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KrissyKC
How do you deal with a complainer/grumbler?
May 10, 2013 at 7:02 PM

I have tried to get excited, cheer him on, have fun with the stuff myself...etc. He is just so.. uh... ho-hum about his life.

He's actually my easier kid usually, but what I'm noticing is he'll only do what he HAS to do and nothing more. I'm actually not talking so much about school work. He moans and groans about that sometimes, but I'm more concerned he just hangs back and doesn't DO other stuff.

Like, he wants so much to be on a baseball team and gets pumped and excited. Then at practice he kicks the dirt and stares at the coach like he just sprouted three heads. I suggested a short baseball camp this year and he got upset and started crying because he didn't want to. However, next year the boys are more competitive, and he will not be happy with himself if he falls behind. It was a daycamp for 3 hrs a day... he wouldn't tell me why he didn't want to.. he just grumbled and complained.

Then I let him play with his new legos most of the day (bought with his own money) and when he wanted to switch tasks, I told him he had to practice choir and instrument first and he threw another cry-baby whining session again.

This goes on for EVERYTHING. He is ho-hum about everything in his life. He stands and watches life go by, really.

He can hit a ball pretty good, and now he swings the bat REALLY slowly making very little effort. However, when I suggested maybe he just didn't want to be in baseball he fell to pieces in tears again. He won't really talk to me about it either... he just nods his head and say, "ok, yes maam, ok..." in that generic, quick way that means he's not really listening. oh, he's almost 9.

Replies

  • HopeJoyPeace1
    May 12, 2013 at 5:22 PM

    Sounds like my son to some extent.. The only thing he is excited about is Super hero's.. and comic books.

    I suggest sitting... Kids hate having to just sit and stare at a wall.. That is less fun than ANYTHING!

  • HopeJoyPeace1
    May 12, 2013 at 5:37 PM

    I don't know if your of the christian faith.. And if not.. Please feel free to disregared. However.. You asked what I would do..

    So were I in your situation.. And to some extent I am.. My son refuses to participate... Chores, homeschooling etc.. Unless it is fun.. He won't do it.. But he will whine, grumble etc...

    So for your sake.. And for mine.. I looked up what the bible says about Grumbling/complaining spirit

    And this is what I found.. I try to be as biblical as I can in how I respond to a situation.

    Complaining is a Sign of Being Ungrateful

    Yes, we have all done it from time to time. Things don’t go our way and we are complaining about this and whining about that. We make excuses. Yet the Bible clearly says that complaining is a sin. It is shows an attitude that you are ungrateful and bitter. It often tests God’s patience.

    1 Corinthians 10:10 - And do not grumble, as some of them did—and were killed by the destroying angel. (NIV)

    Job 10:1 - I loathe my very life; therefore I will give free rein to my complaint and speak out in the bitterness of my soul. (NIV)

    Complaining Can Lead to Disobedience

    While the Bible says that complaining is a sin, it also states that it can lead to further disobedience. Along with complaining comes pouting. If you complain too much or focus on all the negative things, you can lose sight of all the good things God does in your life. This can lead to an attitude where you lose faith and cause others to lose faith, too.

    Psalm 106:25 - They grumbled in their tents and did not obey the LORD. (NIV)

    Keep a Positive Attitude

    Things will go wrong in your life. A pop quiz. A long term paper. A break up. A fight with your friend. These things happen. You can spend your time complaining, taking your eyes off of God, or you can find a way to make things better. You can remember all the other things God has provided. Not only will you be happier, but you will be a positive Christian example to everyone around you.

    Ephesians 4:29 - Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. (NIV)


    Also see Philippians 2:14-15 14 Do all things without murmurings and disputings:

    15 That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke

    For me I see that my son needs to learn to obey.. That while he may not always like doing something that in the real world there are many instances where you must do what you don't want to.. And that as an adult especially in the working world that he must know how to put in effort.. regardless of his desire to do something.. So why not teach him that now..?

    Good luck momma.. I share your frustration!


  • KrissyKC
    May 12, 2013 at 8:10 PM

    You have a very smart little girl, thank her for her opinion and suggestion.    He begged for baseball to begin, in our home, they get choose what they do. 

    To other posters, he doesn't like when we cheer him on too much.   He would be embarrassed if we all got decked out and started cheering him on too much.   It distracts him if he hears me, so I don't start cheering until AFTER he has made a play.   He's an odd duck.  He likes to be silly and will carry on, but in group settings he'd rather we didn't call him out.   So we back off and just go watch and get excited afterward and let his coach do the correcting and teaching.

    I'm trying to respond to most every thought I've read up to now... sorry...

    Another suggestion was to get him alone... we do that, too.   However it's once every three weeks, each kid gets a "night" with a parent of their choice doing something of their choice.    He will open up sometimes, but other times he just wants to play games or just be together.

    Quoting celticdragon77:

    My 9yr old daughter was snuggled up with me last night as I read this post and without me knowing it she read it too. She blurted out that she knew the problem with the boy because you had already mentioned what it was - your child is doing what "he HAS to do and nothing more". 

    I sincerely understand the importance of developing good habits and character skills. However, I also know that children need the freedoms to explore and figure out who they are, what they love... 

    Every child is different and you know the complexity of your child better than anyone else. However, if what you have been doing isn't working, then it seems only wise to sit back down with the problem and try to resolve it from another angle. 



  • KrissyKC
    May 12, 2013 at 8:20 PM

    Yes, we are, actually.   Thank you for your effort in finding those verses and sharing them.   We have discussed him a couple times about what the bible says about grumbling and complaining.   Later I will come back to this and re-read this.

    Baseball was just an example.   His Bible Quiz team leader (who is really good with kids) has been having issues with him too.    I'm actually approached about his "behavior" in everything he participates in.   It's difficult to address behavior while still trying to balance not making it all negative for him.   It's a balancing act.

    He does have some impulse control and focus issues, and these things really work against him....His homeschool choir teacher had to discuss his behavior with me, his kindy teacher (before we homeschooled) complained constantly, his sunday school teachers have all mentioned problems, and his wed night commanders have complained, too.

    I just wish I could help him be happy again.   He has cried about six or seven times this week, and at almost nine... I think that's a bit much.  Maybe I'm wrong, and have just been lucky so far, but he has never cried like this before.  Do boys get as hormonal as girls at this age?


    Quoting HopeJoyPeace1:

    I don't know if your of the christian faith.. And if not.. Please feel free to disregared. However.. You asked what I would do..

    So were I in your situation.. And to some extent I am.. My son refuses to participate... Chores, homeschooling etc.. Unless it is fun.. He won't do it.. But he will whine, grumble etc...

    So for your sake.. And for mine.. I looked up what the bible says about Grumbling/complaining spirit

    And this is what I found.. I try to be as biblical as I can in how I respond to a situation.


    Complaining is a Sign of Being Ungrateful

    Yes, we have all done it from time to time. Things don’t go our way and we are complaining about this and whining about that. We make excuses. Yet the Bible clearly says that complaining is a sin. It is shows an attitude that you are ungrateful and bitter. It often tests God’s patience.

    1 Corinthians 10:10 - And do not grumble, as some of them did—and were killed by the destroying angel. (NIV)

    Job 10:1 - I loathe my very life; therefore I will give free rein to my complaint and speak out in the bitterness of my soul. (NIV)

    Complaining Can Lead to Disobedience

    While the Bible says that complaining is a sin, it also states that it can lead to further disobedience. Along with complaining comes pouting. If you complain too much or focus on all the negative things, you can lose sight of all the good things God does in your life. This can lead to an attitude where you lose faith and cause others to lose faith, too.

    Psalm 106:25 - They grumbled in their tents and did not obey the LORD. (NIV)

    Keep a Positive Attitude

    Things will go wrong in your life. A pop quiz. A long term paper. A break up. A fight with your friend. These things happen. You can spend your time complaining, taking your eyes off of God, or you can find a way to make things better. You can remember all the other things God has provided. Not only will you be happier, but you will be a positive Christian example to everyone around you.

    Ephesians 4:29 - Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. (NIV)


    Also see Philippians 2:14-15 14 Do all things without murmurings and disputings:

    15 That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke

    For me I see that my son needs to learn to obey.. That while he may not always like doing something that in the real world there are many instances where you must do what you don't want to.. And that as an adult especially in the working world that he must know how to put in effort.. regardless of his desire to do something.. So why not teach him that now..?

    Good luck momma.. I share your frustration!




  • Leissaintexas
    May 12, 2013 at 8:29 PM

    He sounds like a perfectionist who is afraid of failure. I have one like that too. He will always be harder on himself than anyone else is.

  • blueyedbaker
    May 13, 2013 at 10:16 AM


    One question, Was he always like that?

    My oldest is sort of like that but it's her personality. She doesn't really get excited about much, usually doesn't have an opinion about much either. She has always been a shy kid. She would rather sit back and watch than actually get in there and do it. (my youngest is complete opposite!) She wanted to be home schooled so when she does on occasion complain about work I tell her I'll send her back if she doesn't just do what she's suppose to do. She's 11 now so she pretty much does her work to get done with very little complaining now. 

    I used to be worried that she just wasn't interested in anything. She never wanted to do sports or go anywhere. But that's her personality and I had to, still have to, break her out of her shell. I am coaching softball and she joined the team with her sister, but she broke her foot and even though it's healed she will sit back and not want to do anything. She needs more encouragement than other kids. Even though she can hit the ball farther and throw farther than anyone on the team she still second guesses herself plus she does not like to be the center of attention that's why she tends to sit back, so she won't be noticed. 

    It has been sort of a slow process figuring out what she really likes to do. She likes to be outside exploring, and she likes driving her Razor and she likes having friends over (that's been the new thing the past 2 years...sleepovers) When something new is introduced it takes a bit of coaxing to get her involved where with my youngest she's ready for anything!

     

  • Joann.HS
    May 13, 2013 at 1:44 PM
    I have a child just.like.that. (:

    Positive reinforcement and a parent's attitude can truly make a world of difference in a child's life.


    Quoting KickButtMama:

    I completely agree with this! It took me a long while, but I realized my son had a ho-hum attitude as a defense mechanism. Like, he didn't want to act excited or push himself if he thought the result would always be criticism of what every one thought he should have done to be better. Like he had fun, but once we were in the car dad would say, "u know if you had done this then you would have gotten to first base" so he wouldn't push himself. It was all a part his perfectionism. He wants to be awesome at everything. So he'll hide his excitement and sometimes seem like he isn't trying. 

    This is why he would react with tears when he was criticized. To him it was the same as us saying, "see, you sucked." 

    So we made a conscious decision to do positive reinforcement. 

    Quoting Joann.HS:

    This isn't necessarily just for KrissyKC, but all parents who have children in sports. I'm sharing because it was a lightbulb moment for me....I wish I were able to locate the article. But the main idea was that kids really want to hear I loved watching you play today. They don't want to go into details of their performance and the technicalities, but just a simple I loved watching you play, now what should we have for dinner. I have two in organized sports, and I make it a point to say this each and every time. Even when I want to say oh man why did you miss that ground ball or your swing wasn't what it could have been etc...I bite my tongue. I also make it a point to take them outside and "show" them the fun of a sport and how we can become better with practice!

    Hopefully I can find the article to post.



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