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Troubled child

Shayleen's picture

So my stepdaughter is now 7, will be 8 this year, and has lived with me and my husband since she was 4. She has no contact with her biological mom (we don't know where she is) not does she ever talk about her. I am posting on here to hopefully get some help! She has been getting into trouble constantly since she started living with us. It had gotten better but now we are back to old habits. She gets into trouble everyday at daycare and at school. She does things to make people upset on purpose and lies like crazy. We have tried every tactic we can think of to stop this behavior. We've tried the corner, the wall, bed early, sitting on edge of the bed, spankings, positive reinforcement, ignoring the bad praising the good, good job charts, gold stars, taking toys away... You name it... We've tried it. I was just wondering if they're are other people going through this! I feel like this is never going to end!

Azure's picture

Awww I hear you. I always advise talking to your pediatrician. My son was also troubled and when I finally broke down in his pediatrician's office about it, they referred me to a behavior specialist at our local Children's Hospital. Also, the school helped us get in touch with our Intermediate Unit (every county has one, I think). They have lots of options for help. Both of these changed our lives for the better. That, and time. He is 17 now and has grown out of a lot of his issues, thank goodness.

My son was so bad, he was expelled from Kindergarten! He is now a good student in a public school and likes school very much (and hasn't been in any real trouble since 5th grade)!

Much luck to you! **Hugs!***

Shayleen's picture

We've been through a mental health for behavioral issues but they said all tests were inconclusive and that was it. I'm in the military so don't really have a choice of who to go to.

Shayleen's picture


Shayleen's picture

I understand how she has had a rough life! I I hate that she went through that. When she first came to live with me I bough her everything new. I wanted her to have a life that I never had.

I always tell her I love her. I want her to always know that. I leave little notes for her randomly telling her that I love her. Even this past weekend we went to the park multiple times and watched multiple family movies so that she knows how much fun we can have if she wasn't in trouble all the time. I want to do all those things for her on the daily but how do I when she's always in trouble? I already got a text from daycare, an hour after I dropped her off, that she had already been yelling at other kids and been in time out a couple times already.

We have went through the process for behavioral issues and ADHD but the doctors says it's inconclusive and that was the end. My husband and I don't know what to do now. I'm scared that if this continues then I'll lose daycare.

Azure's picture

Been there. I lost my daycare with my son too. Well actully the director pulled me in her office one day and gently suggested that I pull my son out of that daycare center because the complaints from the other parents were mounting. And one parent was threatening a lawsuit if my son was not removed.

So, I found someone who would watch my son from her home. It was better for him anyway.

Shayleen's picture

She is in a home daycare right now. My daycare provider says she is doing things she knows she's not supposed to do. I'm getting the vibe that she's starting to get annoyed with it. She's been going there for 7 months now.

Rags's picture

Sentences. 10s of thousands of them begining NOW. When she pulls her toxic bullshit she sits in a bare part of the house in an uncomformtable chair with a writing tablet and a pencil and she writes. Every free minute she has she writes.

I will not lie, cheat, or steal or cause problems my misbehaving. x1500

I will do what I am told to do when I am told to do it. x2500

I will do my homework and turn it in on time. x3000


Align the sentence with the behavior you want ot correct.

On messy sentence and she starts over. She writes 120-160 sentenes for hour and if she misses the quota that you set she starts over.

My kid wrote 10s of thousands of sentences beginning at about your Skid's age and ending when he was ~13 years old.

The bonus .... she will have amazing handwriting.

If the family goes out to dinner she can come with you but as soon as you walk back in the house ... sentences. If you eat at home she gets a 15min break to eat dinner with the family. If she takes a bathroom break she still has to meet that hourly quota.

For my Skid he had to be in a barren room so that he would not be distracted. Fortunately at the time we lived in a 6br house and there were only three of us. So we had a tortuous antique wooden school desk and he sat in it for thousands of hours and writing sentences. He referred to the sentence room as "the Tower of London".

To this day if you mention the "tower" and sentences SS-21 cringes. Of course he laughs about it now and he freely admits that the sentence inquisition was the most effective consequence we ever devised when he was a snarky turd of a preteen and early teen. He clearly understood that if he was screwing around and misbehaving when he was supposed to be working (school) then he worked when he should have been playing.

To amplify the message we used to go outside and play with the neighborhood kids in our yard right outside of hte room that SS was writing sentences in. It used to drive him insane.

For us sentences were an evolutionary process. We tried many different consequences before we arrived at sentences.

Give it a try.

Good luck.

Azure's picture

I am SO going to do this with my 11 year old next time he gets detention for missing homework or talking in class!!

Shayleen's picture

We've tried the sentences as well. She would sit at the table and write for hours and only have half a page done. I would tell her until you finish these pages front and back you won't get up. She would literally take her time and sit at the table till midnight. This happened on multiple occasions. And if we just left her alone she wouldn't do anything. I would come back in a hour to check on her and she's literally have one sentence done.

This past weekend I took everything out of her room. No posters. No toys. No books. Nothing. She walked in her room and acted like nothing was wrong! I was like seriously. She just ignored that everything was stripped from her room and went on with her day. Nothing we do phases her! It's so irritating.

Azure's picture

OH man, she is a tough one! Can you get a 2nd opinion? Oppositional Defiance Disorder is coming to my mind (and I am NO doctor, this is just my own humble opinion!)

Shayleen's picture

I've requested one yes. I'm military so it's not easy for us to get off base care. I am about to call and see if the referral was approved or not. I need help with this kid! I love her but I'm on edge all the time now. Every time I get a text I'm scared it's daycare and it usually is.

Azure's picture

Yes, I know what you mean. There were many years that the sound of my phone ringing would make me physically ill because 99% of the time it was about my son. One time I actually pulled over on the side of the road and vomited.

Please hang in there. It is SO frustrating trying to find the right help, but sometimes all it takes is finding the right doctor. I hope you do. You are doing so much for her and in the end it will pay off. I know it seems like a long road, but you will make it. You are already doing all the right things! One day at a time, and keep talking to people about it.