Aa
A
A
A
Close
Child Behavior Forum
This expert forum is not accepting new questions. Please post your question in one of our medical support communities.
Avatar universal

Help I have a 3 and a half year old that is very aggressive and screams

Hi,
My problem is that I have a 3 and a half year son that is running ours lives. He has a temper and hits and scream alot when he does not get his way. I know that this is around the age that it should be showing but he been like that even before he was born. He was very active in the womb. We put him in time out all the time but what he does is scream and scream ( I don't give in which it is hard to do). We are very consistent of doing it for the same thing that he does wrong. We had to  put locks on everything even our bedroom because he will fine anything to stand on and get into things that can harm him or he should not touch. he is smart enough to do it when we are not pay attention at that time. He screams where ever we go. i can't even go shopping and take him with me because he start screaming. He just gets mad because we won't let him down so he can get into thing. We had 3 different doctors telling me that there is nothing wrong with him but he is really putting a edge in our marriage. It is getting to the point of us putting our hands in the air when we are trying to play with his so the neighbors won't think we are the one hurting him. He also will bang his head on the cement gound or anything that is hard. He leaves marks on himself all the time. We tried to stop it but the more we did the more he did it. Like I said before he was look at by 3 different doctors and they say it is normal but I really don't think so. I have a gut feeling that it is not but can't get anybody to listen to me or help me. I have a daughter that is 9 and she does not have the temper that he has. Anything can trigger is temper and when it does watch out. I am hopping that you can help me in some way. I take things away from him and put him in time out all the time and I leave him there for 3 min. (a min per year of life). Right now we really don't know where to turn too or what else we can help him learn. he talks and he can understand. Other then his temper he is a very funnie child when he wants to even though it doe not show that often. Any help would be wonderful and sorry for so long winded.
10 Responses
242606 tn?1243786248
MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL
Dear Carm,

It's not possible to tell if your son's behavior represents an emerging emotional disorder or whether it is an example of a normal-spectrum, though sever, behavior problem. Whatever the case, the behavior requires management.

I think you should request, via your pediatrician, a referral to a child behavioral health clinician. That person can evaluate the situation and help you and your husband develop a systematic plan for behavior management. Such a plan will likely include a time out component, though it won't be confined to that. By the way, if you utilize the SEARCH function in this Forum, you can obtain some ideas about how to implement the time out arrangement.

Also, try to refrain from putting your son in situations (e.g., the grocery store) which he has trouble managing right now. Sometimes you'll probably have to bring him, but try to avoid this when you can - it's only inviting a problem.
Avatar universal
Please look into these:
ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder)
SID (Sensory integration disorder)
SPD (semantic pragmatic disorder)
AS (Asperger's syndrome)
NLD (non verbal learning disorder)
CAPD (central auditory processing disorder)

If one of these is involved, then normal discipline methods will probably not be effective. Some involve receptive language problems, even thought the child can speak relatively well. I invite you to look through my web site for information on some of these. I can imagine how you must feel.
Avatar universal
Try reading 123 Magic, "Power Parenting for ADD/ADHD Children" by Grad Flick PhD and "Taking Charge of ADHD" by Russell Barkley PhD  These will give you the skills to "TRY" to deal with this in an effective manner.  My son used to do the same things so I know what you are going through.  Spanking and yelling and time out usually do no good with this - just makes it worse.

Try reading also "Special Diets for Special Kids" by Lisa Lewis PhD, and "The ADD Nutrition Solution" by Marcia Zimmerman.  Dietary changes have helped our son immensely and have helped lots of other children too.  Foodallergy.org is a good site to get information on diet and behavorial problems.  Conductdisorder.com is a good site for support and information too.
Avatar universal
My daughter did, and to some extent still does this.  She definitely did it at 3 1/2.  I really don't think it is normal.  My daughter has Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder and she was banging her head on things too--she was frustrated because everything was bothering her.  She is now on appropriate medication, a year later, and we can actually go shopping.  By the way, she was off her medication about two months ago and the behavior returned, thus it was not a stage.  There are a variety of disorders that could trigger these types of behaviors.  Because you are consistent, it doesn't sound like it's a behavioral management issue. I have done a lot of research-- and I have a significant background in child psychology and psychiatry.  I believe you need to see a child psychologist and perhaps a child psychiatrist.  You don't have to endanger your marriage and your personal relationship with your child--there is help out there.  The first step is to not listen to people who tell you this is normal when you know in your gut that it is not.  You are the mother and you know more than anyone A good child neurologist is probably another step to take, as children with explosive behaviors may have underlying neurological disorders.  At any rate, a WONDERFUL book is "The Explosive Child."  It is great because it addresses explosive behaviors in children caused by a variety of factors.  It was a tremendous help to me.  I wouldn't jump to a conclusion about your child having ADHD until you have a more precise psychological and psychiatric evaluation.  It is very liberating once you have some answers and some methods of treating the problem behaviors.  Good luck.
Avatar universal
try this site, http://www.users.uswest.net/~gromer/Enemy.html. you may find it iteresting. I use it for a different reason but it makes a lot of sence and gets you wondering about other possible causes for things such as ADHD and there was at least one case involving ADHD. I'm new to the site so you may find more. Look under "cases". Good luck. Joyce.
Avatar universal
My daughter did, and to some extent still does this.  She definitely did it at 3 1/2.  I really don't think it is normal.  My daughter has Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder and she was banging her head on things too--she was frustrated because everything was bothering her.  She is now on appropriate medication, a year later, and we can actually go shopping.  By the way, she was off her medication about two months ago and the behavior returned, thus it was not a stage.  There are a variety of disorders that could trigger these types of behaviors.  Because you are consistent, it doesn't sound like it's a behavioral management issue. I have done a lot of research-- and I have a significant background in child psychology and psychiatry.  I believe you need to see a child psychologist and perhaps a child psychiatrist.  You don't have to endanger your marriage and your personal relationship with your child--there is help out there.  The first step is to not listen to people who tell you this is normal when you know in your gut that it is not.  You are the mother and you know more than anyone A good child neurologist is probably another step to take, as children with explosive behaviors may have underlying neurological disorders.  At any rate, a WONDERFUL book is "The Explosive Child."  It is great because it addresses explosive behaviors in children caused by a variety of factors.  It was a tremendous help to me.  I wouldn't jump to a conclusion about your child having ADHD until you have a more precise psychological and psychiatric evaluation.  It is very liberating once you have some answers and some methods of treating the problem behaviors.  Good luck.
Avatar universal
My daughter did, and to some extent still does this.  She definitely did it at 3 1/2.  I really don't think it is normal.  My daughter has Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder and she was banging her head on things too--she was frustrated because everything was bothering her.  She is now on appropriate medication, a year later, and we can actually go shopping.  By the way, she was off her medication about two months ago and the behavior returned, thus it was not a stage.  There are a variety of disorders that could trigger these types of behaviors.  Because you are consistent, it doesn't sound like it's a behavioral management issue. I have done a lot of research-- and I have a significant background in child psychology and psychiatry.  I believe you need to see a child psychologist and perhaps a child psychiatrist.  You don't have to endanger your marriage and your personal relationship with your child--there is help out there.  The first step is to not listen to people who tell you this is normal when you know in your gut that it is not.  You are the mother and you know more than anyone A good child neurologist is probably another step to take, as children with explosive behaviors may have underlying neurological disorders.  At any rate, a WONDERFUL book is "The Explosive Child."  It is great because it addresses explosive behaviors in children caused by a variety of factors.  It was a tremendous help to me.  I wouldn't jump to a conclusion about your child having ADHD until you have a more precise psychological and psychiatric evaluation.  It is very liberating once you have some answers and some methods of treating the problem behaviors.  Good luck to you.
Avatar universal
Our son did some of this behavior....banging head etc...and he also used to move furniture.
He would push anything and shout and scream. Nothing in particular brought it on(or so we thought) it came without warning. We also had him checked by a doctor and he was put thru series of tests at childrens hospital. Finally the ped. suggested we take him to an allergy Doctor.Come to find out he was allergic to red dye and orange dye.All summer long he had been eating orange freezies and we also found out there was orange dye in childrens tylenol......hje was allergic! He was only 2 years old and this was his bodies reaction to the dye.Now I'm not trying to imply that this is your son's problem but if you exhaust all other possibilities you might try looking into allergies....I wish I had from the beginning.The behavior stopped as soon as we cut all food and med.'s with these dyes in them.Good-Luck!
Avatar universal
I have a 4 year old that is exhibiting similar symptoms.  I, too, agree that the book "The Explosive Child" is great.  Traditional behavior methods do not work on my child.  He also shows signs of food allergies, particularly food dyes.  We have an appointment with an Allergist at Childrens in October.  My prayers are with you.  Hang in there.

Carole
Avatar universal
A related discussion, Tantrums in children under 2 was started.
Popular Resources
Fearing autism, many parents aren't vaccinating their kids. Can doctors reverse this dangerous trend?
Is a gluten-free diet right for you?
We answer your top questions about the flu vaccine.
Learn which over-the-counter medicines are safe for you and your baby
Yummy eats that will keep your child healthy and happy
Healing home remedies for common ailments