My 8 year old daughters is usually very good.

But in the last few months she has started to cry more and more each time she can't have something she wants. The odd thing is that it's something she didn't really used to do before... well, not as often anyway.

As far as I can think, nothing major changed in her life recently that could trigger this change of behaviour.

We're currently trying to encourage her to stop crying for anything by giving her stars (10 stars = 1 small present) but I don't think it's making any difference

Any tip much appreciated!

  • 5
    We're trying to encourage her to stop crying by giving her stars - er, do you mean you give her stars when she stops crying, or when she doesn't even begin to cry at all? Feb 10, 2012 at 17:59
  • 1
    Currently if she manages a whole day without crying she get stars. Do you think it's not a good idea?
    – Johann
    Feb 11, 2012 at 20:02
  • 1
    This isn't an answer but I remember being in 6th grade (I'. a girl too) and having a lot of crying spells when things didn't go my way. I was never a cry baby, in fact I was the opposite and kept most emotions to myself and still do. But for some reason about this age I had a hard time dealing with things I couldn't control or change. It went away after 6th grade (I remember it mostly happened during that school year). I always blamed hormones. Maybe there is a biological something at this age that makes kids more sensitive.
    – user7678
    Mar 6, 2015 at 13:23
  • my 8 year old always cry when school homework starts Sep 16, 2017 at 20:13
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    @Evargalo Oops. My bad.
    – John Doe
    Jan 12, 2018 at 16:06

4 Answers 4


Major peer pressure starts around 8 years old. It is possible that she is asking for things that she feels she 'needs' to get along with her peers. Talk about this with her (talk to the teacher first, to see what is happening in class).

Is she crying when she is frustrated about other things, other then not being able to have what she wants? ie homework, school work, sharing, etc. If that is also a problem she may be feeling more pressure at school (which you may not even see as a change simply because you don't see it). Speak to the teacher about this as well.

Overall, the best thing to do is model what you do when you are frustrated, both about not being able to have what you want and other frustrating experiences. I have even staged experiences like that so that I can model the behavior. Don't give in to the crying. Calmly say something like, when you are done crying we can talk about why you are frustrated (give her the words for her emotion). You may need to repeat this to her more than once. I would also recommend, if the crying continues and it is disruptive (ie loud and distracting to the rest of the family) remove her from the room, explaining that we speak with words and when she is ready to use words you will discuss with her what the matter is. In this way she will hopefully learn that words are more effective than tears (this has worked with all my kids) after she comes to you when she is done crying help her express herself by giving her the appropriate emotion words. Show her lots of love and help to problem solve (WITHOUT giving in to what she wants).

Good luck!


Well, you're the parent, but I must say it does sound like something's changed: maybe just something you're not aware of.

Here are some ideas off the top of my head:

  • Increased tiredness (maybe by her body fighting off some virus?)
  • Something not going well at school? Problems with teachers or 'friends'?
  • Something innocent that you didn't notice that has affected her.

The only thing is to try and talk it out of her, or see if she has some ideas why. It depends on the child who/when is best for doing that. With ours, it's snuggled up next to Mum just before falling asleep...

  • 2
    It may not be major to you, but there might be some change that she considers a big deal.
    – afrazier
    Feb 10, 2012 at 14:57
  • It could also be that she just learned that one of her friends does this with her parents and it works (a lot of the time) to get what she wants. Dec 24, 2013 at 14:04

What is wrong with letting her cry? Perhaps if she is allowed to cry it out and you just give her a few supportive words, "I know its frustrating" followed by an, "How can I help" she'll stop. Ask her about what is going on. If the problem is that she is crying so much it is preventing her from moving forward or getting anything done, state your concerns and follow them with a supportive question. "I'm concerned that you seem to be crying a lot, is there something else bothering you too?", "Do you want to talk more about it?", "Crying is one way we express sadness, but it seems like you cry a lot so I think you must be really sad. I love you and want to help. What is making you so sad?". . .

  • I love this & it has also worked well with my kids. I always tell them it is okay to cry, as long as we aren't doing it in such a way as to be inappropriate with others, such as screaming while doing so, or being excessively loud, such as in public, and just encourage them to find a suitable place to do it & I am happy to accompany them to another location & hear them out. It doesn't change a decision, but I want them to know I care. It has helped at older ages I think for them to be willing to continue to bring me their troubles, versus always turning to friends.
    – threetimes
    Jun 14, 2017 at 16:23

(I know this was answered and accepted, but I will leave another to help people in the future)

I was a crybaby growing up. I didn't really think about it until I was in 6th grade and my teacher commented on it. At first I was mad that she said it, coming from an adult, but I think it helped more than my parents saying something or the other kids teasing me about it. After that I really payed attention to the times that I reacted to bad situations and saw that I was being pretty lame and just stopped on my own. It got to the point where it is really hard to get me upset about much anymore.

I don't think that there is much that you can do other than letting them know why you feel it is a concern. Something that didn't help was that my mom was always trying to please everyone and my dad was/is still a crybaby and his mom was the same as mine so it was just perpetuated. Anytime I cried, she would rush in to try and sole the problem. This just showed me that anytime I cried I would be taken care of, problems fixed. With my son I did the same thing and am kind of upset with myself because he is now in the same situation, 6th grade and cries when things don't go exactly his way. With my 7 year old daughter it was different. I lost custody and her mom started to raise them and she doesn't deal with kids well at all so she didn't rush to save her. When I had them I decided I would try something different. I made sure she was OK (no broken bones) but other than that I didn't rush to her aid and told her to go to another room to cry and that once she was done crying she could come and tell me what happened. She is not a crybaby. Not sure if it was the technique or different personalities, but it worked for her, so far...

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