My daughter is 4 1/2 yrs old. She goes to PreK & is a delight there. She's never been in trouble at school. However, with my husband & me, she can be a very naughty. I am glad that she saves her "bad" behavior for us instead of in public. But I'm beginning to wonder if she has a split personality because her personality can change on a dime. For instance, we went to Kindergarten registration. She was terrific, charmed everyone, answered all questions. On the very short drive home, we talked about how nice it was, etc. We pulled into our driveway & she pretended to be asleep. When I turned around to look at her, she opened her eyes & gave me a big smile. Then closed her eyes and opened them again. She immediately started to kick, scream & cry that I woke her up. She wasn't pretending. She was hysterical! We've had a few instances in the last month like this (mainly when she is with me). Another time, we went for a walk and I told her she could push a dolly in the doll stroller. We couldn't find a doll so we chose a stuffed animal. We walked up the road chatting & having a nice time. I said, "Oh, what a good mommy you are. Taking your baby for a walk." Immediately, she shoved the stroller away from her saying, "It's not a baby. It's yucky!" then she tried hitting the stuffed dog. I took the stroller away & kept walking her up the street. She stopped crying & asked for the stroller back. I told her yes she could have it but she needed to behave. The stroller was not even completely back in her hands when she again shoved it across the street & started to rage that it was yucky &horrible.
We are also having problems with food. In the last two weeks, I've noticed that she is spitting food into her napkin like corn, apples, blueberries, peas-all foods she loves. She says she doesn't like the skin (the apples had been peeled.) She is a picky eater &doesn't try new foods so I am very worried about her giving up these foods that she loves and are good for her. Help!!!
First, relative to the food issue, refrain from getting into struggles with her. You don't want to be creating opportunities for combat. She is asserting herself, as most pre-schoolers do at some point in their early years. That's OK. As long as she is not breaking any rules, let it alone. If she breaks rules, discipline her via time out.
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