Yep, I am smack dab in the middle of them. While most of the time my son is very affectionate, humorous and just a typical boy, we have hit the full-blown end of the world tantrums. For example, I tell him he can’t have any more grapes because he’s had like 30 of them and how about some toast. He starts repeating “NO NO NO!” and running away from me. Then he’s back demanding again. I suggest other things to eat, or suggest not hitting “C” with the play golf stick, that if he does it again he’ll be locked in his room.
Well, I reached that breaking point yesterday when his behavior got to an all time unacceptable. He was fighting with “C” over her blanket she calls “taggy” that she brings every day to my house. It’s hers along with her little froggy doll she brings and it’s only hers. I do not let J play with it as I don’t let “C” play with J’s blanket and dolly. They both know it’s theirs and J should know by now that he is not allowed to have “C’s” blankie. But I think he takes it from her just to see her reaction and despite lots of corner time and telling J he has to tell “C” he is sorry and to give it back to her, he sometimes refuses and throws himself on the floor in a fit of rage or screams at the top of his lungs back at me. So this time I grabbed him, I yelled in his face “NO!, that is “C’s”, give it back to her!”
He yells “NO!!!”
I say, “Say I’m sorry!”
Once again he yells “NO!!” and starts running from me.
So I grabbed him, I took him straight up to his room where he stayed there for a full 25 minutes. I know they say that time out should be for how ever old a child is, that simply doesn’t work with my son. This 25 minutes in his room was agony for him. He screamed he yelled, I could hear him throwing things and only when he decided to quiet down did I open the door and let him out. He came down stairs, grabbed “C’s” blankie and gave it to her and said “I sorry”. I couldn’t believe it!! He knew why he had been punished and I will now resort to the room time out when he is being out of control. I tell ya sometimes this parenting thing is so tough and I know that what one parent might say is ok punishment for a two-year old might be different with another parent. For me it was the end of a straw and, it happened to work. His behavior was improved the rest of the day and all I had to do is say “Do you want to go to your room” and he’d do an about-face.
I ultimately think each parent will know how to properly punish their child. It can be hard to figure out what to do, especially with toddlers. With older kids there are so many options, extra chores raking leaves etc. With toddlers, you have to punish in a way they will understand that what they have done is wrong and it’s really hard to reason with a toddler. I’ve put him in the corner, doesn’t phase him, I’ve swatted his hiney, doesn’t phase him, so complete isolation seems like the key. I think it’s also hard for him because he never sees “C” punished. “C” always listens the first time when I ask her not to do something. If I say “C”, don’t touch the DVD’s. She steps away. With J it almost always results in a time out, so part of me thinks that since he never sees her punished, he thinks she is getting special treatment. It’s really not the case. If I only had to tell J once not to do anything, it would be the same way.
I also know that “C” behaves because I am not her mother and kids always behave much better with people who are not their parents. At least that is what I’ve learned and heard.
What are some of your toddler parenting woes? Does it get easier right?
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