I could use some experienced moms help!

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-22-2004
I could use some experienced moms help!
91
Sun, 08-22-2010 - 10:49pm

Okay I need help, bad.


Savannah is 2, she will be 3 in November.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 08-22-2009
Sun, 08-22-2010 - 10:59pm

Sorry I have no help for you but just want to let you know that you are doing nothing wrong.

You just have two things happening at the same time that can both cause issues.

She is at a stage where some kids do tend to be bratty and you have a major change in the family coming up in the birth of the baby. Either one of alone could cause issues, having them both happen at the same time means a double whammy.

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-24-2008
Sun, 08-22-2010 - 11:17pm

I'm not really clear on one thing, when is this happening most and when does not it not happen? It sounds like you say you have lots of time with her doing activities, is it happening at those times?

Pay attention to when it does happen, and what comes right before that. Also pay very close attention to what is going on when it's not happening. Whatever is going on in those times, is your key to eliminating the behavior you don't want. Whatever does work, do more of that. Whatever isn't helping, stop or do less of that.

Which means, if the time outs are not working, you can ditch them. Honestly, she may really like it when you get down on the floor and talk to her face to face. I'd be more inclined to totally turn my back and ignore her when she kicks or hits. Protect your body and the belly first. It really needs no further explanation, she knows she's hurting you, if you turn away and stop giving her any attention when she's lashing out. You can also put her in time out with no explanation. She'll figure out what she's done wrong, or you can say it one time quickly, "you are time out for hitting" without getting down at her level, and without saying it before and after the time out. It sounds to me like the time out experience is very pleasant for her with all the face to face nice explanations of what is going on, maybe too pleasant.

My son throws things and hits, and the only thing that has helped is telling him what TO do instead of what not to do. So I try to avoid saying "don't hit" and instead I say "be nice." We practice "being nice" which is touching someone softy. So I can say "I need you to be nice to your sister, show me how you are going to be nice" and he'll touch her softy, most of the time. I'd say when I used to say "no hitting' that rarely if every worked, and now phrasing it positively works a good amount, though not all the time. I have given up on finding something that will always work. I do the same with throwing. I used to say "don't throw" as the thing, whatever it was, was already flying through the air. Now I say "I need you to put that ball down on the table" and that has better results. Other times I say "you can't throw the ball at me, but you CAN throw that ball down the hallway" or for hitting I'll say "you can't hit your sister, but you CAN hit the floor." That sometimes works too.

Do you talk about the baby with her? If so, see if she can tell you her thoughts more. Get her talking as much as you can. If she's talking she might be thinking too hard to kick, throw or spit.

"Life is the art of drawing without an eraser."

John W. Gardner



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Ten Rules for Being Human


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"The key to good decision making is not knowledge. It is understanding."
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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-29-2010
Sun, 08-22-2010 - 11:40pm

I went through a similar phase with my ODS, and was recommended this book by the Spirited Child board on iVillage.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-08-2009
Sun, 08-22-2010 - 11:47pm

First of all that baby is almost five months from being born and that is a long, long time for a three year old so I would not make too much of it in front of her. Don't hide the fact that you are expecting but don't mention it all the time, either.

Secondly, I would ditch the warnings for physical behaviors like hitting or spitting. That shows an out of control child who isn't really capable of moderating the behavior when it gets to that point. I would also try lengthening the time outs now. I agree with the poster above who pointed out she may be getting too much positive attention. I would start with a three minute time out and if she repeats the behavior within a short time, go to a five minute time out, then seven, then nine. Do not engageher during the time outs, even by making eye contact.

How is she sleeping and eating? Is she getting enough physical exercise?

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-24-2008
Sun, 08-22-2010 - 11:50pm
Recognize everything she does right in very specific detail. It does not HAVE to be praise. For example:


"I see you've used your red crayon to color your picture."


"You are sitting quietly on the couch reading a book!"


"You helped mommy pick up all your blocks off the floor!"



I agree, good advice. They need to be *noticed* for the very specific good and creative choices that they make, it's validating, and builds self-esteem.

"Life is the art of drawing without an eraser."

John W. Gardner



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Ten Rules for Being Human


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"The key to good decision making is not knowledge. It is understanding."
Malcolm Gladwell Blink

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-05-2000
Mon, 08-23-2010 - 12:12am

She is almost 3. She learning that she has power over her world and you. I agree with the other posters. It can seem as if she is daring you to do something about it. Ignore her in time out and notice her when she is being good. Eventually, she will get the idea that bad behavior is not fun but good behavior is. She really doesn't like being out of control but she doesn't have the skill to stop herself yet. And she does want to know that you are still in control even as she gets more independent. That's what time out is for--to teach her what to do when she gets out of control. One more thing for you to try is to catch her just before she hits, bites, etc. That's the time to tell her she is losing control. Then teach her how to regain control. Taking a deep breath and using words to get what she wants instead of hitting, biting, etc.

Chris

The truth may be out there but lies are in your head. Terry Pratchett

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-04-2009
Mon, 08-23-2010 - 5:05am

I think you're giving her way too much credit for understanding intangible concepts than she actually has. For one, she does NOT "know" you have a baby in your tummy. You've told her and she's mimicked it back, but she really has no idea of "a baby in there" than she has of God in heaven created the world. She *certainly* had no idea that hitting your stomach could be a way of hurting the baby (to show jealousy); in fact, I doubt the very idea of a baby is very meaningful to her.

She's hits your stomach because 1) it's close. It's easy to reach. and 2) you react specially and differently when she hits your stomach than when she hits other parts of you.

Also, I really don't think the reward chart has that much meaning to her just yet. In another year? Sure. Right now at 2 almost 3? Probably not. She's not developmentally at a point where she can make the mental connection that if she exercises self-control, she gets good things--not ahead of time. And certainly she's not at an age to truly grasp delayed rewards (If you're good for 3 days a good thing will happen).

She still needs rather immediate feedback for her good behavior, just like she needs immediate feedback on bad behavior. I mean, if you were to tell her, "Just you wait til Daddy gets home" to warn against bad behavior, could you possibly expect her to go, "Oh, yeah, that's gonna suck. I better stop this." Of course not.

You need to start catching her doing good things. And not in an over the top way, but simply quietly, as they happen. "I like how you're eating nicely." "I like how you're holding my hand. Thank you." "Thank you for putting those blocks in the bin. It's good when you clean up your toys. Let's go to the park now."

Also, set her up to succeed with good behavior. When John was little, I used to buy him a helium balloon as soon as we'd get to the mall, and tie it to his stroller. He would play happily with the balloon the entire trip and I got a nice peaceful trip. A friend once accused me of bribing him with a toy, rather than expecting him to be good the whole trip BEFORE he got the balloon. Personally? I'm fine with bribing him if it means I'm guaranteed a peaceful shopping trip every time for the price of a $1 balloon! (it was the 80s; balloons were cheap :D)

But it was win win, because it set him up to be entertained in a way that didn't happen at home (less likely to get bored with the toy quickly), so I didn't NEED to hope for him to show good behavior. Plus, he behaved well, so I could compliment him throughout the trip over how well he was behaving and we had a good time with low stress. And he enjoyed the trip, so it reinforced good behavior.

while *some* kids at nearly 3 are becoming more able to entertain themselves without Mom's help, some, like Savannah, simply are not. When you stop expecting her to behave in a way she's not yet ready to, it will help.

that's not to say don't discipline her or tolerate her bad behavior. Of course she needs discipline and teaching. But I think your current methods are a bit past her developmentally. They'll likely be perfect methods when she's closing in on 4. But she's still legitimately a toddler, whereas some of your methods are better suited to a pre-schooler. She needs more re-direction still and less punitive correct. I would review discplinary methods for a 2 year old and be sure that they're meeting her developmental stage.

************

Kitty

"I suppose it is unfortunate that "I counting isn't me strong suite" any more than "you grammar and spelling is you strong suite". We'll all just have to struggle through, huh?"--From the Immortal Wisdom of Xyro

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Kitty

"If you can't annoy somebody with what you write, I think there's little point in writing."-- Kingsley Amis, British novelist, 1971 t .

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iVillage Member
Registered: 02-24-2009
Mon, 08-23-2010 - 5:23am
I have to say that I never found a reliable way to make dd go sit in a time-out.

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Men can only be happy when they do not assume that the object of life is happiness.
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iVillage Member
Registered: 06-16-2010
Mon, 08-23-2010 - 9:42am
Been there...no fun. I have a 2 y/o now too, and am waiting for the tantrums to peak. They haven't been bad so far, but who knows. Anyway, have you considered this?
http://www.comeunity.com/parenting/extinction.html
It's not easy, but it worked for me when nothing else did. Good luck!

Kevali


Kevali


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iVillage Member
Registered: 01-05-2000
Mon, 08-23-2010 - 10:26am

I never did timed time outs. They were separated from the family until they decided they were in control. That was started around age 4 or so, depending on the child, when I could trust them to be alone. Before that, time out was on the couch. And lasted as long as the tantrum/crying stage. Certainly no more minutes than the age of the child and could be shorter. The only attention they got after the time was me asking them if they were ready to play nice. And to remind them of what was nice playing/behavior.

Joy is starting time outs with Parker as he is getting into a hitting stage. He's 19 months. Most of the time, the time out is more of a distraction than a true time out. It removes him from the situation and gives him a chance of finding something else to look at/do. Most of the time, he's sat down, we walk away, and he gets up to go play. But it's long enough to break off what he was doing that resulted in the time out. So more of a redirection than a true time out.

Chris

The truth may be out there but lies are in your head. Terry Pratchett

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