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5 or 15?!

I can't help but wonder how old my eldest thinks he is. I'm pretty sure I only gave birth to him 5 years ago. He is shorter than the average teenager, although taller than most 5 year olds... but his behaviour and attitude are far older than his years (or so I think).

Some times this is a good thing! He is doing very well in school, reading ahead of his age range and so on.

Sometimes it's just plain funny! Like insisting on geling his hair for school, or getting exasperated with the little girl from 2 door doors down who has a crush on him (she knocks on the door "Urgh, not again. Dad, you talk to her!" so Daddy fibs and says he's grounded to get her off his back).

But sometimes it's just infuriating! Like when we ask him to do ANYTHING and he's goes and does the exact opposite. Or he pouts and stamps his feet muttering about it being "not fair". We tell one of his brothers not to do something, and then he does that exact same thing. You get the idea?

Now I know that "to change the child, change yourself" stuff and to a large extent I do agree with it. "Be who you want your child to be". But I don't recall behaving like Kevin the Teenager around my kids... It would be easy to blame the influence of other kids at school. Maybe that's part of it, maybe it isn't. There are some kids who get away with far more than my lads do. And yes Jack does know this too and does resent it. But some of that stuff it simply unacceptable! Other stuff - like staying up later - has to be earned. And we've talked about that and a time-scale has been set in place. He wants to stay up till 8pm instead of 7.30 but I've said wait until the school holidays (only 5 weeks away) and then we'll see how he copes when he doesn't have school to be too tired for.

I'm really hoping this is just a phase he's going through, but I'm worried that it might not be and I don't want to sit back and let stuff slide if it's just going to make things worse, but at the same time I don't want to come down on him like a ton of bricks if he's going to sort him self out in a matter of weeks.

Gah... I need a WikiHow for raising 5 year olds!

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