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I Don’t Understand My Daughter!

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My daughter is 8 now and seems much different than my other children. She has always been more attached to me, needing to be with me all the time, flipping out when dropping her at school or making her sleep in her own bed. She will be up drawing in the middle of the night. Always has to have her ears covered when flushing a toilet or starting a bath. Must be listening to music 24/7. Is becoming increasing more violent. Shows zero emotions unless its anger, sadness, or attitude. 2-3 times a year has a complete angry, violent to herself, screaming, breakdown that she says she “can;t stop.” Literally nothing makes her genuinely happy. Always mopey. One pediatrician said 3 years ago that it was just anxiety.

Now just this school year, she is failing. In trouble every day for talking and being disruptive, but seems to only be failing in “comprehension”. She can read something and haven’t a clue 2 minutes later. She doesn’t grasp directions and sometimes they must be repeated because there is just a blank stare when she is told. She’s always in a rush with life it seems. She is very healthy otherwise, very outspoken (unless its her feelings), makes friends very quickly and is quite popular. She literally rebels with every single thing you tell her to do! She crawled, walked, talked, and all that early. I just don’t understand what is going on!!! No life trauma minus her dad and I separating in 2012, that I am aware of.
On a simple test at school last week, the question read:
Which of these is NOT sweet?
A. a lemon
B. a lollipop
C. cake
D. strawberries
She chose cake! She is so smart, I just don’t get it!!

I Don’t Understand My Daughter!

Answered by on -


It is time for an evaluation by a child psychologist or psychiatrist. At this point your daughter’s symptoms fall outside the norm for typical childhood anxiety. Ask the pediatrician for a referral. Once they have done a thorough testing it is likely they can identify what is at the root of it all.

Wishing you patience and peace,
Dr. Dan
Proof Positive Blog @ PsychCentral

I Don’t Understand My Daughter!

Therapists live, online right now, from BetterHelp:

Daniel J. Tomasulo, PhD, TEP, MFA, MAPP

Dan Tomasulo Ph.D., TEP, MFA, MAPP teaches Positive Psychology in the graduate program of Counseling and Clinical Psychology at Columbia University, Teachers College and works with Martin Seligman, the Father of Positive Psychology in the Masters of Applied Positive Psychology (MAPP) program at the University of Pennsylvania. He is Director of the New York Certification in Positive Psychology for the Open Center in New York City and on faculty at New Jersey City University. Sharecare has honored him as one of the top 10 online influencers on the topic of depression. For more information go to: He also writes for Psych Central's Ask the Therapist column and the Proof Positive blog.

APA Reference
Tomasulo, D. (2018). I Don’t Understand My Daughter!. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 24, 2020, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018 (Originally: 6 May 2016)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
Published on Psych All rights reserved.