*Sorry, didn't mean to wrote a novel! If you get through and comment, thank you xo
Before I start, my daughter is amazing!! I love her beyond words and would do anything for her. But f%$k me she is hard work!!
She is the eldest of my 3 girls (lord help me!) and is my people pleasing rule follower, the middle is easy going, but cheeky and sneaky and the youngest is a mix of the best and worst of both (I'm sure I'll be writing in about her in a few years, lol). All three are very strong willed, hard headed, determined, resilient kids who I am extremely proud of. We are trying to guide them to become decent humans without crushing their spirits but at the moment I'm done with their crap, especially the biggest, and just don't know what to do anymore. I would never give up and walk away, but I can see why some do. I hate living this way!
I know hormones have a lot to do with it, but she has always been a volcano that explodes without warning when the wrong buttons are pushed. She tries to parent her sisters and is bossy and dominating, but can also be the complete opposite, then gets upset when people don't do things the way she would do them had she been in control. This is a battle she faces at school. She has a list of letters after her name different peads and psychs have given her over the years which we are mindful of and work on. They are a reason she behaves the way she does, but we do not allow that to become an excuse for her poor choices. She only behaves this way at home as we are her safe space. She holds it together at school, with friends and family, but it is exhausting so when she is home she is done and lets seemingly small stuff become huge. It is like she doesn't know how to find the middle ground without taking personal offence and is always missing social cues which lead to disaster. After she has calmed she is so remorseful it is heartbreaking. I know many kids are like this, but her reactions are extreme. We can have several massive meltdowns a day!! Especially if she is overstimulated or in sensory overload.
It doesn't help that her sisters seem to enjoy pissing her off for the sole purpose of pissing her off, then they get upset when their goal is reached and she is yelling at them (my biggest struggle!!!). They don't always do that and there are times when they play together so beautifully it makes me want to cry, but even those times are spoilt in seconds when one of the younger ones inadvertently push the bitch switch.
We are all sick of walking on eggs shells and awaiting the next tsunami of screaming and yelling. I'm on edge all the time and am frightened of saying something I will regret in the heat of the moment. I'm turning into the grumpy yelly mum I never wanted to be. We have always had a good routine which she thrives on and although they all test them, the boundaries don't move. We celebrate her "letters" as a gift as although they give her challenges, they also make her the amazing kid she is. We let her know that one day she will be able to control it, but she is still learning so can't expect to be perfect. We constantly fill all their buckets with love and compliments as well as acknowledging that none of us are perfect and failing is ok. We will always love each other no matter what. We say sorry and mean it. We do forgiveness and understanding. We limit screens and have proper family time daily.
I don't even know what I'm asking....maybe I just need to know it gets better. She isn't even a teenager yet so I'm petrified of what she will be like then. I miss the close bond we had when she was little. I know it changes as they grow and not need us as much, but I feel like I am losing her. She is becoming more closed off and I worry about how she sees herself and how to navigate her through this time with her confidence and self love intact. I know we are not alone and that this parenting gig is tough. I know it could be worse. I know that some of this is kids being kids etc. I know that this too shall pass, but none of that helps me now.
What can we do to help her? What can I do to help me and my hubby support them all and ourselves better? Please tell me there is light at the end of the tunnel!!!