Please help, 2 yr old outta control when mommy and daddy are home

Becky - posted on 01/05/2011 ( 8 moms have responded )

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We have a 2 1/2 year old son that has been going through his terrible twos for over a year now. I am a sahm who is constantly with him. My husband works for about 9 hours a day, including travel time. When he has the day off or even when he comes home from work, my son goes from being the mild mannered kid I spend all day with, to becoming a hell-raiser. He disobeys, throws tantrums, doesn't want to cooperate with anything we ask him to do. My husband took the week off last week, and it got so bad, I wanted to run out of the house and not come back. It's a constant power struggle, but it mainly happens when my husband and I are together with our son. I feel as though we can never take trips together until this phase passes. We can never enjoy being together as a family if this keeps happening. Any suggestions?

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Jeneva - posted on 01/07/2011

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The kids are looking for attention from the parent that isn't there and negative attention is better than none at all. When daddy gets home, he needs to spend a little time just cuddling/playing/talking with the child. Maybe when you two are there together, he feels left out. So maybe all 3 of you need to do something together at that time as well. Save your daily talks for after bedtime and talk and read with the child instead.

And when the child misbehaves, you two need to be on the same page and discipline appropriately. If this is an issue, both of you need to sit down and work it out because that is going to make the situation worse not only now, but even more so as they get older.

I hope this helps.

Stacey - posted on 01/07/2011

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Im not sure that this goes away at all! We have a 7 year old son who is almost perfect. He gives us trouble sometimes but nothing like the 31/2 year old son does. Our oldest never acted like our younger one does. It is awful at times. There is never a day that goes by that we dont have to yell constantly at him. Talking to him doesnt help, yelling doesnt either but it seems to get his attention more. Instead of spanking him we us the time out method and it seems to be having some affect on him! If we spanked him there would be no regular skin on the child it would be red from head to toe! It does get old, and there has been days I wanted to throw my hands up and say im done with it, let him do what he wants. But I could never give up on our kids! My husband says I dont displine as much as he does but I do. Im with him all day most of the time so it's up to me to make sure he doesnt act up. He tells us he hates us, he is very hateful to his dad at times and he is more close to me than his dad, if told to do something he tells us no, and to top it all off I have been trying to potty train him for a year now and he will not go to the bathroom unless its his idea. I have def. had it with that. If anyone has any advice please I would love to hear it! thanks!!

Saphilie - posted on 01/06/2011

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That's so true!! There is a saying in French that says "I used to have principles, now I have children". Before you have kids you have all kind of ideas on how things should be done, all kind of judgements on mothers you see, and you're sure you'll be different...and then you have children and everything goes out the door! It is a tough job, and I agree that it does add challenges to your relationship!

But you're right, everything takes time, and we learn as we go. Sometimes we make mistakes.But as long as we do our best and we're willing to look at ourself and rethink our ways of ways of doing, we'll be ok!

Becky - posted on 01/06/2011

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Well sure, we do talk about it. And lately there have been times where is is starting to be more authoritative, but since he's not consistent, it never works. I think the more experience we get, the better we will be. It's just gonna take time. We never had experience with kids before, so we are learning as we go. I always knew this would be hard, but until you actually have your own kid, you will NEVER understand just how hard! I'm just extremely lucky that my husband and I have such a strong relationship before he was born. Otherwise, I feel like the stress of having a baby can tear relationships apart!

Saphilie - posted on 01/05/2011

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Seems like we have the same husbands too!! :) The "you guys have to be on the same page" is definitely easyer to say than to do! My husband was always vety open to what I ad to say about that, and mostrly agreed with me, but, he just couldn't do it. He would always say, when she's older and can express herself better, than I'll be more firm. And I would tell him that the earlier he starts, the better, and that she's already able to understand that. The more he gives in, the more she'll cry , and she'll never have enough. Her job as a toddler is to try and get more (of anything), and to push him to see how far he could go. And it gets worse and worse. Our job as parents is to show her the limits.

And suddenly he changed, and he doesn't really know where it came from, but he is happy to see that his new "authority" (I don't know if I can call it that quite yet) is functioning.
So it's better now. And I do think that the change came from my husband and not from my daughter.

Is he willing to talk about it?

Becky - posted on 01/05/2011

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Wow Saphilie, I feel like I just read my life story. That's sounds exactly the same. So to answer your question about how my husband is, he's your husband! He is just starting to realize that our son isn't a baby, but he still says he doesn't understand. He hates hearing or making him cry. He's a huge pushover when it comes to our son's constant demands. He never lets my husband sit and eat, or take a shower or breath without him clinging to his leg and screaming. He wants his Daddy and no one else matters. But when they are alone together, he's perfect. Same if I am alone with him. But when the 3 of us are together, all hell breaks loose. I hope this is just a phase he will grow out off soon. I know it would help if my husband and I were on the same page though.

Saphilie - posted on 01/05/2011

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Wow, I have the same at home! My little girl have been in love with her dad since she's about 1. When he's here, I don't exist. But, she is so much more difficult when he's here!! It lasted about a year, or a year and half, and I feel like it's finally getting better. He also works a lot, 6 days a week. I was always looking forward to his day off, but once we were there, I was alomst hoping he'd go back to work. It was very frustrating. She would become this demending, never satisfied, never happy, always wanting something else little girl. A really different child from the one I knew. I kept on telling him he has to put limits, and be a little more strict with her, but it was very hard for him. He would still see her as a baby, and was telling me that she's too young for discipline. He hates to hear her cry and would do anything to make her happy...well, she knew that, and she would use it to her advantage. And suddenly, these last few weeks, he finally started acting with her like she's a toddler and not a baby abymore. He statred putting more limits, and being more consistent with what he asked her to do. And he saw it was working! It's like she had been asking for that the whole time! It really made a big difference and the last few week-ends have actually been enjoyable!!
How is your husband with your child, and what does he thinks of the situation? Like Amber, I think that when the parents are on the same page, it's much more profitable and less confusing for the child. Did you guys talk about that?

So I know what you're going though and how frustrating it can be. I hope you guys will find a way to make the situation better soon!

Amber - posted on 01/05/2011

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you guys have to be consistant in disciplining your son. dont give in as hard as it may be. be firm you have to be on the same page. if there is extra stress or frustration between you and your husband or your husband is bringing home work stress your son is feeling that and is only acting out because he doesnt know how to handle it. have you tried leaving for a few hours and leaving your husband with your son? try to pin point the real problem if he is fine with you alone and fine with your husband alone then he is trying to get someones attention when you are together. if he is a hell-raiser with your husband when your gone that might be the problem not enough time with daddy. but i would try to ask im guestions when he's calm to try to get him to tell you why he's acting the way he is. and when you get an alarming answer ask im awhile later to see if the answer is the same. i know it is very stressfull but your children tell you more then we know sometimes.

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