3 or 13, parenting frustrations: What is the answer?
After a few weeks of less than ideal 3 year old behavior I decided to write to vent and gain insight from others. So today, no writing about running although this often makes me want to run! Alright parents, we all hear the “Terrible Twos” but honestly that year was nothing compared to the 3s, seriously there are days when I’m not sure if I have a 3 year old or a 13 year old on my hands! Isn’t it supposed to be the teen years filled with emotional rollercoasters, drama, pushing limits and door slamming? Not here, my 3 year old has mastered these all!
|We pick our battles: outfits of tutu and PJ tops are fine with me!|
Every parent has seen this: the lack of listening, frustration leading to hitting and throwing, just plain defiance, right? I honestly question those who say their child doesn’t do any of this, what is the secret?
O is big into pushing limits and continuing to push complete with the gritted teeth…
- The other day at Costco she continued to hit me with the cart strap, I tell her “that is not nice, hitting hurts” well it continues but now she has that smirk. I take away “snacks” (samples) at the store but nope not working.
- Again we are at home asking her to do who knows what: pick up toys, brush teeth, put on shoes, etc and the answer is “No” and she walks away.
- I will admit that the responses are funny at times: “I can’t pick up my toys. I only have two hands and they are little.” –Yep, she has a point there!
- And the many times where I wonder if her ears work, although when she does that thing she was told not to complete with smirk then I know the ears work! There are times when it is not just a behavior but a safety issue: leaving the yard and going in the street, running around with food in her mouth, climbing the stair railing! I try to reason and explain she could get hurt badly and think she gets that but just pushes still. She did finally learn after being told to not rock on the kitchen chair only after the entire chair fell backwards leading to a fall and a scared kid (although not hurt).
I mean I get it she is learning her independence and pushing the boundaries but come on, nothing prepares you for this. You read all the books and listen to the advice that says love your child, listen the them, give them attention… but what else? It all sounds great on paper but no matter how much of the previous is done there are days when the behavior is out of control! A full moon, weather, parental stress, who knows?
I have tried attempting to cut off behavior early with removing the situation, the reasoning and telling her she made the choice (suggested by her pre-school teacher), take away toys and activities after one time of not listening, tried time outs but that usually means just jumping on the couch. I try to keep calm myself but we all know that doesn’t work many times as they continue to push and now we are both escalating.
So what works? Do we just hold our breath and know that we will survive and it has to end soon? Just love and hug our kids and teach them to be strong through our positive example? Or is there a hidden answer somewhere out there? If anyone knows this, please share!
She has now moved on to refusing the much needed nap, so much she won’t stay in bed for fear of actually falling asleep! But she needs this, luckily I can still convince her to stay in her room or I always have this…
|I guess BOB still means a nap!|
I run and de-stress! Parents tell me I am not alone, please! What other tricks work? Thanks for letting me vent a little, deep breaths all around, we will survive. Even with this behavior it is all worth it when she runs up with that big hug, the giggles and tells me "You are the best mommy ever."