why does my two year old only whine around me?

Aubrie - posted on 04/26/2012 ( 10 moms have responded )




My two year old boy will whine and scream for a long time if he does not get his way. Should I discipline him for this? He only seems to go on and on around me.


Lesley - posted on 09/24/2012




I remember my daughter being worse around me, as well. Kids have a complex relationship with their mums, which sometimes involves a touch of resentment (going both ways!). He could act out around you because you tend to give in more or because he feels close enough to you to have no filters on his behaviour etc. That's a strange one, I know, but my daughter, being a little shy, would be pretty good out in public, good with other people, and then could 'let her hair down' more with me.

I suppose you could approach this issue, "I'm glad he's so good with others...that's something to be thankful for!". I don't think discipline is great for this issue because he's probably too young and his emotions are too 'new' to understand it fully. I think having as calm as environment as possible is important, and allowing him to make small decisions about his life. "You can sleep with this toy or that, wear this outfit or that, have this snack or that..." Not endless choices, but an alternative on minor matters. Praise him when he's calm and pleasant. Notice when he's starting to lose it and intervene or redirect to something else.

It would be frustrating to see that you get the 'worst' of his behaviour, but I don't think it's that unusual. Keep your relationship as upbeat and positive as possible, and don't label him as 'bad for mummy.' He's pretty young still, and the relationship that you forge with him now is so important. You don't want a child that gets 'shut down' or starts to 'shut you out' because you're punitive with his emotions. They call it 'the terrible twos' but I thought they were, overall, pretty great! Kids learn by leaps and bounds, glow when you praise them, love to 'help out' and their worlds are expanding so much. They need lots of routine and firm, cheerful leadership, but remember too, that most annoying behaviour sorts itself out. Good luck :)

Shayna - posted on 04/27/2012




LOL I know how you feel! I've been told my bossy, demanding, whiny, two year old is the most well behaved toddler in her daycare!!!

It's totally normal and it doesn't mean that you are doing anything wrong or need to change anything. Toddlers NEED to test their limits and mommy/daddy are the safest people to do that with. It just means you have a healthy two year old!

The only thing I would add is, no, do not ignore your child when they are acting out, redirect instead. Ignore the behavior but try to change the focus.

Kimberly - posted on 04/26/2012




My daughter can sometimes do the same things and I totally agree with the other ladies that you have to ignore it or if he can talk enough to tell you what he wants he needs to use his words. That what I will say to my daughter( usually wines when hungry) to use her words as I dont understand 'uh uh' and this usually pulls her up. Same with if she only says 'drink' I will repeat that she has to say ' Drink please mummy' so she understand how to ask for something. I think every kids plays up more for mom or dad then anyone else because they are the most comfortable with us!

Amy - posted on 04/26/2012




I agree with Louise, just ignore the whining, if he has the actual language to express his needs. He does it with you because your his mom and he's probably most comfortable with you. If he doesn't have the language skills I would get down on his level and say I need you to stop whining, and then give him the words to use.


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Aubrie - posted on 09/24/2012




Thanks for the advice. I definitely noticed he likes to push my buttons more than his dad. He is an angel when he is with grandma and Grandpa. I think because I am home all the time he knows I will let him get away with more things. He is a good boy, very loving with me, his dad and brother. When he doesn't get his way that's when we have a problem. All part of being two I guess :)

Nicole - posted on 04/28/2012




Out of my four children I have two that currently do that. My daughter, who is 7, has a tendency to whine around me, and then whine even more around her dad. I call it "squeaking" and it drives me CrAzY!! MY 4 year old son also whines more around me. I have dealt with it by telling either of them, in a very firm voice, that I can't understand them when they whine and that I don't enjoy talking to them when they talk to me in that manner. I then tell them that I will be more than happy to talk to them when they calm down. I then turn away from them and continue doing whatever I was doing (which always seems to be in the kitchen,lol). Usually, within a minute or two they have quit whining, their tears have dried up, and they are talking like big kids!

Aubrie - posted on 04/27/2012




Thank you everyone for your comments, My mother in law told me something very similar about him being more comfortable with me. It is hard because son is 23 months and does not talk a lot of words. I think I may give in too much to him, I'm really going to try to ignore when he carries on the way he does.

Kelly - posted on 04/26/2012




Usually behavior continues if there is some reward built in. He is gaining something by whining to you. Attention, mom caves in, babied, ....IDK? You need to completely ignore it and not respond in anyway. State unemotionally that you will listen when he speaks in a regular voice. Until then....sorry. Remember to some extent this is normal for 2-4 year olds. If it is only with you and no others then it's you. : )

Louise - posted on 04/26/2012




He is trying to attract your attention by doing this so ignore it completly. Reward him for positive behaviour and ignore the whineing. He will stop if you dont react to it. Children work on the fact that if mum responds it is a result. It is his way of controlling you. If you make a fuss of him and play with him because he has whined then he will do it again and again. Take control of the situation firmly by praising him for being happy and smiliey.

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