Punishment for today

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Shari, Feb 10, 2009.

  1. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    What punishment do you give a 6 year old for threatening, in detail, to kill people?

    Ground him from the tv every time he gets in trouble? Looking for ideas...

    I kinda thought I'd have an officer come to the house and take all our guns away. I think he would feel very bad for causing that to happen and its logical.

  2. ML

    ML Guest

    Yes, I agree with the guns approach. At least for a period of time. It makes sense. I'm sorry to hear he is talking about this kind of stuff. How scared you must be. Other than this incident how has he been doing in this school the past several days?
  3. ML

    ML Guest

    oops nevermind Shari I just started reading your updates. Biggest hugs!! ML
  4. Janna

    Janna New Member

    First and foremost I think apology letters, hand written, to each individual would be appropriate.

    If he's telling people he will kill them, I seriously (not knowing your difficult child of course) would doubt he would feel alot of guilt, especially with his age and just the fact that he's a difficult child. Too, I would never make the consequence for one of my kids actions something that would affect us.

    Taking TV away sounds miniscule, huh? Yah - I dunno what I'd do. I don't think I've been hit with this one.

  5. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I personally would be more apt to worry about getting him into a psychiatrist ASAP. Although what he says is dangerous, I'd be thinking that he's pretty darn unstable. If he says those things when he's older, he'll get expelled. Those are frightening words for such a little guy.
    I'm not sure any punishment will change him. I think he needs some extra treatment. I wouldn't WANT guns in the house if I had a child who could potentially become violent. JMO
  6. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    He has an appointment tomorrow (lucked out there, it was already scheduled).
  7. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    Shari, I agree that this is a treatment issue, not a punishment issue. Good luck at the psychiatrist tomorrow. Let us know how it goes.
  8. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    We dealt with this regularly with Wiz from the age of 5. It really does take the psychiatrist and therapist to help. Punishment wasn't effective for us.

    You REALLY NEED to make SURE that there is NO WAY he can handle a gun, bow and arrow, or any other type of weapon at this point. The line between reality and fantasy is very thin IF it is there. Also, with the mean rage yesterday and purposely slamming the teacher's head in the door, you are just begging for a tragedy if you don't get the weapons out of the house.

    This is just my experience. It was the reason my guns were locked up halfway across the country from us for many years. Right now they are in a 1/2" steel gun case my dad welded when he had a metal shop. It has a key lock and a combination lock and only my dad can open it. And he won't.

    I know you live in the country and hunting is part of your way of life. But store the weapons at someone else's house for a while. Or rent a storage locker and keep them there, and never take difficult child to the storage locker.

    This is something to take seriously. been there done that and hated the whole experience.
  9. crazymama30

    crazymama30 Active Member

    My difficult child hates to miss school. When he threatened people he got suspended, and he hated that. We made him rake, clean up the yard, or just be "helpful". I do realize many kids like to miss school, but even now difficult child hates to miss school, except for therapy. He really likes to go to therapy.
  10. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    When difficult child 2 brought a knife to school and then made threatening remarks to another student, his therapist said he needed to apologize in writing to everyone who had to get involved (the other student, his teacher, the vice principal, ME, etc.) We talked a lot about the effect his words and actions that day had on everyone -- the fear, the worry, the frustration, all of it. He felt very badly when we put it in those terms, especially when the therapist said how it had hurt me, his mother (he's got a very close bond with me).

    So I agree that apologies would be in order after he's made to understand the effects his behavior has on others.

    And going without something that is very important to him for a set period of time would be an appropriate add-on to his sentence as well.
  11. slsh

    slsh member since 1999

    I agree it's a treatment issue. I don't think there's a punishment in the world that is going to touch this. I do think school, having identified a real trigger, needs to modify how reading is presented. He's not going to learn to control himself, much less master reading, the way they're currently doing it.

    I do worry about the guns, or anything that could be used as a weapon, when you have an impulsive child in the house. When my difficult child started making a habit of threatening verbally or physically with knives, they all got locked up (along with forks, screwdrivers, hammers, etc) in a lock box with a keyed lock. I wore the key around my neck. The worst he could've done was spoon us to death. ;) We lived like that for well over a year. It's not that I ever thought it was his *intent* to hurt us, but his impulsiveness was just so completely over the top there was no guarantee what he would do in a rage. Also, I so clearly remember having to disarm him the second time and thinking - what on earth am I doing letting him have access to this stuff?

    It's a wicked balance of dealing with current level of behaviors without reinforcing them while working on the therapeutic and medication side to reach to better function.

    Hang in there!
  12. eekysign

    eekysign New Member

    We went through this with Sis. I can remember her screaming at 5 or so that she was going to kill us all, and go live with friends/in the woods with the animals/in another country. It was a frequent comment.......but even after we'd get her calmed down---I was sitting with her on the top of our stairs once, and she looked at me and said, "But eeky, sometimes I really do want to kill people.". It's a hard thing to hear---and how could you punish that?

    We treated it like any other "blow-up" and gave her the same consequences for misbehavior. Although it was ultra-shocking, those thoughts weren't her fault any more than a normal rage situation, was our take on it. Just talked to her a LOT about what EXACTLY would happen if we all died, and how it makes us feel, and why saying things like that made her look bad (she's always been really sensitive to appearing "crazy", and once she STARTS to calm down, saying that'll get her the rest of the way down).

    We don't have any weaponry or, really, even sharp knives in the house. My biggest worry was that she would come up behind Mom or stepdad and push them down the stairs. Mom put her on Paxil a few years later, when it had gotten really bad, and we never heard about "killing everyone" again. Even once she weaned off, those thoughts never reappeared. Thank goodness.
  13. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Thanks for the input, guys.

    husband is intent he "have consequences" for this (ie the tv, which actually would be punishing me more cause on the rare instance he'll sit and watch tv, I use it.)

    I guess I was caught up in the fact that he wasn't in an out of control rage when he said this. But you're right, that doesn't mean he's any more stable than when he's having an out of control rage...its just scarier when he seems to be aware of what he's doing.

    The guns are all locked away. The keys to the gun cases are locked in another spot.

    I have arranged for a deputy to come as soon as possible and make a production of taking the guns away from people who make unsafe threats. They will go to the ex in-law's house to stay for a period of time. I think this will make an impression on him because everyone in the house does own a gun and its kind of a right of passage and something he wants to have, too. He's also going to see my mounted shooting guns taken away. I do think that will make an impression, and stable or not, this doesn't fly.

    Ironically, the deputy coming to the house sits on the county mental health board and chairs the crisis intervention team. This might be a silver lining in this cloud.
  14. Allan-Matlem

    Allan-Matlem Active Member


    If we say to the kid , we are not going to punish you , we are not accusing you or blaming , we just want to know what's up , why are you so angry and frustrated ? there is a good chance he will open up and with your help you will be able to identify his concerns and frustrations , address his concerns etc. Once he has a plan to meet his needs in an appropriate way , a vision for the future , he can reflect in a meaningful way on what happened and then try to make amends.