Oh that gym class

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Malika, May 11, 2011.

  1. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Oh that gym class... After a gap of three weeks for the school holidays (there are lots of those here!),J had his gym class today. We have or had got into the routine of me dropping him off, then coming to collect him at the end - each time, the teacher has said to me, "Fantastic, no problems, he was very good". Well, today - all was chaotic! He wouldn't let me leave, clinging to me and crying. Eventually I said I would stay, knowing it would mean he would play up. And he did - not listening to the teacher, putting his tongue out at him, running around everywhere, not waiting his turn. Etc, etc. At the end of it I feel frazzled and cross, wondering what it is that has gone "wrong". Is it the fact that we have been away for three weeks? That he was tired - he went to sleep in the car on the way home and is now fast asleep, at not even 6pm? Or just because this is how life is with challenging kids?
    I don't know... times like this I feel like a hypocrite. All the stuff I say on here about accepting him as he is and then he plays up like that in a social setting and I feel cross and embarrassed...
    I guess my question is (apart from just letting off steam) - and it might be the 10 million dollar question - is to what degree can such children "help" their behaviour when they are naughty, disruptive like this? The teacher, I noticed, is softer with him than he is with the other kids - I think this is because I said to him some time ago that J is hyperactive and, being the nice man he is, perhaps he just thinks this behaviour is not his "fault". But I'm not sure how wise it is. And I know that I go on about the collaborative approach!! But I think that is between me and him. With others, in social settings, he seems to respond to firm boundaries.
    Then I was cross with him afterwards and he got upset - said all this stuff about "you don't like me and I'm going to go and stay with Daddy" and "I feel sad" and "I"m not going to listen to you", etc... But I feel it just doesn't serve him not to tell his this behaviour is not acceptable and won't help him...
    I don't know!! :)
  2. SRL

    SRL Active Member

    You won't get any flak from us if you're feeling cross. You signed on to be a mother, not a saint!

    There is no one size fits all to your question. Some kids obviously do better at controlling their behavior, some are random, some respond to various triggers, some are more controlled when around peers than family, etc. etc. etc. What your goal is is to help move them forward in being able to mature in their ability to control behaviors. Usually early steps in that are controlling the environment more and helping them to see triggers.
  3. Confused

    Confused Guest

    Hi Malika,
    I'm sorry you went through that with J. You asked the very same question that I have been wandering for years! I would like to know if our kids can actually "help" their behavior. My daughter as I mentioned before is" fine"( except lately again acting up-maybe because attention), but my son is another story. That's what I heard that it was all me and my sons/ and my father's interaction because he is "better" for others. Although he is still very "demanding" with his dad, aunt and great grand-father! I hope one day we can figure this out. I do know my son has less problems overall with his dad because he lets them do anything and i mean anything they want! I have "rules" or "guidelines" for them to follow.( I do give in). So how is your son's dad with handling him and "rules"?
  4. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Hi Confused - thanks for your reply. In general (I think!), my son seems to be better behaved with me if I take a collaborative approach, better behaved with others in other settings if they take a "firm, rules-based approach"... Go figure, as you say... As for J's (adopted) dad - they see each other just in holiday settings (we live in different countries) so there is a lot of playing, toy-buying, etc. I think his dad is typical of all Moroccans of his background - very little psychologising, a lot of physical punishment to "discipline" kids. Also a lot of warmth and affection. J seems very close to his father and he listens to him far more than he does to me; they have a strong chemistry - fortunately or unfortunately, they seem quite similar... I've sometimes suspected that my ex-husband is an undiagnosed hyperactive... The thing is I just can't reproduce the "strong male authority" that J sometimes seems to respect, even if I wanted to... If I take that approach with him, which out of my own limitations I sometimes do, he does not respond well - just sets off his oppositional tendencies. Yet if he thinks someone is REALLY stronger than him, he will listen and obey. Bit like a dog in a pack or something.
    Thanks for your thoughts, SRL. A lot of my reaction to what happens in the gym class is, I'm afraid, that I hate being around to watch his misbehaving antics... makes me feel embarrassed and out of control... to do with me and my incomplete acceptance that he is a difficult child... So basically I prefer dropping him off and then picking him up at the very end with the teacher telling me he has been fine!!