Best Age?(11 Posts)
Quick question to all of you out there. What is the best/most enjoyable age for DC? I'm hoping its yet to come!! DD is 2.5yrs and exploring boundaries... Some say the best age has already passed.. please tell me this is not true!
I'm sure it depends on the child! DD is 23m and the last few months have been an absolute blast, she's so funny and sweet and doing something new every day it seems. But some of my NCT friends are having a terrible time of it at the moment with tantrums and bedtime battles.
I loved the newborn months... four to eight months I could've cheerfully had her adopted... since then it's slowly gotten better which looking back is just as much me learning to live with things eg her fussy eating, as it is her changing.
I agree that it depends on both the DC's character and your own, and also life circumstances (eg new sibling or stressful time at work). Also, my theory is that difficult phases are often when we change our expectations of our DC (perhaps unrealistically) - either because they've reached a different development stage or because we need them to step up (eg new sibling being born).
I found 2-3 an absolutely magical stage, full of fun and amazing developmental changes. But I think what helped was that I still considered DD to be a little toddler and was willing to be very flexible eg still using distraction and silliness rather than expecting obedience.
I found that my expectations ramped up quite a lot when she hit 3 - mainly because she seemed to change fairly fundamentally at that point, but also because cultural expectations seem to increase then too. And sure enough 3-3.5 was pretty tough.
Now that she's almost 4 she is delightful again She has stepped up to the new expectations, and another seismic developmental change has made her more independent, able to think and talk about more complex things (I LOVE explaining the world to her) and full of imagination.
If 2.5 is proving hard, I'd suggest thinking about:
- are your expectations too high? (they really do learn to say please and thank you based on your example - leave it for another 6 months before insisting on it)
- Power struggles are the biggest issue with 2-year-olds. If you can let them do what they want most of the time, they're more willing to accept your constraints when you have to insist (when it's actually dangerous or a nuisance to others) Eg if he wants to make the tea, let him pour cold water into the kettle, switch it on, put the tea bag in the cup, <you pour the hot water - ie the only dangerous bit>, then let him take out the tea bag, pour in the milk (even if it spills), stir the tea.
- know that it really will all change again in 6 months time! Which makes it easier to let the little things go..
thank you both! She is normally very good and nursery says she is an angel until I come to pick her up when she starts throwing things on the floor and refusing to pick them up. Maybe I am expecting her to be obedient too much, i'll try to tone it down a bit :-)
I just don't want to spend all my time following her around picking things up and mending things!
DD is nearly 3 and for me about 15 months on has been great. My sister has two now teenagers and she says 4-7 is the best age. 0-12 months was definitely the worst for me and it's been getting better since then! I think every child and parent is different though. Some people even love the newborn stage which I found akin to torture.
My DC are primary aged (between 7 and 10). The last couple of years have been fab. Less intense and tiring than the baby / toddler years and no teen angst (yet).
I liked around 8 best. Not so needy as when they were younger. Fun to talk to. But not yet reached the stage of grunts or strops.
Generally, every age between 1 and 8 is easier then the last one.
I like the baby stage the best you know when you put them down and they don't move. Ds3 is 21m and I hate this age I can't wait for him to grow up. He's into absolutely everything he shouldn't and there's no reasoning with nearly 2yr old.
Each age brings different challenges .
My older dc are 9 and 6 and I like that they pretty much self sufficient ie wash dress feed toilet themselves but also that you can chat and laugh more with them as they get older.
In my experience between 1 and 3.5yrs was hell
I think different ages are best for different things, it's hard to choose one! I loved the baby days but they're exhausting, I loved the toddler stage, seeing them develop and learn to talk and walk is amazing but again it's very full on.
I would say I am happiest since my youngest has been about 4 (they are now 6.5 and 8) - when they become more independent and you don't have to worry about naps or pushchairs and they are absolutely hilarious! It is much much easier in general now and DH and I have a lot more time for each other so that's always a positive thing. I love spending time talking to my 8 year old, he's starting to form his own opinions on the world and be so thoughtful. My 6 year old should be a comedien he's so funny so we laugh all the time! We have a lot of good times and adventures, it's great to be able to do things on a whim without needing to plan like we had to when they were younger.
thank you all for your messages! I'm really looking forward to having time for my partner again, he only ever gets 50% of my attention if that! I agree that it is fascinating watching them learn and grow, at 2.5 my DD is learning new things every day and can be so sweet, but she can also be a little madam! Glad to hear that with every year it gets easier - perhaps until the teenage years anyway!
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