So, like your boyfriend's son, he may get mad and not take a moment before he just reacts by hitting your daughter. Most 6 year olds have a clear concept of right and wrong, and can be held accountable for their actions. In general, i recommend using time-out in this age group as follows:
1) give a warning (i omit this for physical violence
- that immediately goes to step 2)
2) tell the child what he did that was wrong - be specific! for example, "no scott, we don't hit. We keep our hands to ourselves."
3) place the child in a quiet area away from the family activities, but still close enough for you to monitor his or her behavior. This spot has to be boring (i.e. Stairs, corner, wall) - don't send him to his room with all the cool toys to play with, or let him be able to watch tv from time out!
4) have the child stay in this spot for one minute per year (in your case, 6 minutes). I recommend the use of a timer - like an oven timer - to reinforce when time out is done
5) return to your child and either tell them again what they did that was not acceptable (toddlers) or you can ask them why they were in time-out (school age)
6) have the child say "sorry" - sincerely - for the behavior, and let the child know that he/she is forgiven ("hugs and kisses time"). In the case of physical violence, i make the child apologize to the one he or she hurt.
7) let the child return back to the regular activities. Don't keep referring to this all day long - the punishment is done, and move on!
in your case, if your relationship is newer, his son may not be as willing to accept you as the disciplinarian - so talk with your boyfriend because consistency between all parents is very important!
in my opinion, most children with adhd or add do best clinically on a combination of medications to control the impulsivity, hyperactivity
, and inattention
to help the family and the child learn how to manage his or her behavior best.
Another thing to consider is that since all children are different, they may react differently to certain medications. Some children may have headaches, stomachaches, loss of appetite
), problems with sleep
, or become tearful, withdrawn, or aggressive. If you are concerned about this, talk to your doctor about the medication that your boyfriend's son is on - maybe a different medication would work better.
Finally, we have a doctor at utmb pediatrics
at bay colony who specializes in these issues - dr. William mize is a board certified behavioral and developmental pediatrician who has a special clinic designed to help general pediatricians (like myself) manage children with adhd where the treatment is not optimal. Your doctor can make a referral to dr. Mize, if desired, and you can call 1-888-utmb-kid for more information. I hope this is helpful!
sincerely - dr. Marney gundlach.