17 month old boy who doesn't listen at all and any punishment doesn't work

Christina - posted on 12/23/2008 ( 4 moms have responded )

18

19

2

I need help I am really at my ropes end. I have two children but it's my 17 month old Danny who doesn't listen at all. He purposely does things he isn't supposed to and then when you punish him he just goes and does the same thing again. My husband and I have tried everything, time outs, taking toys away, putting him in the crib to cry, even a smack on the behind. NOTHING WORKS!!!! I also don't condone the spanking so I don't want to do that again. Can anyone give me any advice as to what to do? I am desperate, and to top things off I'm expecting again, and actually thought to myself today there is no way I can have another baby with him being this way. I am so afraid that he'll teach the new baby these bad things and then I will really go insane. I keep having thoughts of him in his teenage years and I'm that mother who can't control their child, and he is constantly in trouble. PLEASE HELP!!!!

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Uyen/Winn - posted on 12/23/2008

13

0

2

Christina- please know that you are not alone. Let's take a step back and take a look at what he likes and what he doesn't like. Start by picking your battles to the most critical things and stick to your guns. The more consistent you are, the quicker he will fall in line with your expectations.

I have 3 kids -- all stubborn (6, 4 and 2yrs). Here's what worked for me:
1- I defined for my family what is critical and not up for compromise (e.g. respect and manners, health, and safety).
2- I let them know (age-appropriate) what the consequences are for those things
3- I find out what each child is driven by (rewards) and what they do not like (punishment)
4- Every time one of them goes over this line, I discipline them according to what works for them. 100%. I don't let it slip one time.
5- I use hand-over-hand as needed. That is, if my 2yr old daughter does not pick up the toy as I have asked the first or second time and is now throwing a tantrum, I will put my hand over her hand to manipulate it and make her grab it, and walk her over to put it where it is supposed to be and reinforce "This is where we put our toys away. Thank you darling."
6- I mete out punishment as needed.
7- I give them all (even the 2-yr-old) jobs to do that is appropriate to their ages, development, and liking. They love earning the ability to do things (vacuuming, put out plates, getting their own cups) and the sense of accomplishment and most importantly, my attention "Great job! Thank you for bringing me your cup!" Hugs, kisses, all Oscar-worthy of praise.

Say, do, follow through. Every time. Consistency is key. Set your expectations that your son will meet them. He will.

It's always more work on your part, but the work you put in now will teach them responsibility, respect, and self-esteem from accomplishment.

Don't give up on this. I, too, was pregnant with baby #3 when my now middle child was a year old (they're 19 months apart). I have an autistic son with behavioral issues. It can get hard, but you have so many moms out there in your shoes.

Here's one example of one tough evening with all 3 children: after asking them repeatedly to clean up the playroom, all 3 whined and hollered for 15 minutes and nothing was done. I gave them warnings and told them that whatever toys they did not pick up and put away, I was reclaiming the toys via garbage bags, and they would have to earn it back out. They didn't believe me. They didn't pick up. So imagine their jaws dropping when I put 3 garbage bag fulls of toys in the garage!

They've since earned most of it back by doing good deeds and following directions. (Bonus: it feels like Christmas every time they get a "new" toy out of the bag!) But I still was able to clean, disinfect, and resell toys (brand-name ones that are no longer available) and made over $100. More than enough to get them Christmas presents this year. And they never even missed those toys.

And they clean the play room every night. And they listen and follow directions.

So good luck dear Christina. More responsibilities, more expectations, and consistency in teaching and follow-through on your part will make your child rise to the occasion.

Erin - posted on 12/23/2008

5

9

0

He is testing you!!! My daughter was the same way at this age. I would have to put her in her room and walk away because I was about to go postal!!! I found that counting to 5 helps (that is after I said in a stern voice--if you don't stop after 5 seconds I will.....). If she did not do what she was suppose to I would tap her behind and do it for her. Also I would take away whatever she was playing with. If you follow through on your threats, then he will know that you are the boss. It is hard at this stage, but it does get better I promise. Just lay down the lay in a stern voice and let him know that you are the boss and he will stop testing!! He most likely senses the pregnancy and the changes that you are going through. This is normal:( Take care and Good luck.

4 Comments

View replies by

User - posted on 12/23/2008

2

0

0

above everything else remember not to set your expectations of them too high at the end of the day they are still babies at this age. its so easy to get caught up on those toddler books about what they should or should not be doing every child is different and as long as you are consistant it will be fine

User - posted on 12/23/2008

2

0

0

hi the best thing do to is to ignore i know its hard but at that age they arent doing it to be naughty but just to get a reaction and hence attention,seriously the next time he does something you have told him not to tell him firmly no then ignore it .once they know they not getting a reaction they realise there is no point it can take a while but it works good luck

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms