One thing I’ve started doing, and it does take a lot of patience, which I’m not known for, lol, but anyway, I now insist that Rye (and minded children) look me in the eye when I am speaking to them. And I will not let them go and play until they look at me, and listen to what I say. I also insist on standing still, no jiggling, hopping, waving arms etc. I know it sounds very draconian, frankly though, they jiggle, hop, wave arms, look around etc as distractions so they don’t have to listen. So, they stand in front of me until they do listen.
And if a child speaks rudely or agressively to another I ask them to try again speaking politely, as the kids are young I do suggest what they could say. I see it as forming good habits. Just like if I ask Rye to go upstairs because he’s ignoring my requests, being distruptive or just plain rude and he screams at me or slams the door, I make him come back and stand in front of me and ask him to express himself in a polite manner and then to go upstairs and shut the door without slamming. It does go against the grain a bit, as it’s all so controlling, however, add in that Rye is almost certainly aspergers too, I find that actually he needs that structure of expected behaviour… and since I’ve started doing this his behaviour has improved no end.
There are times, of course, when I get so fed up I just end up shouting, but if I can hold onto my irritation and remain calm it seems to get through to him so much more effectively.
I do wonder if with your DS, if there is anywhere safe you could practise the “stop, go” game? It’s something I use to do with Rye when he was around 2yrs old. I would walk on very quiet streets, explaining he must never run into the road, and that we were playing a game, I would call “stop” and he had to stop and wait until I called “Go” It does work very well, it’s a game to play, and if you ever see them about to run into the road, or across a drive and a car is reversing etc, shouting “STOP” means they do, because.. well it’s what they’ve learned to do. It did take Rye a wee while to learn, and I always had either sling or reins to hand so if I needed to I could use those aids… mostly though, from 2yrs old he was walking without reins. I also made sure to teach him to stay away from the edge of the pavement.
And I do review my boundaries too, when he was younger, I had the rule that he was never to open the front door, (I usually double lock it, but a few times when he was younger, I forgot to, and he opened the door and went outside, and managed to lock himself out - once in the snow in his pjs and barefoot! Thankfully I sleep with my window open, so I could hear him outside and it woke me up!), but anyway, that rule has now lessened in that he’s allowed to open the door when we go out and go out first. He’s also allowed to open the door to visitors, (so long he asks me first).
So I wonder do yoru boundaries need adjusting? Are there some that prehaps Alice is pushing against, because they aren’t appropriate for her anymore?
And yes, little boys…. boundless energy, I found the only way to be ssane (and still find it) is to take rye somewhere where he could burn a LOT of energy! Parks, soft play, beach..and it did pretty much mean being out most of the day. And while his impulse control is now better at 5yrs old, he still struggles to contain himself if he’s not had enough out door time.