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Coping Techniques for Contrariness - Help!

(6 Posts)
swingsofglory Mon 15-Nov-10 12:33:23

DD1 is 3 going on 13, although that may be an insult to 13 year olds. Outside the house she's ususally well behaved and quite reserved. At home, she's going through a prolonged phase of stubborn refusal to co-operate in anything from getting dressed, to eating to you name it. Anything I suggest is wrong, met with shouts of no or she insists that the opposite is true when it quite obviously isn't. For example - I say 'the sun's shining' and she starts yelling about the fact that it's raining and gets REALLY angry about it up to the point where she starts hitting or biting.

I thought this was supposed to get better once they were beyond the terrible twos or is that a myth? Does anyone have any coping strategies - I've tried a reward chart for good behaviour and ignoring the contrariness as much as I can. She's undoubtedly better when I keep it together and laugh off her behaviour and praise anything good but I feel like I'm nearing the end of my tether and can feel my temper starting to go more and more often - not helped by the fact that DD2 (7 months)isn't sleeping well at the moment.

Is this just normal 3 year old behaviour? Does anyone have any tips for dealing with it?

SkyBluePearl Mon 15-Nov-10 12:56:32

insisting the oppostite is true is just a way of getting your attention. Walking away from the comments might work - showing no interest will result in them not getting the banter they expected. Or change the topic - tell her what you are planning to do later on.

thisisyesterday Mon 15-Nov-10 12:58:35

just ignore it.she can't argue unless you are arguing back

so when you say "what a lovely day" and she says "NO, it's RAINING" you just say "oh yes, so it is" and that's that.

they all do it

swingsofglory Mon 15-Nov-10 13:26:41

Fair enough. Thanks for that. I did suspect it might be standard behaviour - it's just reassuring to hear it when you feel like you're going up the wall.

Walking away does work up to a point but you're right I need to hang on in there,stay calm and change the subject.

I'll practise my deep-breathing!

Ladybee Mon 15-Nov-10 23:35:32

my DS is doing this at 2.5, thanks for the don't argue tip. Will try this tomorrow.

ghoulishglendawhingesagain Tue 16-Nov-10 10:39:36

My DD is just the same, she'll be 4 in March. She will argue from dusk til dawn given the chancegrin

Everything is wrong, all of the time. No I can't have a blue cup I like pink. No I don't want a shower I want a bath no I don't want a bath/I'm tired/I'm not sleepy/I want 3 more stories - no three Mummy, I WANT THE OTHER ONE!!!

All day. I can't wait til she can go back to nursery, she is off with general poorliness atm.

Threenager I have seen it called. Very wearing. I think just wait for it to go, and try not to take it personally.

I also find 'Oh do you think so?' and 'what do you think DD?' are quite effective replies rather than arguing back.

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