Traumatized children have an inordinate need for control. Well, as I write that, I realize that they actually have a justified need for enormous control. After all, before YOU, the people who were supposed to be in charge, in control, obviously weren’t.
If you find yourself, your child’s siblings, and peers constantly angered by the mighty Control Chihuahua in your child, consider implementing some of the following things (but don’t do any of them if you cannot follow through consistently.) Children cannot give up control if you give them all the control, because they will not feel safe. So be aware this is shared power YOU give, not YOU giving in, giving up and letting go of your little Chihuahua to shred up your life.
Allow your child to decorate and organize the bedroom space.
Once a week on a specific day you select, allow your child to choose between two menu items what the family will eat for dinner.
Share power around choice of two after school activities once in awhile.
Give two choices often, but don’t allow your child’s choice of a third option you didn’t offer.
If you allow your child to be in control in appropriate ways there will be room for your child to relax in other ways. This is not a fast solution, but over time the enormous need subsides.