Tuesday, 15 July 2014

The Barbarian Princess

Our young daughter has a very mercurial temperament, meaning that she can go from being calm to extremely upset at a moment's notice.  Usually it happens when something doesn't go as she expects it, or if she has been disciplined for improper behaviour.

When she becomes agitated in this fashion, there is very little we can do to calm her down and no amount of reason will help her understand the situation.  She fixates on the notion that she's not at fault, or she screams and refuses to obey, to the point where one of us has to discipline her or send her to her room, or sometimes both.  Occasionally her quick temper has disrupted her class at school, and I've had several discussions with her teachers and the school principal about it.

We all agree that she should have an evaluation for ADHD type disorders.  It's clear that there's nothing wrong with her intelligence - she is at the average or above average level in her schoolwork - but her outbursts will eventually cause her to be isolated and perhaps even bullied by her peers.

Table manners are another, possibly related, issue.  I grew up in a household where everyone was expected to be at the table promptly for meals, and to remain until everyone was done and Mom dismissed us. However creating that atmosphere with my own family has been less than successful.  More often than not Missy eats like a three-year-old instead of a girl who is 7-1/2.  She knows how to use a fork and knife, and she knows the mealtime rules, but all bets are off if the TV happens to be on and she'll want to eat in the TV room because she "hasn't seen this episode before".  It doesn't help that Hubby eats quickly and disappears into the TV room before either Missy or I are done.

A catchphrase from one of my favourite books is "Let it be a challenge to you."  Well, this is a definitely a challenge.

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