Sure, you’ve heard of the ‘terrible twos’ that maybe even got worse when they reached three. But did anyone ever tell you that ages 4-7 is just the quiet before the storm?
When my daughter was 7-1/2 years old (she was always a little ahead) she started changing. One minute she would be clinging to us and the next she was going crazy. Stubborn, difficult, sensitive, selfish, sweet, caring, sassy could describe her mood swings in one-minute increments. I had no idea who this person was. It was as if she had become someone else overnight.
My husband and I were at our wits’ end trying to figure out what to do. Nothing that we had done previous to this seemed to work and we were losing energy and patience. So I went online and found the single article that helped us get through this difficult age: Child Development – The Eight-Year Old. The other guides in that series were also informative but this particular one was spot-on.
Finally, I knew all was not lost. Just knowing that this was a normal stage that would be passed was so reassuring. I shared this with other friends who had children in the same age range. They felt the same despair and confusion as I did and found comfort in the article. While there were no specifics in how to get through this period except to try your best to wait it out, just knowing that it was a phase made everything ‘okay’.
As she neared 9 years old, all was good again. So if your 8-year-old is doing a regular Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde routine, just remember that will pass and your bond with him/her may actually get even stronger.
Now we just have to steer through the pre-puberty episodes and wait for the hormones to really start kicking in…