3 yo Out of Control


Hi, we have been having a really tough time with our 3 year old daughter for quite sometime now. She's always been a difficult and very resilient child. We recently started her in preschool to get a break from this chaos. Her behavior and attitude is really taking a toll on my husband and I and we are at a loss as to what is left to do. We feel like we have tried everything and it has had no effect on her. Now that she is in school we would like to put together a plan to start tackling these issues when she is home. We have tried the tickets method and have been using it consistently for months and it has just worn off nothing upsets her in-fact lately she is very manipulative, pleased with herself and laughing/grinning if a privilege is taken away or a consequence is dealt. We are dealing with tantrums,major whining problem, copying word for word things I or my husband say (to annoy people/get attention), Not listening (although more like not paying attention when told to do something) and VERY much a slow poke at everything.
Every morning is a battle to get her to school. She's uncooperative/ complains she can't do this or that or its too hard and acting very much like a drama queen. Most times when she's told to put shoes on she will not even attempt to touch them(she does know how to) She will stare at them and whine/ complain that she can't do it. She does this with almost all things I ask of her such as hanging up her back pack (she will barely pick it up, drop it and tell me she can't), washing her hands, which at school has no problem at home gives me these dirty looks/attitude and just stands there motionless holding her hands under the faucet. The other morning I asked her to pick up her pants off the floor and bring them to the laundry room.. Came back in the room and she is is still standing with them right next to her foot I asked again to pick them up and hand them to me and she flat out refused, put on an act and stood there doubled over with her hands dangling to the floor and that was her attempt at "trying". Im sick of her acting like I am expected to do these things for her because she doesn't feel like it.
We are having a really big problem of her not paying attention to what she is told/asked (she is always in la-la land)... Lately she has picked up on saying the word yeah (very unenthusiastically/bored) after everything we say/ask. She doesn't think about when or why she says it.. its become like a bad habit... We can ask her whats her name and her response yeah...Did you have a nice day at school? yeah... What did you do? her response yeah... majority of the time she says it before we finish what we were saying which just proves to me more that she is not paying any attention... Last night I told her to go upstairs to the bathroom as clear as I could say it and she still wound up going to her room and waiting for me.. When asked where did I tell you to go sometimes she will know which just makes me question why she did not go there in the first place and other times its followed with an ummm I just can't? ... How do we get her to pay attention to us? Do we do anything about the yeahs? It has become so frustrating to hear it knowing that she's not paying attention and we feel like there's obviously no point to continue the conversation.
Her latest thing she's picked up on is copying us word for word, sound effects (if I drop something and say oops from the other room she will quickly find something to "accidentally" drop and say oops as well and then will stand there smiling waiting to see if I notice and if not she will copy the next thing I do). She especially does it more when my husband and I are talking. She will whisper word for word whatever is being said, when we turn to look at her she acts like she doesn't know what she's doing, thinks its funny will quickly scramble to make herself look like she's busy playing... Its the intention she's going for that is really starting to bother us and that she knows what she's doing yet acts innocent. She is always in this mindset and its getting very tiring!
Tantrums are not the biggest issue at the moment but they are still happening mainly when told its bed time and after I pick her up at school. Majority of the time I am carrying her out screaming because she will run away from me and will go completely limp when I try to pick her up. At the moment I am ignoring the tantrums and just carrying her out. Should I be handling this any other way? She goes to school Monday-Friday and has about 2 1/2 hours home if we are to use the tickets for any of this how many should we do on a daily bases with that time frame and would it increase to more on the weekends as she's home then too. Which of these issues should we be focusing on first and how do we go about handling the other problems?

Become A Member To View The Answer

Please register and purchase a subscription in order to view the answer. Existing members please log in.


View All Questions