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  #1  
Old 10-13-2010, 06:13 AM
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Default What To Do With Child Who Constantly Talks Inappropriately?

I have a SA DCB who is 8, and is constantly talking about violence, guns, shooting, killing, etc. He even sat at my kitchen table last week and told me that he was going to shoot his Dad because Dad said that he couldn't buy a video game! If he doesn't like something, he makes comments like "I'm going to get an AK-47 and shoot that" or "I'm going to get a sword and chop off that (insert whatever he's unhappy with)'s head".

He also apparently watches a LOT of youtube videos at home, and they either contain actual bad language or censored bad language. He comes here quoting what he's seen, and is all the time going "what the BEEP!" (he actually says "beep" and not the bad word, but it's implied), etc.

He doesn't seem to enjoy ANYTHING - I can't get him to participate in crafts, games, etc. While everyone else participates, he either does his own thing or stands off to the side making sarchastic or violent comments about the activity (say we're doing an animal craft - he'll say "I HATE lions - they're stupid" or "I'd get my gun and shoot that lion if I saw him!")

Here's the thing. He has NEVER laid an actual hand on anyone here, nor do I believe that he would. He is not physically violent in any way, he just talks about violence. He does his homework with no prompting, cleans up after himself, and generally follows my other rules beautifully. His Mom picks up on time or early and pays on time each week. If it weren't for this issue, he'd be a "perfect" DCB!

He's actually made several of these types of comments in front of Mom, and she just rolls here eyes and laughs it off - apparently he does the same at home and isn't corrected for it. I haven't made a big deal of it yet, because I was hoping that he was just getting used to being here and it would calm down when we all got into our school year routine. It hasn't.

Do I need to talk to Mom about this? I've tried saying something to him, but he completely shuts down when you correct him for anything - even if I say "please don't do that", he freaks out, talking about how everyone hates him and that he wishes he was at his other daycare (I mentioned that in another thread - he told me that he was going to tell Mom that I was mean and that he wanted to go back to his old daycare). Yesterday I got on him for his attitude and he started chanting "I wish I wasn't here, I wish I wasn't here...." over and over.

It's weird, and I don't know how to handle this! Am I making too big a deal of it?
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Old 10-13-2010, 07:22 AM
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WOW! That's a tough one...
I'm thinking outside the box on this one- is it possible that you know a police officer that would have a 'chat' with this boy? To the effect of gun safety, threats are punishable, what happens to people who use/threaten to use a gun on someone? I dunno... might be interesting to let him ask an officer about it, to kind of peak his interests into good rather than evil, KWIM?

Otherwise, since you had mentioned that you brought it up to mom and she blows you off...I would document the crap outta this (keep a log of each incident) so that if it gets to be too much you can term based on lack of support from parents.

Final thought- He's 8, he should most definitely know better. How does he do in school- not academically? Is he bullied, small for his age, left with caregivers most of his day? Something has him frustrated and he's not getting the right amount of attention at home. Just my opinion...
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Old 10-13-2010, 07:24 AM
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Umm, yeah... you definitely need to talk to mom about it. I wonder if his dad is really into guns or hunting???

That is not appropriate talk for daycare, and I'm sure his teacher at school doesn't allow him to talk this way either. He is probably someone the younger ones look up to, or will soon. What if your dck's start talking this way? You'll have to answer to a LOT of parent's concerns!

It's good that he's not physically violent, which definitely makes me think there is some influence at home other than you tube that is making him obsessed with violent acts. Who the heck would show him these kind of videos on you tube?
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Old 10-13-2010, 07:27 AM
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You are definitely NOT making too big a deal out of it. How would you like to try to explain to another parent of a younger child when they come to you and ask why little 2yo Johnny told mom he was going to kill her because he couldn't have a cookie before dinner? You have a responsibility to all children in your care, not only physical safety but emotional too. Of course, you already know that - just stating the obvious

I would have a talk with mom and let her know that that's not acceptable behavior and it will not be tolerated. Find a time out spot away from the other children and put him there every time he says anything like that. Explain to him that that talk is not acceptable and will not be tolerated at dc.

That is very scary that he talks like that at 8! What's going to happen when he hits puberty and the hormones are raging?!? I would be very leary of having this child around other children.

Just curious, why isn't he still at his old daycare? Was he kicked out for this type of behavior or was it some other reason? I know most schools these days have a zero-tolerance policy, and if he talks like that at school, he will be suspended or expelled. You would actually be doing him and mom a favor to nip this now.
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Old 10-13-2010, 07:50 AM
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I think you are wonderful for putting up with this and trying to help this boy. I personally would not keep him, I would not want his bad behavior rubbing off on my other children and if the mom and dad didnt see it as a serious problem I would feel that without their support I would not be able to change the boys behavior.
I do not have any advice.
Good luck, and your awesome for putting effort into this!!
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Old 10-13-2010, 07:50 AM
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He's not at his old daycare because (and keep in mind that this is what the parents told me) it was a large center and there was some bullying going on (to him, not by him). He had 30 kids in his group in the afternoon, so they were looking for a smaller group.

I don't have any younger kids currently - the youngest here is in the 2nd grade, only one year younger than this child. Everyone else is a bit older, but only by 1-2 years. However, I don't want my own children thinking that this is ok, and I'm sure even the parents of the older kids feel the same way!

I'm half afraid that if I put him into time out, he'll have some sort of breakdown! I realize that I can't let this continue though. I guess I will end up having to talk to Mom about it.

I truly believe that he's not really a danger to the other kids - his comments are never directed at them personally, nor at me. If they were, you can bet that I'd have been on top of that immediately!!!
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Old 10-13-2010, 09:17 AM
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I would talk to mom and put dcb on a reward program. DS picked up violence from other kids in Kdg. I did a list of behavior expectations for him: talking using nice words and smart words, do as you are told, look at the person talking to you, no violence, etc. He earns 3 tickets a day and can turn them in for activities (computer time, special things with Dad,...basically anything that he would normally get to do, but now he needs to use tickets). He can lose a ticket if he does not meet the behavior expectation after a few warnings. It worked for him.

Does he need some time of creative outlet to get rid of some negative feelings? Maybe have him draw a picture of how he's feeling instead of using violent words (angry/sad faces).
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Old 10-13-2010, 09:35 AM
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At first I was gonna say this is normal boy behavior but WOW no it is not my 2 boys play nerf guns say Im gonna kill you shoot you BUT wow not like this kid. I cant believe Mom laughs it off and YES the schools have a ZERO tolerence policy he WILL be suspended and then expelled. This behavior is far from NORMAL he seems like he would be the type of kid to shot up his high school he NEEDS help it sounds like he may have seem deep mental issues going on. You NEED to tell Mom your concerens ASAP dont let this go on.
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Old 10-13-2010, 02:02 PM
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haven't read other responses yet...

That is a little strange...the fact that he talks so violently yet has great behavior. But, the fact remains that he is in group care. I would be very unhappy if my daughter was in group care with this kid and started talking about guns or shooting people. It is completely inappropriate, especially the remarks about him shooting others.

Personally, I would talk with him and mom separately. I would tell him that him talking about shooting others will NOT be tolerated at all while in daycare. I wouldn't do this to correct him right after he's done it, I would set aside some time with just you and him and tell him you'd like to have a little chat. He's old enough to understand and it doesn't sound like he has these boundaries at home and he NEEDS these boundaries. I would also find something to talk about that he likes to talk about (please...there must be something else...lol) and tell him that it's so much better when he talks about that and you'd love to talk to him about that anytime.

With mom I would ask her what he likes to play at home. If she says, nothing or only with the computer, I would tell her that that might be the reason dcb is talking about violence so much and that you need him to stop talking about violence. I would also mention that you're concerned (or say, 'wondering') about how he doesn't play while in care. And then say, I wonder if it's because he's so used to the computer... I use "I'm wondering" a lot, it's not as threatening as "I'm concerned" or "He should".

Good luck

sorry, I guess I'm really into writing books today.
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Old 10-13-2010, 02:04 PM
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A question...does he get a lot of attention from the other kids when he talks like this? Do they think that he's 'cool' when he talks like this? You mentioned bullying at the other childcare, maybe he found something to talk about that leads to people not bullying him anymore...
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Old 10-13-2010, 02:57 PM
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Kendallina, the other kids don't like it either - actually, they've all told me at one point or another that they don't like him very much. They've never said that to him though, at least in my presence. I find it kind of sad.

He was the last one to go home today, so I attempted to sit him down while we were alone and have a talk with him - it's like banging your head against the wall. He immediately goes on the defensive completely shuts down. UGH!

Thanks so much for your advice, everyone - I really appreciate it.
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Old 10-13-2010, 03:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AfterSchoolMom View Post
Kendallina, the other kids don't like it either - actually, they've all told me at one point or another that they don't like him very much. They've never said that to him though, at least in my presence. I find it kind of sad.

He was the last one to go home today, so I attempted to sit him down while we were alone and have a talk with him - it's like banging your head against the wall. He immediately goes on the defensive completely shuts down. UGH!

Thanks so much for your advice, everyone - I really appreciate it.
Wow, I'm sorry to hear that he shut down today. This must be very frustrating...
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Old 10-13-2010, 11:04 PM
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i think you should talk to his mom about it. she probably knows it's an issue, but just blows it off because it's easier than dealing with it. like other posters said - you don't want it rubbing off on the other kids. i've never let my own kids have toy guns (they don't even ask for them - they know it's not an option) or pretend to play or talk about guns. i'd be annoyed if a kid at daycare was talking like that and making my kid think it was acceptable after i've tried so hard to teach them the opposite. i used to play guns when i was a kid, but times have changed. my daughter who has never played or pretended with weapons got in trouble at daycare when she was 4 for saying she was going to shoot someone. she said a boy told her to say, "i'm going to shoot myself and then shoot everyone" or something like that - and then when she said it, he told the teacher what she said. the director approached us from the standpoing of, "if she had said that at school it could've been serious, blah blah." of course, when she talked about it, my daughter hadn't yet told me what the boy had done - which i believe because guns and killing wasn't even in her vocabulary. it was irrelevant anyway. she said it.

maybe you could approach the mom from that standpoint - that with all the "zero tolerance" stuff at schools these days, you're afraid he's going to get into trouble. you could even say another parent is concerned because their child has started repeating some of the things her son says. yes, lie! whatever it takes - i think you need to make this mother aware that it's not okay.
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Old 10-14-2010, 05:49 AM
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Ok, Mom is getting a call today - we were on the way to school and he made a rude comment, so I asked him not to say that - and he said he wished he'd get struck by lightning, so that at least he'd be dead!

ETA: Just a few days ago I went on and on here about how great my group was - and I included him in that. However, if this keeps up, I'm going to have to ask them to leave, no matter how much I REALLY need that money. Too stressful!

Last edited by AfterSchoolMom; 10-14-2010 at 05:55 AM. Reason: Added More
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Old 10-14-2010, 08:48 AM
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hmmmm......sounds like the child is playing to many video games too me. Almost sounds like he is playing games like Halo and Call of Duty. I had a little boy who just left this summer because he moved. He played these games, and while he was a GREAT child, ALL of his drawings and alot of his language was violent.

I would ask Mom the if he is playing games like these. Let her know that you believe it is setting a bad example for him and his language is getting intolerable. Ask her if she'd be willing to remove those types of games from his selection. If she's not, then I'd consider the future possibilities of how this is going to effect your business, as other parents will tire of hearing complaints from their own children about this boy.
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Old 11-20-2010, 12:38 AM
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My 6-year-old son is exactly like this. He cannot stop talking about violence. He has no other real interests. If he speaks for more than about 15 seconds, the subject always drifts to sharp objects, dismemberment and killing.

It is not environmental as far as I know. Our kids get TV and games for 1 hour, on Sat/Sun only. We have no cable TV, no movies above PG, no video games above G. We have no guns or weapons, and no domestic violence (I'm the dad, mid 40s, a skinny, bookish engineer who has literally never seen domestic violence except on TV). He has never bullied nor been bullied, as far as I know. He has never been in a fight. He has no other behavioral problems, other than a lack of interests beyond violence. He has the highest measured IQ in his grade, at one of the most competitive primary schools in the state, reads far ahead of grade, blah blah blah.

He has talked this way since he could speak. His very first sentence, at around 18 months, expressed a desire to hurt someone and "break" them. I found it chilling. No one else seemed to mind. Since then, it never ends. No one but my brother believes this is a problem. I have consulted his teachers about it since pre school. They all say he is fine. I sent him to the school counselor. Also fine, supposedly.

So i don't know what to think, or what to do, if anything. If anyone figures this one out, please post so I can try whatever you tried.
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Old 11-20-2010, 06:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
My 6-year-old son is exactly like this. He cannot stop talking about violence. He has no other real interests. If he speaks for more than about 15 seconds, the subject always drifts to sharp objects, dismemberment and killing.

It is not environmental as far as I know. Our kids get TV and games for 1 hour, on Sat/Sun only. We have no cable TV, no movies above PG, no video games above G. We have no guns or weapons, and no domestic violence (I'm the dad, mid 40s, a skinny, bookish engineer who has literally never seen domestic violence except on TV). He has never bullied nor been bullied, as far as I know. He has never been in a fight. He has no other behavioral problems, other than a lack of interests beyond violence. He has the highest measured IQ in his grade, at one of the most competitive primary schools in the state, reads far ahead of grade, blah blah blah.

He has talked this way since he could speak. His very first sentence, at around 18 months, expressed a desire to hurt someone and "break" them. I found it chilling. No one else seemed to mind. Since then, it never ends. No one but my brother believes this is a problem. I have consulted his teachers about it since pre school. They all say he is fine. I sent him to the school counselor. Also fine, supposedly.

So i don't know what to think, or what to do, if anything. If anyone figures this one out, please post so I can try whatever you tried.
Is it possible he is just frustrated?

He sounds exceptionally smart for his age, and I've known boys (including a pastors son) growing up who were too smart for their own good and would talk like this. AFIK (I only keep tabs with 2 of them) they all grew up to be decent people.
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Old 11-20-2010, 06:46 AM
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Wow, that's something else. Have you tried physical activity as an outlet? I'm thinking something like Karate or Tae Kwon Do would be great for that, with the bonus that they teach respect for one another and that violence isn't the answer.


Update on this: I sent Mom and email and a note (personally handed) that I wanted to meet for a few minutes sometime when he wasn't standing right there to discuss some issues. Never heard a word about it, no meeting set. As the year goes on he's getting used to being here and the comments have eased up. Though, I also made a rule that we do NOT talk in a "disrespectful" manner and listed most of those things as examples. For some reason, that seems to be working. It seems like he just doesn't deal well with direct confrontation. I've had to be really careful about saying "everyone, we don't do/say that" instead of "hey, [boy's name], don't do that". It's odd, but it makes a difference.
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Old 11-20-2010, 08:02 AM
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It is unfortunate, but not so strange or unusual. I've seen this alot and almost every time, it's because the child plays or is around an older sibling/parent who plays shooter-type video games. They are at the age when the line between real and fantasy is very blurred... which is nice when it's Santa and the Easter Bunny but not so nice when it pertains to AK47s.

Most of the kids outgrow or learn to control it - but only after constant warnings that this is inappropriate talk for daycare or school. More than inappropriate... children can now get in serious trouble for that kind of talk. We are growing up in an era when shooter games are a growing obsession with teens and adults... last night I watched a newsman say that the latest Call of Duty game broke all kinds of sales records in 5 days - taking in over $650 million. That's just 5 DAYS!!!

Years back, I remember my youngest started watching his older brother play a very popular James Bond video game and was horrified when he started talking about shooting a PP7. I had to put my foot down and my older son could not play if his little brother was in the room. I also explained to my youngest why this was not appropriate talk. This worked for me.
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Old 11-20-2010, 09:11 AM
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One thing that might be causing it, related to the question about frustration: though smart and highly verbal, my 6-year-old is inarticulate about certain feelings. I wonder if he talks about violence as a substitute for inability to articulate anger, anxiety, fear of failure et al. Wonder if this might also be true for the boy that prompted this thread.
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Old 11-21-2010, 07:18 AM
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I know a kid like these two boys. His dad was the main cause because he would routinely talk bad and disrespectfully to his mom. He was a biter and a runner when he was young and as he got older his language got worse and he started beating up cats and peers. Then he witnessed his dad kicking his mom (after nasty divorce during a custody exchange) and so he started getting very violent toward mom and peers. He could be a great kid and fun and loving and never beat or bit me. He knew I wouldn't allow the bad language and I constantly reminded him he had the choice to stay with the group and be respectful or the choice to sit in the dining room alone at the table. Long story short: he's in a group home where he's under 24 hour supervision and is surrounded by therapists and helpers. He's been on so many drugs and has so many diagnosises following him that no one knows what's really going on.

My advise to both of you is keep up with teaching them appropriate ways to express their emotions and be very thankful they are not physically violent. I would watch them carefully and if they even start beating up an animal get them into therapy. Don't take no for an answer if they start getting physically violent or it may well escalate and they will end up as bullies or worse. Please keep fighting for these kids.
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