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Unusal behaviour in our 5 yr old granddaughter?
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Unusal behaviour in our 5 yr old granddaughter?

I am a newby here so please be patient!:) I am currently taking care of my 5 year old granddaughter because of all the issues her mother has at the moment.
My husband and I have had a great bond with this child since she was born and until a few months ago lived right next door to her. We made the hard decision of leaving the area for business and personal reasons, but made sure we were no more then 2 hours away.
In this past week alone we have noticed unusual behavior from our grandchild. She has taken to removing items we use daily and hiding them so we cannot find them.
She goes through the motions of "helping" us look for them (one was the remote and the other was the cell phone). When we asked her if she knew where these items were she would insist she did not know where they were, but would help us find them. She seemed oblivious to the fact that we were upset about the missing items as we had just seen them not to long ago etc. I would catch her "smiling" and she would also give a half smile when being questioned.
The remote was found by me while looking for something else and tonight when I discovered the cell phone was missing she went as far as to offer to go to the pool with me to see if we left it there! Not once did she mention she knew where it was all along. Again this is not the norm for her. Is this a 5 year old thing or should we try to get to the bottom of this quickly before it turns into something more serious???
I will admit it brings up old issues about her mother who is diagnosed with more then one mental disorder.
I will look forward to feedback!
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How frustrating!!

What would happen if you didn't search?  Once you see that half smile on her face,  what would happen if you just quit searching for the item and said "oh well, it will turn up eventually",  and then busied yourself doing something else?

I have a nephew,  who has had a very rocky beginning,  and was adopted as a preschooler,  who would hide from his mom in the house.  He's EXTREMELY good at hiding,  and it would take her up to an hour to find him - because he'd dart to a new hiding place she hadn't searched.  She finally just stopped searching - she'd call out "Nick,  I'm done with this game,  come out when you're ready!!" and it often took him an hour or so to come out.  But he finally quit it.

Maybe you could actually have a fun game in the house where she hid some item - as a game - and  you find it.  Then you hide it,  and she finds it.  
It saddens me to hear about her mother.  These poor children don't get to choose there parents.  It sounds to me like your granddaughter might have some emotional issues about her mother.  

She might be doing this for the attention because she doesn't get attention from her home life (her mother or father).  

When she hides these things she knows that eventually you'll be looking for them and asking for her help in finding them.  She gets a satisfaction in helping you look for them because she is getting attention from you at the same time.  It's a comfort thing w/ her.

That little girl needs alot of love.  If she hides things - instead of asking her if she hid them, just go along w/ it and tell her that if she can find it she'll get a piece of candy and a huge hug for finding them.  Maybe you both could play some kind of hiding game together.  Hide things around the house together and then go find them or have her hide something and make you go find it and vice versa.

She's going through alot right now - be patient w/ her and just love her & hug her as much as you can.
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