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Help I have had a c**p morning

(10 Posts)
carlyb Sat 15-May-04 13:05:54

Ds is at the age now where he says "I want" before every sentence and boy does he want a lot!
He is 20 months and usually I am quite patient with him. But lately I have started to loose my rag. This morning he was a little devil. He wouldnt do anything I wanted and when I wouldnt let him run around homebase on his own he attacked me by hitting my face and he bit my arm.

I have been trying the ignoring the bad and praising the good approach and have read loads of toddler books - but I dont think nothing prepares you for how it feels to be on the recieving end of a toddlers willful behaviour.

I am a SAHM so he sees me all of the time and I get all of the crap. To top it off when he knows he has pushed my buttons he says "I want nanny" or "I want daddy" and then runs around saying "nanny, nanny, nanny". AHHHHH!!!!! (my mum loves this - it makes her smug)
I feel like he doesnt like me - this might sound silly. He doesnt seem to need me. He isnt clingy at all - which I usually like as he is very happy and independant. But on days like today I feel so down about it and wonder why I bother!

Please tell me it is a phase! If I carry on being there all the time he will need me eventually?? Or am I to blame - am I just doing a naff job at all this and getting it wrong?
Sorry - rant over - having a bad day - will go and have a cry now why ds is napping!

monkeygirl Sat 15-May-04 14:07:42

Poor you, please don't beat yourself up over this - he is just being a normal toddler who seems to have a strong personality as well. It will probably serve him well in the future but at the moment you are getting the brunt of it. He's just testing how far he can push you - apparently kids do want their parents to set limits but they need to find out what they are. My dd is just 3 and has been doing similar things for a while, especially the 'I want daddy' line when I tell her off (although admitedly she hasn't attacked me yet but she is more of a little sensitive mouse personality-wise). Recently she has been going through the histrionics less and less and she now apologises after a few minutes of crying and accepts what I say more and more.

Of course your son loves you. He's just beginning to find out what the boundaries in life are. It may last a while yet I'm afraid but it won't last forever (although from friends' experience it will probably re-surface around teenagehood time!).

Make the most of your 'smug' mum and let her look after him and give you some time to yourself. I'm also a SAHM and whilst I love my dd to pieces I do relish my few hours away from her as it helps to put things back into perspective.

CountessDracula Sat 15-May-04 16:26:12

Oh carlyb I know how you feel - I have a 20 month old who has started really acting up with me lately, she is fine if she is with her nanny or dh but when she comes in in the evening is really quite vile to me Instead of saying "please" or asking for something, instead she just starts shouting and screaming for it immediately. I know how you feel with getting cross, I actually shouted at her yesterday cos I was so fed up and her little face crumpled and I felt soooooooo mean

I have to just keep telling myself that it's a phase. Today she is fine , being really sweet. Long may it continue!

goosey Sat 15-May-04 16:36:31

carlyb, IT IS A PHASE!!!
Your ds sounds like a perfectly normal, wilful and exuberant little lad who is secure and happy and exploring his world. Of course at this age he thinks the world and everyone in it revolve around him, so his behaviour may often be frustrating and appear selfish. But that is all a good sign that he has been brought up with love and sensible boundaries. It's just that he is yet to fully understand those boundaries - actually sorry to break it to you but he'll still be testing boundaries at 16+ - and because you are doing such a great job with him he feels safer testing the waters with you than with anyone else. Of course he loves and needs you. You're his mum, and the loveliest person in the whole world to him.

carlyb Sat 15-May-04 19:33:32

Thanks for you kind responses. It has helped as I feel like I am going mad sometimes. How can such a little person be such a force to be reckoned with? I think as a mum we are made with a 'failure' complex! All ds has to do is look unhappy and I feel bad.

Anyway thanks again

Flip Sat 15-May-04 19:49:12

I haven't read any of the posts but just wanted to say that the reason he treats you bad is because he trusts you. He knows he has your love unconditionally and no matter what he does that won't change. You're always there for him.

I've got the same problems with mine and he's five. Mummy get's all the crap and with daddy he's cautious because daddy goes to work every day and leaves him.

Welcome to hell by the way!

gothicmama Sun 16-May-04 12:51:43

Thanks Flip your words make sense

carlyb Tue 18-May-04 19:18:37

Another nightmare day with ds. In fairness I have bad PMT at the moment - so I am not looking at the situation very objectivly.

Ds has biten me 4 times today and my mum (his nanny) once. At the moment I have being doing what I has seen suggested on this site and in a book I read. I put him down away from me and ignore him. I always praise the good things that he does and encourage him. I have tried saying no biting. And still he keeps doing it.

So my dilema now is, shall I carry on this 'behaviourism' approach of ignoring the bad and praising the good - or start telling him off? Will this just give him attention?

If I ignore him it doesnt seem to impact him at all - he just goes off playing. It is so embarrasing in public. I am supposed to be starting a toddler group on Thursday (as I am quite iscolated), but am aprehensive about it incase he plays up.

I am just praying that like I said before this is a phase. Encouragment needed!! sorry abou spelling have typed so fast.

aloha Tue 18-May-04 19:27:38

Carlyb - this approach does work eventually. What I did was the minute there was a bite, I picked ds up - without eye contact or fuss - said "NO biting" in a stern voice and put him out of the room and closed the door for a few moments. This instantly shocked and upset him and then he could come back. It isn't an instant solution - but eventually it will work. Also look for triggers - do his teeth hurt? Is he hungry? Can you spot the look in the eye that means he is about to bite? If so put him away from you. My ds used to bite more when hungry - I'd give him something else to bite on - a bit of apple or a hard biscuit. It's not pleasant but it is very normal. And remember, he really has no real idea of how much it will hurt you. I also think it is really normal for a 20month old to run off and not follow instructions. If that's happening in a place where I can't follow him, he either is carried or goes in his pushchair.
Go to the toddler group - you will see that they all behave like this (or at least lots of them do), but do supervise quite closely if he is prone to biting. I think it is important. If he goes to bite, grab him and be stern. If he does it again, take him home right away and tell him why. You are allowed to get cross in that case, IMO.

carlyb Wed 19-May-04 11:27:03

Thanks for you response aloha. Am going to keep on not reacting to it and see what happens. Amazingly he has been as good a gold today.
thanks again

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