Let me preface this saying that I feel like I ask you guys the same questions all the time… but we are trying so hard to get better at this. I need your ideas and suggestions on how to handle a few specific situations. I have gone back and reread Explosive Child and read some online material from Love and Logic but I am a little unclear on what this might sound like in “real life”. So here goes…
1) Homework – very much an issue at our house. This year we have gotten better and are not badgering her about doing it. We remind maybe a few times but don’t get mad. If she doesn’t do it, then that is between her and school. As a reminder she goes to a school for kids with learning differences so her teachers are well used to dealing with this. She is in 4th grade and the expectations around writing are picking up. She can do the work because when she finally does it, it is correct and done relatively quickly. But she puts it off… “Im not ready!!” but she is never ready. Granted we could apply Plan A and “force” her to set at the table but that isn’t good for anyone… know that. We do try to problem solve and she can say that she needs to practice math and writing so she can get better at it or that she didn’t do well on the Science Test because she didn’t study and that she needs to do it earlier in the evening. But in the heat of the moment, she reverts to the “I’m not ready” mantra. Currently what she doesn’t do at home she does at school but that won’t work long term. We are meeting with the teacher early next week to discuss how to help her so would appreciate any thoughts.
2) Picking up – getting her to pick up her stuff is challenging. Our home has a “keeping room” off the kitchen which she plays in most time. She is “not finished” playing with stuff and as a result will leave things out for as long as we will allow. Granted there have been some times she will do on her own which we praise greatly but extremely seldom. When we finally can’t see the floor or table and say it is time to clean up and help her it typically ends in a rage. Here again, when we try to problem solve before about why it is important to pick up and how we can do that…she comes up with all the right answers and says she will do that next time. When next time comes, she isn’t done playing with it and a rage ensues if we push or we clean up. I was reading the Love and Logic and it talked about making statements that I can control not telling her what she must do. I can see going in and saying (after we have talked about it and agreeing of course) that I will keep the toys that I pick up and she can keep the toys that she picks up at the end of the day. I can see doing that and keeping the toys for a few weeks. How would ya’ll handle it.
The main thing we are working on now is trying to prevent the violence when she rages and having the sense (and maturity) to walk away rather than engage her but these 2 things are what seems to be triggering them. Just trying to get some ideas as to how to handle the “right way”.
Thanks in advance. Hopefully someday I’ll get the hang of this and be able to offer advice to others. ;-)