July 8, 2014

The Terribles (Two & Three)

Is your child posessed by a demon? Mine might be.

I've heard of terrible twos. I've also heard that threes are worse. I'm a believer of both. As Noelle is nearing three years old, wow, I can't stress enough how hard the last couple months have been! Of course, Noelle naturally has always been a bit on the harder side. Her colic days didn't really seem to go away, but instead formed into her temperament and part of her personality. She's always been stubborn, strong willed, and a tad on the touchy side. However, lately it's escalated and her tantrums are out of control!

Yesterday she bawled uncontrollably after I took away the Sun Chips, after she ate almost half of it straight from the bag! She screamed until I couldn't handle it anymore and had to put her in her room until she calmed down. Before falling asleep on the floor, she body slammed herself into her bedroom door repeatedly, screaming, and pounding her fists. This went on close to 40 minutes.

Today she started screaming at me and kicking me because I wanted to wipe her nose! I resorted in putting her in her bedroom again and just walking away. She cried and screamed for 25 minutes before falling asleep on the floor next to her door.

When she was younger I had to resort to the cry it out method numerous times to get her to sleep on her own...I didn't realize I'd have to use it on a near three year old, just to get her to calm down from her tantrums!

It's not just tantrums like these that make the days hard, but also just her behavior overall! When she doesn't want to do something, it can't be a simple "no," it has to be a bloody scream "NOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!," kicking, and furious punching (the ground lately). Noelle also has been slamming doors, pushing me away, and also telling me to go away, leave her alone, or to stop talking!

I have to admit, although I've nannied and taken care of other people's children for the past 10 years, I've never had a child behave this way with me before. I don't know if it's because I'm her mother so she behaves even worse while the other kids just didn't do this to me, or because my child is out of control, or if this is completely normal! I don't have many SAHM friends, so I don't know where to go or who to ask!

With that being said, last week I went to the library to get myself a slew of books to read for the rest of the summer to try to either 1. figure this child out, or at least 2. figure out how to deal!
I got:
  • 1-2-3 Magic. My sister in law told me about this book. It helped her with her stepson who was a very stubborn child during the toddler years. I started browsing through this one over the 4th of July weekend. It basically describes using 1 and 2 as warnings, 3 as a time out, and directs the parents to not show any emotion or reaction to their behavior.
  • The Happiest Toddler on the Block. Oh my gosh, I cannot even stress how much "The Happiest Baby on the Block" helped us with Noelle when she was a baby. The 5 S's described in the book and DVD saved us, seriously! I haven't started this book yet, but am going to this week! If only I had more free time to dig into my book!
  • Parenting Your Out of Control Child. I know, this sounds really extreme, but really, Noelle fits the recipe for an out of control child! She screams and fights me to get dressed, get out of the house, to leave a place she's happy at, to nap, to go to sleep, to eat, etc. She throws tantrums. it's been SO difficult. I browsed through this book too last week, and noticed a lot of the same method that was described in 1-2-3 Magic. 
So far the only explanation I have is that my child is just testing me...seeing how far she can get, and what she can do to get me to cave. I see that in some of her behavior (refusing to sleep, refusing to listen, etc.) but in other cases, she just seems crazy (screaming and crying over the smallest of tasks, hurting me or herself when she doesn't get her way, etc.). I don't want to feel like I'm at a loss with my child so I'm going to read "The Happiest Toddler on the Block" in it's entirety to get a feel as to how to deal with my child on a normal basis, while I'm going to try the disciplining methods described in the other two books to see if I can get her to follow direction better. 

Parenthood is not for the weak! I'll keep you posted on my parenting trial and errors!

2 comments:

  1. P.S. that pic and caption - ha!

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  2. Whoops my first caption wasn't posted! I was going to say that I am right there with ya and that it is usually Myla screaming "yes yes yes!" until I give in and let her have what she wants. It is so exhausting! I really don't want to create a monster queen, but sometimes I am lazy. I think Noelle is a smart girl and she loves you more than you know, which is why she pushes the boundaries with you more than anyone else. I skimmed HTOTB back when Myla was 13 months or so, I should look into the other two! I keep hearing that being consistent and authoritative with discipline is what works best, but it can be very hard to follow through when we are home with them ALL DAY every day. Don'y worry, soon enough these little demons will grow out of this stage and become little sweethearts....... at least I hope! ;)

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