5 Year Old Barber

Discussion in 'Family Life - Stories, Pictures & Updates' started by bigredfeather, Sep 13, 2011.

  1. bigredfeather

    bigredfeather Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We are having an issue with our almost 6 year old daughter. Over the past few months, she has been cutting her 2 year old sisters hair. She only takes a snip or 2 at a time, but that's not the point. We have punished her by taking away things and giving her extra work to do, but that hasn't stopped her. We put up all the scissors, but I think she has a pair stashed away somewhere and won't tell us where they're at. She is becoming more and more sneakily about it, like hiding the cut hair, then taking it outside to dispose of it in the garden, since we where finding little piles of it after we find out she's cut again. For a almost 6 year old, she is pretty devious. My DW and I are our wits end. The 2 year old was late getting her hair, so this only makes it worse. We tried telling her to run away when sissy tries to cut it, but I think she sees nothing wrong with it, so goes along with what big sis wants to do. It's not like we're leaving them alone for hours at a time. The latest incident occured when my DW went out to get the mail. Now, I know we could eliminate the chances by not ever letting them alone, but that is not getting to the root of the problem.

    Any suggestions on how to correct this behavior?
     
  2. sfw2

    sfw2 Global Menace

    At six years old, your daughter is old enough to understand that what she is doing is wrong. Has she given you any explanation as to why she has decided that cutting her sister's hair is a good idea? Is she well-behaved, except for this?

    My children (all eighteen and over, now) would have been spanked (not beaten, just spanked) for pulliing something like this, especially for repeating it. I realize that's not everybody's parenting style, but it worked, when needed, for us.
     
  3. HEChicken

    HEChicken Overrun With Chickens

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    I assume you've tried talking to her and asking her why she does it? At her age she may not be able to verbalize the reasons very well anyway. For example, if she is doing it to get attention, she is unlikely to phrase it that way and may even just say she doesn't know why. Is it possible she IS feeling that her sister gets more attention than she does? You could try setting aside some time daily to spend time just with her. Perhaps some mommy time, daddy time and even time after little sis has gone to bed when the three of you are able to do something special together - board games, baking cookies, whatever floats her boat.

    Has she had a professional haircut herself lately? If so, perhaps she enjoyed the experience so much that she is trying to re-create the experience with her sister. If not, perhaps some pampering at a salon will alleviate whatever compulsion she is feeling.

    Regardless of the reason she is doing it, you clearly want it to stop. The best disciplinary measure I found with my kids is loss of privileges. I laid it out for them - and yes, at 6, they understood perfectly - what the loss entailed and what they could do to "earn" it. For example, if the child's favorite activity was watching TV, a small infraction (having to be told multiple times to brush teeth) might mean a 1-hour loss of viewing time, while a large infraction (DS hitting his sister) would mean a 1-day loss. For my kids this was very effective. Each child lost different privileges depending on their own interests but they all knew what the consequences of undesired behaviors were.

    Good luck and keep us posted.
     
  4. dewey

    dewey Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Maybe she's not using scissors to cut it. An even scarier thought is a 2 year old trying to have to be responsible for running away from a 6 year old that's in pursuit with scissors or such. Most kids at some point hack their own hair or a sibling's hair, but it sounds like there could be some rivalry on the part of the 6 year old since she's old enough to know better yet continues to do it. Do you think it could be a jealousy thing? Does she cut her own hair, too, or doll hair, or just her sister's hair? What does she have to say for herself when she gets caught and disciplined?
     
  5. bigredfeather

    bigredfeather Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:The reasons so far have been: She doesn't like her sisters hair, so she is cutting it. And the other reason is she says LS made her mad, so she is getting back

    Is she well-behaved, except for this?

    For the most part. Every child has their moments, as we all know. Her good/bad behavior is 80% good/20% bad.

    My children (all eighteen and over, now) would have been spanked (not beaten, just spanked) for pulliing something like this, especially for repeating it. I realize that's not everybody's parenting style, but it worked, when needed, for us.

    That was the punishment for the first several incidents. After that, we decided it wasn't correcting the problem. I agree with this parenting technique, but when it doesn't work, I tend to try something else.​
     
  6. bigredfeather

    bigredfeather Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I don't think this is the case. My DW started homeschool 2 weeks ago, and she gets several hours of "just her" time throughout the day. I also spend a good bit of time with just her outside tending to the chickens and goats, riding bikes, and gardening. I guess none of those things may be considered special time, but it is quality one-on-one time. Maybe I should find something special to do

    Has she had a professional haircut herself lately? If so, perhaps she enjoyed the experience so much that she is trying to re-create the experience with her sister. If not, perhaps some pampering at a salon will alleviate whatever compulsion she is feeling.

    No. She has only had her hair cut twice in her life. Once was when she was 2 or 3. It was necessary to fix up a self cut she did. After that she never cut it again that we noticed. And the other time she got it cut she had enough enough length for "Locks of Love" which was about 6-8 months ago.

    Regardless of the reason she is doing it, you clearly want it to stop. The best disciplinary measure I found with my kids is loss of privileges. I laid it out for them - and yes, at 6, they understood perfectly - what the loss entailed and what they could do to "earn" it. For example, if the child's favorite activity was watching TV, a small infraction (having to be told multiple times to brush teeth) might mean a 1-hour loss of viewing time, while a large infraction (DS hitting his sister) would mean a 1-day loss. For my kids this was very effective. Each child lost different privileges depending on their own interests but they all knew what the consequences of undesired behaviors were.

    After the spanking, we started taking things away. This past weekend she lost her privelage of playing in the park at the family reunion, which I thought hit her pretty hard. She had to watch all the kids playing while she had to sit with us at the shelter house. We repeatly told her she wasn't allowed because that was her punishment for doing it the day before.​
     
  7. bigredfeather

    bigredfeather Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I know what you mean. When my wife told me she gave these instructions, the same thought crossed my mind.
    Most kids at some point hack their own hair or a sibling's hair, but it sounds like there could be some rivalry on the part of the 6 year old since she's old enough to know better yet continues to do it. Do you think it could be a jealousy thing?

    I wouldn't think so, but kinda forget how to look at the world thru a 5 year olds eyes. We certainly try to devote equal time to each of our children.
    Does she cut her own hair, too, or doll hair, or just her sister's hair? What does she have to say for herself when she gets caught and disciplined?

    Not for quite some time. We told her if she felt like cutting hair to do it to a Barbie or pony, but that hasn't appealed to her yet. When she gets caught/disiplined, it seems to have no effect on her.​
     
  8. TinyChickenLady

    TinyChickenLady Chillin' With My Peeps

    I would first tear her room upside down and take away anything she could use on her sister. I know this creates some extra work for you but she needs to realize that Mom and Dad are in charge and can take anything they want. Then I would also tell her (can be a white lie that I have had to use) that if she lays one for finger on LS's head, then hers will be shaved or cut. I tend to get a bit strict but it seems to work so I'm not letting it go yet LoL
    One solution I have found that works in some circumstances is that if a child won't leave the sibling or sibling's stuff alone, then they will have all of their stuff taken away until they can earn it back.
     
  9. HEChicken

    HEChicken Overrun With Chickens

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    I just had another thought. Isn't there a doll that specifically allows the child to cut the hair? I think it regrows (probably have to buy refills or something) so they can do it over and over. Do you suppose something like this would be the outlet she needs or does it HAVE to be LS' hair?
     
  10. HEChicken

    HEChicken Overrun With Chickens

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    And another.... [​IMG] What about instead of discipline for the unwanted behavior, a reward system for the wanted behavior. Maybe set up a star chart and she gets a star for every day she doesn't cut LS hair. She can save up the stars so that when she gets a certain number, she gets a prize of her choosing. I.e. let her decide what she wants, and then you decide how many stars she needs to save up to get that thing. If you make it seem reasonably attainable, it might work as an incentive not to cut hair?
     

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