My husband and I are at such a loss. I have attended your classes, and we have tried to implement many of the things from the lessons. We are not perfect parents, but we do try to be consistent.
I am pretty much past the end of my rope with my 7 year old daughter.
She lies constantly - about everything from big things to insignificant things.
She is very disrespectful when we try to suggest a way to do something different, or help her, or discipline her - yelling, screaming, crying, saying that everyone hates her and she is horrible (she has even mentioned that she just 'shouldn't be on this earth anymore' a couple of times which terrifies us).
Lastly, it seems like *every* chance she gets, she will break the rules of the house. If I'm on the phone, if I go take a shower, if we have put her to bed for the night. Any time she is not directly supervised she tries to be sneaky and break some sort of family rule.
I just feel like such a failure as her mother, and I truly do not know what to do. I have spent so many nights on my knees, and perhaps I am not patient enough or something - I just am at a loss. If you have any thoughts or suggestions - we would welcome them wholeheartedly. Thank you.
I am so sorry that you are struggling with this little one. It is so hard to give advise when I know so little about your family, her place in it, and her individual little personality. I do know that she sounds like a very discouraged little girl. I also know that when children seem to be acting out on everything it is hard to show them love. Sometimes when children get on this downward cycle of misbehavior they do not have the emotional strength to change. It is sort of like they have to act the way they feel you see them. Right now, I think she feels that you see her as a "bad" person so that is how she is acting. I do not know if there is another child in the family that is a "good" child but that could also discourage her more as she feels that she cannot compete with the good one. I think more than lots of discipline for her every act of misbehavior, she needs to feel loved. This may seem counter intuitive, but she needs emotional courage before she can have the strength to change her behavior. Focus on telling her 10 positives a day. Plan a date with just her. Stop focusing and praying for a way to change her negative behavior and pray to find a way to fill her little soul with your love!
I love the quote from President Packer:
True doctrine understood changes attitudes and behavior. The study of the doctrines of the gospel will improve behavior quicker than the study of behavior will improve behavior. Preoccupation with unworthy behavior can lead to unworthy behavior. "
I had a daughter that felt this way about one of her children once. She sent that little boy to me for a week so I could give him the love she could not right at that time. I don't know if you have a grandma she could visit for a few days so you could both get a break from each other.......
If not then I would suggest that for the next week you focus only on the positive in her life. Pray that Heavenly Father will show you her spiritual gifts and share that insight with her. Tell her she has an important role in this life and you have faith in her. Ask Heavenly Father to help you see her as He sees her. Visualize her sitting on the Savior's lap and seek to hear the words He would be saying to her. Spend this week just trying to fill her emotional bank account and helping her feel important. Try not to react to every little thing she does wrong....You still have plenty of time to correct bad behavior. Focus this week on telling her what you would like her to do instead of what you do not want her to do. Try it for a week. Help her to feel loved! How can she feel the Savior loves her if she feels you do not?
Also you seem pretty discouraged. You need to see what you can do to fill your own personal emotional bank account. Do something for yourself that makes you feel closer to the spirit. You need that added strength and peace that comes with the spirit.
I am not saying just read your scriptures more or pray more...(though you might evaluate where you are on those things)...just find something that brings you great joy and do it! Sometimes strong emotions prevent us from hearing the answer to our prayers as the spirit whispers very softly. I know that Heavenly Father is answering your prayers for yourself and your little one. The question is: is your soul still enough to be able to hear it?
Heavenly Father loves you so very much and He also loves your little girl. You are certainly not a failure as a mother...just a discouraged mother with a discouraged little girl.
May Heaven bless you, I know that Heaven loves you!!!!