just in need of some advice...(2 Posts)
Hello, I'm new here and I joined because I'm having something of a crisis of confidence and just wanted some advice/feedback from other mums who aren't friends or family and therefore unbiased.
I have a 2.5 year old daughter who I love dearly and is my absolute world. I'm a single parent but maintain a good relationship with her father and have a (mostly) good support network of friends and family. My little girl is certainly what you would call 'high spirited'. She is incredibly active and is constantly wanting to go outside or to the park. We can spend all day out in the open and its still not enough for her. She doesn't play particularly well with toys and gets bored very easily. Even things she does like to do, such as drawing and colouring, don't hold her attention for much longer. As a result she is quite cheeky and disobedient, and has to be shouted at until she bursts into dramatic fits of tears and screams before she stops whatever she shouldn't have been doing.
Personally I think that although she is a handful, as are most toddlers, she is perfectly normal. However it is my mother and to an extent some of my friends who have given me reason to doubt myself and my abilities, as well as to question whether my daughter may have behavioural problems. I have been told on many occasions I am too soft on her, yet my mother complains I am too hard on her, which usually leaves me totally confused. Sometimes my friends express discomfort at us going to visit them because my daughter is so constantly hyper and flittish that she poses a hazard not only to herself but to their children as well. Although she cannot talk particularly well yet, my daughter appears to have mastered the art of humour and deflection, often laughing and pulling silly faces to detract from when I tell her she can't have something. She doesn't get her way, but because of this people think she is cheeky and sometimes defiant. I try my best to discipline her 'correctly', despite none of my current methods appear to have much sticking power. I can't imagine things like time out and the naughty step having much effect as my daughter cannot sit still, which leads me to believe she has some sort of hyperactivity disorder. I know I'm probably being over dramatic, but inbetween constant comments about my parenting skills (or lack thereof) and jibes regarding my daughter's behaviour, I'm left feeling rather pathetic and sorry for myself. I feel bad because lately I find myself constantly waiting for her to misbehave because that's all anyone seems to focus on. I don't understand why nobody can see the good parts of my daughter, the funny, chatty, happy, confident little girl, and see that those things were my doing. I'm not saying I'm perfect, but I'm finding all this criticism less than constructive. Some help or hugs would be much appreciated x x
What you are feeling is completely normal - in the sense that you are unsure if what you are doing is right. And with conflicting messages from family and friends it certainly can't be easy.
A friend bought me Dr Green's Toddler Taming book when Alfie was about 2, and I have to say I think it's the best source of info and help and advice I've come across. It doesn't 'Tame Toddlers', it gives you tips on what to try and what to avoid doing and makes you look at things in a different perspective.
Other than that your daughter sounds perfectly normal to me. The fact that you're a single parent and you are trying your best I applaud you for - I don't think I could cope being a single parent. It's not easy deciding what's best to do for your children at the best of times, so when you're getting conflicting info from people it can be frustrating.
Stick to what you think is best for your child, it's you that has to implement all the rewards/telling off, so do what you feel is right for your daughter. Each child is different, so what your friends or mum might may be different from what you do.
I would definitely give the book a read if possible - it really helped me at times, and I still refer to it occasionally and Alfie is now 4!
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