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Desperate for help - my 23 month old is literally driving me to despair!

(10 Posts)
Belladonna666 Thu 11-Oct-12 17:31:32

I am so fucking depressed it is unbelievable. I have a 23 month old who acts like he is permanently on speed. He goes out every day for walks, is fed ok (have cut out anything bad), has just dropped his nap so he not only is hyper from the moment he wakes until he falls asleep but if I try and put him in his cot for a nap or do anything by myself (such as go to the loo) he screams the loudest, most ear piercing horror scream and I think I have been deafened by it. He wants my attention 24/7 (literally), isn't interested in his toys, isn't interested in books or tv. I am hating my life so much and I am so so down about this. I have an older son who was/is much more sedate. My little one is so hyper and uncontrollable and I am exhausted! I can't put him in nursery as we cannot afford it so it won't be for another year that he gets the free hours. The thought of another year terrifies me. We are in a teeny tiny flat with no garden so he can't even play outside when he is home. Can someone please advise? Is there anything I can give him that is safe that would calm him down a bit (and that works)?

Dollydowser Thu 11-Oct-12 17:40:12

Fish oil have got really good press for children and behaviour. If you google pub med you will be able fo read some of the research papers on it. I haven't tried it personally though.

Asmywhimsytakesme Thu 11-Oct-12 17:42:05

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Belladonna666 Thu 11-Oct-12 19:07:38

I don't really know how I can possibly give him any more attention since he won't let me do anything. He literally doesn't leave me alone for a minute. Even if I spend 6 hours sitting with him playing games, it is still not enough. I hate it. I would put him in full time nursery if I could afford it. He is just making me extremely depressed. Right this moment his dad has put him down for bed (you would think he would be tired having been up 3 times last night, no daytime nap but he has been shrieking blue murder for the last half hour!). I just don't know what to fucking do!

Iggly Thu 11-Oct-12 19:10:11

Ok maybe he's teething? Or actually needs a nap, is overtired hence the screaming and not settling. How's his speech?

Belladonna666 Thu 11-Oct-12 19:12:43

Iggly, he is starting to talk now, says lots of words, some of them clearer than others but no sentences yet. He does have very bright red cheeks but he has all his teeth already. He has always been fairly hyper but since dropping his nap he has got 100 times worse. I am exhausted. Of course he is overtired. But I can't reason with a 23 year old or explain to him why he should sleep.

Iggly Thu 11-Oct-12 19:27:44

Yes I feel your pain. I has to enforce naps with ds - sitting with him with a light show to get him to lie down then light show off with the sounds of the sea and he'd drift off eventually... Took ages but worth it.

If no naps, then we'd have super early bedtime of around 6.30pm after a long drawn out routine over half an hour to get him to calm. Again, sit with him until he slept.

Can you keep sentence simple with him? Tell him what to do, not what not to do. I've read that toddlers don't hear the "dont" eg "don't play with that" and will play with it. I had a tendency to treat ds as older than he was, resulting in unrealistic expectations.

Ds also didn't play with himself for long at nearly 2. But he loved it of I let him join in with things I was doing. That was easier than playing. So I'd let him help me cook, clean and wash up. The last one was great - stick him on a chair, put water and bubbles in sink and chuck safe stuff in. I could stand next to him while he splashed about and have a cuppa. Also getting him to help fill jars with pasta. It would obviously be messy but it kept him quiet and I could sweep it up once done. Cleaning - give him a spray bottle filled with water and let him do that while I cleaned.

Basically ds became my partner in crime.
Now at 3 he plays alone for ages! It's great grin

nannynick Thu 11-Oct-12 19:50:47

I care for a child the same age... it is exhausting.

My Tips:

Get out and about every day - children't don't mind what the weather is like. Splashing in puddles is a great game.

Swimming - I find it can help tire them out a little.

Have them help - they can like helping at this age, so a small dustpan and brush can go down well, or a cloth, or just a box to put things in. They also like helpling make cakes, biscuits, anything like that.

Make time for you - have a break now and then. DVD was created for this purpose surely. Nursery Rhymes DVD is currently popular with 23mth old I care for, she is learning the songs and actions. She has a name for the DVD 'moo moo' so she can request it constantly.

Go out every day - oh did I mention that already... it really does not matter where you go... garden centre, in the countryside, canal (feed the ducks - not jump in it!), library, shopping centre, anything really but remember their attention level is short so whatever you do you probably won't be doing it for long.

scarecrow22 Mon 15-Oct-12 14:26:22

OP. sorry for delay, was mid post and then arrived at my train station and unbelievably not opened iPad for days! I hope you are still on here.
So, if you still want any advice from somebody so chaotic they can't open their iPad for nearly a week wink, for what it is worth:
1. Number one, you must must go to your GP. For your sake. You sound at your wits end, not surprisingly. You also sound loving and sensible, having tried so many practical things. So talk to your GP, ideally alone if DP or anybody else can take DS. If they hesitate you need to explain how serious this is. Maybe write a list of the problems and, crucially, how they are affecting you. If you become emotional or upset it will get you back on track. I suggest you ask the GP to help you first. When you have done this, then ask about help with your son.
2. This might take the form of an appointment with the GP or a specialist child doctor to rule out any health issue - even a food intolerance might trigger some of this. As if not more importantly you should ask for advice about other help available locally. There are a lot of support services and charities, Home Start would be one, but the GP or if s/he prefers a local health visitor will be able to recommend others too if that is not suitable.
3. If the GP is not as helpful as you'd like, or you simply want to broaden the net, you should consider one or more of the following, again at least to point you in the right direction: a local MIND, the Citizens Advice Bureau, the local library, or any other parenting group or centre you can find in your local area (eg Surestart centre). I will wager a lot that most of these places will be keen to help evn if they do not have the answer immediately.
4. Finally, from your very sensible sounding email I am guessing you have thought of this, but do ask for help. Even if you think you can't ask, or even if people have said no, explain how you feel. You really need a break.
I hope some or all of that helps.
Take good care.

usernametaken Mon 15-Oct-12 14:48:46

My DD was similar at the same age. She dropped her day time nap at 18 months but some days she would need it. I would literally drive her miles in the car until she fell asleep just to get her to nap. I believed good sleep breeds better sleep. Even half an hour in the car was a life saver.
We now use Omega oils to calm her and help with concentration...you might not want to hear this, but she now has an ADHD dx.
You would have thought that the more you wear them out in the day, the better they sleep and night, but if they fight sleep then it has a negative effect. Take him to a park 10 miles away, let him run like a nutter, then drive home with the car heater on...he'll hopefully fall asleep! If you can move him once asleep, even better, just transfer him to his bed/sofa...if not, invest in a Kindle and read in the car for half an hour!

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