. It is a sign that she is experiencing the world in all its extremes. Perhaps your child is similar?

Yes, my girl has a problem with anger as well. Btw, don'T we all? Dealing with your feelsing, e.g. Anger management, is not something most parents teach -- and as we see from the posts in this forum, punishment and supression seems still to be a common parental technique. very sad. scary in fact.

Your child needs to learn how to recognize situtations that make her escalate. And she needs to know where she can go, and what she can do, when she sees it coming. You can tell her, that tantrums are not socially acceptable. This is fine. This is not punishment, this is called being a friend. She has to learn the consequences of her behaviour. She isn't a dog, that responds to conditioning.

When my girl screams, I cover my ears. I tell her that I can'T hear her, because she is so loud that my ears hurt. If I don't replace it. The consequence she learns: she cannot be heard.

If she breaks something, the consequence is: it's broken. gone. Mom might be mad and not feel like playing a game because she is dealing with her own anger.

If she hurts another chld, the consequence is: negative feedback from peers and teachers, possibly more serious legal consequences.

Slowly, she will begin to understand. She will see it too with younger children. Main thing:_ love her, and never let her get the idea that she is somehow disturbed or sick.

best of luck,

most sincerely,

anon.

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