Time for a parent coach.


Our daughter who is 4.5 is very strong willed and I feel at my wits end knowing how to deal with her. Often I am in tears when my husband comes home in the evening. Recently, i decided I'd had enough of the the dawdling,whining, and demanding behavior. Since she turned three and in conjunction with the pregnancy and birth of our (now 14 months old) son, this behavior has waxed and waned in its severity. i'm trying so hard to be patient and remember that she is four but I'm having a hard time and despite trying to follow Johns advice I feel very discouraged.

We recently tried to reimplement the ticket system, picking four behaviors and four tickets, specifically Not doing what she is told to do the first time (whether it is a task or to stop doing something), Demanding Behavior, Whining/Complaining, Talking Back. This seemed to be too much so I decided to assign all the tickets to the first behavior, but it feels like she does not want to listen to the word no and often argues with you when you tell her to do something. Additionally, she takes forever to do anything (this is exasperating when time is a factor) or she will tell you she did it and then you find out she didn't. Such as asking her to put laundry away and then finding it hidden somewhere in the house. After losing all her tickets, I've sent her to her room for the day and took away her evening story (a favorite).However, this does not seem to curb the behavior. In fact tonight I refused to read to her when I discovered that she has not emptied the potty in her room ( one of her morning chores) despite telling me she would.

Additionally, she often wants me to play with and read to her all day. This is point of contention between us as she feels like I never do enough. I am trying to do more things with her and with her alone ( I work part time as a fitness instructor and must do a great deal of my work at home) as she is jealous of the time our son receives. But it does not seem enough and just this week she has started to stay that I don't love her as much as I love her brother. I am heartbroken over this and worry that perhaps I am micromanaging her behavior. Despite being a great follower of John's ideas, I feel confused and at a loss as to how to proceed. Am I expecting too much from her, nitpicking her behavior? She genuinely seems hurt and she does not seem to understand that we expect her to do as we say. But the turmoil is exhausting for everyone in the house.

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