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Old 08-08-2011, 07:12 AM   #1
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Short of spanking my kid...

NAK how the HECK do I make him listen??? He's 2~ smart as a whip. He has a baby brother... He's always in his face (kissing/hugging/poking) when I tell him not to~ & he gets timeouts.
He KNOWS, because some days I'll tell him what not to and he's like: "oh yeah, ok" and stops.
He KNOWS how to push my buttons, by the end of the day I'm running on fumes.(I take that back, by naptime that usually doesn't happen anymore...) When I sit to nurse the baby he'll jump to sit there right before me (or anywhere I put the baby down/baby only areas.) He sasses like you wouldn't believe. Turns his head, crosses his arms and/or says "Well!" and continues on his path.
I'm soo done. I know I'm not failing as much as I feel I am, my mom said my brother was the same way and she didn't handle it as well as I am. I know I need to push through & be consistant~ but he's openly defiant, and time outs don't even work half the time. :/

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Old 08-08-2011, 07:31 AM   #2
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Re: Short of spanking my kid...

DS does the steal my seat thing. I firmly tell him "You knew mama was gonna sit there. What you did is not nice and not ok. You need to move now." If he doesn't, I move him. I ask him if he wants to put his own shoes on or if he wants me to (I give him choices that are acceptable to me and the situation). If he says no or asks for something else, I inform him that is not an option and repeat the options. If he says no again, I tell him to pick a or b or I will choose for him. Either way, these shoes are going on his feet. If he says no again, I just put the shoes on despite the kicking and fighting. Again, this is an example situation. I do not let myself get flustered and it is not a power struggle. I am mom. That is that. I do take his feelings and wants into consideration. If you ask him "Are you ready to go to bed?" you are leaving it open for him to tell you no. Either you will have a kid staying up until their decided bed time or you will tell them they need to go to bed anyway which is basically telling them that you asked them what they wanted, but it doesn't really matter. I tell my son "After xyz or in 5 minutes, we need to go brush our teeth for bed". If I do mistakenly ask "Are you ready for bed?" to which the answer is almost always no, then I say "Okay sweetheart, you have 5 more minutes then we need to start getting ready for bed." This took a while and it was a lot of just doing stuff like putting shoes on a fighting kid or forcing him dressed. It is hard but eventually DS figured out that when he was asked to do something, he could chose from what I gave him/do it himself/the easy way or it was up to me and it would be done anyway. I also make sure to give him plenty of choices. Just remember to keep the choices acceptable for you.

As for the back talking and such - I would send him to his room. Time out never worked for my child. I just told him to go to his room. If I ever got to flustered with a situation, I sent him to his room to cool down. Like when he was whining or hitting "You do not hit me." "I don't want to hear this whining. It is not necessary." and I sent him to his room. I would physically place him there and close the door if need be. Yes, he has toys in there but sometimes just being isolated and being made to take time to themselves helps a lot.
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Old 08-08-2011, 07:44 AM   #3
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Re: Short of spanking my kid...

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DS does the steal my seat thing. I firmly tell him "You knew mama was gonna sit there. What you did is not nice and not ok. You need to move now." If he doesn't, I move him. I ask him if he wants to put his own shoes on or if he wants me to (I give him choices that are acceptable to me and the situation). If he says no or asks for something else, I inform him that is not an option and repeat the options. If he says no again, I tell him to pick a or b or I will choose for him. Either way, these shoes are going on his feet. If he says no again, I just put the shoes on despite the kicking and fighting. Again, this is an example situation. I do not let myself get flustered and it is not a power struggle. I am mom. That is that. I do take his feelings and wants into consideration. If you ask him "Are you ready to go to bed?" you are leaving it open for him to tell you no. Either you will have a kid staying up until their decided bed time or you will tell them they need to go to bed anyway which is basically telling them that you asked them what they wanted, but it doesn't really matter. I tell my son "After xyz or in 5 minutes, we need to go brush our teeth for bed". If I do mistakenly ask "Are you ready for bed?" to which the answer is almost always no, then I say "Okay sweetheart, you have 5 more minutes then we need to start getting ready for bed." This took a while and it was a lot of just doing stuff like putting shoes on a fighting kid or forcing him dressed. It is hard but eventually DS figured out that when he was asked to do something, he could chose from what I gave him/do it himself/the easy way or it was up to me and it would be done anyway. I also make sure to give him plenty of choices. Just remember to keep the choices acceptable for you.

As for the back talking and such - I would send him to his room. Time out never worked for my child. I just told him to go to his room. If I ever got to flustered with a situation, I sent him to his room to cool down. Like when he was whining or hitting "You do not hit me." "I don't want to hear this whining. It is not necessary." and I sent him to his room. I would physically place him there and close the door if need be. Yes, he has toys in there but sometimes just being isolated and being made to take time to themselves helps a lot.
Thanks! I definately limit choices, & only offer when I feel it's ok. His whining for junk is unacceptable, but I do give in sometimes because I don't want to hear it.. which, I know, feeds the fire & I need to stop. I'm absolutely working on it.
I cannot, unfortunately send him to his room. If he is alone in his room, he will bang his head on his wall/floor/bed whatever. He has been so ticked that he (or the headbanging) has made himself go stiff as a log and pass out and I need to pour water on him to bring him back. (Which is why I *have to be with him to get him to sleep every.single.freaking.night because he pulls the headbanging card when alone, and bruises himself! last night it took 3 hrs to get him down because DS2 kept waking/needing to nurse.
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Old 08-08-2011, 08:11 AM   #4
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Re: Short of spanking my kid...

Put him in a pack and play with the soft sides if he bangs his head. To me, those are all signs of attention and trying to get his needs met. My son knows we have our snuggle chair and he'll sit smack in the middle - I don't think he gets the we need a bit of room, so we just move him over or on our lap. We also got him a bean bag and his own chair which was a huge mistake as sometimes he will sit there over giving us our snuggle time. I would think he's jealous/missing his time with you and I'd do a morning, before nap and before bed snuggle. If we don't do them, my son will not go to bed and scream for a while, till we pull him out and he gets his snuggle time. Its just been part of our routine and no need to change. I'd also try to give him some one-on-one time when dad is home with baby.

As for the junk food, keep it somewhere else and only bring it out when he's napping or sleeping. Or, stop buying it - then you will not be able to give it to him. Just ignore the tantrums and it will take him time to adjust be he'll be fine. (we are holding off on all that for a while longer so we don't get into this as we've seen it happen all the time - you aren't alone - kids that age don't get moderation).

I would not do a time out for kisses and hugs. He's just repeating what you do to him and baby. I'd redirect by kissing him/hugging and giving him a bit of attention. At that age its all or nothing thinking so he doesn't understand why he is being punished for kissing.

We don't do a lot of open ended questions, choices, etc. When he gets older, sure but they are just too young. We just say, bedtime, you are getting tired, and start our routine - sippy & snuggle , potty and teeth, change and off to bed. You could do a book but we don't as we do them during the day. Every other night we do a bath.
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Old 08-08-2011, 08:12 AM   #5
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Re: Short of spanking my kid...

Ugh, I was starting to get frustrated this weekend as well with my 22 mo DS. He doesn't bang his head or anything yet, but I don't want it to get to that. He'll throw toys or come up to slap me just to see the reaction. I take his little hands and tell me "no hitting friends" or sometimes I just pick him up and turn him around to sit facing away from me. He'll turn back around and say "be nice mama". I ask him to say sorry and he does now (oh, such a cute, cute sorry).

If he's really being out of hand or this doesn't work, I tell him that he'll go on the "thinking spot". He says ok. This does seem to get him out of repeated funk.

He does do this though I'd say once a day....frustrating. I'll be watching this thread too for suggestions on better ways.
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Old 08-08-2011, 08:13 AM   #6
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Re: Short of spanking my kid...

Do you have a pack n play? I would put him in there and put blankets where the bars are. Tell him if he acts like a baby, you will treat him like one. The head banging and passing out are attention grabbers. I would dump the cold water on him and leave him in the wet clothes for a bit. He still wouldn't get his way after. I remind DS to use his words, not his whine. I *hate* whining. With a passion.

If you don't have a pack-n-play, then what about sitting with him in a bear hug but not interacting with him? Don't comfort him or respond to any screaming or attempt at violence. DS has done the head wall thing plenty of times so I know that is kind of scary.

Yes, I do feel like a mean mom sometimes. But I remind myself this behavior must stop. It will be better for everyone in the long run. I also only have had one child through this, so it may be a little more difficult with a baby. If you think he may be doing it for attention, def make sure punishment is given with little interaction and make sure to give good attention when he is behaving appropriately.

lol - it is taking forever to type this because DS is making me practice what I preach over here.
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Old 08-08-2011, 08:14 AM   #7
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Re: Short of spanking my kid...

Have you thought of a co-op/preschool (co-ops are where you volunteer every so often and far cheaper) or other activity like gymnastics, if you can afford it? We are starting a co-op twice a week for 2 1/2 hours in September just so he can have a different type of structure/socialization and learning experiences. Its about $160 a month, which isn't too bad considering what regular preschool costs. Ours is at a local church.
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Old 08-08-2011, 08:48 AM   #8
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Re: Short of spanking my kid...

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NAK how the HECK do I make him listen??? He's 2~ smart as a whip. He has a baby brother... He's always in his face (kissing/hugging/poking) when I tell him not to~ & he gets timeouts.
He KNOWS, because some days I'll tell him what not to and he's like: "oh yeah, ok" and stops.
He KNOWS how to push my buttons, by the end of the day I'm running on fumes.(I take that back, by naptime that usually doesn't happen anymore...) When I sit to nurse the baby he'll jump to sit there right before me (or anywhere I put the baby down/baby only areas.) He sasses like you wouldn't believe. Turns his head, crosses his arms and/or says "Well!" and continues on his path.
I'm soo done. I know I'm not failing as much as I feel I am, my mom said my brother was the same way and she didn't handle it as well as I am. I know I need to push through & be consistant~ but he's openly defiant, and time outs don't even work half the time. :/
Our youngest is 5 months old and our 2.5 yo is constantly in his face (but then again, so is our 5 yo). We just remind them, gently, over and over and over and over that DS2 is a person, not a toy, and that he can't see them well if they are right up in his face. Chances are, your son is just excited by his baby brother and forgets to put some space between them.

Two year olds are beginning to test limits and explore independence. As a parent, it can absolutely be frustrating, but it's entirely developmentally appropriate and important for the LOs. For ours, we use LOTS of redirection at that age; we don't use time-outs, though, at any age. You might keep some special toys aside just for nursing, when he can't have your full attention. Or make nursing time snack time. Or read a book together while you're nursing if you can. Or sit near him while you're nursing while he explores a sensory box ( Counting Coconuts has some great ideas, as do Modern Parents, Messy Kids and 1+1+1=1 )

At two, he's probably not intentionally pushing your buttons. He's just trying to get a need met, and attention is absolutely a need at that age. When you feel you are at your breaking point, tell him that mommy needs a time-out, and make sure he's safe, and remove yourself from the situation for a minute or two until you can gain some perspective. If your breaking point happens at the same time pretty much every day, change things up. For me, my hardest point of the day is when I'm trying to get dinner ready and everybody is underfoot. I try to make sure to pull out some fun activity just before that I know will engage them for at least a few minutes so that I can gather a few more resources before they need my attention again.

parenting is hard, especially when you're adjusting to a new baby. Try to be patient with him -- this is a HUGE change for him -- and yourself. If you need extra help at a certain point of the day, get it; if your DH isn't available, hire a mommy's helper for a few hours a few times a week, if you can.
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Old 08-08-2011, 11:37 AM   #9
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Re: Short of spanking my kid...

I am currently dealing with my fourth two year old. He'll actually be 2 in September.

What jumped out of me from your post is that your ds is smart. This works two ways. On one hand he can understand what you say to them and on the other hand they do learn quickly how to get a reaction. But remember just because he's smart, he is still just 2 and the behaviors described sound pretty age appropriate. It doesn't mean that your youngest will be the same at 2.

I think having a baby is pushing in addition to the two year old is pushing your patience to its limits. Perfectly normal.

Suggestions (I realize these might be difficult to do):
-Keep ahead of the physical needs of your son, keep him active, get him outdoors time, get him play time time with other children. These do not have to be day long events.

Feed him consistently so there is no possibility for hunger to add to his cranky.

If he still takes a nap make sure he is getting it.

-Like someone suggested, there are times that you just need to step away and regroup.

-You already know that you need to be consistent. It really does work out in the long run but you have to stick with it.

Next time he's at it try look at it with different eyes. Isn't it just a bit funny that this little guy is strutting around with his arms crossed trying to tell you something.

Background: My two year old is favorite word, "No." "No" means "no" or "I'll think about it" or "I'll do it but grudgingly." I saved his brother from getting seriously knocked on the head with a wooden truck just yesterday. He'll push the computer buttons while I'm typing because that is a sure fire way to get my attention. He'll screech at the top of his lungs if one of his siblings is coming towards him and he isn't in the mood.

I guess I've made it through and I know I've had worse to deal with (dd) and I pushed through without having to start relying on physical punishment.

But don't think I won't come back to this thread and chime in that I'm having a crazy day because my two year old is losing it. We all have those times.
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Old 08-08-2011, 12:18 PM   #10
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Re: Short of spanking my kid...

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I am currently dealing with my fourth two year old. He'll actually be 2 in September.

What jumped out of me from your post is that your ds is smart. This works two ways. On one hand he can understand what you say to them and on the other hand they do learn quickly how to get a reaction. But remember just because he's smart, he is still just 2 and the behaviors described sound pretty age appropriate. It doesn't mean that your youngest will be the same at 2.

I think having a baby is pushing in addition to the two year old is pushing your patience to its limits. Perfectly normal.

Suggestions (I realize these might be difficult to do):
-Keep ahead of the physical needs of your son, keep him active, get him outdoors time, get him play time time with other children. These do not have to be day long events.

Feed him consistently so there is no possibility for hunger to add to his cranky.

If he still takes a nap make sure he is getting it.

-Like someone suggested, there are times that you just need to step away and regroup.

-You already know that you need to be consistent. It really does work out in the long run but you have to stick with it.

Next time he's at it try look at it with different eyes. Isn't it just a bit funny that this little guy is strutting around with his arms crossed trying to tell you something.

Background: My two year old is favorite word, "No." "No" means "no" or "I'll think about it" or "I'll do it but grudgingly." I saved his brother from getting seriously knocked on the head with a wooden truck just yesterday. He'll push the computer buttons while I'm typing because that is a sure fire way to get my attention. He'll screech at the top of his lungs if one of his siblings is coming towards him and he isn't in the mood.

I guess I've made it through and I know I've had worse to deal with (dd) and I pushed through without having to start relying on physical punishment.

But don't think I won't come back to this thread and chime in that I'm having a crazy day because my two year old is losing it. We all have those times.
Is my child at your house????

Seriously, sounds like a totally normal 2 year old. He's still a baby that wants/needs Mama's attention, and now there's a little sibling stealing some of his spotlight.

My 2 year old's favorite word is also "no", but in addition to the above, it also means "Yes, of course, I just like being able to tell you 'no'!"

Hang in there, Mama! It isn't easy, but it will get better. If there's any way you can do it, try to arrange some one-on-one time with him - maybe Daddy, Grandma, or a friend can stay with baby for a little while - even if it's just in the other room - so he has time just with you. Will probably help!

Also, try a bit of re-direction whenever possible. If he starts running to your seat, perhaps a "go get your _____ book, and I'll read it to you" might send him in another direction. Or, if possible, just make a quick u-turn to another seat!

And remember that, even if he knows not to do something, he still has a while to go before he achieves good impulse control.
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