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Toddlers: The Rules

(15 Posts)
thumbsucker Wed 16-Jul-08 10:19:20

I'm sure this thread has been written a hundred times over but I'm struggling to keep control with a 3 1/2 yo DS and a 1 1/2 yo DD. I thought it might help (me) to write out some rules to keep in mind so this is a bit of a 'note to self', however, I wondered whether anyone has anything useful to add:

Toddlers: The Rules

1. Focus: days with the kids are not days off. You can get some housework/chores done but give most of the day/your time to them.

2. Don’t say ‘no’ immediately. Think about it. Let them see you’re thinking about it and make an informed decision. Hopefully this will reduce the number of times you will have to go back on your word when you’ve instinctively said ‘no’ and are then pestered into wondering ‘where’s the harm’ (in whatever it is you originally said ‘no’ to).

3. Food
They must at least try everything before they are allowed to reject it
They are allowed to choose what they eat from their plate
Don’t offer an alternative
Expect them to stay at the table until others have finished
Don’t offer pudding if they have left most of the main course

4. TV to be restricted to 1 hour a day - THEY ARE SO MUCH HAPPIER WITHOUT IT. REMEMBER THIS!

beansprout Wed 16-Jul-08 10:21:20

That's fab (and I'm at home with a 3.9yo and a 6mo today), thanks for posting it. smile

Would also add, accentuate the positive. Praise what you can and try and keep the negative stuff to a minimum.

Habbibu Wed 16-Jul-08 10:27:02

5. Brief your children. If you came to me just now and said "Right, stop what you're doing, we're going out", I'd be pretty pissed off and resist. Tell them your plans for the day, then remind and remind as each bit is about to happen. That way they're part of the process, and in my experience, a lot more willing to go along with it.

lucyellensmum Wed 16-Jul-08 10:39:50

Whats going on??i cant see the messages

thumps hard drive

thumbsucker Wed 16-Jul-08 10:47:38

Thanks beansprout and habbibu. you're right. beansprout, you've reminded me of a song i used to sing when it got really bad 'you've got to aaccentuate the postitive, eliminate the negative and latch on to the affirmative, don't mess with Mr in-between'...

lucyellensmum Wed 16-Jul-08 10:49:03

6. always remember that rules are meant to be broken, follow your instincts

thumbsucker Wed 16-Jul-08 10:54:25

hmm. I'm trying to avoid using the instinct that makes me want to shout 'ffs just f'ing do it because I said so' and be a reasonable, loving, nuturing mother lucyellensmum

noonki Wed 16-Jul-08 11:01:58

You forgot bribery - my failsafe when all else is lost!

lucyellensmum Wed 16-Jul-08 11:11:19

thumbsucker - that is an EXTREMELY good point!! I know what you mean. OK, scrap lem rule number 6!

lucyellensmum Wed 16-Jul-08 11:15:00

I would just like to say that i don't have a set of "rules" as such, and sometimes i feed my 3yo DD on the floor next to the dog as she likes to pretend to be "bob". We did this yesterday at the beach when we were eating our fish and chips - did get some very looks from passers by as they both sat there begging chips and fish grin

But you know something, despite not having rules, i AM a resonable, loving and nurturing mother. In fact, i am the best mother my DD has grin. It is possible to live without rules.

eandh Wed 16-Jul-08 11:18:07

7. Compromise slightly if it means an easy life

EG dd1 desperate to help me today (ie hanging washing out/clearing up) I've just made her a washing line (bit of gardening string tied betweeen two posts she is pegging her dolls clothes out and is happy as larry, I was hoovering she wanted a go so I finished doing it but then let her have a go for 5mins )

Also got her pens/pencils out and leaving them out all day on dining table with paper (normally put them away when shes not playing with them) etc etc

at the moment dd1 (3.10) is cleaning the table with a dishcloth and an empty mr muscle window cleaner bottle and dd2 (18mnths) asleep so I am enjoying 10mins peace wink

lucyellensmum Wed 16-Jul-08 11:21:59

eandh you sound like you have it right envy

eandh Wed 16-Jul-08 11:23:38


<<<tries to forget that she spent all of yesterday shouting at them as they were both annoying moody impatient overtired>>>

peacelily Wed 16-Jul-08 11:31:47

I'm very interested in this thread have just had a hellish 2 days with dd (22m), admittedly she's got a horrible cough and a cold but the negativity astounds me, and the hitting me and biting me whenever i want her to do something.

Exhausting, ended up really shouting at her yesterday when getting her dressed then felt terrible sad. nappy chnages, hairbrushing, getting dressed EVERYTHING an issue.

the only thing she likes doing is brushing her teeth, so much so that I have to physically detach her from the sink!

gingerninja Wed 16-Jul-08 11:44:33

peacelilly I'm getting the same from my 22 month old. It's prety scary seeing her coming towards me with teeth gnashing! I'm always worried that a cuddle will turn into a bite at the moment!

I'd also say, take a minute to get down to their level and listen. Even if it is inaudible whinging, showing an interest in what they're talking about can diffuse a situation.

Also, I say everything three times with an instruction on what will happen if she doesn't respond. After which I do a count to three so she's had plenty of warning.

really I just make it up as I go along but she doesn't know that

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