We have a 4 year old foster daughter, whom we love and adore, she is the best daughter a mom could ask for most of the time, but if for some reason she doesn't get her way, and we have sat limits, then she will act out very aggressively, either by hitting the animals, or by ripping paint from her walls, and then yesturday she picked up a garden hoe and was beating the side of our house with it. What causes a child to get that angry over the simplest of expectations? For example, yesturday we were burning leaves in the yard, Well we had told the children while we we're working on the yard, stay on the trampoline, or go to the porch, of course with a 4 and 2 year old, we are afraid of them not paying attention and getting too close to the fires we were setting, so....the next thing I knew I looked around and she was off the trampoline, had the garden hoe and was literally banging dents in the house, and when asked why, she admitted it was because she wanted to be able to go play? How do I set the rules, which they never had before, and then enforce them, without getting into the retalliation for the disciplinary actions we present?
We have had several instances with this little girl where she gets angry and then gets very destructive, as if doing so for spite, or in retalliation for the limits sat, and most of the limits sat is for their safety!!
The child has definitely been traumatized, but as a mother how can I help her to transition into the fact that every adult, most any playground, and even at home, there is rules that has to be obeyed, and that if you break rules there is going to be consequences, and that you have to accept those consequences, or else the retalliation will cause another consequence to be sat forth?
I want to commend you for doing what you are doing for these children. it does not sound like an easy job. This little girl is not used to anyone caring enough to set boundaries for her. She is testing you.When you set boundaries you need to also inform her of the consequences at that time. For example. "You need to stay on the Trampoline, if you do not, you will have to go to bed." Then follow through. When she destroys something, I would also make consequences for that as well. let her know if she damages the house she will lose privaleges. Such as going outside since that is where the damage is done. It may sound harsh considering what she has been through, but the sooner you get right into it the sooner she can get used to it. If you start letting things slide, then she will always test you to see if this is one of those times you will let it slide. Always let her know it is because you love her and want her safe. She will probly put up a fight, so be ready for that. But over time as she learns you will not let up, she will start to except the boundaries you are setting. She will thank you later for this. Good Luck
I trully understand that every child really needs boundaries, and discipline, even. But, the hardest thing is knowing what she has already endured, and I am afraid that she might feel that it is no better here than where she was. See before there was limited boundaries sat because they were pushed into their room, and there allowed to do what ever as long as no one had the burden of caring for them, so? It is like a used car, we are trying to fix the problems someone else created. I love these girls and am willing to do whatever needed..but at this point I am afraid aggression will get worsened with time, and then how do we handle it? I have given the girls rules and we do try to stay consistent with the consequences that come with breaking those rules, but then I worry ? Just trying too hard to make them happy maybe? But, I feel as if that is what they deserve so much, and yet these things like this can really make it worriisome, you know, how do you handle this, or that, and what is to be expected, and how can we prepare for it. So many questions, such difference in these girls than how my children were, and I know my children never were raised like these were, thank goodness, and I know it is going to take a longtime, too...so, I try to keep patient, and look for all the positive changes were making, but hitting, and destruction is a bit too aggressive for 4, isn't it? That is hard to see, how the children haven't learned the major life lessons, like no hitting, no kicking, etc...you know?
I understand. I know you want to do the right thing, but in this case it is a thin line, isn't it? I think maybe start w/ counseling??? I have never had to deal w/ this kind of situation, so I realy don't have any awnsers, just opinions. But honestly, considering what these girls have beent through, I think counseling would be a great start. They will also guide you on how to best handle situations, and discipline w/o making this situation worse for the girls. Best of Luck to you, and please keep me informed.
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