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When do little people understand 'no'?

(6 Posts)
heslimedme Fri 23-Oct-15 09:04:22

My DD is 19 months old and is a mischievous little monkey. She was 7 weeks early so we've been told to expect thing to happen a little slower developmentally but the delays are not very obvious to me to be honest.

She understands a lot - will put things in the bin if asked (and sometimes if not!), gets pajamas, socks, water beaker, shoes etc and 'helps' to clear up toys.

When we tell her not to do things - chewing on books and then showing you the bits in her mouth for example and then yesterday she discovered that she could climb on the outside of the cot holding onto the sides and stand on the base. Not very high but very dangerous if she tumbles backwards. When we tell her not to do this it turns into a fun game of doing it and laughing.

When do they understand that we're telling her not to do something? Does she understand but is loving all the extra attention? Should we just try and ignore it not giving it any attention and not explain why not to do it or do we keep saying no until she gets it?

Obviously she needs boundaries and to know that some stuff is naughty or dangerous but I can't help thinking she's only a little monkey getting up to mischief and exploring new things.

gandalf456 Fri 23-Oct-15 09:15:39

It sounds as if she does understand if she laughs when you say 'no.'

They way to deal with it depends on what she is doing. Obviously, with dangerous things, you will need to remove her straightaway.

With things that are just annoying, you could probably ignore.

Witchend Fri 23-Oct-15 09:29:47

I would say plenty of time before 19 months.

But 2 of mine were in full sentences by 18 months, so more visible understanding if that makes sense.
Dd2 was using "no" by shaking her head in the correct context at about 8 months. I knew she wasn't going to be as compliant as dd1 when that happened!

Say "No" remove from item in question and ignore laughter. If she goes back to do it again repeat. If she keeps on doing it, remove her from room, settle down to do something (like reading) and ignore her for about 2 minutes.

SevenSeconds Fri 23-Oct-15 10:03:14

I think there is a difference between understanding that the word "no" means "don't do that" and understanding consequences (ie if you do this when that will happen). The first is much earlier than the second. So I'm sure your DD understands the word "no", but she's still a step away from understanding that if you chew a book it's spoilt, or that if you fall backwards you might hurt yourself. I'd say, with my DC, understanding consequences came at around age 2.

At the moment it's just a word you say to her. She understands that you're saying no, but not why you're saying it, which makes it hard for her to obey this seemingly arbitrary command.

flanjabelle Fri 23-Oct-15 10:10:21

It's all about consistency. When you say no, you enforce it (nicely of course). no to climbing, you get her down. No to chewing a book, you take the book. No to hitting, you put her down and walk away. Soon enough they stop as they don't want the consequence so they stop when you say no. Dd is just 2, and 99% of the time will stop something if you say no. The other 1% I enforce and remind her.

Just to point out, none of this involved shouting or aggression from me, but there have been tears and strops from dd. they don't like it, but it's a learning process. It's important that they understand when mum says no, it means no.

Mrbrowncanpoocanyou Fri 23-Oct-15 12:16:59

Depends on the child's personality. Ds was high energy from birth and never stopped abs never listened despite us being consistent. We feel we turned a corner around 4.5 and he had started to listen. Bliss.

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