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Cathey
Cathey asks:
Q:

My 7 year old daughter runs when she gets in trouble and sometimes if she thinks she might be.

My 7 year old little girl has had a problem with running if she thinks she is in trouble or if she thinks that she is going to get in trouble. When she is finally caught she will kick, hit, slap, and bite anyone that catchs her. She got kicked out of school because of this. What can I do to help her with this problem?
In Topics: School and Academics, ADHD & attention issues, Discipline and behavior challenges
> 60 days ago

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Expert

Hand in Hand
Jan 4, 2010
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What the Expert Says:

Hi Cathey,

I'm sorry to hear your daughter is struggling. I hope we can give you some suggestions that will help.

When children become emotionally charged, like they do when they think they are in trouble with an adult, they can't think. They simply can't function normally. They can't listen, and the slightest thing brings them to tears or tantrums. Your child needs closeness and patience. It sounds to me like your daughter is terrified. She can't get out of that state without help.

At times like this your child needs to have you close to her while she bursts out with the intense feelings she has. This spilling of feelings, together with your kind attention and patience, is the most effective way to speed your child's return to her sensible, loving self. A good, vigorous tantrum or a hearty, deeply felt cry will clear your child's mind of the emotion that was driving her off track and will enable her to relax again and make the best of the situation she is in.

This emotional storm is a natural and normal process. Your daughter's mind and body knows what to do when she is overwhelmed with stress--she lets it out. If a caring adult is there to listen to her and pay caring attention while she releases this fear, she will come through the storm a better, more capable child.

She is very lucky to have you there to help her with this process. More ideas are included below.

Good luck with your daughter. We'll be thinking about you,

Julianne Idleman
Hand in Hand Program Director
www.handinhandparenting.org

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Additional Answers (2)

dgraab
dgraab , Parent writes:
Hi Cathey,

I'm sorry to hear about this behavioral challenge you're having with your daughter. Have you talked with her pediatrician about this? You might also explore if your daughter's school or school district has a child psychologist on staff who could examine her and make some recommendations as well.

Here are some resources on Education.com that you may find helpful...

Hitting, Kicking, Biting, and Hair Pulling:
http://www.education.com/reference/article/Ref_Hitting_Kicking/

When Your Child Is Aggressive or Scared:
http://www.education.com/reference/article/Ref_When_Your_Aggressive/

Positive Discipline:
http://www.education.com/topic/positive-discipline/

Managing Challenging Child Behavior:
http://www.education.com/topic/misbehavior-discipline/

Child Development Guide: Seven to Eight Years:
http://www.education.com/reference/article/Ref_Child_Guide_Seven/

I hope you are successful in teaching your daughter that physical aggression against others won't be tolerated in your home or at school, and that she'll need to find other non-violent ways to express her anger and frustration. The first two article links above offer some specific suggestions for how to guide your daughter in this way.

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Loddie1
Loddie1 , Parent writes:
Sounds like an anxiety issue.
> 60 days ago

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