To wonder if this is normal? (Toddler related)

(25 Posts)
Bellyrub1980 Thu 14-Apr-16 19:30:39

My 17mo child screams.... A LOT.

It seems to be her default method of communication for all emotions, happy or sad.

She knows quite a few words and signs and will use these a fair bit but this doesn't seem to cut down on the screaming. As she gets older it seems to be getting worse!!

She's constantly 'naughty' as in doing things she know she shouldn't, on purpose, for attention.

We give her a lot of attention and social interaction in the hope that plenty of eye to eye contact will make her feel 'listened to'. Also try and give her plenty of quiet time.

She's very healthy. Possibly teething.

Is this normal? Am I doing anything wrong? Am I missing something?

Is there ANYTHING I can do?

Me and my husbands nerves are constantly on edge with the screaming. It's draining us.

TestingTestingWonTooFree Thu 14-Apr-16 19:35:42

Mine (19m) screams and squeals more than I'd like and is often pushing boundaries (repeatedly doing things he's not supposed to).

PennyHasNoSurname Thu 14-Apr-16 19:37:17

My 18mo ds is the same. His big sister didnt do it so its a shock! But Im thinking its just their personality - he isnt parented too differently to how dd was.

Twistedheartache Thu 14-Apr-16 19:39:18

Sorry no advice but snap. My particular favourite is the arm waving screqm because she can't reach something she's not allowed anyway!
DD1 didn't do it as much but she was & still is very verbal from 11/12 months onwards.
It's just a phase, it's just a phase - and lots of distraction

wheresthel1ght Thu 14-Apr-16 19:42:19

Yup totally normal.

I tended to ignore as much as possible because making any sort of acknowledgement only made dd do it more!

Maisy313 Thu 14-Apr-16 19:48:43

Is she your second child? My second baby is so loud and quite naughty (20mo) but when my very well behaved 5 year old went on a little holiday with my in laws my 20mo was as good as gold! I suspect he is just making himself VERY heard...

Bellyrub1980 Thu 14-Apr-16 20:04:02

Ok, phew! Thank you for the reasurrance. She's our first and probably only child!! I worry that look at me (friends and family) and think "For Christ's sake! Discipline your evil child" but she's a lovely little girl deep down (quite far deep down at the moment... But I still adore her!!)

I have the exact same reaction to telling her off. She literally laughs in my face. I've tried the 'really angry voice and face' but she thinks it's hilarious.

Ignore and distract..... I shall try!!!

Why is she only interested in playing with dangerous things?!

Bellyrub1980 Thu 14-Apr-16 20:08:25

She RUNS AROUND with stones in her mouth, goading me with her open mouth as if to say "look Dadda (yes, she calls me Dadda even though I'm her mummy) I've got a stone in my mouth. I could choke and die at any moment and you chasing me to get it out will only increase the risk! Hahaha!"

She's not even 18mo... Help me!!

inlovewithhubby Thu 14-Apr-16 20:11:25

If she laughs in your face when you tell her off, you're not in control. Sort that out and everything else may follow. You aren't doing her any favours by finding bad behaviour cute or funny.

Lazyafternoon Thu 14-Apr-16 20:17:18

My 2 yr old seems to have just discovered screaming. I'm pretty sure does it just to get attention as does it more when I'm occupied doing something like cooking dinner or if I'm chatting to someone. I try and ignore it or say very calmly (or at least I think I'm trying to be calm...) "I don't like that noise. Tell me or show me what you want." If it's obvious what he wants I tell him "No, I don't like that noise say please". I'm not sure it makes any difference whatsoever as by that point he's already well and truly got my attention. If he's tired it's hopeless trying to deal with it sensibly. I'm hoping it's just a phase!

KiwiLaura Thu 14-Apr-16 20:20:49

My son is 19 months and exactly the same! It's so exhausting. We've taken to just ignoring it - he usually points at something he wants and screams/screeches, so we just pretend we can't understand what he wants until he stops screaming. confused

Madhouse05 Thu 14-Apr-16 20:23:14

I remember reading somewhere once that smiling when being told off is often a default because they don't know/aren't emotionally mature enough to deal with the feelings involved and often are trying to work out how to make you happy again and the best they can muster is a smile! All sounds pretty normal to me, though totally get it & how frustrating it is!

TruJay Thu 14-Apr-16 20:26:11

I used to do this, I could talk perfectly well but my mum said I just used a constant high pitched scream ALL THE TIME and it was awful to live with.
One day she was on the phone to my grandma and my grandma could hear me down the phone and how fraught I was making my poor mum. My Grandma said fill a jug with water and pour it over my head! My mum was shocked and refused while I just carried on in the background, on and on and on! Until my mum did it on my next scream, I stopped immediately and then after a couple of minutes I opened my mouth to start again so mum filled the jug again and showed me it, I never ever screamed again from that moment on and used my words and my poor mum could relax at last.
Written down that sounds absolutely terrible doesn't it but I have no negative memory of it so no lasting effect at all and to be honest I don't blame my mum suffering that all day everyday for months and months. She said it was awful.

I have a two year old daughter myself now who is the absolute double of me at my screaming age and guess what? She does the screaming too! Nowhere near as bad as what I was and I wouldn't pour the water on her and I'm not recommending you do that either op, just sharing that it is a phase some tots go through.

My daughter is non-verbal so far so I think that is why she screams whereas I had plenty of vocabulary just chose not to use it.

I hope you can reach a solution soon, it's an awful noise and situation.

ChihuahuaChick Thu 14-Apr-16 20:28:33

My now two year old went through a phase of slowly getting down on all fours then headbutting the floor over and over while wailing like Tarzan on helium. Fuck knows what downstairs neighbour thought was going on. Apparently I did the same thing on a cobbled high street as a nipper while a tutting crowd gathered to stare at my mother. Some toddlers are just harder than others and that's all there is to it, I think.

yumyumpoppycat Thu 14-Apr-16 20:43:25

I think it is normal and pos can be due to frustration around communication, but it might help to have some strategies for dealing with it...my youngest is 5 so toddler parenting books have prob moved on but I quite liked elizabeth pantley amazon link .

yumyumpoppycat Thu 14-Apr-16 20:49:20

If its about attention its prob best to ignore then distract and give praise for 'good' behaviour? I just need some advice how to handle my lippy 8 and 10 year olds now....

FeliciaJollygoodfellow Thu 14-Apr-16 20:49:45

Totally normal. I think that she's at that age where she knows what she wants but can't quite verbalise it.

Bellyrub1980 Thu 14-Apr-16 20:51:31

Thank you for more understanding replies.

Most people saying its normal. But 2 contrasting opinions on the laughing/smiling when I tell her off.

1) she is in control not me and I need to get control.
2) she isn't emotionally mature enough to understand my anger

I think it's a mixture of both. She doesn't appear to have developed any empathy or conscience yet... Not that I'd expect her to at 17 months, but I hadn't quite linked that to her feeling remorse for doing something naughty. But when you look at it from the point of view that she simply isn't capable of feeling those emotions yet then it makes perfect sense.

Feel a bit guilty now.

But there's also the control thing. She is definitely wearing the trousers. How do I gain more control of being clearly angry and telling her off doesn't work. There's no chance of her sitting on a naughty step. Although I admit I've never tried that kind of thing.

Bellyrub1980 Thu 14-Apr-16 20:52:58

Thank you for even more replies! It's good to know it's pretty common.

Will definitely check out that book, thank you!

MrsBobDylan Thu 14-Apr-16 21:09:30

Laughing in your face when you're giving good angry face and voice is very normal. Anger is an energy and your daughter is reacting to it because it's exciting and funny for her at her stage of development.

My two nt child both did it and people often tell me how well behaved they are now.

I would just take away the dangerous item, very calmly tell her no she can't climb on the work tops etc and then get on with whatever else you need to do. then use a big bright voice and ask if she wants to do something exciting <insert helping mummy put a wash on, build a tower from bricks, go in the garden to look for ants etc>.

You sound like you are doing absolutely fine!

Iwillorderthefood Thu 14-Apr-16 21:21:06

I have just started removing her, or the object from the situation. For example if she's messing around and running off in a shop and not holding my hand, she will go into the buggy (no argument). She sometimes sits on a normal chair at mealtimes, if she starts to mess about she gets put in the high chair and strapped in immediately. I think actions speak louder than words at this stage. They will hopefully get the message that certain behaviour is not desirable. Well that's the
plan anyway. Only time will tell. The phase will pass.

Bellyrub1980 Fri 15-Apr-16 07:27:34

Thank you... I hope so! She is currently eating her porridge saying "Baaaaaa!!" in her loudest voice because they are on Hey Dougie.

Love her

Fraggled Fri 15-Apr-16 07:33:08

Totally, 100% normal in my experience. And just when you think it can't get worse they turn 2 and it steps up a gear!!

But you do learn lots of tactics to deal with it and I found 27 months a turning point with mine. They somehow became easier to negotiate with at that point!

Maisy313 Fri 15-Apr-16 08:21:28

Just lf say also get the laughing when being told off thing, and I've seen it in plenty of playgroup situations when involving v young children. I have no advice but I hear you!

LittleBearPad Sun 17-Apr-16 09:55:31

Stay calm and don't chase her rather than showing you're cross. If you show the naughtiness is boring but good behaviour gets lots of attention then she may behave better just to get more attention.

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