Viking When mine were very small, I was sure that I would not stand for whinning and that I was going to be calm, understanding and my children would never have cause to whinge, tantrum and scream/shout. I was incredibly deluded! I have been known to say "whatever you want, you can have, just stop making that noise" <mother of the year me> It's not all bad, I'm just good at complaining, and I suppose they are doing the child equivalent.
I didn't laugh about it when they were moaning in the park! We could have stayed home for all that. But yes, it's not all bad, we'll get there, these phases come and go don't they? I have also re-introduced 'special time'. They get 10 minutes each of complete 100% focused time with me a day. 1:1. I know that doesn't sound like much, but it's time that we have agreed there is no shouting, no whinging, no being unkind and it's time for fun where we can do whatever they want to in that 10 minutes without fear of interuption. Today me and ds1 played catch. For 10 minutes. Was lovely.
My mum was baffled when at some flashpoints I talked to my toddler DS - "Just tell him!" Long term I wanted him to know why I wanted him to do X or not Y. I agree you sometimes get better results directing DCs. Who as a parent never felt tempted to yell back "Because I say so!"
Before they kick off why not remind them now and again "Let's say what we want to do and if we don't fancy it, what can we do that's nice for all of us instead?" Emphasis being on talking (not whining).
The only fear DCs should have is of losing privileges, playtime, off to bed early. Stickers and reward charts, if necessary. One per DC so they can compete. You know the clicker thing dog trainers use to teach animals, instead of a clicker repeat as necessary: "What did we say about whining/talking back/ignoring?"
Be consistent. New rule, no backchat, no whinging. Get DP to take the same line so one parent doesn't undermine the other to win points as "the cool" parent.
Pick your battles, find a calm non-shouty voice of authority. When there's no urgency allow some leeway, be sure and take turns, allocate some power but step in if siblings can't agree.
I DO agree with you, in theory and as much as I can in practise. I honestly think it is a balancing act: yes children need to be listened to and understood, but they also need to be lead (sometimes young children honestly do not know what makes them happy or unhappy and too many choices and too much freedom makes them more confused and insecure). Ok, there will be a lot of people who disagree with that! But I am pretty certain that life cannot always be "child led" - as children do not always know what they want and life will not always give them what they want as and when they grow up.
(Limited) choices are good some times, but if you have a need or a good reason for some decision, then that is your informed decision and I am afraid that they need to follow and respect that (much as they will a teacher's decision or an employer's decision in future).
Being a parent is so blooming tough: you need to constantly change and adapt whilst maintaining the patience of a saint and giving your child/ren security, guidance and self-esteem. Easy, not!!!
It is a tight rope of balancing doing what is best for them in a way that is sensitive to their feelings whilst keeping clear boundaries of what is acceptable and what is not.
Sometimes you just need to get control (or calm) into the situation (ie "thinking corner" or whatever), so that they listen (calmly), before you can talk it thrugh with them reasonably and move on in a positive direction.
Yeah, I put them in the 'thinking corner' or send them to their room for whinging for what I think is 'no reason' iyswim. My problem, is that I'm an over-thinker. I try to understand their view-points and so on. I always try to talk through situations when they are showing signs of inability to cope. Dp takes the more impatient route and they are so well behaved with him. I like to acknowledge their feelings and try not to discount that. I'm probably not making much sense because I've had a few
They are so frustrating! (light-hearted) An example, I asked them this morning what they wanted to do, they said nothing. I said we could go to a big park, with a big slide and a sand pit etc. Ds1 (5yo) said he didn't want to go to a new park, he wanted to go to the park near our house (really rubbish one that we go to all the time and that he complains in that he is bored). I told him that going to a new park would be fun. He cried and screamed, stamping his feet and all that shit. In the end, we went to a park near us, but not the one either of us had in mind.
We have stuff like this happen all the time. Every time I say something, before I have a chance to fully reply (like "no, you can't have anything to eat..............but I have ice-cream for after dinner") the pair of them will stamp their feet and whinge and scream and it's driving me bonkers.
I don't ever remember being like that to my parents, don't think I'd have dared. I'm not saying I want to install fear into my children, but I really don't know how to handle it all sometimes. They shout, they argue, they talk back, the younger one constantly whines (but he gets that tone of voice from his dad) Ggggggrrrrrrrrrrr
I know this is a phase, and I'll miss it etc but need to just get it off my chest. What the hell am I doing wrong?