Author Topic: Struggling  (Read 1615 times)

fuchsiasky

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Struggling
« on: November 13, 2016, 03:38:18 PM »
My daughter is nearly 8.  We have now been a year without her dad.  And oh do we miss him!  When he was alive he was our balance.  My daughter and I are very very alike and butt heads at points.  He would step in and help us.  Give us a break from each other.  Support us or distract us.  Just something.  He was there and it made things better.  But now...

I don't feel like I'm cut out to be a single mom.  This wasn't the deal.  It was supposed to be 2 parents.   I'm so angry that it's not like that.  So is my daughter.  We were supposed to have a daddy involved. 

She is being so defiant lately.  Time for bed. No.  Time to eat. No.  Time to put on pants and go buy food.  No no no no no.  She won't do anything that I ask of her.  We got into a massive fight cause we needed to go shopping and she just refused.  Ended with both if us crying.  We did make it to the store though. But only cause I broke down completely.  This is insane. I don't know what to do.  I love that child more than anything in the world.  But right now I do not like being a mom. 
I love you, I love you, I love you!  Forever and always I love you!

canadiangirl

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Re: Struggling
« Reply #1 on: November 13, 2016, 03:45:26 PM »
We seem to have been having quite similar experiences.  7 years old (mine has just turned eight) and Grade 2 was the absolute worst, far worse than terrible 2s, with more tantrums, more worries, more anxiety, and definitely more defiance. It was a year of precious little joy given my own levels of exhaustion and anxiety.  I can only say that so far, Grade 3 and 8 years old has been somewhat better.  I keep waiting for the other shoe to drop, but it is better.  The Explosive Child by Ross Greene and the work of Gordon Neufeld were recommended to me.  I do get it.

fuchsiasky

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Re: Struggling
« Reply #2 on: November 13, 2016, 04:10:04 PM »
She is 8 in a month and in grade 3. This past year has been so hard for her I know.  I get it. But we have to try and be a team. I need her help here. We can need him but it's not going to happen.  We have to figure it out. 
I love you, I love you, I love you!  Forever and always I love you!

fuchsiasky

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Re: Struggling
« Reply #3 on: November 13, 2016, 04:11:26 PM »
She has been super clingy. Won't go for sleepovers.  Just wanted me.  Well she's done with me now.   Sleepover at grandma's is planned for this week.  We agree we both need a break.
I love you, I love you, I love you!  Forever and always I love you!

Julester3

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Re: Struggling
« Reply #4 on: November 13, 2016, 08:30:05 PM »
Hugs. It sounds like she is having a hard time coping and accepting still. Defiance is the only thing she can control in your situation. She can't control the loss of her dad. She can't control her anger and sadness. It is hard for our children and I hear so many stories like this at our monthly groups. In the end, we are all weary and drained, trying to keep our own shredded morale and our children's spirits up as best as we can.

Hugs for you to find a common ground. I don't particularly get along with my eldest daughter but we make it work and only by the grace that she's a teenager and has better reasoning than younger child. However, she's still a teenager and prone to quick fits of defiance and anger. The good news, she gets over it quickly, feels guilty because she knows it just adds to our stress. I too sometimes really can't believe how much I'm doing here and it's freaking tiring. We were successful parents and we were a team. Taking on the weight of the team totally sucks but we have to.

RobFTC

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Re: Struggling
« Reply #5 on: November 13, 2016, 10:31:05 PM »
fuchsiasky - defiance, yup, seen that.  I have one child who has to test every limit, just to make sure :-)

Your emotions and reactions are the energy that drives the machine, unfortunately.  If you are more calm and use fewer words, it won't be as much fuel.

Going further, if you can figure out strategies where her choices lead to consequences that are unpleasant for her and tolerable to you, and you can keep yourself and your emotions out of the way so that there's no reason for her to get mad at you, she'll figure out her choices weren't good ones.

These are a couple of tenets of Love and Logic, which I try to use.  I started a thread about it here: http://widda.org/index.php/topic,1740.0.html.  It can work really well sometimes, but it's sometimes necessary to get help thinking about what to do to handle an issue.  So yes, it worked better before I was widowed, sigh.

For your shopping issue - what would it be like if you simply went shopping and left her?  Would she be unhappy?  Of course, you would be stressed at the thought of leaving her at home alone at age 8.  But if a friend could park in the driveway to make sure she was OK, would that work?  Or if a sitter came over and she had to be paid with a toy from your daughter?  You might not like these ideas or be able to put then into practice, I get it, but those are examples.  I am willing to brainstorm with you if that helps.

Take care,
Rob T
There was something fishy about the butler.  I think he was a Pisces, probably working for scale.

fuchsiasky

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Re: Struggling
« Reply #6 on: November 13, 2016, 11:11:50 PM »
I wish I could just leave her at home. But she is just too young still. Another year or 2.  I've tried for a sitter. My mom would come. But she doesn't want someone coming in to rescue us cause they will lecture her about being nicer to me.  Which doesn't help at all

I know she has it rough missing Rob. We both do. I wish I could just make the pain go away

We had a good cuddle athe bedtime.  Reaffirmed our love and agreed that even when we don't like each other we do still love each other.

Thank you for the suggestions and support. I really appreciate it
I love you, I love you, I love you!  Forever and always I love you!

Julester3

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Re: Struggling
« Reply #7 on: November 14, 2016, 10:28:27 AM »
That sounds like you have an understanding. That's good. It's a solid foundation to work on.

RobFTC

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Re: Struggling
« Reply #8 on: November 15, 2016, 09:13:24 AM »
Hi fuchsiasky,

You might be able to work out a deal with the sitter about how they should interact with her, including no lectures.  I would also point out that your daughter doesn't need to be happy with the arrival of a sitter, and that I would be wary of giving her a veto.  You're the parent, and will sometimes just have to do stuff.

I'm hearing a flip side of a lot of love in how you cuddled and reconnected there.  That's the ideal manna for your relationship with her, lots of love.  Remember that the acting out is only happening because she loves you and feels safe with you.

Take care,
Rob T
There was something fishy about the butler.  I think he was a Pisces, probably working for scale.

fuchsiasky

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Re: Struggling
« Reply #9 on: November 20, 2016, 07:28:38 PM »
The sitter is my mom so that is a challenge. I've asked her to not lecture but it just doesn't happen.  It's a big respect issue for us.  So if daughter doesn't want to see meddling grandma I kinda understand.  At the same time I am the parent so need to make the things that need to happen happen.

We did have a successful store trip recently.  So it's getting a bit less bad...I hope

I love you, I love you, I love you!  Forever and always I love you!

MR

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Re: Struggling
« Reply #10 on: November 21, 2016, 12:15:56 PM »
Hi fuchsiasky,
Sorry to hear your situation but as a parent we are the ones who have to bend backwards if reqd. I had a similar situation with my 19 year old. Want to eat only certain things. No breakfast no milk no egg just chicken and pasta as that is needed to build muscles. Want to do things at his timeframe even if that will cost me money or inconvenience but I am giving in except few times when I got mad and gave him some piece of my mind. Just go with the flow probably after some time her frustrations will be less and also she will grow and understand your pain. Good luck and hugs.

MR

Eddienhp

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Re: Struggling
« Reply #11 on: January 09, 2017, 08:46:22 AM »
Oh fushiasky I can so relate! I am totally exhausted! My 7 year old daughter is so tough. My 10 yo son has autism. My 7 year old daughter can make autism look like a walk in the park!!! She winds up, makes every solution impossible, then self sabotages. I am normally the most patient person but this kid really could get me into a rage with in 60 seconds. I have had all my energy sucked out. I don't have enough to fight. I walk away from her because I can't stand her anymore. I try to find consequences that will be effective. It's exhausting just trying to parent her.

May we all find a way to help these children be at peace.
Eileen
My life is better because you were in it. You encouraged me to stretch my wings. I will forever be grateful. Rest in Peace Babe. Till we meet again.

MACC

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Re: Struggling
« Reply #12 on: January 10, 2017, 08:47:41 PM »
I totally get how you feel. We were supposed to raise our kids with our spouses. My husband was the one with an even tone that balanced us out. I remember totally breaking down at a mall after an attempt to agree of we should stay in a huge line to see Santa. My son didn't want to wait and my daughter did. My husband would have made us go early in the season and early in the day. Alone I was a total mess and was just happy to have made it at all. We walked away from the line after bickering with one another.  I broke down in tears while they pouted in the play area. We shook it off and went for a second try. I think they had mercy on me in round 2  because they saw what a horrible effect round 1 had on me.

I am overwhelmed trying to manage it all. Two kids, a full time job, managing the finances, saving for retirement,managing my house and its upkeep, managing our two very old rental homes (4 apartments) and all the repairs and work to keep those rented , shoul i keep them, should i sell them, helping my retired parents financially by allowing them to live with me  (but my mom helps watch kids a bit before and a bit after school, dad has medical problems, helping my sisters financially (but they usually pay me back with their tax return(so consider it a savings). Am  I managing it all right? Am I doing enough?

This week has been particularly stressful with a wake that I think pushed me over the edge.  I missed two days of work even though I said I would not as I have to manage sick day usage wisely.  Just was feeling overwhelmed by everything. Felt like my emotional and financial well was running dry. Then ,as I write this I hear my 7 year old daughter ask my 9 year old son... Do you love me? He responds yes, I do..do you love me? he asks her.. she responds yes.

I broke out in tears again but this time good tears. I am imperfect and wonder all the time, am I managing it all well and wishing I had my husband here to help. Hearing my kids share their love with one another tells me I have to be doing something right. Those kind words have filled my dry well enough to get through for another while.

I pray we all have better tomorrows! A special prayer for you fuchiasky! As hard as it is lets both try to be gentle on ourselves and know we love our kids and are trying our best. Hugs.
« Last Edit: January 10, 2017, 09:56:40 PM by MACC »
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Virgo

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Re: Struggling
« Reply #13 on: January 16, 2017, 06:39:58 PM »
It could be grief, but it could also be just your daughter testing her boundaries. Normal for kids to do throughout their childhood. I have 3 daughters, and mine seem to have a behavioral/emotional phase every 3 years! This year they'll be 18, 15, and 9. Lord help me!! All 3 at the 3rd year mark. My youngest is being very defiant. 9 was the worst so far for all 3 of my girls! I think it's partially hormonal. My older 2 started their menstrual cycles around their 12th birthday. At 8/9 you'll notice breast development, body odor, changes in mood, and public hair. I hope that doesn't seem like to much information. We're a house full of girls, so very open. :)
Jen

"Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened." Dr. Seuss

alemja

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Re: Struggling
« Reply #14 on: January 18, 2017, 03:47:17 AM »
Huge hugs Fushiasky

My daughter was almost 7 and a half when my husband died, she is also a very strong willed child (seriously she is the most hard headed little chick I have even met) and has challenged me at just about every turn!
It is so hard to handle it, to know when to be tough and when to let it slide because she is hurting too.

I think the defiance is an attempt at feeling like she is in control, everything is not as its supposed to be in your lives and its overwhelming for her so she is tying to take control the only way she knows how.

I found that counselling helped both of us, she was trying to keep her grief from me so she wouldn't make me sad , dad wasn't their to protect us so she was trying to protect me. Going to a counsellor allowed her a safe place to vent and cry without affecting me.

I found it helped to "pick my battles" and let her have control in certain areas, small things like what we should have for supper, our weekend plans, helping decide what chore to do/help with. Allowing her a bit of self-determination helped reduce the fighting a lot. Agree together on an acceptable bedtime, mealtimes etc.
I couldn't believe what a difference it made to our evenings when I agreed to let her have her bedtime 30 minutes later than her little brother. It was such a small thing but it made a big difference.

My daughter turned 11 this last Christmas, we still butt heads but we are doing ok and honestly I am so proud of how she has come through the most terrible loss and continues to do so everyday.

You'll both be ok

Oh yeah with regards to getting a sitter, its not as easy as it sounds! I was very, very lucky that my daughters therapist had an 18 year old daughter who came to work for me as the kids au pair because I had to go back to work. My daughter gave her such a hard time, but she obviously understood our situation and her mom was able to guide her on how to handle it.
I have realized now that she is not comfortable with just any sitter because she doesn't feel safe or trust that they are strong enough to take care of her/her brother if something goes wrong. She is only ok with my mom or my fiancé's mom anyone else is just not good enough. She also only has occasional sleepovers with my mom or my fiance's mom, she went on a school camp a few months ago (two nights) and she practically flew off the bus when they got back and hung on to me like a leech for ages because she had been so anxious being away
« Last Edit: January 18, 2017, 04:01:09 AM by alemja »