Challenging days

Kim - posted on 08/02/2011 ( 7 moms have responded )

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What should I do when my 3 year old is out of control, and will not listen. He is behind in his speech, so sometimes I just think he doesn't understand but other times he will tell me what I told him.

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Lisa - posted on 08/02/2011

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I have a 2 1/2 year old who has delayed speech but I know he understands.
Have a consequence for not listening and follow through. Tell him, if you're not going to do ABC than XYZ will happen. I give my kids three chances.
Our conversations go like this.
Connor we need to pick up our toys because it's almost bedtime. Connor I asked you to pick up your toys, let's pick them up now. Connor, this is your last warning, let's pick up your toys or I will throw them away. Even if he's throwing a fit during number two, I just continue on. When I get to the part about throwing his toys away, he MOVES!
If he's really out of control, I make him sit on his bed and he can't get down until he settles down.
You have to find what will work and just stick with it.

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Lisa - posted on 08/04/2011

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Have you had a birth-3 evaluation done? His pediatrician can refer you to someone who can do that. I had it done for my 2 year old - they test speech and comprehension and social skills and other things to determine if there is an issue like turrets or autism or overall development delay or just speech The evaluation is typically free. Then you can qualify for state funded care or a discount depending upon your income if your kiddo needs therapy for some kind of delay.

As for the acting out, I would have the eval done so you know if it is some kind of disorder or just him being 3.

If it is just him being that age (3 is worse than 2 I hear) be consistant. Do not let him manipulate you or the situation. When he needs to have a fit put him in a safe place and leave him to it. After he has had a few minutes of being calm happily tell him you love him and move on. If he has another fit it starts over. When he is in a good mood enjoy every moment. Let him learn that having fun with mom is better than having a fit alone in his crib or chair or wherever his safe place is. When he does not listen he gets an "uh oh" and "looks like it's bedroom time" or whatever the safe place is. Then you take him there and let him think about what he did. No lectures. Give him some time and then get him, love him and play until he acts up again. Then repeat. Every time you give him this time out he learns that there is a consequence to his bad actions. It's better for him to learn this lesson now while he is young and you are able to control the situation than when he is 14 and decides he is going to try to drive your car while you are sleeping.

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Kim, I feel your pain. I'm a stay-at-home mom of a 4 year old son who has a significant speech delay. My husband and I know many of my son's behavior issues are directly related to the speech delay (apraxia). Yesterday, it was a very bad day for him. His frustration is very difficult on me. I feel unsure what to do. I wish I had some better advice. But, you may wish to check out the childhood apraxia of speech or special needs communities on Circle of Moms and the internet for more help.

Kat - posted on 08/03/2011

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What I'm starting to do is treat him like he's an infant, meaning I try to diagnose his tantrums by running through the "baby list": "are you hungry? thirsty? tired? hurt?" and I'm trying to be more aware of his schedule. My son was behind in his speech also, but he was generally very aware of what was going on. I think your son can probably draw the conclusion that when he does x, it results in y. I've also put my son on the "quiet couch". It's a comfy couch in a separate (child-safe) room that is easily accessible to both of us that allows him some time to quiet down. It's been working so far. I'll explain to him why I put him there and ask him to change his behavior in the future. After that, when he's calmer, I can figure out what is bothering him.

Sal - posted on 08/03/2011

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bored is not good for kids...neither is hungry, makes them super cross and less content...and as katherines said when they want attention they get it how ever they can...

apart from that, 3 yr olds by nature aren;t renouned for listening

Katherine - posted on 08/03/2011

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Why don't you give him something fun to do? Play with play dough, finger paint, watch a movie etc.......read him a book. Sometimes they do that because they want your attention.
Ever since my daughter was born, who is now 2.5, my 5.5 year old NEVER listens. I know it's because she doesn't get enough attention from me.

Tamara - posted on 08/02/2011

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I am pretty sure every mom on CoM has days where their child don't listen. So I honestly don't think it has anything to do with his speech.

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