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How can I tame this 2yr old?

(6 Posts)
xede Sat 19-Mar-05 20:37:48

Hello everyone, I wonder if anyone can give me any advise.

I look after 2 girls aged almost 5 and 2yrs 9 months. I am having real problems with the youngest and am not sure what is the best way to deal with it.
The older girl is , I would say , very naughty and rude, however she goes to school and when it is just myself and the youngest we have a lovely time. She is an absoloute angel. However, when her sister comes home she changes immediatley .

An example;

After tea we are all playing when youngest one says - 'I am going to stick this down the radiator' Now she knows ( I say she knows, but at 2 ,almost 3 maybe she has forgot?) that this is not on. I was at the door and said please do not.

However she did and then looked at me and said ' ha ha Ive done it!' So i asked her to come to me so that i can do the bending down thing, eye contact, 'no , thats silly' and she says 'no I wont come' Anyway when it is just us she does what I ask first time, this time I have to say it 5 times. She just keeps saying no. When she wont come I go to get her but as soon as I move she runs to me saying 'yes yes'. I bend down to try and explain and she spits in my face!
Now I class this as unacceptable behaviour and I put her in her room and tell her she has to sit in here, and she relpies 'I will stand up'. I leave her in there and when I go back 2 mins later she is laying on the floor singing to herself, and is not bothered in the least.

That is just a typical example.

I know it is a game to her when she says she wont come to me, its like she wants to see if I will go and get her. And I know she does learn alot of this defiant behaviour from her sister, but she doesnt spit or shout no at me. WHat should I do? Should I go get her straight away if she says no? And should I put her in herroom, as that doesnt really seem to work. She and her older sister both have a sticker chart, for eating nicely and not kicking or hitting each other, but that is mainly for the older one as i dont htink youngest really gets it?A m I expecting too much? Im not sure but I know I dont want to be spat at by someone elses child!

PLease please help! Sorry for going on aswell.

KarenThirl Sun 20-Mar-05 07:40:55

Hi Xede

I'm going to repeat the positive reinforcement idea I posted on another thread a couple of days ago. Often when disciplining children we tend to say "If you don't do X then you can't have Y", which always sounds like a punishment before the crime has been committed, especially to a child. If you turn it around to make it a rewards, as in "If you DO do X then you CAN have Y", you often get a much more favourable response.

These days I use a combination of sticker chart and token jar for disciplining. The sticker chart shows positives, rewards for jobs well done etc, whereas the tokens are something the child will lose for behaving badly. There has to be a run-up to losing a token (I use 1-2-3) and the outcome has to be understood by the child in advance. I've found the combination of strategies works better than one or the other individually.

Depending on how the sticker chart is used, it might need to be reviewed to bring the system down to smaller chunks for quicker rewards. Younger children can't wait a whole week like some older ones can. On the whole though I reckon she's old enough to understand the basics of what's acceptable behaviour and what's not.

kid Sun 20-Mar-05 09:10:25

I just want to add that the positive reinforcement idea really does work - thanks KarenThirl

Amberlilli Sun 20-Mar-05 09:27:15

I'm mum to dd five and dd 21 months, I have more problems with dd1 but use a reward chart which occaisionly works, but she has started filling it in herself and removing any black marks for bad behaviour, so it seems pretty pointless!
My neighbours daughter is 7 and they use a method of withdrawing pocket money (they start with £5 and it drops by 50p every time she breaks any rules), they said it seems to be working, but this of course won't work for younger children.
I've noticed that dd2 will throw tantrums if I cuddle dd1 or try sit and read with her, as she is used to having my full attention when dd2 is at school.
It sounds as if your little one is doing the attention seeking thing- as usual naughty behaviour gets immediate attention. So I have tried to ignore dd2 when she is chucking things round the room, slamming doors or anything else that I would find unacceptable (providing it isn't dangerous!) I have to grit my teeth but eventually she gets bored and gives up! I would then make a big fuss of any good behaviour.
I've found disciplining children a very difficult thing, I seem to spend a lot of time shouting and screaming, then I'll feel really bad.
Looking after someone elses children must be doubly hard for you!
I don't know if this has been any help at all-sorry rambled a bit!

xede Sun 20-Mar-05 11:41:31

Thanks every one, some excellent points, the postive reinforcment I deinately do try, and will ignore behaviour if its not dangerous or anything. But spitting at me? I cant ignore that can I? Its tough it really is.

KarenThirl Sun 20-Mar-05 11:47:07

The token jar would probably help with the spitting, if you keep it specific. "One token will be removed if you spit at me", and make sure she sees you being really sad at having to take it away.

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