Troubles with the Terrible Two's

Maegan - posted on 10/12/2016 ( 9 moms have responded )

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Hello, my name is Maegan. I have been wanting to find a group of moms that can maybe help me with my struggle. My son, Nicholas, is almost two. He is my world. I never thought a love like this could exist. But his behavior is getting worse. I don't believe in hitting a child, and time out isn't really working either. I have gone to family members and friends for advice, and everyone keeps telling me to give him a good whipping. At the moment, his father really isn't in the picture, so I don't have a male role model for him and all the stresses of this is falling on me. I have become that mother you see at the grocery store who has a child that is just cutting up, screaming at the top of their lungs. He likes to throw his body and kick a lot. I hate it, because when we are out in public, everyone is looking at me like, what is this crazy woman doing. I love my son with every being of me. He is incredibly smart. I can have conversations with him, and he can pick up things like the drop of a hat. If I tell him, " Do you wanna go in time out?" He will tell me, "Fine!" or , " No I'm not!" Its shocking to me how such a little person can have so much attitude. What am I doing wrong? Can anyone help?

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Claire - posted on 10/14/2016

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Okay, must have missed that in your post then :)
Best of luck with your son, and if you need any future help, I'd be happy to try and help.
:)
-Claire

Michelle - posted on 10/14/2016

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You can explain to him that you are going shopping and he needs to sit in the trolley/stroller/pram (whatever you are using). If he wants to get out, let him know that he can get out and walk ONLY if he holds on next to you. Tell him that if he runs off, you will go to the car and there won't be any more shopping.
If you need to, get the car keys from your sister and go and sit in the car until she is done. He will eventually learn that what you say goes and if he wants a treat or to go out, he needs to behave. You just have to be consistent and follow through with what you say.
If you don't get on top of it now, he will run rings around you as teen. Boys are more energetic as toddlers so please don't compare him to your niece, boys and girls are very different.

Maegan - posted on 10/14/2016

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To: Michelle Waldbillig, Shawnn,and Dove,
Thank you for all of the helpful comments. I really appreciate yall talking them time to respond. I will definitely need to learn to be more assertive( in a good way) and stick to it. I guess I just hate breaking his lil heart so sometimes I cave real easy. Most of the time it's not him wanting a toy that makes him have a tantrum, it's more he wants to get down and run all over the store. He is definitely "free spirited". At the moment I live with my sister and her husband and lil girl. My niece is only 2 months older than my son. I don't have my own vehicle yet, so when I need to go to the store, I'm going with my sister and her family. Her lil girl is a whole lot more calmer, so they allow her to walk next to them when they are shopping. My son sees it and wants to do what she is doing. But instead of being near me, he runs all over, knocking items down. I guess this is just typical behavior and I know being a his mother, I must be strong. I will take all of your advice and set the limits. Be the one who makes the rules. I just feel like if I ignore him then I'm scared he will think I don't love him. And I am so scared to hurt him emotionally. Growing up, I was abuse physically emotionally and sexually. I know that these are my own demons and I need to be able to keep the inner child in me out of the picture when it comes to dealing with my son. But it's hard. Especially when he calls out my name. AGAIN, thank you ladies for your advice. I will follow.
To: Clair, I appreciate your input, But I specifically asked for advice that didn't involve spankings. I won't judge you or make any comments to the right and wrongs of your parenting because you didn't ask for my opinion and it's not my place to judge anyone, so I'm not gonna butt in. But thanks anyways.

Michelle - posted on 10/13/2016

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Sorry Claire, I disagree. Spanking a child is abuse. If an adult hits another adult, they get charged with assault, why is it okay to hit a child? It's NOT!
I don't understand people that think it's alright to assault their children but not another adult.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 10/12/2016

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I respectfully disagree, Claire. A seat or two on a clothed /diapered butt is one thing. Bending them over your knee for a "proper" spanking is abusive.

Would you, as an adult, allow someone to lay hands on you as a "punishment"? No, you would not. Why, then, is it acceptable to use that method with ANY human, regardless of age?

I stopped butt popping when the kids were old enough to communicate, and I have NEVER put a child over my knee to assault them. Having grown up with the hairbrush or wooden spoon, I have known from about the age of 10 that there were better methods. I certainly did not respect my mother at that point...

As for the rest, I agree with Dove. My method for tantrums was to leave the store or wherever until my sons understood proper behaviour. Sometimes that meant a five minute stay in the car, other times it meant I left the cart in the aisle and took my kids home until later.

Dove - posted on 10/12/2016

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Don't listen to people telling you he needs a good whipping. He's not even TWO yet. Freaking out when he doesn't get his way is 100% normal for his age. Acceptable? Of course not, but normal? Absolutely. Don't hit your child for being normal.

Talk to him before you go out in public and let him know in simple terms what to expect and what you expect from him. If he freaks out you could ignore him and just get done whatever needs to get done while he freaks out in the shopping cart or your arms or scoop him up and go buckle him into his car seat and leave (or sit in the car until the freak out is over if you have to get stuff done... sometimes just leaving isn't feasible especially as a single mom who might have a limited window to get stuff done).

Tantrums at home you can just walk away and ignore him until he is done... or wrap him up in a big bear hug and let him melt down. How you choose to deal w/ his behavior depends a lot on your style and what will work best for your particular child, but the things that will help no matter what the situation are for you to stay calm, be patient, and never reward a tantrum w/ the thing the tantrum started over.

Claire - posted on 10/12/2016

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Just want to address one thing you said. Saying all spankings are abuse is completely false. Beating your kid, leaving bruises, using a belt, etc is abuse. A swat here, or there, or even a spanking over the knee is not abuse if done responsibly.


-Claire

Michelle - posted on 10/12/2016

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You need to find his currency. It could be his favourite toy or not being able to watch his favourite TV show.
You let him know that if he keeps up with the tantrum he will lose _____. If he keeps it up then you take it away. You don't give it back until he starts behaving.
You have to be consistent and make sure you tell him what will happen.
If he has a tantrum when you are out then you head straight back to the car and go home.
You need to be strong and let him know that you make the rules, not him.
I have left a trolley full of groceries when one of mine had a tantrum in the supermarket. Only had to do that once in 15 years!
You don't need to spank, that's just abuse and only teaches him that if he doesn't get his own way, to hit other children.
You can also reward his good behaviour. Have a star chart and when he goes a day without a tantrum he gets a star. If he has one then a star gets taken away. When he has XX stars he gets a surprise. It could be a small toy or a treat. Nothing big but it will give him a visual on how he is going.

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