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Terrible twos or terribly spoiled?(8 Posts)
Hoping some wise MNers can help.
I have 2 children. A DD 2years 10months and a DS 10months.
Both are/have been very clingy babies, both do not sleep through. We’ve fought hard and now DD wakes 1/2 a night but DS wakes every 2/3 hours.
However over the last year we’ve had some behaviour issues with DD. She is about 60% of the time so funny, sweet and quite bright. But the other 40% is TERRIBLE. I’m starting to dredge socialising for fear of her playing up. My DH thinks it’s in my head but I definitely feel a coolness now coming from some mum friends. Actually one (who lives very close by and who I thought of as a good friend) told me when I commented that I’ve not seen her in ages that her son (and I’m guessing by extension her) just didn’t want to see my DD.
Yesterday our friends messages saying they were out if we were about as their DD (our DD little BFF) was asking for our DD. She was so excited to see her friend, they ran towards each other to hug and bumped her finger that had a small cut from earlier. Cue crying, calling her bad which resulted in a tearful sad apology hug to her little friend.
Then she tripped over her scooter and hurt her face. The girls decided it was time to play inside. So in we went and it was cute for about 5 minutes then there was fighting over toys. She wanted the bowl the other girl had for grapes (in all fairness it was a pretty cool bowl) she did wait until her friend was finished and switched her grapes from the plain bowl to the whale shaped one. After awhile we went over to ours as my DD got a small bouncey castle from her uncle and was so excited to show her friend. But as soon as it was up she was crying thy she didn’t want her on. Then there was a bit of pushing which resulted in a naughty step time out, then fighting over her toys. Her friend was so good and 90% just moved on to the next thing.
She’s really bad at taking toys off her brother and 90% of the time causes a huge meltdown when told to give it back.
She’s also started being really dramatic and throwing herself down on the ground and takes the smallest bumped or thing to heart and either gets really upset over it or angry.
We do tell her off and give her time outs. But her bad behaviour seems to be getting worse not better and it’s exhausting. She’s good at saying sorry and “I’ll no do it again”. But it happens again and again.
She goes to playgroup 3 days a week, a music movement class and a gymnastic class. We usually try to do something once a day.
I have to admit I am bad for saying yes to things like when we’re out and she asks for cake at soft play or a toy, ice cream. I am making more of a conscious effort to say no as I don’t want to raise spoiled children.
I’m just wondering if anyone has some advice or recommendations for books?
She is at heart a lovely funny girl who wants to play but I feel gets overwhelmed and acts out especially with other children her ages (older kids she’s great with). I can already feel her being judged as “that kid” and I don’t want that to stick to her.
Your daughter doesn’t sound spoilt, it seems she is just finding it hard to regulate her emotions, something that will come later. As long as you’re consistent, which I’ve always found very important, then with time and understanding she will be able to control her emotions a bit more.
I also noticed you said your daughter doesn’t sleep through the night, which will most likely have a big impact on her behaviour, it does my daughters. Could you implement a new routine and work on getting your daughter sleeping through the night?
i second Tilly’s suggestion of working on her sleep. Try the No Cry Sleep Solution for Toddlers and Pre-schoolers. Does she have an afternoon nap too?
She’s only 2 -its very normal for her to act like that. I think you need to lower your e
..expectations. She is little more than a baby and hasn’t yet learned how the world works and what is the appropriate way to behave. She has limited ability to control her emotions too.
Totally normal for a two year old. The world is still big and scary and new and they can’t regulate their emotions. You just need to model good behaviour, talk to them and eventually it sinks in. A really good book is the whole brain child. It helped me understand development and how to deal with it.
Like others have said, don't be hard on yourself or her, it sounds like you're doing just fine. She might be finding it harder than other kids her age to regulate her emotions but all kids are different and circumstances (like having a younger sibling, sleep struggles or anything really) play a part.
I do think that although it's good to have boundaries and to take a step back when a situation has got out of hand, but at her age the naughty step doesn't always help. If they don't really understand how to deal with their feelings which caused the problem in the first place, then when they say they won't do it again they are saying it to please you but don't really have to the tools to make that happen. Might explain why you feel like you're just going round in circles.
There's a great book called How to Talk So Kids Will Listen which I found helpful, but otherwise just keep at it.
It might be a little bit you feeling self conscious about the other parents, but if they genuinely have a problem then forget about them. All parents know that it's not always easy and every child has their moments (usually at the worst possible time!) Don't let the feeling that others are judging you get into your head as kids are perceptive and you don't want your daughter to feel like you're embarrassed of her, as this might cause her to act out more.
Sorry I had half typed out a reply and got distracted with an ever waking baby!
Thanks for responding it’s good to hear we’re normal
I’d love to say we were consistent but with sleep deprivation and my DH travel frequently but irregularly for work (its almost every week but duration changes from 1 night to maybe 3) it can be difficult. As when he’s hope I want the extra help so some times I do bed time and some times him.
She is slowly cutting naps out herself, I try to get her to have a lie down she I feel if she doesn’t she gets over tired and can’t function well but unless in the car or buggy she mostly doesn’t nap.
I’ll definitely read both books recommended. I’m now unsure about the naughty step (although we call it a thinking step or mainly the step) as I don’t actually thinking it’s improving her behaviour long term. Sure she calms down most of the time and apologises but doesn’t actually change her behaviours and some times just causes a spiralling effect. Not always tho. However I think I’d have a battle on my hands with DH to give it up.
@Rayrae19 I’d never want my daughter to feel I’m embarrassed of her, I feel very emotional thinking about it. But you probably head the nail on the head. I do feel at times self conscious (my neighbour once called her little miss selfish when she had a little tantrum when a neighbours kids took one of the toys she had out and a child minder at bookbugs called her a diva and hard work) but that’s my issue and I don’t want that to effect how she sees herself.
I feel like I’m making it up as I go and I’m not the zen happy mum I thought I’d be
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