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Is it just a phase, or is it bad parenting??

(12 Posts)
2littlegreenmonkeys Tue 27-Sep-11 11:28:30

I am at my wits end with our DD's (I think DH isn't far behind either TBH)

They are generally good kids, but can be little terrors (only nice way I can think of putting it)

DD1 is almost 4 and DD2 has just turned 2 and they are at each others throats 95% of the time. DD2 has a terrible temper on her and DD1 just loves to wind her up. We have taken to separating them (one upstairs in bedroom and one downstairs) At the weekend we all used to go and do the shopping, now either DH or I go and take one DD with us and the other DD stays with whichever stays at home.

I hate it, it is making me so sad sad I do not know how to deal with this, DH and I are at a loss.

Also DD2 has a will of iron and bad behavior cannot be ignored unless you want it to carry on all day. I realize that we are making a rod for our own backs. We have tried for months to just ignore the bad and reward the good but it makes no difference to her behavior at all. I think we are maybe doing something unconscionably that is giving her mixed messages so no wonder she is acting up.

DD1 speaks to me like a piece of fucking shit and I hate it. She ignores me when I am talking to her, when she says 'Mum' to me I answer her immediately and then she will walk off and ignore me and it makes me want rip my head off.

DH and I are on the same page, we never disagree with each other in front of the DD's, if we disagree with how the other parent has dealt with a situation we talk about it later once the kids are in bed.

We have given up the naughty chair as it makes no impact what so ever with DD2, so now we send them to their room. DD1 has started apologizing for her actions and the way she speaks to me (unprompted by either DH or myself) We accept the apology and speak to her about it and then draw a line under it and move on.

They share a room, their rooms is full of books, toys etc, it is decorated how they wanted it decorated. I think that they have become spoilt. I have decided once DH is home from work tonight we are going through all of their toys and getting rids of at least half if not 3/4 of them. It sounds harsh I know but they hardly play with most of them. DD1 has her birthday coming up in November and then Xmas.

I am lost as to what to do, I feel like a terrible mum who seems to shout a lot sad sad No wonder they take no notice of me, I wouldn't take any notice of someone who shouted at me.

Please help, I am willing to try anything.

2littlegreenmonkeys Tue 27-Sep-11 11:31:38


I meant subconsciously.

Oh and please do not recommend speaking to my HV, I don't even know who she is and they are less than helpful when I ring to find out and couldn't give a shit. Plus the one that I saw last time was about as much use as a chocolate fire guard.

veryfedupatthemoment Tue 27-Sep-11 11:43:22

I think we have the same children. Except my youngest is a DS.

DD is 4.5 and thinks she is queen of the world.

DS is her slave/punchbag/partner in crime, depending on her mood.

They are much easier one at a time. I found preschool sessions helped, that and treating them a bit like puppies - feed them regularly, plenty of running about to work off some steam.

But 2 minutes looking away, while you try to unload the washing machine or peeel a carrot, and someone is screaming - someone got bitten, someone else pinched. Is very wearing.

2littlegreenmonkeys Tue 27-Sep-11 11:50:54

It is horrid isn't it.

DD1 goes to the nursery part of school 5 afternoons a week, DD2 is still very hard work unless I am out of the house all the time with her, which is impossible. I have things that needs doing here, cooking, cleaning etc.
As long as DD2 gets what she wants she is okay but I think, in fact I know it is spoiling her. I don't want her to become that annoying spoilt kid sad

She is like that nursery rhyme, when she is behaving good she is lovely and when she is behaving naughty she is horrid.

I have emailed DH at work to tell him that the DD's are not having anything other than bday toys, xmas toys, no sweets, treats NOTHING until after Xmas. Only half an hour of TV after school and that is it. Or at least until their behavior changes positively. I sound like a callous bitch don't I sad

TwoPeasOnePod Tue 27-Sep-11 11:54:13

Hi, sorry to hear about your DD's. I have similar problems with my 4 yr old DD (just started school) but my other DD is only a year old, so she doesnt argue back, just gets a load of crap from her older sister sad

Is your eldest at school yet? I think the routine change has a lot to answer for if she is. My advice would be cut out the boring food shop at the weekends, we used to do that and tbh if it's boring for adults, it's going to be ten times worse for kids.. So don't put yourself through the hassle and either do online shopping or take turns with your DP going one night a week alone to do it when kids are in bed. This has made our weekends more fun and relaxed. It cuts out one battle whilst they are still very young!

If they start being horrendous, take them to the nearest park and let them run wild until they tire. Keep an eye on snacks, my eldest turns into an arsehole to be quite frank, if her energy's getting low..
But as for the random acts of shitty behaviour, I am stumped with that too! Yesterday, eldest DD in perfectly good mood, BITES her baby sister on the hand! This has resulted in privileges being removed.
Your removal of toys is a good thing, let them earn instead of taking for granted. Good luck smile

lingle Tue 27-Sep-11 11:56:33

sounds hard.

make sure you are using all the principles set out in "Siblings without Rivalry" ~(you don't have to agree with all the authors' rather 1970s opinions but the book is bursting full of techniques, some of which are bound to be useful - it also helps you identify any techniques you are using that aren't effective).

good luck.

2littlegreenmonkeys Tue 27-Sep-11 11:59:36

Yes DD1 has just started (well about 5 months ago) at school. TBH not I think about it that coincides with her, quite frankly, disgusting attitude and horrid way she speaks to DH and myself (more me though sad)

I suppose I could change the day I shop, we use the local market so usually do it on a Saturday as it only opens certain days, could always do it on a Tuesday though when DD1 is at school that afternoon. Good Idea, will give that a go.

For the last 3 weekends the DD's have lost their swimming session, which we usually do on a Sunday, but because of their behavior they have lost that privilege. Good idea about the run about at the park, will try it maybe after school to really tire them both out.


2littlegreenmonkeys Tue 27-Sep-11 12:06:32

Ooooo that books looks good, thank you.

<Off to buy it from amazon now>

belindarose Tue 27-Sep-11 12:27:40

I don't know if this is helpful as I only have the one to deal with, but my DD is the same age as your dd2 and I wonder if you're expecting a bit much of her. My DD is very verbal and has great understanding, but certainly wouldn't understand missing swimming because of her behaviour, for example. And I know she'd make a great mockery of anything like a naughty chair! Not saying your DD2 isn't difficult, but perhaps you're seeing her as naughty when she's really just being two.

2littlegreenmonkeys Tue 27-Sep-11 13:11:38

I can see that, she understands going to her room, being out of the situation helps her to calm down (and me) The swimming is more for DD1 TBH who does understand, I need something more that DD2 will understand I think.

Thank you.

belindarose Tue 27-Sep-11 13:19:53

I always recommend these books, not everyone's cup of tea but they help me keep the perspective I want on behaviour. 'Playful Parenting' (Cohen) and 'The happiest toddler on the block' (Harvey Karp). I'm sure they'd apply to your 4 year old too.

TwoPeasOnePod Tue 27-Sep-11 14:02:26

I can second Playful Parenting as being useful to read, it may help you keep a lighter perspective, it does for me when sometimes I just want to scream and rant, which I'm sure you know isn't the best wink
They will eventually grow out of it, I just get exasperated that we are "wasting time" with all the petty rowing and punishments when I just want to enjoy them, and them to enjoy life without interminable issues...

With the two year old I'd pare things right back to basics- no complications, just a list of things she's aware of that are definite 'no's and use a lot of distraction, praise for good behaviour (I know you said you already do that but dont give up) She's still a baby, and without a doubt copying her sister, mine does too. Thus shes not entirely responsible for her actions yet (but that wont last forever!)
Also some days as long as they aren't physically ripping chunks off each other, I shut the dining room door (makeshift playroom atm) and just let them get on with it (periodically checking the 1-year old is safe grin )

Because sometimes, mums just need a break. And sometimes over-monitoring and intervening can make them play up even more. And sometimes it helps my head not explode wink Stay cheerful, rant on here if it helps!

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