to want inlaws to lay off DD a bit, she's only 2.5!

(74 Posts)
newcommer Sun 07-Oct-12 22:28:02

I can't help feeling slightly upset and annoyed after conversation with DBIL today, that he is genuinely surprised that DD is not writing her name yet, or that I am not even getting her to practice.

It just seems that instead of concentrating on the things our DD can do, that the inlaws will spend more time correcting her mistakes in grammar ect, which I understand that they want her to improve, but I can see that it does dampen her spirit.

I don't feel DD is falling behind her peers, she can easily use 10 word sentences and recite nursery rhymes, but maybe I'm not spending enough time teaching her, helping her reach her full potential, I just feel that at not even 3 yet that I shouldn't come down too hard on her.

I guess what I am really asking is how old were your children when you started practicing their writing skills, and is my parenting really that slack?

MonthlyChange Sun 07-Oct-12 22:29:13


Sirzy Sun 07-Oct-12 22:30:23

Just ignore them!

At the moment all you should be doing is giving her access to paper and crayons etc. you can show her how she can print her name, but only if she is interested. Life at 2.5 should be fun!

cutegorilla Sun 07-Oct-12 22:30:56

Oh FGS she's 2!!! YANBU!

FizzyLaces Sun 07-Oct-12 22:31:32

Agree ignore.

nailak Sun 07-Oct-12 22:31:33

my dd is 4, been in nursery 2 terms, can't write her name (her bday in sept) she knows all her phonics sounds and letters, can count to 30, just starting to do blending. Can write numbers but not letters.

monkeysbignuts Sun 07-Oct-12 22:31:37

she is not even 3 yet! Seriously your family need to get a grip, most two year olds struggle to.scribble with a pen or pencil never mind write anything!

AngelaMerkel Sun 07-Oct-12 22:31:50


natsmum100 Sun 07-Oct-12 22:32:20


Don't listen to them. Why does a toddler need to be able to write her own name? If she wants to learn, she'll let you know. Childhood is not a race to learn to read and write.

Ignore them. She's so little. Plenty of time to learn this in the future.

Aboutlastnight Sun 07-Oct-12 22:33:25

They are being ridiculous. You need to tell them to stop.

WorraLiberty Sun 07-Oct-12 22:33:45

They sound completely bonkers!

skateboarder Sun 07-Oct-12 22:33:45

Tell them she writed poems when they are not there, so it must be them putting her off.

Barabajagal Sun 07-Oct-12 22:33:45

Your inlaws are loons. I take it BIL doesn't have children yet. Ignore.

Sirzy Sun 07-Oct-12 22:33:45

To answer your question DS who is 3 next month is just starting to write his own name but only because he is obsessed with getting me to write it then trying to copy it!

monkeysbignuts Sun 07-Oct-12 22:33:47

ny daughter has just turned 3 & she can write a curly C, that's all. this is the start letter of her name and I wouldn't expect more at this age.

Soditall Sun 07-Oct-12 22:34:29

Take no notice I'm a mother of 5 children and they're all very bright and doing well in school and none of them were writing they're name at that age.

larks35 Sun 07-Oct-12 22:34:37

YANBU and definitely not slack. Let her come to it when she wants to. I remember my niece loved to carry round a notebook and pen when she was 3 or so. She would sit and quietly "write" for ages. She wasn't writing anything just drawing curly lines, my DSIL was at uni at the time and writing a lot of notes and essays, so DN was copying her and "writing". I think as a family we would have been a bit freaked out if she was really writing and we can tend to be a bit academic.

WilfredToadflax Sun 07-Oct-12 22:34:43

I'm guessing he doesn't have dc.
If he does, he has no idea about dc's at all, so just ignore.

Ds1 had no interest in writing whatsoever, and could write his name badly when he was nearly 5.
Dd was 3.8ish
Ds2 was about 4

I have no idea if they were behind where they should be, but they are all doing fine at school, and are at the level, or above, where they should be.

conorsrockers Sun 07-Oct-12 22:34:53

Aaaarrggghhhh. I would give them a stern talking to. Give her independence, teach her how to share, how to soothe herself - to not be afraid to ask questions and be inquisitive and the world is her oyster. You can spend all the time in the world hot housing her now, but by the time she is 9/10 she will be at the same stage had you not bothered. My DS1 couldn't write ANYTHING when he went to school, couldn't even count to 10. He won the handwriting competition last year grin. DS2 and 3 are the same. Breaks my heart when I see these parents forcing their kids to read at 3. Totally unnecessary. Make your feelings known and stick to your guns - you need to foster a natural love of learning in her and they do not sound like they are helping you.

MrsDimples Sun 07-Oct-12 22:35:01

FfS. They are knobs.

My daughter didn't even say Mummy til gone 2.

Little people's 'job' is to play and learn through play. It is your job to ensure they have lots of fun and love.

If in laws are being twats and stopping the fun - correcting grammar is fucking ridiculous - stop them seeing her.

As for writing . . . . Stab Them All Now with the play dough knife she should be wielding and not a pen.

weeps for all little people with competitive twats for relatives

noblegiraffe Sun 07-Oct-12 22:35:05

Does he have children?

Check the milestones if you're worried about what she should be doing, but rest assured that writing her own name is nowhere near anything expected of a 2.5 year old.

LilRedWG Sun 07-Oct-12 22:35:33

She's a baby! Ignore them. School is where she will learn to write.

DeepPurple Sun 07-Oct-12 22:35:50

My dd will be 3 next month ands he has not shown any interest in writing yet. Yanbu.

Way2Go Sun 07-Oct-12 22:36:32

You need to tel DBIL to butt out. What a pillock!

Is your DBIL's child called "Jo"?

Flojo1979 Sun 07-Oct-12 22:38:23

My DD is nearly 4 and can't write her name. She tries but she's not good at realising the letter go from left to right!
But my DD is much more interested in learning how to catch a ball or ride a bike.
Whereas DS who is 7 can't ride a bike but could write loads of words by 3!

noblegiraffe Sun 07-Oct-12 22:38:36

My 3 year old can draw pictures of bottoms. I'm so proud.

HeathRobinson Sun 07-Oct-12 22:38:38

One of mine wasn't even talking at 3.

I think I left writing skills till they did them in school. Can't really remember. And that's the point really, it'll all be forgotten about in time, anyway.

elizaregina Sun 07-Oct-12 22:39:48

so frustrating, they all come at things in thier own time, why rush them?

What is the advantage of a child drawing at 2 or picking it up and learning much faster at 3.

my in laws were really pushing piano lessons from 2.

a piano teacher i trust who teaches some very well to do children said - unless there is a genuine special talent for it - a child of 2/3/4 will take three months to learn something where as a child of 5/6/7 could pick it up ina week - so whats the point?

same with potty training and everything else.

one friend was very worried about her little boy - who didnt speak much until 2 - worried something might be wrong with him, smug friends saying what thier DC could do - and then all of a sudden he spoke alomost in sentances and now at 4 has the reading skills of an 8 year old and is a year ahead in class!¬

Wow, DS is two and won't even say his own name, never mind write it!

Your BIL sounds weird!

Tryingtothinkofnewsnazzyname Sun 07-Oct-12 22:41:16

That's ridiculous. Do they have kids? Next time, laugh openly at them and say 'What? Next you'll be asking me if she can do brain surgery yet! What are you on about?'

Casmama Sun 07-Oct-12 22:44:29

My ds is three and I'm still not sure if he is left or right handed far less writing his own name. They are being ridiculous.

Tell them to love her, laugh with her, tell her she is loved and wonderful and listen to her and pay her proper loving attention (not critical observations)

daft buggers! At that age a child is learning to be a person in their world and doesn't need any bloody pressure to hit tartgets!


RubyrooUK Sun 07-Oct-12 22:46:40

Oh ignore them. Ignore, ignore, ignore.

Today my FIL began banging on about how my DS (2.1 yrs) needed to be taught to walk more even though he was tired after walking several miles and I didn't mind carrying him.

I said "he is TWO - he gets tired and wants his mum". Then FIL started on about how I needed to lay down the law to him and tell him 'he was a big boy and now you are pregnant only the baby will get carried by mummy'.

I argued back a bit, pointing out that I wasn't going to start telling him that when DC2 isn't here yet and DS might feel pushed out....then I realised I was wasting my breath.

FIL has just forgotten what it is like to have a two year old or would choose different battles from me. So in the end I just said in my most innocent tone:

"Oh well, I'm sure you know best. After all, X [my DH] is so obedient even now. I imagine he would definitely have walked when tired if you told him to."

My MIL practically choked laughing as DH was the most obstinate child (and adult) on earth. FIL attempted a gracious smile and ended up laughing a bit himself.

DS got carried. smile

DoMeDon Sun 07-Oct-12 22:46:58

When would they like her to just be a child? I prefer the idea of 'teaching' a child nothing until they are about 7. They pick up, absorb and take on so much through interaction, play, their own natural interest. Sitting down with a pen and making them learn something they frankly don't give a teeny tiny shiney shite about is pointless and 'look at me' parenting.

GhostofMammaTJ Sun 07-Oct-12 22:49:20

My DS was not interested in picking up a pen or a pencil until he started school. As he is a September baby, that was on his 5th birthday.

The other day, we were watching Countdown in bed at stupid oclock. They were playing the letter game. He said 'That's just silly, the only bit of that that is readable is the e and the d-ed'. In just over a year he has come on enough to be confident that something that is a jumble of letter is unreadable.

Your DD is still only a baby, plenty of time for reading and writing and grammar later one, right now she is busy learning other things. Among those things are who is nice and kind to her and who is critical and not worth bothering with.

GhostofMammaTJ Sun 07-Oct-12 22:50:10

later on*

WinkyWinkola Sun 07-Oct-12 22:52:02

Oh just ignore your bil. He's the cretin, not your DD. When she's 10 and all her peers etc are writing and she's not, then you need to worry.

It sounds like they're putting her down unnecessarily and personally, I'd be stepping in and telling them to shut up.

EverybodysSpookyEyed Sun 07-Oct-12 22:55:50

At her age I would just be encouraging mark making. DD is very keen to colour (scribble!). DS couldn't have cared less at that age

I think you need to perfect your 'are you an idiot?' face and the accompanying tone while saying
'she's only 2.5!'

or just sarky comments, like, 'we don't worry about her writing because we're concentrating on her IT GCSE'

Regarding grammar - I must admit that I always correct my kids. Not in a pushy way, I just repeat the sentence back. I hope DD just thinks I'm confirming my understanding but she also takes it in!

quoteunquote Sun 07-Oct-12 23:16:24

OP, take your in laws very seriously, you must for the sake of your child, she must learn to do her signature ,

announce that you are very relived to find where DD's talent lies, and you had been sharing their concerns,

next time you go over there, take lots of acrylic paint, pour into large trays, lay out some huge sheets of paper, all over the garden,(give DD a bag of sweets)

as she goes ballistic, keeps saying,'"It's amazing, who would of thought we have the next Jackson Pollock", "that's amazing darling, try to throw it more"

Insist that she is truly a new talent.

berri Sun 07-Oct-12 23:23:37

Oh god, my nearly 4 yo can't write his name, or even the first letter, unless he's tracing over mine!

This reminds me of the time FIL repeatedly asked why we weren't toilet training 10 mo hmm

newcommer Sun 07-Oct-12 23:53:52

I am relieved that I'm not being unreasonable to want my little girl to be able to enjoy discovering the world for a little while, without being bogged down with academia smile. I have made a point of saying that maybe PIL/BIL should relax the correcting a bit until she's older, but they either pretend they never heard me or roll their eyes.

I don't think it is going unnoticed by DD because she seems to talk a lot less than usual around them. I have heard on the grapevine, that they are not happy that I don't ask them to babysit often, but they see her usually every week with me there, but I really don't want them to see her unsupervised because their pressurising can cause her to be quite stressed.

redwhiteandblueeyedsusan Mon 08-Oct-12 00:09:43

both my children were interested in writing their names. dd at 22 months would take my finger and jab it on the paper demanding "name" ds at 2 used to ask for me to hold his hand whilst he wote his name. dd did not write her name independently til age 4. (where you could see all the letters not some letters and some random squiggles) ds is 4 and has now lost interest in writing his name, though occasionally does 3 circular scribbles to represent his name.

however early they are interested,they will still endup writing their name when they are ready. if they are not bothered, so what. they may be learnign all sorts of other things.

all that correction will not help her to learn. it will just stop her trying in case she gets it wrong. silly sods are stopping her learning.

Devora Mon 08-Oct-12 01:36:34

My dd has just turned 3. She is, naturallement, the cleverest child the world has ever known. But she's not writing her name wink

uselessinformation Mon 08-Oct-12 01:47:31

My son spoke only a few single words until he was three and suddenly came out with sentences! He didn't read or write very well until he was seven and everything clicked into place. That age is when a lot of other countries start formal learning. He did learn his phonics in reception and could say the letter sounds so I knew he would not have a problem learning to read when he was ready.

Psammead Mon 08-Oct-12 02:07:20

DD is 2.10 or thereabouts and can draw circle and lines. Sometimes these squiggles are a flower, or a bird, apparently. If she was called lolo we'd be laughing. Or even lil.

Ridiculous to expect her to be writing!

thebody Mon 08-Oct-12 05:45:56

If a relative of mine 'rolled their eyes' at me over my parenting I would tell them to fuck right off, correct that grammar!!!

Where's your dh in this?? He should be telling then to butt out. Seriously they sound mad.

She's 2!

I was around 2/3 when I started writing (reading came much later, and I'm sure it wouldn't have come so quickly if I'd been pushed into it earlier) but my mum was constantly with me all day, and I bet I spent hours in front of a paint palette and expanse of paper a day, because I was obsessed with paint, it was bound to happen (she couldn't have me ruining much more paper afterall....). We have pictures and things with writing on it from around that age, but the writing was obviously shaky and I put a million bars on my E's instead of just three grin
I'm not stupid, and I'm definitely no Einstein! obviously babies develop at certain rates. Of course they should lay off her, she'll come to it in time and it doesn't mean she won't be very bright.

as she goes ballistic, keeps saying,'"It's amazing, who would of thought we have the next Jackson Pollock", "that's amazing darling, try to throw it more"

My mum once convinced my uncle that one of my paintings was the latest thing in modern art grin a sea of red splodges. tho er I think she might have convinced herself that he was convinced!

pigletmania Mon 08-Oct-12 06:43:52

She is only 2 fgs, a baby. Just give her crayons and paper and encourage her to mark make

pigletmania Mon 08-Oct-12 06:44:17

Ignore, ignore,ignore

tethersend Mon 08-Oct-12 06:51:03

Tell them that you're developing her tact and empathetic skills, which you feel are far more important wink

tethersend Mon 08-Oct-12 06:51:46

(DD nearly 4 and still not writing, BTW)

Convert Mon 08-Oct-12 06:54:19

That's so unfair of them. She's only tiny, my DS couldn't write his name properly til about 4. My inlaws correct my kids baby talk, like DS used say living lounge because I call it a lounge and DH calls it a living room. He also use to say car keys and fil corrected him so he stopped saying them and I was furious.
His speech was perfect and I thought the mixed up words were really sweet!

Florabeebaby Mon 08-Oct-12 07:50:21

OMG! She is 2...I didn't write my name until I learnt to do it in school at the grand old age of 6! (Not UK) And I'm fine...

My DD, 22 months, doesn't really even speak yet, just a few words very badly pronounced...wonder what they would say about her?


RubyStolenBootyGates Mon 08-Oct-12 07:59:09

DS2 turned 4 yesterday, and despite his claims he could write his own name for about the last year, it's only been recognisable for the last month or two. (and that's the short three-letter version).

He's very, very bright but has absolutely no interest in "mark-making". I'm not worried, OH isn't worried, and his nursery aren't worried.

Ds is 4, just started reception and can't write his name. I get grief from sil whose ds is 6 weeks younger and has been writing since he turned 3. I don't care, ds will write when he is ready & can instead identify ridiculous amounts of steam engines from pictures.

Madmum24 Mon 08-Oct-12 08:29:33

Being able to write your name/supercalafragalisticexpialidocious is no indication of IQ/any type of intelligence. My daughter's occupational therapist who is Austrian was horrified that kids in UK schools use a pencil before the age of 7. A short chubby crayon or short piece of chalk is ideal to encourage the tripod grip, but FGS she is 2!

OP YADNBU but I do find this type of behaviour in some famiilies is prevalent and only gets worse as more children are born so get used to it. Arm yourself with facts (children in Scandanavia don't start formal education until 7, and at age 10 their mathmatical/language skills are greater than UK children of same age, for example) and have confidence in your parenting and your daughters own learning pace.

Enjoy your dd while you can, when she does start school you will miss these days!

AlwaysOneMissing Mon 08-Oct-12 08:56:48

Your inlaws sound very annoying!

My nearly 3 year old is barely interested in even picking up a crayon and definitely not in writing yet. He would much rather be running round like a loony!

Although I will also admit to correcting grammar, as I don't want him getting into bad habits with his speech.

With your ILs : smile and nod, then totally ignore!

noviceoftheday Mon 08-Oct-12 09:07:17

Dd has been able to write her name since just before she turned 3 and can now also read simple words. However, that's definitely not the norm. Mil keeps crapping on about how dh learned to read at the age of 2 and as soon as dd turned 2 mil kept asking when she was going to learn to read hmm. As everyone says....ignore, ignore, ignore...even though its so hard! I know I couldn't read or write at 2/3, and I turned out just fine! Your in laws sound moronic.

I like RubyRoo's suggestion and also:

tell them she writed poems when they are not there, so it must be them putting her off.


Wrt correcting, children do not learn from correction, they learn from modelling. And while they are making mistakes they are learning.

If she says "I falled down" then she has learned to make a past tense with -ed. Hurrah! You reply "you fell down, did you?" and she gets reinforcement of the right version, and reinforcement that her comments are listened too.

If on the other hand FIL says, "no you didn't, you fell" then she thinks "what? I did falled, what's Grandad going on about?" which is the opposite message.

Fuck. Listened to. Fucksake.

lobsters Mon 08-Oct-12 09:18:19

Tell DBIL that DD can't write her own name yet, but she seems to have mastered his signature beautifully, which you think might come in handy.........

How ridiculous! YANBU

DS showed absolutely no interest whatsoever in learning phonic sounds and writing until just turning 5 at the start of YR. Once he got going however, there was no stopping him and 3 years on, he is comfortably in the top third of his class for literacy and reading. Let them go at their own pace, presumably your BIL has no kids of his own? Or none of your DD's age or older anyway, otherwise, he would know he was being a complete twat.

KellyElly Mon 08-Oct-12 10:21:27

Good god tell them to bugger off. It's not a normal milestone to be writing her name at 2.5!! My DD is 3 this month and has shown no interest in writing her name and it's never occured to me to think anything of it.

How early children can do things like write their name means not a lot - my dd loved to draw and possibly as a consequence could write her name quite neatly and a few other family names at just turned 3 (Kindergarten told me off for teaching her - not UK smile ) however now she is 7 she's still good at art but academically average - she had good fine motor skills not academic genius smile My DS only learnt to write his name at 4.5 and is only now at just turned 5 showing the remotest interest in letters or reading, (although he's been quite good with numbers for a while). I have no reason to think he is any less intelligent at all...

Your in-laws are talking nonsense, and apart from anything everyone should be taught from the age of 3 onwards that nobody ever takes unsolicited parenting advice...

Pixieonthemoor Mon 08-Oct-12 12:08:41

My dd who is pretty bright (sorry for the boast but just to put it into context) was past her 4th birthday before she was writing properly. DS (just average academically from what I can tell) is just 4 and is at least half a term away from making properly legible marks. Both of them are at a pushy, academic hot house of a school too!!

Put your in-laws straight - you have no idea where they are getting their information from but it is just plain wrong to be concerned that a 2 yr old cannot write their name yet. Actually, not just wrong - utterly bonkers!! Don't let them worry you.

BlueSkySinking Mon 08-Oct-12 12:12:35

Why pressure her to write her name at only 2.5? I really wouldn't worry about name writing at all, they might help teach her in pre school if she is interested but failing that she will catch on very very very quickly in reception class. My son is presently in reception and has gone from being a total non reader to reading basic words like cat, mum, run, the, she, him etc in the space of 5 weeks. But in fact most of his class are doing the same regardless of what they were doing before the summer.

I always think all fine motor skills are linked - so drawing, junk modeling and writing are all largely the same skill set really. If she is interested, I would push creative outlets and spend lots of time reading to her. Inspire her and have fun with her, sod forcing them to jump through hoops prematurely.

BeauNeidel Mon 08-Oct-12 12:19:23

They are being utterly ridiculous!

My boys are 4 in January and are speech delayed. They have weekly speech therapy. Doesn't stop family from commenting a lot on it though hmm

I remember seeing one of my dads neighbours a while back - she has a daughter about the same age as my boys. She is bounds ahead of them in her speech and apparently, 'loves reading with Reading Eggs'. When the mum said that it was blatantly obvious she was just boasting to try and get a rise. I just said that if I could I wouldn't start any formal education for my children till the age of 7 like they do in Sweden. I do actually believe that as well! We read together and look at words but they are THREE they really don't need to be learning now!

BTW though this was the same mother that brought her child round to see mine when she suspected she had measles angry My dad told me a couple of days later, I was sick with worry as my baby is too young to have had the MMR - turns out she had eczema. Clearly a bad guess when she saw a rash, but FGS at least Google symptoms before you go all out on the hysteria!

Ok....totally off on a tangent there, sorry! I suggest you practise your best blank stare and say, 'she's not even three yet.' If they need more clarification than that, you can say she's not even old enough for pre-school yet, let alone proper school!

BlueSkySinking Mon 08-Oct-12 12:19:58

Can you mention how quiet she is around them? Email them some links too 'Here I've emailed you some links so that you can see what a normal 2.5 year old can do'

newcommer Mon 08-Oct-12 21:20:56

Thank you Bluesky, link has made very interesting reading smile . BIL does not have any children at the moment. Makes me sad to think of his children being such a disappointment to him when they don't quite reach his stupidly high standards!

EverybodysSpookyEyed Mon 08-Oct-12 21:34:02

When BIL has kids they will be the most advanced and intelligent child ever to have roamed the earth. And you'll be looking at 3 yr old jonny sitting gormlessly (whilst picking his nose) and you will feel a huge surge of smuggery!

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