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My 5yr old is just so naughty at the moment

hi betty. I have 2 busy little girls, 1 who is 5 and 1 who is 15m. my 5yr old is just so naughty at the moment she won`t listen to anything anyone says. she backchats and screams at me now usually for no reason. i just don`t know what to do anymore, i have tried everything from time-out, smacking, walking away, taking things away, rewarding when good and ignoring the bad but she just seems to be getting worse and her sister is starting to copy her. can you help me?

Answer: Hi - it seems so difficult doesnt it? You have tried so many things and have your hands full with the two young children. I would like to suggest some ideas that you will need to keep reminding yourself throughout your mothering...firstly when you see your daughter as being naughty, look at how you are feeling (I know this seems like it is getting off the point but it is actually getting to the source of many of our situations...) and see if you can calm it down. By this I dont mean block it out - this is a very dangerous stance. What I mean is to identify the feeling/s, eg, frustration, rage, anger, exasperation and then describe it, eg, where is it - in your hands, in your stomach, in your neck, etc. This will take some time for you to readjust your focus from your daughter to yourself When you have got some good information on your stress levels, then find different ways to manage them, eg, if you are stressed in your stomach maybe rest and rub it, or if you are stressed in your legs you may prefer to take a walk...When we are less stressed we all find it better to think about how to handle situations. Being a mother is a very demanding role with no support and lots of stress. Specifically regarding your daughter, think of at least 3 good things about her before you even utter one negative thing to her (even if it is to yourself). Speak calmly to her from inside your heart not just your words - she will read you if you are being strained. All the strategies you have used are parenting style management tools that simply do not work under stress or if you are being inconsistent (which happens when you dont initially agree with these strategies). Think about how you would like to handle the situation your own way. How would you like to remember dealing with this situation as a 90 year old grandmother? How would you like your own daughter to deal with her daughter? would you like your own mother to have helped you when you were feeling scared or frustrated?...there are so many ways to help you and I am sowing a few seeds for you. Stay in touch so I can see how you are going. Tace Care, Betty
Answered: 08 Nov 2007