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-   -   My 17 month old is draining us (http://www.diaperswappers.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1475089)

firsttimeclothmomma 12-26-2012 12:22 PM

My 17 month old is draining us
 
LO has always been challenging, since birth. I guess I was hopeful some of the issues would get better as he got older. But he'll be a 18 mo in January and DH and I are starting to lose our gourds. I'm basically venting but any or all advice for any of the issues below is appreciated.

1. We've enter the picky eater phase. This kid would devour liver if I gave it to him as an infant. Now, he literally eats seven things: Crackers, Cheese sticks, blueberries, chicken nuggets, pasta, bananas and applesauce (notice how there isn't one veggie in there). He's with DCP full time and let me tell you, the list there is MUCH longer. It includes mandarin oranges, green beans, cucumbers, eggs... however he refuses to eat any of that with us.

2. He's.so.clingy.and.dramatic. Since 3 months, he's hated anyone who isn't me or DH. It took him MONTHS to stop crying with DCP at drop off (still does some days) and despite seeing them weekly for 17 months, he bawls when we try to hand him off to my inlaws. I try to be patient with it, but we can't do anything or give him to anyone. It's like we're setting him on fire. And of course everyone takes it so personally and looks at you like you did something to your kid :cry:

3. Figuring out his naps, ugh. With DCP he naps once per day - 2.5-3 hours. Like a clock. Goes down easy, wakes up happy. At home he still can't make it past mid-morning. He always wakes up grumpy and crying. And he's awake by 5:30 a.m. every morning (we have a small window of time to get ready for work and it would help if he stayed down til at least 6!)

4. He isn't entertained by anything. Except movies :banghead: - we've tried all sorts of imaginative play, his toys and cars, sensory stuff, books, pots and pans, painting, balloons... he likes nothing for more than 6 seconds. He just cries and screams and carries on until I'm carrying him all day trying to get my stuff done, only interjecting when we pass a light switch he wants to play with for a half hour or a bunch of cords he thinks he can tug at.


I think how horrible it is that he's my first and only and he makes me never want to have more kids. They're not all this draining, I have plenty of friends whose kids are normal! How do we cope?

danielle 12-26-2012 01:10 PM

I have a 17 month old as well, and all I can say is this is my least favorite age. My daughter is 4+ and she terrorized me from about 13-19 months and then we had a wonderful time for awhile.

My son is even worse, he's trying to bring the roof down on our heads. I am responding by parenting the best I can, taking deep breaths, leading by example and hoping this horrific phase ends very soon.

bumminbeachbabe 12-26-2012 01:14 PM

He's at the age where they re really learning to assert themselves and try to control something in their lives. It's a really rough age. It does get better as they are able to communicate more.

kelpie169 12-26-2012 01:26 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by firsttimeclothmomma
LO has always been challenging, since birth. I guess I was hopeful some of the issues would get better as he got older. But he'll be a 18 mo in January and DH and I are starting to lose our gourds. I'm basically venting but any or all advice for any of the issues below is appreciated.

1. We've enter the picky eater phase. This kid would devour liver if I gave it to him as an infant. Now, he literally eats seven things: Crackers, Cheese sticks, blueberries, chicken nuggets, pasta, bananas and applesauce (notice how there isn't one veggie in there). He's with DCP full time and let me tell you, the list there is MUCH longer. It includes mandarin oranges, green beans, cucumbers, eggs... however he refuses to eat any of that with us.

As far as this goes-mine went through it and this is what we did. (No flames please!)
I gave him a certain choice (ie. oranges, banana) and if he said neither then he didn't get anything until the next meal/snack time. For meals, the biggest concession I ever made for my kids was not putting sauce on their pasta.
My feeling is that they'll eat if they're hungry. They always are able to have water. Otherwise mine would eat all day first of all and only eat crappy food. They eat whatever my mom offers no mattr what but this was a huge battle with us. This works for us though.

BinahYeteirah 12-26-2012 01:33 PM

Re: My 17 month old is draining us
 
Most of what you wrote sounds normal to me. My kids aren't particularly picky eaters, but it sounds like he eats a fair variety of foods for a seventeen-month-old. The fact that he eats a greater variety of foods at daycare makes me wonder if there is some aspect of a power struggle between you over food at home. My two-year-old can be pickier than my older children, but I just continue to serve her the same food that we all eat. I don't care if she eats it or not. Food is just a nonissue. There are a few things the kids enjoy and can eat no matter what (mostly fruit, veggies, cheese, and other healthy things they can grab without help), but I don't make special foods for people who don't want to eat what they're served. It's my expectation that my two-year-old will eat even more of what I serve over time.

I haven't had kids in childcare for awhile, but when I did, my child cried any time I dropped her off, even after a year with the same caregiver. She didn't cry when dh dropped her off. I don't believe there were any issues with the caregiver; she was just very attached to me and I hated leaving her. She probably sensed that. My husband even took videos of her crying and carrying on after I'd leave the house and she was alone with him (her own father!).

As for him wanting you to carry him around all day, I'd try ignoring him a little. Give him a toy, tell him you need to do something then go about your business. Talk to him if he gets upset, but don't pick him up. Tell him you'll be done in ten or fifteen minutes. I actually think this is one of those things that is easier when you have more kids, because they play together. My oldest was much clinger than my younger kids. I was all she had.

homebirthmom 12-26-2012 01:38 PM

Re: My 17 month old is draining us
 
my 2 1/2 yr old just started doing some of the same stuff. mind you I have 5 kids and they all did have times in their lives that i REALLY disliked their behavior... and it lasted at least a yr.
so the tantrums, I wont deal. if its a fit for no reason, you go to your room or throw a fit by yourself. I ignore it. that has worked great. attention made it worse and she only got louder.
i offer food all day long. I dont do 3 meals, cause I dont eat 3 meals. I snack and have big 1-2 bigger meals (I am a small girl and need to keep natural sugars up)

throwing toys, getting mean, screaming, also not tolerated. I make sure she understands she wont get her way and her actions are not ok.
a 17 month old may not understand but I feel they learn early so if you see a thing you dislike, change it now.
more often than not, her sassiness is from not eating well or being over tired.

SaraElise 12-26-2012 01:40 PM

Re: My 17 month old is draining us
 
Honestly, he sounds like a very normal toddler to me, and this is actually mine and my husband's favorite age as they are really starting to get their own personality and making their own choices!

1. We don't cater to meals. My oldest went through a VERY picky stage of not eating much, we still served him whatever we were eating, if he ate it fine, if not, he wasn't starving, it was his choice I made sure at least one meal a day had some thing in it he really liked and didn't worry about the rest. He's gotten much better and at 5 always at least tries his food now before he decides if he likes it or not, and will eat tons of different things he used to say no to.

2. Some kids are just way more clingy than others. All of mine have been weary of other people and preferred us much to my IL's dismay. By 2 they were MUCH better and easily go with other family members and close friends, but still are very quiet and stay close to me around people they know well. DH and I are both sort of introverts, ,so it makes sense to me that our kids are too. As for dropping him off with other people, it's easiest if you just do it and move on instead of worrying if he is upset or not or trying to comfort him (not saying you do this, I just know some people do.)

I babysit an 18 month old and gets SO upset when his grandma lingers and tries to get him to be happy before she leaves. The few times she just kisses him and goes, he cries less than 30 seconds and then runs off to play like she was never there.

3. Naps are tricky to figure out, I would try and do the exact same schedule as the DCP, especially if it's working there. It might just take him some time to realize that the rules don't change at home. My kids were always early risers, there isn't a whole lot you can do about it but find a way to make it work with your routine. It's rough when you're working too.

4. 18 month olds have VERY short attention spans. My daughter is 23 months and is just now starting to sit down and play with things for longer than a minute or two. They like interaction with other kids/adults, even if they are not playing directly with them, they don't like to play alone. Often my daughter plays at my feet as I do other things, but I interject or sit down and add to her play every few minutes. It wasn't until my kids were closer to 3 that they liked to wander off and do things on their own.

A lot of times it just takes a change in expectations, toddlers are unpredictable little people who are just learning that they can make choices and do things their way.

mibarra 12-26-2012 02:59 PM

18ish-24 months has been the worst for my 2 girls. I had a nephew who was extremely clingy like that. Turns out he had food allergies. DD2 wouldn't even go to DH til almost a year, at almost 2 she's gotten TONS better, mostly in the last few months.

doodah 12-26-2012 03:08 PM

Re: My 17 month old is draining us
 
Since you know that he does all these things with the daycare provider but just not you, I really think that your little one knows that he can get his way at home. I have several daycare kids over the years that did everything expected at daycare but were quite the little tyrants at home. I am sorry if that is harsh....

this isnt going to fixed until you and the hubby get very firm and consistent with him. no TV period. do it cold turkey until he shows that he can play independently at home. I would expect this to take a couple weeks to a couple months, depending on how stubborn he is. no matter how much he cries for TV, dont give in! do the meals and if he doesnt want it, then he can wait till the next meal to eat. I dont have picky eaters here but I also never make meals based on lists of what kids eat. He will not starve, I promise. carrying is tougher but I would recommend limiting it to carrying only when necessary. if he wants attention, sit down next to him or let him climb in your lap to read a book but no more carrying around the house. I realize that is not something that every mom is comfortable with but that is what I would do. as for the clingy, that might be his nature but either way, just make goodbyes short and sweet. there is nothing else you can do. i do recommend that my daycare parents walk the kid to the door so mom doesnt have to rip him off her body and cause more drama by physically removing him.

doodah 12-26-2012 03:08 PM

Re: My 17 month old is draining us
 
DP


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