I am a mother of 5 children 4 boys and 1 girl, my second child has been diagnosed with ADHD and learning difficulties and hearing and speech difficulties, my question relates to how to the other children are starting to behave, and have the same outbursts as him even though there is nothing wrong with them it is like they think that, that is the right way to act and it is like a chain from one to another to another even though we consistantly talk to them and explain that it is wrong. I understand that it is hard for them and i am a very consistant mother forever trying to make the house a happier and calmer place but nothing is working,he does take medication and tutoring, my other children are extremely bright and talented but the noise and violent outbursts towards each other is very dangerous, we do disipline them and reward all of them for good behaviour but this isnt working and each child by themselves are terrific and calm but other traits are starting to shine through in the best of situations, i dont know wether their dad being ADHD is of any importantance as i am the main disiplinary and everything else. He doesnt seem to be worried as he finds this normal for soo many boys in one house but i dont, not to say that he doesnt support me he is fantastic do you have any ideas?
I do not see violent outbursts as something you should either have to tolerate or to manage on your own without your husband's support. You have enough on your plate with 5 children and one with disabilities. Behaviors are contagious among children, particularly when they believe that exhibiting the undesirable behavior gets them something they want (particularly your attention! even negative attention like yelling or scolding can keep these unpleasant behaviors going). I am sure your husband is a wonderful fellow, but you can not manage 5 children without the two of you working as a team. If you do not present a united front, the children will take advantage of the situation (do not for one minute think they do not know who is the softy) and you will grow resentful to him over time.
I recommend you start working with a psychologist to learn how to get these behaviors under control. Ask your pediatrician or psychiatrist for a referral to someone who specializes in Parent Management Training (or applied behavior analysis). Find someone who can design a family behavior plan for the children--all of them need to be on a behavior plan until you are getting some relief. In the meantime, definitely check out the book The Kazdin Method by Alan Kazdin. He has excellent, research based information about how to change behavior from what you do not want to the behavior you want to see from your kids (as well as a chapter on managing the behavior of more than one child at a time).
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