Leah - posted on 01/10/2013 ( 7 moms have responded )
My 3 1/2 yr old DS likes to demand that one parent or the other do various things for him, i.e. no daddy has to dress me, no mummy get me a tissue, no daddy put my shoes on, no mummy get me a drink...and it goes on. If the requested parent doesn't then do as asked a large screaming tantrum occurs. and even when I've managed to calm him down he will still go on about which parent he wants to do the selected task. My tactic at the moment is basically to try and stop the behaviour by not giving into the demands. I tell him...you get who you get it doesn't matter who does it only that it gets done. It doesn't matter who gets you a drink it only matters that you get a drink etc..and if the bahaviour continues then I use the time out chair.
What I'm wondering is am I crushing his spirit, is he just expressing control over his life and surroundings? Is there a better way to explain to him, should I just be disciplining the tantrum and not the request for a particular parent or is that not setting enough boundaries? I guess I just want to set good boundaries but at the same time I want him to have confidence in himself, where do you draw the line?