Hello Sister, I need a Patron to pray with on behalf of a little girl (3 years old) who is showing some serious behavior problems, (mostly directed at her siblings.) I know that I should be praying rosaries, but do you have any other suggestions that, in addition, I might work on? Thank you, Ann
I am so pleased at your clever wording! Everyone always wants a saint to pray "to". We don't pray "to" saints. We ask for their intercession. We ask them to pray for us. That leaves us with the cumbersome phrase "pray for the intercession of". You have solved a centuries long problem! We're going to use that from now on!
Who should you pray with? Before we get to that, I have a bright idea. What if you got her a little child sized chaplet bracelet and when she misbehaves have her say a Hail Mary using her bracelet. She's three, so she might not manage the whole prayer. "Hail Mary full of grace" is enough. It might be a more useful way of counting to ten.
Also, seek help. Early intervention with a behavioralist is extremely helpful.
When I first heard about ODD (oppositional defiance disorder), I thought, "Well, that's just a fancy anagram for 'brat'." But I was wrong. And the normal ways of dealing with brats have the opposite effect on kids with ODD. Since I have no actual training, I'll leave it at that. Go to the pros.
Meanwhile, you both could use a patron saint.
For her, St. Peter, the patron saint for anger management. Peter was famously angrily impetuous, but he turned out alright, wouldn't you say?
For you, St. Monica, the patron saint for mothers with difficult children. Poor St. Monica had a difficult husband AND a difficult son. She followed her son all over the world trying to stop him from doing whatever he was about to do and wasn't particularly successful.She had to have the patience of a saint (hence, her title). But ultimately, she did prevail and her son, St. Augustine is still the #1 person the Church turns to for philosophy and doctrine. So he turned out alright, too.