Hi N. Drolma and everyone,
You've gotten a lot of good advice here. We had the same problems with our first son, at around age 3. I bought this book and found it very very very
helpful, and very much inline with Buddhist wisdom. Making use of the strategies and insights suggested we were able to help turn everything around rather quickly.Raising An Emotionally Intelligent Child
I'd also strongly recommend this book for Rui S. The mimicking strategy can work from time-to-time but it sounds like your son still hasn't changed his behavior patterns, and is requiring a lot of your attention. Unfortunately, the longer a child is able to "practice" and rehearse disruptive emotional and behavioral "habits" the harder it can be to shake them. Children who behave disruptively in order to gain attention
- and then receive attention - are having those disruptive behaviors reinforced.
Understanding how all this works we were able to do things differently with our second son. Tantrums were not reacted to in the same way, and so he never developed those behavior patterns. By contrast, the oldest (a teenager now) has sometimes fallen into the old patterns when he's stressed, angry or fearful...
Parenting is a joy, but always a challenge.