Cant Cope with my 2 Year Old(5 Posts)
Im at the end of my tether. I have a 4 year old and a 2 year old. Neither have ever been good sleepers but my 2 year old daughter tantrums all through the night now. We average 3 hours sleep a night and probably not all in one go. The sleep deprivation is becoming a serious problem. I have headaches all the time, I have a cold on a monthly basis, my periods are not normal for me anymore, Im pretty vile to my husband and shout more than I've ever shouted before.
Her behaviour during the day is very hit and miss. She can be lovely and cuddly and can melt my heart but she can also hit, bite, pinch and pull hair, not just me, anyone who's near her. Everything is a battle from getting dressed to cleaning teeth and every other part of daily life.
We live in a calm house generally, I try to be happy and positive during the day so I don't think she's feeding off any moods from me. We feed the kids healthy foods with a few treats so she's not exactly eating crap all day long that could send her hyper.
Believe me, I've analysed myself to death to see what Im doing wrong and I constantly feel guilty that Im obviously not the mum I want to be. Tonight during the mother of all tantrums, I really shouted and manhandled her into the cot. Not hard enough to hurt her but rough enough that made me crumble into tears.
To make me feel even worse, my 4 year old is loving and kind and gentle but barely gets a look in or any of my time as DD is so demanding, more to feel guilty about.
The depression is something I've never experienced before as Im such strong person normally but she has broken me.
Im sure theres no answers or solutions but I felt the need to vent.
Gosh you poor thing. How about asking your GP for help. You first, as you need help to relax. You may not be aware that she is picking up on your tension but you are now expecting her to misbehave. It makes you tense. ( who wouldn't be)
Don't feel guilty either as we have all been there as I felt like throttling my DCs quite often, especially when I was sleep deprived. She is only two so it is difficult for her to change as she is too young to rationalise.
You are a good Mum too, as you realise yourself that treating her roughly and shouting is not the answer. Something is disturbing her and she responds with raw emotion as she can't articulate what is her problem.
So your DD next, take her to a GP and get her checked over in case there is anything physical. Then ask him/ her for the number of Homestart as they help families with young children under five. You need a break to get this situation in perspective.
We love our children but sometimes we don't like them much.
I am afraid that you do sound as though you may be suffering from depression. You may just need some Meds to get over this bit and get it back into perspective so that you are more able to cope.
I can tell you with certainty that this situation will pass.
Every time you are patient, you are investing in giving your DD a happy childhood. You will be rewarded in shedloads for this when she grows up.
Diversion tactics are good.
I.e They want something, you say 'NO' and they start to scream. I would then stop eye contact get up and go to the window and say in a loud voice 'wow look at this ' pointing out of the window with supposed great excitement. The two year old stops screaming and comes over to look. I used diversion tactics a lot until they could tell me what was wrong. By that time they slept. Sometimes I put music on I liked and started singing and dancing, that usually stopped them tantruming. Or I would go and sit under the table and pretend to hide. I tried to ignore bad behaviour.
At night I got fed up with bed hopping so we got a bed ( could be a mattress) put up besides theirs. I then slept beside them. I listened to the radio through headphones so that only the loudest screams got through and woke me up. My presence reassured the baby ( because that is what a two year old is ) and I gradually got back into my own bed,( because I wanted to get back to my own bed but I wanted to sleep as well)
BUT there was also a comfortable bed in their room so that I wasn't bed hopping and getting cold.
I took drinks for them to bed with me so that I could just reach into the cot.
I hope my suggestions help. Hugs as you need them.
Watch both series of the three day nanny on catch up. Loads of ideas on there which transform people's lives.
I am so sorry to hear your story. I think lack if sleep is an absolute killer it grinds you down. I don't have much advice but I would be tempted to look at control crying for your dd2 there is a point when you just need her to sleep better - a lot of her behaviour is probably down to lack of sleep. Are you concerned about other aspects of her develpment?
I'm sorry things are so rough. I agree a GP appointment for both of you would be a good idea. Although nightwaking in toddlers isn't unusual your DD2s does sound at the extreme. Is she fully awake or could she be having night-terrors? I've no personal experience, but I have heard enlarged tonsils/adenoids can seriously disrupt children's sleep. If you end up ruling out a physical cause it may be helpful to then explore the behaviour-side e.g. possible sensory sensitivities?
I also said you to have a check up because you mentioned problems with your periods. I'm currently being assessed for thyroid problems and that can be a symptom along with irritability and a few others, so don't overlook the possibility although the broken sleep would have most people on their knees anyway.
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