Kids and whining and fighting

x-whiningI think this is something that we can all relate to. Whining and fighting.  I think there are just some people who like to whine and like to fight. Don’t we all know people like this? When this was on the news the other night, I wanted to check it out and see what they had to say about it.

When I watched this, it kind of surprised me.  My kids didn’t really whine in the way they were talking about.  If I told my kids to go do their homework or it was time to take a bath, they didn’t really whine about it.  They whined more often while fighting with each other.  It was classic fighting I think.  Jason would tease Toby quietly and then Toby would whine “Jason stop it” and I’d yell up to Toby to quit it and Jason would laugh at him for getting yelled at.  I did this to Darryl too.  Classic oldest picking on the younger one.

I dealt with fighting in two ways.  If they fought over a game or TV show or a toy, I’d just walk over, remove said object and walked away.  Or I’d turn off the TV and leave them sitting there.  If they were fighting over nothing, I’d send them both off to sit in the same room together.  There’s nothing that will stop a fight like that.  As soon as they realize they’re not “getting to you,” there’s nothing to fight over.  I think a lot of kids like to fight just to get attention and once they aren’t, you’d be surprised how fast they stop.  We also didn’t have “time outs.”  They weren’t invented yet so this worked for me.

Sometimes I do feel all this “talking” we do with kids just prolongs things.  You can talk till your blue in the face and if they feel they are getting somewhere, they will just keep up the debate.  I don’t do debating with a child.  I just don’t and my kids got away with an awful lot but once they knew I was done and sick of it, they generally stopped because once I was to that point, they knew it was over.  I wasn’t mean but I was the parent and I wasn’t about to explain everything to them for an  hour when I can stop it right now.  I’m not about to start listening to some lame story that goes on and on about the “why” they just hit their brother over the head with a 2X4!!  Come on people.

But I do have to admit there were some good idea’s on this program.  Do you have to deal with the fighting and whining?  Just whining?  Just fighting?  What do you do or what do you plan to do if your not there yet?

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15 Responses to Kids and whining and fighting

  1. I think you’re right about the attention part, definitely. When I bugged my brother when we were little, I think I most often did it so I could end up being the one who was crying [I’d bug him so much he’d push me over or hit me – usual bro-sis stuff, nothing dangerous or anything] so that my parents would coo over me. I don’t remember this consciously, I just assume that this is part of why I annoyed him.
    I think my parents did just about what you did – there was always a certain point where we’d know we had gone too far and we’d just quit it.

  2. Laura (LS) says:

    I’ve only got one, but man, has that boy perfected the Art of the Whine. It’s a directed sound. Goes right to the base of my brain and makes my eye twitch. I’ve tried technique after technique, but he’s like a virus… he assesses the situation and adapts: “hmmm, mom’s staying calm. Better ratchet up the decibel”, “hmmm, mom’s starting to discuss my feelings, I’ll tell her SHE hurt MY feelings,” “mom’s getting mad! YESS. Now throw something.” And so it goes.

    So…. I’ve turned to charts to pre-empt the whine. We have charts for behavior at school, a chart for him to follow directions, and just today, started a chart for getting ready on time in the morning, and will start one this evening for getting ready for bed without a whining meltdown.

    I think the biggest thing in that article was this sentence:

    “Paul and Sarah say the technique works, as long as you’re disciplined enough to do it. ”

    That’s the biggest thing, isn’t it? Kids have nothing better to do than fight for what they want. There is no ‘big picture’ for them. They live in the moment. As Hot Rod says ALL THE TIME, “I want what I want when I want it.” And I KNOW he didn’t hear that from me – I think he picked it up at school. So the big thing is for me to remain in the present. To deal with this problem, at this moment, and not think about how it’s going to look to an outsider 20 years from now when he’s sitting on a therapists couch.

  3. Sue says:

    I read this story as soon as you told me about it and printed out the tips that the pro gave. I have found that my kids respond much better when I use the neutral tone then a harsh one, but sometimes that’s REALLY HARD! I am also getting more response out of the little one when I ask him where do his toys go instead of telling him to put them away.

  4. Doraz says:

    “To discipline thus means to instruct a person or animal to follow a particular code of conduct, or to adhere to a certain “order.” Consequently, “in the field of child development, discipline refers to methods of modeling character and of teaching self-control and acceptable behavior.”

    This definition is one that made sense to me. I followed it, the way I felt best.
    I always challenged my kids to be analytical.

  5. Just a Mom says:

    My brother & I always fought! I was the whiner! I can still remember my mother very calmly telling my brother to leave me alone and then she would look at me and yell “And you stop that damn whinning!” My kids are the same way! I guess it is payback and I am finding myself saying the exact same thing my mom used to! My girls know when to stop usually. If not I send them to their rooms basically for me to have some peace!
    My favorite is when I tell my kids to do something like “set the table”, then they tell me “but I have to do this.” I always respond ” Did I ask you a question? No, I didn’t think I did. I told you to do something so do it!”

  6. tessa says:

    I am w. Just A Mom. My bro and I always fought, and I was the whiner, and the initiator! He was so sweet and looked up to me. I feel SO bad for how I was to him! We had good times, but what sticks w/ me is feeling BAD! We are close now though.

    If we were fighting in the car, I remember my mom pulling over the car and spanking us right there on the side of the road!! Most of the time, we did as we were told. We knew whining would get us nowhere and that our mom meant what she said!

    Nice post!

  7. Gary says:

    Two of our four kids are whiners. Our four year old LOVES to whine and is quite good at it. He has perfected it as a matter of fact. He has different pitches to his voice and everything. We are trying to break him of this habit by making him sometimes sit in the corner using this equation….

    Years of age=minutes in the corner as a punishment

    This works fairly well as does sending him to bed early. Usually when he is whining a lot it’s because he is tired and should go to bed a little early anyway.

    The other whiner is our 15 year old son. Every time I ask him to do something, he whines to mom that he shouldn’t have to do it for some lame ass reason or another. This I have NO patience for. If I ask him to take out the trash, there is some lame ass reason as to why he should not have to do it and whines to mommy about it. Pretty much anything I asked him to do warranted whining to mommy.

    This however was a nice EASY fix. It only took a few days really.

    1. When I did the laundry, I did EVERYONE’S laundry in the house except for his. When he asked about his clothes I simply told him that I didn’t think that I should have to wash his clothes. I mean, I didn’t wear them and get them dirty. Why should I have to wash them??

    2. When I cooked the family a meal, I would make sure there was enough for all of us except the whiner. When he asked where his food was, I simply let him know that I didn’t think I should have to cook his food. I have my food and that’s what really matters right? There is some frozen “crap” in the freezer you can pop in the microwave and enjoy.

    3. When asked “Can I get a ride to (fill in the blank)” I answered with the following……

    I don’t feel that I should have to give you a ride when I am perfectly comfortable sitting here enjoying my coffee. You do have two perfectly good legs that seem to work just fine. I’m sure if you put one foot in front of the other, you will be there before you know it. You can even make this process go a little faster yet by using those same legs to pedal your bicycle wherever you would like to go.

    After two or three days of this……PROBLEM SOLVED!! 😉

  8. joanharvest says:

    I had the best punishment when my daughter and son were fighting with each other. I would make them sit very close to each other in the recliner for 15 minutes. I did this whenever they fought. They hated it and usually made up fast so the torture wouldn’t be prolonged. Even as a young child my daughter was extremely clean. She thought of her brother as a whirling dirt bomb and hated touching him. I would sit in the kitchen laughing hysterically inside as they made up. Oh, the good old days.

    • Joy says:

      Great, great story Joan. That was basically what I did. They didn’t want to be alone in the same room and the fighting would usually stop before they even got there!! It’s funny now and you know what they say about “payback!!”

  9. Adell says:

    Joy, this was a great topic. I liked your method of discipline when your boys fought or teased. It sounds like you really had wisdom. Having a compliant obedient child, my oldest and then a strong willed second child and the baby to boot was a combination where there wasn’t as much bickering because the older one ignored the teasing of the younger one. I think it helped that they were opposite gender too. I always had to keep a few steps ahead of my stong willed son. I usually would take things away from him. Now when I watch my daughter with her three, it can be very interesting. Jon the 17 yr old he teases the girls, Liz 15 and Kathryn 11. It doesn’t seem to be much of a problem, but wow those girls are something else. Girls sure can fight. Colleen usually sends them to their room or they don’t get to parcipate in something with the family. They hate this as they love do things with mom and dad and gramma and papa too.
    Colleen always wanted two girls so they could have a sister that she never had. So when the girls get heated up, I calmly say(lovingly of course) “Wasn’t it you that wanted these sisters?)

  10. nikki says:

    I have a pretty big whiner that I nanny for. Plain and simple he whines if you ask him to move 3 inches to the left. He gets a time out every single time. He has to learn he can’t whine and in turn throw a fit because he is asked to do something. His parents aren’t really on the same page as I am. My method is do what’s best for the child and not whats’ easiest for you. It’s easy for them to give him what he wants or to simply not make him do anything he doesn’t want to do. That doesn’t fly with me.
    Now for Bailey, he can whine quite a bit sometimes. Sometimes Jason eggs him on, I swear I only gave birth to one child but sometimes….UGH! If Bailey is in a “mood” I leave him alone. I know I want to be left alone when I’m not in a good mood. Jason likes to pester though, that has NEVER changed!!! I wish I could put him in a time out to be honest!!! lol

    • Joy says:

      Jason?? Likes to pester?? NOOOOO!!!!

    • tessa says:

      Nikki, I have a lot of respect for what you do!! I would not like watching others kids since I am not the parent and they do things differently. I agree-do what is best for the child, not what’s easy for you! My friend here lets her 6month old baby feed himself so she can get stuff done! A little independence is okay, but babies need lovin’!! Lots of toys to, when babies could care less. Although, I do think parents need to do what is best for themselves, and that will be what is best for the kids. Ex: for myself it is best to get my education, follow my dreams-otherwise I will not be happy and neither will the family!

  11. SKL says:

    I am getting to this late due to my recent workload. (Waah, my hours are too long!)

    I grew up in a mostly whine-free zone (my mom couldn’t tolerate it), so I don’t tolerate it well either. My girls go through phases when they are whiney or not whiney. Right now (famous last words) I don’t hear whining often. The girls are getting a lot more verbal and will usually try to “use their words” first. It doesn’t always work, but most of the time it’s sufficient. When I hear a whining kick starting, I usually try to put a stop to it right away because it’s a habit I want very much to discourage. The girls are advised that if they don’t work it out immediately, I will take an action that neither of them wants. I’ll put up the toy they are fighting over or whatever. They know I mean it! So that extends their patience until they both get a turn or whatever.

    Once in a while a whining fit continues because someone is particularly disappointed. That’s a maturity issue. As long as it doesn’t get them anywhere, they are hopefully learning that whining is ineffective at best, and I won’t be listening to it for the rest of my life . . . .

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