is he testing me?

Nicole - posted on 09/21/2009 ( 19 moms have responded )

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Lately my 9 month old has been protesting whenever I try to put him in his high chair or carseat: he arches his back and won't bend his legs to sit, and when I do make him sit he screams at me and when I tell him "No, we don't scream like that!" he screams at me again, but quieter. I try so hard not to laugh because I don't want him to think it's a game, but it's hilarious! I think he's just mad because I'm taking him away from something fun to put him somewhere where he can't really move. Is he starting to test me to see where the boundaries are? He also screams at me when I take him away from something that's not exactly safe, like Daddy's Xbox cables or the birdcage.

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[deleted account]

My son, also 9 months old, is doing to same thing. From what I can see he's not really testing. He's just doing what he see as fun, or interesting, and we are taking that away (how dare we!). I'm just tell my son why I am taking it, or doing this (he usually doesn't care). They might not be testing us yet, but putting down the foundation for boundries now will make it easier when they are testing us. Because they are used to that concept.

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Beverly Xx - posted on 11/23/2011

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Did you know that withing the first month of being born children understand over 300 words and all body language, but it takes them longer to be able to process it enough to express them to another person. its within the first three months they start to "puch boundaries" however its not so much puching the parents, its puching themselves to see what they can and can't do. like rolling over, crying, etc. 'puching boundaries' thats what children do, as they are at their learning and development stages where they are attempting to form cognitive movements they actually do something to see the reaction of the people around them. withing the first 6 months they understand the words yes and no and by body language are able to comprehend the tone behind it but they are unable to fully understand what EXACTLY it means. Another words for every action there is a equal and opposite reaction and all children see whaats the consequences of every action and movement they make. Everyone treat children like they have no comprehansion of the world around them, which isnt true, they know more than people realise, its just as they grow the definition becomes clearer. Perfecting all kinds of skills. By the sound of your problem I'd say he's putting up this "protest" to see what reaction he'll get. Not pushing boundaries, or being a baby, he's testing what happens with every movement, every sound. Like when a child says their first word we react happy, surprised as though its a huge occasion (which it is) and then they start talking more and more because they got a good reaction for their action. Im not full of it, ive actually studied child psychology for 3 years

Pippa - posted on 09/22/2009

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Thank you Jenifer thank you you realise that a 9mo child is not at the developmental stage where they know how to "test" "boundaries" thank you!!! children do push us mother's HOWEVER not this young when they hit the over 12mo age that's when they learn that i wanna push mummy and daddy to see how much they can take that's when you need to worry sweetie because he wont stop pushing you like when they learn to crawl they keep at it until they walk that's just one of the many beautiful things of having children

[deleted account]

He's only 9 months old. He doesn't yet understand being defiant or testing you. He just wants to play and explore constantly. When you have to put him in the car seat or high chair, talk and sing to him, give him a toy - distract him from the fact that he is being restrained in the seat. A little bit of redirection will go a long ways toward calming him down. Don't worry, he will start to test your limits, but you've got a few months still...

Nicole - posted on 09/22/2009

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I should add he's fine once he's in the high chair and starts eating or once he's in his carseat buckled up with his paci or special car toys. It's not even a meltdown or anything like that, he just screams at me in protest. I know at this age they're mobile and wanna go go go so sitting still is no fun for them! He doesn't even want to sit still in my lap anymore! I know all about consistency, I worked at a daycare and watch lots of Supernanny, lol! I know he's going to be testing boundaries, but I didn't think he would start so soon, lol!

Betty - posted on 09/21/2009

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OK..... Your child might just be showing frustration towards the car seat and high chair or might be testing you. Either way you should address this the same way. Positive reinforcement. Just a special toy to give him soon as he is in the car seat(one you know he likes) that way he will have something to look forward to when he gets strapped in. You shouldn't have to feed him on your lap. If he won't calm down and eat than he might not be very hungry. Don't teach him that he can eat anywhere he wants. You could try singing a song to distract him whenever he gets this way. You aren't rewarding the bad behavior unless you let him out and give him loves.
Oh and a baby isn't going to get leg cramps from sitting in a high chair for 10 minutes and that's all the time it takes to feed a baby if they aren't playing while you try to feed them. High chairs are perfectly comfortable, you don't even need to strap them in if you stay right there with them.

Pippa - posted on 09/21/2009

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well ladies!!! the fact that there is only one mother (me) that has said that the child is not testing when i had my daughter i realised that this little thing is mine to bring up and raise to show this world to even to show them (my son as well) what its like to be a parent but along with this i realised that these children are and never will annoy me. Reading these comments all i see is you all saying that a child is a burden and that makes me angry very angry i will apologise for one thing and one only for my language i used yes it was inappropriate however has anyone realised that bonding could be an issue that the children that go threw this are wanting to be so much closer to there mummy and daddy I Philippa Diedrichs do apologise for my inappropriate swearing language AND FOR TAKING THE LORD'S NAME IN VAIN but to take back the words like thinking children a burden i do not take back!!! as for crap like letting them get away with things no never said it and wtf not being in a carseat NEVER have i said this nor made this statment some children can develop a fear of car seats this most but not all do go threw this this is why i said to try TRY making a game of putting his buckle in his shoe and tyr TRY getting him to show her how to do them up. Now getting away with thing i deffiantly do not let my children have that privlage rules yes there needs to be rules with children but high chairs well let me put it this way when breast feeding do you put them in a high chair NO we hold them they think that there in trouble when there in this situation they think that mummy doesn't wanna hold them so before criticizing me on these facts think about it

Michele - posted on 09/21/2009

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I was honestly wondering the same thing,Nicole because my 8month old started arching her back when we would put her in her carseat a coupe weeks ago.She would get red in the face,grunt and then arch her back. i laughed at first, but then realized that if i laugh then it would encourage her to do that. So i would just lightly place my hand on her belly when she would arch and say "no no..we're goin bye byes." it took me a couple times of me saying that..and she hasn't done it since.

Samantha - posted on 09/21/2009

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Pippa needs to remember her manners, as to the child, he is testing, they are all testing daily that is how they learn. That is how everyone learns. But be safe and use the high chair and car seat regularly. Having child understand eventually that it's their special chair makes it easier, but with time all arguments go away and new ones appear.

Miranda - posted on 09/21/2009

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My daughter started the 'throw head backward, arch back, kick, and scream' thing. After about three weeks, I got her to stop. If you have a high chair that you can adjust the height on, you might try making your son at your level up against the table in which you're sitting/counter/what have you. Even if you're not hungry, just nibble on a healthy snack so that he feels involved with you. Also, when you pick him up to put him in his seat, try giving him an empty bowl and spoon to bang to keep him entertained while you feed him! Best luck and be patient. :)



And for "Pippa", your vulgar language isn't appreciated nor is your ignorance. I read every last comment on this thread and nobody made any type of statement that implied they see their children as a burden. If you're patient enough for your daughter to come back and forth, that's good for you. However, I believe that rules are rules. A child crying for a minute until they forget they're mad does no harm. They'll figure it out eventually. Otherwise, if you let them get away with things that easily already, just think of what will happen when they are teens!

Lynn - posted on 09/21/2009

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Quoting pippa:

Jesus does everyone think a child is a burden for fuck sake if you lot think it then don't fucking have kids people like this piss me off they are our future reading what the 3 of you said makes me think of my mother i punched out because she called my children retards fuck grrrrr


I am sorry but this is very offensive to me and more than likely to all the mothers who have posted on this thread.  Not once have we expressed that our children are a burden to us.  We were just pointing out that she is not she is not alone when her son tests her.  We all love your children very much, but they do test us; that does not mean that we resent them for doing so.  I am sorry I do not agree when you state not to make him sit in the high chair.  He needs to learn boundaries and that he needs to be safe and to listen to his parents.  I do agree to maybe give him toys to be a more enjoyable experience.  Sorry but I just had to respond to this comment.

Jennifer - posted on 09/21/2009

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Oh yes he is testing his limits and he is letting you know that he is not happy. It only gets better & the testing gets more intricate as they get older.

[deleted account]

Quoting pippa:

Jesus does everyone think a child is a burden


Nobody here thinks their child is a burden. However children want to test the boundaries set by parents. It's good and safe for a child to sit in his/her car seat and high chair. Yes you can make a game of it, but you also need to be consistent in requiring the child to be safe. No giving in. It is not mean, it is discipline. Children need that in their lives in order to be happy. That's all I'm going to say.

[deleted account]

Definately testing boundaries...That's what his job is right now and in the future, with everything. From a developmental standpoint, it's never to early to make boundaries, and all children need it. In an earlier post it was recommended to let your child sit on ur lap or come back and forth to the table as he wants, but this is not in your best interest. If you want him to sit at the table in his high chair, continue to require it and dont give in...You can give toys for him to play with in his high chair to encourage him to be happier. Also, you can always have a good laugh about his actions after he goes to bed.

Tara - posted on 09/21/2009

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Oh yes, definitely testing boundaries there. My daughter did (and still does) the same thing, only now that she's older (18 months) she's more creative. Sometimes it is hard not to laugh, but you just have to grit your teeth and stick to your guns, especially with things like the Xbox cables, etc. My daughter really liked the cables and her Dad's Xbox 360 controller, but now she just picks the controller up and brings it to her Dad because that is what we told her she needed to do :)

Pippa - posted on 09/21/2009

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no darling he's not testing you he's going threw what my daughter is and has been going threw when you put him in his car seat try getting him to help you turn it into a joke try saying do i put this thing in your shoe get him to try and do it up make it into a game for him to laugh at what your doing if that doesn't work try getting daddy to put him in. With the high chair try a better way but don't loose your cool with him sit him on your lap or daddy's lap and feed him that way (with my daughter she HATED the high chair she would sit play then come and have a mouthful go sit play mouthful go sit play mouthful she would do this until her tea was gone unless she was full) try that of cause you will need to ask him if he wants more of his dinner but he will tell you no even if he wants to say yes lol so give that a try tonight. most children of your sons age they don't wanna be stuck in a situation where there stuck with sitting up what i mean is when you sit down for too long your bum and back gets saw now if you cross that with a hard surface and we get chronic pains especially being mothers now when you think about it put your self in there seat so to say lol but forcing you to sit and to sit straight for me to think of it i'd kill my parents so try that out you also get to eat your tea while its still warm to lol you will adjust but yes it'll take time AND patience. Good luck sweetie xoxo

Adrienne - posted on 09/21/2009

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Sounds like my son. My youngest is going to be 15 months and he still sometimes screams and cries. Especially when trying to play with something that isn't safe to play with. But he use to arch his back when trying to put him in the car seat, in the highchair, in the stroller. I think it was testing and he still does it.

Lynn - posted on 09/21/2009

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That is exactly what he is doing. He is testing his boundaries, and trying to see how far you will let him get away with something. Just make sure you are consistent with him. Trust me it is cute now but when he is still testing at 3 years old it isn't so cute lol. My daughter has a mind of her own and still tests me on certain things.

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