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How do you deal with the "NO" phase (terrible twos)(6 Posts)
I have a boy who just turned 2. For the past couple of months my once-sweet and pretty well mannered boy is constantly saying NO to EVERYTHING, refusing to co-operate and and fighting with us about everything to the point that I'm about to have a mental breakdown. It requires so much energy to deal with this behavior all day, everyday without losing it in front of him.
How did you all handle this? Seems to be typical "terrible twos" behavior and I know I just need to keep this in mind but I am still having such a hard time currently, even though I know this is all to be expected.
There's constant screaming and crying about changing clothes, putting a diaper, washing hands, eating a meal, taking a bath, brushing teeth.... literally there is nothing that we do that that goes smoothly without a fight and tears. His speech/communication is great and he tells us exactly what he wants/doesn't want but mannnn terrible twos are hitting us HARD!
Usually what works well is turning things into games, but this takes so much energy and time and I find I can't possibly do this for every single thing all day long. I just want a peaceful home and it's currently the opposite.
I’m not sure I can offer much advice but can sympathise! My daughter is due to turn 2 at the end of October and we are knee deep in everything you describe! It’s draining.
I have tried to just narrate things rather than ask her questions. So instead of, “would you like to come into the kitchen for your tea?” I just try and breeze along and say “it’s tea time, let’s go and find your chair, mmm it smells good” etc. Just trying to keep a running commentary on stuff rather than giving her the opportunity to say no. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t!
Also in the meltdowns I try and just take a deep breath when she screeches or rebels etc before I respond. Not always easy in the heat of the moment. Get down to her level, quick hug and try and talk to her about it in basic terms E.G. “we need to put our clothes on everyday, can you see the rain outside? That means we need our clothes on to keep us warm”. Sometimes having a bit of explanation helps.
Also instead of “come and put your top on” she definitely responds better to things like “you show me where your head goes”. Or instead of “right it’s time for bed now” I will say “you show mummy where your cot is” etc.
Also look after yourself! Anything that keeps you as calm as possible. I have started going out for short walks alone, when partner is home, just to clear my head and get some air! I always feel more able to handle her once I get home.
Bribery.... If you don't put your shoes on then we can't go to the park. If you don't put you t shirt on then we can't go downstairs and have milk etc. I dunno if it will work works with mine. Otherwise I ignore no and pop top on over his head etc.
Great reply on the last message, if you explain why they need to do things they accept it much better and they can apply it to future things. For example put your coat on or you will get cold when you go out, teaches you always need warm clothes when going out. Put your coat on only teaches them to put a coat on when asked.
I know it's tough sometimes at that age, but keep up the good work. It may feel like you are getting nowhere but every time you stand your ground, he learns it isn't worth the battle.
Our daughter tested every boundary possible around 2 years old, at 3 years old she was as good as gold.
My little sweetie is testing boundaries every chance she gets. Everything is “no-no-no”. Her bedtime routine is now fairly non-existent and brushing her teeth is like pulling my own out with pliers! Tonight, after finally getting her in to her bed and reading her her nightly story, she kicked off again, big time. 11pm by this time and both her mum and I were exhausted (I’ve been working all day and mum’s off with Covid symptoms). Eventually, I lost my temper and started to tell her she was A naughty girl but it came out “bad girl”. I felt so wretched. I laid down next to her bed and told her over and over that I was sorry and that I love her until she fell asleep. I’m now downstairs feeling utterly, totally shit and so guilty. It’s not helping my conscience that she’s daddy’s girl, that we have a wonderful bond and that mum really doesn’t get a look-in. I’m so anxious that she might remember me saying that. I’ve never said it before and truly didn’t mean to say it tonight. I made sure that the last thing she heard tonight was “I love you so much” but still...Am I the worst father in the world?! 😢