|Basic InformationMore InformationLatest NewsQuestions and Answers|Personality Disorder or Just a Horrible PersonHusband Jealous of my Friends and FamilyIs it Just a Name?!She's Lied About EverythingMy Family is Ruining my Relationship With my Boyfriend What Is Wrong With Me ?My Boyfriend's Children Won't Accept Me....Does my Boyfriend Have Feelings For His Ex Wife?I Have BulimiaArranged MarriageWhen is Enough, Enough?Breaking UpSoon to be 15 Year Old Step Daughter Who is Physically Abusive to Family MembersI Have Everything I Ever Wanted. Why am I so Miserable?Should I Stay or Should I Go?Wife's BehaviorStep-Daughter is Deliberately AbusiveIs my Sister a Pathological Liar?Lost in Limbo19 Year Old DaughterNeed Help in Building the BridgesLack of Affection and IntimacyIs He Seeing Someone?Marriage QuestionRespect + Anger ManagmentMy Husband With Daughter...... Resentment-Controlling Wife/Passive-Agressive HusbandGetting Married, Stepsons With Awful TempersAdult Son Interferes with Our RelationshipCo-Dependent MotherCan My Marriage Be Saved?On and Off Relationship For Almost 10yrsI Am Tired of MarriageI'm His 2nd Wife. Am I Destined to Play Second Fiddle to His daughter Forever?How do I Get my Husband to the Psychiatrist?Is it Inappropriate to Call my Daughter...Trying to Save 37 Years of Marriage With My Bipolar HusbandAlcoholism and FamilyBipolar Obsessive Thoughts and False Memories Crazy Mother In Law Ruining Our Mental Health and RelationshipCaught In The Middle Caring For Elderly ParentI am a Newlywed and Need HelpHusband's Relationship With His ChildrenSubstance AbuseChronically Ill Non-Compliant 19 Year OldChild With Possible Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)Obsession or ExcuseThe Marriage Corner: How Can I Move Past This?The Marriage Corner: Do You Think my Marriage Can be Repaired?I am Only 26 Years OldMy Boyfriend Saved a Picture of a Girl he Slept With in Case we Split up?Adoptive Mother of 3 Children - SunFlowerHow to Handle my Mothers State of Mind?JoylessShould I Fight For My Marriage?Homesick and Feeling Stuck.Why Does My Wife's Old Boyfriend Bother Me?How do We Get Her to Accept Us as Part of The Family?Another WomanBoyfriends DaughterHow do I Cope With a Parent Who is Trying to Ruin me?Worried About 4-year-old with DepressionSame Views On So Much, but Can't Get Along As A CoupleIt's Me or It's My Mother?Considering Divorce After Several Deaths in The FamilySchizophreniaSchizophrenic Relapse !Please Help Me..My 19 Year Old Daughter is Out of ControlMy 19 Year Old SonI Desperately Want to Make This WorkHelp!!!Marraige Life of my Parents Is This Abuse and What Should I Do?My Girlfriend's Family Is Ruining Our RelationshipI Feel Like I Have Failed - - May 20th 2010Relationship With My Bipolar and ADHD GirlfriendHuge Disapointment With My HusbandI Don't Really Care About Anything. What Should I Do?What Should I do?My Father, The Sociopath...What is Wrong? What Should I do With my 19 Year-Old Daughter's Anger Issue?Dominating Mother How to Help Our College Age Son with Depression and AddictionCan My Marriage be Saved?Personal HygieneHelp Me Please. What is Going On With Me?Parenting a Bipolar Child, Not Quite a Child, Not Quite an AdultAm I Being Used?Is This Jealous Behaviour Normal In a Child?Grandson BehaviorHusband's AddictionHelp or Do Nothing?Pregnant AgainConcernedAre my past sexual fantasies dangerous and unusual?It is finally an emergency. We need help. Please.Trauma and Drama: Why are friends and family rejecting me? Why is my mom following me around to take over my life?Does my husband have bipolar although the doctors said he doesn't?Fear of death and dyinghow to ask if the pics are her?Unhappy MarriageDid I push them too much?How do you turn your back on your 19 year old daughter?What To Do With a Dysfunctional Past SHOULD GRANDPARENTS INSIST ON SEEING A GRANDCHILD My husband wants to leave me My husband no longer believesMy Son's ProblemWhy do I beat myself up over what they think?Bipolar sister, Narcissist boyfriendUnderstanding my sonWorried about my sonChild jealous of moms relationship with her new husbandThis guy I bullyIs There Help Out There? Lonely Mother of ThreeAm I Depressed?Should I Give Up On This Marriage?dealing with demanding mothercan you give me some advice please?17 year old running the houseOut of control 24 year old sisterMy needy son hates my boyfriend. How can I avoid choosing one over the other?voice in my headtwo intelligent adults who feel they don\'t have friends19 Year Old Daugter--Out of control17 yr old refuses help with bi-polar disorderTeen in Full Retreatout of control 16 year old nephewDepression? Bi-Polar? Personality Disorder?i need help with my sisterGet SupportedForgotten or just ignored?Dealing with a family member's complete personality changeMother showering & sleeping in same bed with 5 year oldDisbeliefZoloft - good or badmy little sisterUnattractive regardless, why bother?Coping with Narcissistic BehaviorHow to Deal with the Loss of Familyhusband\'s angerDid I Love my husband and still abuse him emotionallyI have a hard time making friends with other guysHow to communicate to a \'feeler\'homesickhow can i control morbid jealousyHow can I open up and become my old self again?Advice for my unhappily married friendHow can I tell the difference?Cannot support old friend in her affairIs Something Wrong With Her?Need to find a reason for the abuseMom's Unlisted NumberHow to help a Womanizing friend?'Extremely controling' wife and passive husbandA Habitual Liar's Lamentthe way out is through the doorDrug Addict SonAngry At Ex-BoyfriendViolent SisterWhen Will My Boyfriend Grow Up?A Marriage Outside The CasteAngry MomSeeing A Married ManDisordered Family Member BehaviorMy RoommateA Mean, Verbally Abusive WomanStepson With Personality DisorderMom's ProtectorBusted By A 5-Year-OldGetting Along With Narcissistic RelativesPossibly Molested DaughterDirty NieceHelping My SisterCongenital LazinessBlossoming Paranoia?Is Anxiety A Hereditary Factor?Enmeshed With MumHypochondriac DaughterAbusive FatherGoing CrazySelf-Abusive Step-Daughter(Wo)man In The MiddleParanoid DepressionWithdrawn BrotherDysfunctional FamilyParanoiaMy Mother Is Ruining My LifeCowardly StepdadDaughter's Violent MarriageMy Father Dislikes HimHistrionic Sister-in-LawLong-Distance SupportPersonality Disordered GrandmotherDo I Tell My Children I'm Depressed?Father In RomaniaMom's VentingUnhappy In An Arranged MarriageToxic ParentsA Situation For Tough Love?Avoiding Her ParentsBoarding School BluesDepression Affects The Entire FamilyInternet RelationshipI Want To Leave, But For The Children ...Public MenaceSomatization and HypochondriasSelf-Injuring SisterFamily BoundariesDealing with DivorceTrashed HouseRelationship TriangulationWhat To Treat First?Love TriangleProblematic ParentsHis Mother is Ruining Our RelationshipManaging PrioritiesTime to Cut the Apron StringsMommy's New BoyfriendBusy and WantingOver-Protective MotherHe's Not HimselfJealous of My Fiance's FamilyYoung LoveDifferent ReligionsMy Husband's Daughter...My Dad the DictatorMy Children Aren't Speaking..Dogs Instead of Children?My Wife is DepressedFalling ApartProblems with My DaughterLinksBook Reviews
Worried About 4-year-old with DepressionMon, Apr 18th 2011
Good Morning Dr. Schwartz:
Perhaps you could make some general comments regarding my 4-year-old daughter. I am trying to decide if I need to seek professional help or if we can do something as parents to weather or improve an ongoing concern.
I am in the military (mother) and have traveled a great deal while my daughters are young (now 8 and 4 years old). The absences have not exceeded a couple of weeks at a time, but for a while they were frequent and soon will be again. Both girls are in the German schools system and are fluent in German (we live abroad). The eldest is happy and outgoing - a joiner. The youngest is in a very nurturing kindergarten and gets on well with her peers and sister.
Our concern: The 4-year has a wide, extreme range of responses to situations. One minute she's enraged, the next she's crying inconsolably. She destroys things on purpose and can be very oppositional. Even at an early age, when upset, she would crawl or run away and hide her face and refuse comfort. I have always approached this by holding her anyway, and being with her until she calms down. But at times she has seemed simply sad.
Three factors that may have affected her - I had an extremely high stress pregnancy. Also, her father and I have had some serious marital problems and arguments - some of which have left the children frightened and in tears. The marriage is on much better terms now and the arguing in front of the girls has ceased for the most part. We are working hard on the family atmosphere and the girls are enjoying this. Also, I think her father and I are both prone to depression ourselves although we have different ways of expressing it. He gets grouchy. I get sad.
The oldest daughter and I have been able to talk about much of this and she seems to have a good sense of control and security. I can't say the same for the youngest and am not sure how to approach it with her.
Do you have suggestions for approaching this? I am thinking in terms of improving the sense of security and resiliency in my youngest and could use some advice. I also would like to know what to look for in case there is a more serious problem. I am not a fan of medications for young ones and want to avoid this if possible. Many thanks.
THE ANSWER TO THIS QUESTION WILL NOT BE DISPLAYED UNTIL YOU HAVE INDICATED YOUR AGREEMENT WITH THE DISCLAIMER PRINTED JUST BELOW. CLICK THE 'I AGREE' BUTTON TO AGREE TO THESE TERMS AND SEE THE RESPONSE.
- Dr. Schwartz responds to questions about psychotherapy and mental health problems, from the perspective of his training in clinical psychology.
- Dr. Schwartz intends his responses to provide general educational information to the readership of this website; answers should not be understood to be specific advice intended for any particular individual(s).
- Questions submitted to this column are not guaranteed to receive responses.
- No correspondence takes place.
- No ongoing relationship of any sort (including but not limited to any form of professional relationship) is implied or offered by Dr. Schwartz to people submitting questions.
- Dr. Schwartz, Mental Help Net and CenterSite, LLC make no warranties, express or implied, about the information presented in this column. Dr. Schwartz and Mental Help Net disclaim any and all merchantability or warranty of fitness for a particular purpose or liability in connection with the use or misuse of this service.
- Always consult with your psychotherapist, physician, or psychiatrist first before changing any aspect of your treatment regimen. Do not stop your medication or change the dose of your medication without first consulting with your physician.