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  • living in a jail because of my 4 year old

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    Old 03-09-2009, 12:35 AM   #1
    daughter issues
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    living in a jail because of my 4 year old

    I've been having some real big problems with my 4 year old daughter, still. Quite frankly, I'm so tired of feeling like I don't deserve anything and that I'm living in a prison. I don't know what else to do anymore.

    I try to take into consideration that my daughter was sexually molested by her biological father (dealt with through court etc which is why I haven't been here in the last little while) but there's got to be a point where she stops blaming me for it. She is still seeing a psychologist but that's been no help.

    This is what I deal with every single day with my daughter. I get up (IF I've slept) and start clearing up her messes. I ask her to have a bath, she screams and yells and runs around the house naked and swears (yup, she's taken to cussing worse than a sailor). If she decides that she's hungry (even though I've already made her a big healthy meal) she will go into the kitchen and scream at the top of her lungs until I come in there to try to stop her (I have every single cupboard and drawer LOCKED as well as the fridge and freezer). IF I've bought myself a chocolate (easter egg) it'll be gone because she's managed to get it before I've had a chance to even get it put away. She constantly is into my makeup, which is in the ensuite and literally hangs in the middle of the ceiling about an inch from the ceiling. She has a 8:00 bedtime, and a routine that we start at 7:30pm. IF I'm lucky she'll eventually fall asleep anywhere from 11pm until 3am. She absolutely refuses to clean up her toys and makes a mess everywhere in the house. It's at the point where I've given away 99% of her toys as punishment for leaving them laying around.

    This child is literally into absolutely everything, and I don't know where I went wrong other than being forced by the courts to let her biological father (whom has been charged with domestic violence to myself and pled guilty to, AND has been charged with child abuse ... all of which the courts know about). On a good day, I'm lucky if I can get 3 hours sleep, but typically I have to go for days without sleeping. The same with eating, I'm lucky if I eat 1 meal a day, and even more fortunate if I can get a snack for myself.

    I've tried pretty much everything, and don't know what else to do. She's been tested for a variety of things and every single test has come back normal. I've tried spanking her (as a last resort), but she just laughs at me and tells me that I'm a bi**h. I live under lock and key in my own house, and my day is spent literally cleaning and laundry. I can't take it anymore,


    (I literally walk around the house with keys so that I can unlock one door and lock another behind me).

    Last edited by Administrator; 03-31-2009 at 09:01 PM. Reason: extremely inappropriate

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    Old 03-09-2009, 08:52 AM   #2
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    Re: living in a jail because of my 4 year old

    My suggestion is that you see a counselor for your own problems and life. You say that your daughter is already seeing a psychologist. It sounds like you need a lot of support to be able to deal with your own life. Do you have any support and do you have anybody to help you with you daughter (babysit her for a while, etc)?
    You probably don't want to hear this, but your daughter is 4 and you are an adult. Your daughter was just recently a baby. She has done nothing wrong and horrible things have happened to her. She is an innocent victim and you, although your life is hard, made your own decisions. You picked the man, you slept with him and you got pregnant. Your daughter didn't make any decisions. She just was born. She is an innocent little girl and if it is so hard for you, maybe you should consider foster care or adoption. Reading your post, it sounds like your daughter is a monster who is keeping you in prison which makes me wonder how you are treating her. Are you treating her as if she is a monster or like she is an innocent little girl who has experienced some horrific things and who needs a lot of hugs and a lot of understanding and nurturing? Spanking is the last she needs. Her soul has been spanked enough.
    And, by the way, your little girl is the one in prison, not you. You are an adult who has options and choices (even if it is hard, you still do have options), but the 4 year old has no choices. She has to do and live wherever it is decided for her.
    Also, I hope that her father is in prison, where he belongs, after abusing her. Sexual abuse is traumatic even for an adult woman with previous sexual experience, for a child it must be an unbelievable horror,
    especially coming from her own father. Poor little girl.

    Last edited by negot; 03-09-2009 at 04:24 PM.

    Old 03-09-2009, 06:05 PM   #3
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    Re: living in a jail because of my 4 year old

    This is a very sensitive subject because my son, whom is 4 is autistic & living with him can be difficult too! I understand the frusteration you are having as i am too facing quite an ordeal with him calling me stupid axx and throwing stuff at me expecially while im driving. As parents, you have to expect the worst & hope for the best. Alot of parents are in your same shoes! Although it can be depressing, you cannot blame her for things she has no control of. Please understand that i am sorry for you and any other parent that has to endure mental and physical abuse from a child, but you are bigger than her. Stand your ground! Don't give in, but be compassionate and show her constant attention, maybe something she is despertly needing!

    Please seek help asap from family, friends or a counselor! Best of luck! God Bless u!

    Last edited by Administrator; 03-31-2009 at 08:59 PM.

    Old 03-10-2009, 01:12 AM   #4
    daughter issues
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    Re: living in a jail because of my 4 year old

    No I don't have any support here, or have anyone that would be able to take care of my daughter for me. I moved here for the safety of my daughter, to PREVENT her from further sexual and physical abuse from her biological father.

    As far as how I treat her, even though I've got everything locked up so that she can't get to it and cause herself harm, I treat her like the princess she is. Her father is not in prison, and as a matter of fact he was able to get out of having to suffer the consequences of his actions, yet again. I don't treat her any differently than I've always treated her, and that includes not treating her differently because of what she's had to endure at the hands of her father (as suggested to me by her psychologist).

    Last edited by Administrator; 03-31-2009 at 09:00 PM. Reason: inappropriate remarks

    Old 03-10-2009, 01:23 AM   #5
    daughter issues
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    Re: living in a jail because of my 4 year old

    I'm really glad I'm not the only one that's got these types of issues with their children. I do my best to stand my ground with her, but she seems to have figured out what to say to get me to break my resolve and give in to her. I've found that's a constant challenge with her (and also with my eldest child as well). I think part of my problem with her is the fact that she's not sleeping, and that I've been up going on 4 straight days now. Unfortunately, I don't have any family or friends nearby that would be able to help. If I were to go to them for help it would put my daughter's safety in even more jeopardy with her bio. father.

    I know I've got a lot of anger inside me right now, and I know why. It's because of her bio. father's sexual and physical abuse to her, how he's not been held accountable for his actions (btw, I'm filing a civil suit against him on my daughter's behalf), and how he's been attempting to emotionally abuse me and threaten me as well. He's had friends of his in the police threaten me with physical violence, as well as friends of his in the military (all of whom have threatened to take my daughter away). As hard as it is for my daughter and myself being where we are, I know that we're both safe (especially her) from the real monster (her bio. father). I know that if he so much as thinks about coming here, I let the police here know and they'll arrest him and charge him.

    Last edited by Administrator; 03-31-2009 at 09:02 PM.

    Old 03-13-2009, 02:08 PM   #6
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    Re: living in a jail because of my 4 year old

    oh man. i am so sorry for your poor little girl, and for you! what a heartbreaking situation to be in! it is hard when our kids get so out of control like that and they know exactly what buttons to push in us in order to get their way! i can't say that i know exactly what you are going through, but i can empathize. my kids are remarkably well behaved 99% of the time, but they have days where they can just be horrible little monsters. i can't imagine going through that day after day. no wonder your original post was so bleak. i have a lot of experience with difficult children though, because i taught in daycare for 11 years and the director would send me the difficult children because i was the only one who could handle them. so the advice i give is based on my experience with both my own kids and the difficult kids i've dealt with over the years.

    it's obvious you love your little girl. you wouldn't be here asking for help if you didn't. it's got to be a tough situation for you to be in. you don't want to hurt your daughter any further than she's already been hurt, so disciplining her must be hard for you. unfortunately, you are going to have to crack down on her.

    consistency is the key. talk to her frankly. tell her that she is a big girl and she needs to start acting like a big girl. set some ground rules that she must obey. have her help you set the rules. if she disobeys the rules, put her in time out. i know time out seems like it isn't punishment, but if you do it right, it really is a good teaching tool. do you ever watch supernanny? her time out method is really the best one out there. i can explain it to you if you are interested.

    another key, is don't ask her to do things. tell her what she is going to do and then make sure she does it. it might be a battle at first, but after she understands that you are serious, she will start to obey. like bathtime.... tell her it is bathtime, and then get her into the bath. don't negotiate, don't get upset if she starts screaming and cursing, don't yell, just get her into the bath. i used to give my girls a choice.... they can come willingly and take a nice warm bath, or they can fight me and then the bath will be cold. i believe we had a cold bath one time and since then they come willingly to bathtime. it seems cruel and will probably break your heart to be bathing your child in cold water while she is wailing and miserable and freezing cold, BUT it's way less cruel to start teaching her now, then to wait and let her grow up to be a spoiled out of control monster.

    you said you don't have any support where you are? have you tried contacting your local church? most churches have groups and specialists who deal in that sort of thing and would probably be able to help you tremendously. another thing you could look into is if your local school has a pre-k program or any kind of program that deals with kids in special situations.

    anyway, i hope things improve for you.

    Old 03-13-2009, 09:00 PM   #7
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    Re: living in a jail because of my 4 year old

    As a teacher I have worked with kids with emotional and behavioral disorders from sexual abuse and other types of early childhood trauma. What you are going through is no joke. The kids I worked with were age 5-9 and screamed like 2 year olds when frustrated, cried and sobbed, stole things, attacked me and other kids in the class, bit, scratched, threatened to kill us, hurt themselves, and in many ways were completely impossible. I am sorry you have had to deal with this type of situation and though you blame yourself, try to get past that for now and deal with the situation at hand, which in my opinion, sounds like a daily crisis. Any parent who feels they are locked in a prison needs help.

    First, try to find a pre-k program for your child that works with kids with special needs. If she has no "diagnosis" yet, get her one. It will give her the help and you too that you need. She can always change and diagnosis can change in the future. For now she obviously has emotional problems. She may need medication to help calm her anxiety and nerves. By sending her to school you will get a break which will make you a better mom, get support from other parents in your situation and get advice from teachers on what to do at home.

    In the meantime, children with these kinds of behaviors tend to not respond to discipline in the same way as other kids. They will do what your daughter does, such as laugh it off, or react extremeley to the most minor consequence.

    Try to change your method of discipline into a reward system, and set up a daily schedule. These 2 things will help her feel secure and in control. Try to stick to it as much as possible. For example, meals, arts and crafts, video, nap, outside play, story time etc. at exactly the same time. Boring for you but after doing this for about a week, she most likely will calm down a bit and start to respond. Offer rewards for good behavior and put EVERYTHING in writing and in visual symbols/picturres. For example- find out what motivates her most and then come up with a few cool things on your own. Cleaning up toys=half hour of TV time or going to bed on time (set the time) = something else. Try to keep rewards immediete in the beginning as kids who have emotional problems tend to not see past the right now and need immediete gratification. Once the trust with you and her redevelops you can start bringing the rewards more long term. Also keep rewards simple. Getting to play with a special toy you keep in your closet makes more sense than offering to buy her something new.

    Don't be afraid to say no if she is doing something unsafe or unnacceptable. Let her have a tantrum and ignore it. If it gets dangerous, learn how to do physical restraints (form of deep hugging/holding) which often helps to calm them and also protects them from hurting themselves or others.

    Talk to your daughter when she is willing to talk about it. Don't be condesending or dismiss her feelings. Apologize for what happened but don't let her abuse you. Let her know that you would never have let her get hurt on purpose and now that you are aware of it you are doing everything in your power to keep her safe.

    I hope all of this helped in some way. I loved the kids I worked with but I did not have to live with them and I can imagine what a challenge that would be. I can tell you some of the kids ended up really progressing and doing very well. Consistent behavior management was key and helped them develop confidence and trust. The ones who didn't do as well tended to be older in their teens and we had gotten to them too late. Your daughter is still at a good age to turn things around. She needs to learn how to make good choices, how to trust and how to calm herself when the anger flares up. This may take some time but it can be done.

    Seek as much support as you can. It is out there and will help you so much.

    Keep us posted!

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