You and your kiddo are chugging along nicely when, one day, she figures out that if she raises her voice, repeats herself over and over, and tosses in a few tears -- presto! -- she'll get what she wants. Her latest discovery may mean frustration, aggravation and plenty of headaches for you. But like most developmental phases, whining can be temporary -- so long as you nip it in the bud. We turned to the experts for their take on whining, and got tried-and-true advice on how to stop it fast.
A little perspective Whining is about as aggravating as nails on the chalkboard and can make even the most level-headed mama want to scream. It's the most annoying sound on earth, but it actually serves a good purpose. "It's an all-important part of beginning to grow up," says Betsy Brown Braun, child development and behavior specialist and author of Just Tell Me What to Say and You're Not the Boss of Me. "Whining is his way of figuring out who he is separate from you, the parent. He's not doing anything that's wrong or unacceptable. We have to change the ways we react to it and how we reabsorb it."