Angry 5 year old, says he wants his brother to die

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    • #110170

      My 5 year old is always getting made at his brother. It’s almost like bullying and I nip it pretty fast but sometimes he says he wants his brother to die and it makes me really sad. I just want to cry because I just don’t understand why he would say that. It makes his brother sad too. Any advice? I want to yell at him and get mad but it’s useless.

    • #110171

      When my sisters and I were little, we’d say despicable things to and about each other all the time when we were angry/frustrated with each other. We heard the things somewhere and said them without understanding what they meant. It was just sibling rivalry, we didn’t ACTUALLY wish death/cruel fates in each other.

      Your boy is probably old enough for you to have a serious and calm conversation with him about what death means and why it’s very bad to wish death upon other people, especially family members. Anger at someone is a temporary thing, but death is permanent. Take the death wish words away but give him back some more appropriate words to communicate anger or frustration with his brother, like “I wish you would leave me alone.” (I would bet that this is more along the lines of what he really means.)

      Depending on the type/severity of his ADHD, he might need to be spoken to a few times.

    • #110178

      Ok that’s a relief. I was in panic mode. Will talk to him about it. Thank you!!

    • #110222

      You are not alone. My 7 yr old says things like this often to me and his little brother (5yrs old). I try to defuse the anger and give him some space as the other reply stated there is a strong likely hood that he does not understand what exactly he is saying. I always circle back with my son once everyone is calm to talk about how he was feeling and why. I ask him how he would feel if someone said it to him… I try to help him understand how he makes others feel and help him to walk back through the situation and think of how he can handle it next time. I know it’s time consuming to do this, but it is so important to give him good solutions, connect with him, and reassure him that he can come to me when he needs help with his oversized emotions.

    • #110294
      Penny Williams

      This extreme language is often the result of not knowing how to more appropriately communicate feelings. However, I would seek a counselor’s help with it, since it’s a threat against another. They can help you determine the best way to address this so it will improve.

      Chill Skills: Calming My Emotional Child with ADHD

      ADDitude Community Moderator, Parenting ADHD Trainer & Author, Mom to teen w/ ADHD, LDs, and autism

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