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Does anyone else's toddler scream for hours if they don't get what they want?

(18 Posts)
Mrsfrumble Wed 20-Nov-13 20:45:11

How the hell did I create such a monster? 3 yo is in his room, screaming like he's been murdered because I won't let him have a lollipop. We live in an apartment block with less-than-amazing sound-proofing and I'm pretty certain our neighbors hate my guts.

I don't think we've spoiled him but obviously I've done something wrong. This is just one example of his extreme behavior and I swing between worrying that he has ASD or that I've just monumentally fucked him up and I'm an unfit mother.

specialsubject Wed 20-Nov-13 20:51:32

it would be less normal if he didn't create merry hell because of this. But he can't have everything he wants and it is doing him no favours not to teach him this. Tantrums are part of the deal.

have you tried the calm approach, distraction and all that easier-said-than-done stuff? Is there anyone you can talk over your worries with?

spanky2 Wed 20-Nov-13 21:00:55

Ds2(6) is the same although he is older. He still has a shocking temper. I was afraid of the anger. It is just an energy not a demonstration of your unfit parenting. There are lots of advice online. It really is just a case of research to find out what suits your ds. I also went to CAMHS. I got referred by the doctor. It was more to do with helping me deal with it and make me stronger as I had got quite worn down by it. He would literally scream all day, throw stuff, hit me, refuse to do anything... It is so hard especially as they seem to know when you are low.

Mrsfrumble Wed 20-Nov-13 21:01:55

Responding calmly and distraction do nothing, he's so single-minded and gets so wound up.

GP has offered to refer us to a Behavioural Psychologist over his poo-withholding issue if the tips she has given us don't work (which I know they won't, because as usual he's so far beyond "positive reinforcement" and "gentle encouragement" that I wanted to laugh when she suggested them). The prospect fills me with a mixture of relief and guilt.

Mrsfrumble Thu 21-Nov-13 06:45:53

I've spent the evening looking into local daycare, maybe a couple of days a week away from me would help DS. I've lost all confidence in my ability to be a good parent to him, and I just end up shouting then feel guilty and shit. I feel so sorry for baby DD too, who has to listen to all the shouting and screaming.

I think he gets away with stuff when we're out and about because he's a very attractive, outgoing child, but his behaviour is always noticeably worse than other children. I took him and DD to a story session this morning and he utterly refused to sit down and listen and shouted that he didn't want to be there, which was so embarrassing as there were plenty of children much younger than him sitting quietly.

I love him so much, but I hate feeling like I'm failing him.

Iwaswatchingthat Thu 21-Nov-13 06:56:25

You're not failing him. The fact that you are concerned about his behaviour shows that.

I am the mother of a dd who still has mega tantrums aged 7.5 years!!!! We have an older dd who has never behaved this way (apart from some rare toddler strops).

Chatting on here and reading 'Raising your Spirited Child' helped me understand her better.

It does grind me down though and days out are still often spoiled by her strops/mood!

She is also beautiful, articulate, affectionate and so gorgeous in so many ways!

You sound like you need a rest to have some time just to think and the strength to move forward positively.

Hermione123 Thu 21-Nov-13 10:40:01

Sounds really tough, nursery is a great idea perhaps you both need a break and something new. Have you withdrawn attention and or toys? Worked best if I put dd in her room until she stopped crying. If he aims himself out, just keep repeating the placement. Also taking away treats or favoured toys after a warning.

Hermione123 Thu 21-Nov-13 10:41:40

Oh by the way, plenty of kids do refuse to participate, it might be your kid one day but it's usually someone else's the next, there isn't a 3 year old out there that doesn't sometimes refuse to join in etc

spanky2 Thu 21-Nov-13 11:32:33

Ds2 is very single minded too. Raising a spirited child is really good .

Mrsfrumble Thu 21-Nov-13 15:16:59

Oh god, we have to be out of the apartment in 30 minutes so workmen can do some maintenance and he's utterly refusing to get dressed, just screaming and fighting. I'm so desperate I've even tried bribing him with Smarties.

I'm so ashamed.

Hermione123 Thu 21-Nov-13 16:28:04

I've been there with the chocolate bribes, don't beat yourself up. You should go ahead with the nursery, you need a break. Sometimes with dd (hates leaving in the am), it's better to walk away for a few minutes even though in a rush.

Slothlorien Thu 21-Nov-13 16:36:06

Normal toddler behaviour. Some more than others. Keep calm. Imagine u are in supernanny with hidden cameras. Soon it will pass.

pippop1 Thu 21-Nov-13 18:59:11

Occasional bribery is not the end of the world.

Mrsfrumble Fri 22-Nov-13 03:35:20

Oh, I wasn't really ashamed about the Smarties - happens almost every day - but that I'm the kind of mother who has to resort to that because I don't know how else to control him.

I've seen a few posts on here over the last few days saying things along the lines of "my child is well behaved and lovely to be around because I've worked so hard at being a good parent", and I can't help but see the flip side that opinion implies; that if your child is a holy terror then it's because you're lazy and don't give a shit. I work so hard at trying to teach DS how to behave that I'm fucking exhausted and wrung-out at the end of every day. I tell him about 500 times each day to say "please" when he wants something, not to be rough with his sister, not to throw his toys, not to run off when we're out. I explain why. I put him in time-out. I praise him to the hilt when he behaves well. I tell him I love all the time. And it never seems to fucking sink in!

The nurseries I've contacted so far only take children full-time, which I don't want even though we could afford it (I'm not that desperate yet!). Just a few days a week when he can hear all the guidance I try and give him from another adult, and see how other children behave might help.

I started reading the Spirited Child book, but on the Kindle app on my phone and I eventually got annoyed with the format and gave up. I should get hold of a paper copy and give it another go because the introduction described DS pretty well.

Sorry about the sweariness of this post. I don't swear anymore in "real life" but I just feel so frustrated and fed-up right now.

mum23kidz Fri 22-Nov-13 03:55:34

sounds extremely tough. I hope you can get a break soon. Can you just put ds in his room and ignore the acting out? It might take a long time, but after a few times he might get the message that this behaviour is not right.
It's not you. You are doing the best you can... You will get through this, and mumsnet is a great place to get and give support.

Hermione123 Fri 22-Nov-13 10:02:09

I'm really surprised the nurseries only take dc full time, I had dd at 2 then 3 then 4 days. Can you keep looking or you've checked them all? Would you trust a childminder? You could post on mumsnet local for a recommendation. I don't know how people parent without a break, I can't do it, or I can but it is too wearing, but I accept that about myself.

Personally I think a lot of things with dc are down to personality and luck, I'd just be thinking they were lucky if they had well behaved dc, similarly I often feel sorry for someone who's dc isn't behaving as it could be mine!

Hermione123 Fri 22-Nov-13 10:06:26

Ps I agree with mum23kids about just focusing on keeping repeating the time outs, I found it really helped me keep cool and feel in control of the situation. If we're put, worst case I've marched her a few times (screaming all the way, sometimes hitting me etc) after warnings to prove that she can't do it in public either. I hope the ed psych is useful! Good luck op.

Hermione123 Fri 22-Nov-13 10:07:58

Sorry, marched her home, phone typos!

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