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Terrible Twos - any good news on the horizon?!

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violator Mon 17-Feb-14 18:07:17

Life with my 2.5 year old seems to be one big battle every day at the moment.

He's always been a 'loud' child, for want of a better description (as a baby he never whimpered, he roared!) and we had a very tricky time between 18-24 months when he was a nightmare, constant whining, never particularly happy, multiple night wakings for no apparent reason. Every developmental phase (crawling, walking, talking) came with a tornado of crankiness, sleep refusal and general miserable-ness lasting at least a month.
I couldn't really take him anywhere as he bolted every time, I tried reins but he would lie on the ground and refuse to walk. He had to be tied into supermarket trollies and I bought a special strap to stop him getting out of his car seat straps and buggy.

His speech has always been particularly good, he was speaking in sentences at 18 months and was well able to understand what we were saying to him.

When he turned 2 he was a lot easier to manage, much more agreeable and started to hold my hand when we were out. He could play happily by himself or watch some TV.

In the past month or so he's become a total terror! Everything out of his mouth starts with "I'm NOT... (insert everything here, such as going outside, coming inside, putting on his coat, shoes, having a bath, going swimming, shopping, into the car, to playschool, to visit someone) Even when I put a DVD on for him he shouts that "it's the WRONG ONE" and will continue shouting. I generally walk away and ignore it.

Throwing himself on the floor or ground, running away, refusing to eat anything except toast, pancakes, sausages or porridge are daily occurrences.
He is sleeping 11-12 hours at night and will nap for 1.5 hours most days so he is not overtired. Sometimes when he wakes from his nap he screams for 30 minutes solid and nothing on earth with pacify him.

Because he's a bright little boy, I ask him what's wrong or what he wants and the answer is "I don't know."
I have tried a naughty step, but unfortunately he likes it and has asked to sit on it when there's no 'reason' to do so.

Now I know of the Terrible Twos and I know toddlers test your patience to its limits but I'm wondering in general how long this Dictator Phase lasts? I know all toddlers have their moments but right now he is running the house and we're too bloody worn down to figure out what to do about it.
I hate to compare children but none of my nieces or nephews were quite as headstrong and my friends' kids are pretty placid, apart from the odd strop they're generally easy to live with.

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