Question: Ever since he was a toddler, we have had significant behavior problems with our 6-year-old son — defiance and general disrespect, mostly. We have tried various disciplinary approaches with little to no positive results.

The latest problem involves the fact that I home-school him. Although he was not a problem in private school kindergarten last year — obedient, responsible, achieving — he is not the least bit motivated to work under my direction. The curriculum is on his level, and the materials come highly recommended by other home-schooling moms.

Nonetheless, he seems uninterested and complains constantly that the work is too hard, which it definitely isn’t. Today, for example, because of complaining, purposefully not following directions and generally goofing off, he ended up in his room by 10 a.m. for the remainder of the day with no screen time for the rest of the week. As I write this, he’s in his room screaming that I’m unfair. I have completely run out of ideas. Help!

Visit family psychologist John Rosemond’s website at johnrosemond.com. Readers may send him email at questions@rosemond.com; due to the volume of mail, not every question will be answered.

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