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Honest Answers - does it get easier as they get older?

(25 Posts)
givemecaffeine21 Thu 28-Aug-14 20:16:53

I've got a 25 month old DD and a 14 month old DD (11 month gap) and I'm finding it really hard lately as between them all they do is fight, whine and cry. They are both very strong willed and scrap over everything, me included. The typical scenario of one is happily playing with a toy and the other decides they want it. Except it's ALL the bleeding time. There always seems to be one or the other screaming / crying. They don't do logic at this age so everything is a big cry-fest drama.

I hear so many people say 'enjoy it as they grow up so fast' but what do people mean when they say this? It's not possible to enjoy it all surely. Are they just subtly admitting they didn't really enjoy it that much? I get on much better with 3+ year olds (lots of child experience) and feel guilty that I long for the day when were over the toddler years and the crying lessens. Activities that I plan are pointless, they last 2 minutes before the fighting starts or 'mine' is shouted by DD, or before they just abandon it and climb on me. I then feel guilty because I don't play with them much (I prefer reading, puzzles, flash cards etc) but want them to be each other's playmate and for me to do the more structured things. I love craft, baking & creative things and can't wait to do those but right now it's pointless. DD just cries when the baking goes in the oven sad

Encourage me, please? Surely the post-toddler pre-teen bit has much less drama?

Noggie Thu 28-Aug-14 20:20:42

From my own experience I would say post baby/toddler is much 'easier'. We still have our moments- but they are more predictable and pass quicker than before! Hang on in there!

givemecaffeine21 Thu 28-Aug-14 21:08:33

Thank you!

SoonToBeSix Thu 28-Aug-14 21:14:27

I would say the easiest years are 4-9 over the baby/toddler years but before the pre teen mood swings. Tis a very small window of time grin

WaffleWiffle Thu 28-Aug-14 21:14:29

Hi there

14 months between my eldest two. I would say the youngest being 2yo through to 3.5yo was the hardest.

That said, they are now 9 and 10 years old and they still argue, fight and whine endlessly! But as much as they won't admit that they even like each other - they do play together constantly. They always have a friend in each other and they miss each other when ones isn't around.

Thesimplethings Thu 28-Aug-14 21:14:44

I've got a 15.5 month gap between my ds's. I found the newborn/toddler stage far easier despite the newborn suffering from reflux and colic. He would scream the house down from 3pm-10pm settle till 12am then feed every hour projectile vomiting after until 4am. The toddler would then wake at 5am for the day.

That was preferable to the non stop fighting, pushing boundaries, jumping on furniture etc at the age of 4 and almost 3.

I've turned into a stressed fishwife and I hate it.

Sleepytea Thu 28-Aug-14 21:14:45

Some bits get easier, other bits get harder. When my children were young I was physically exhausted from chasing round after them all the time. Now they're old enough to do lots more things themselves so it's physically easier. However I spend more time having to deal with friendship problems, worrying about how much screen time they have and general growing up worries.

Thesimplethings Thu 28-Aug-14 21:16:48

Sorry! The hardest part is yet to come in my experience. Hope it's short lived.

However they are best of friends and woe betide me if I tell one off, hence the battle. It's two against one :-D

mummy1973 Thu 28-Aug-14 21:17:05

It does get easier post toddler. Baby and toddler stage are so hard as you are needed to help them. Hang on in there!

AnyFucker Thu 28-Aug-14 21:17:13

honestly ?


AnyFucker Thu 28-Aug-14 21:18:01

but it changes

just when you think you can't carry on as things are, a new set of trials pops up

that's parenthood smile

givemecaffeine21 Thu 28-Aug-14 21:33:02

Mixed reviews.....was hoping for a unanimous 'yes caffeine it gets LOADS easier' grin

Guess I'll keep on buying wine and chocolate every week then.....

Maddaddam Thu 28-Aug-14 21:35:43

I have definitely found it easier and easier as they got older, from about 3.5 years which was about the hardest for all of them. Mine are all 10-14 now and it's a walk in the park compared to a decade ago. Primary years were easier than preschool but I'm finding secondary age = less work, more freedom.

Taffeta Thu 28-Aug-14 21:38:07

Mine are 8 and 10 now, and compared to when they were pre school it is 500 million times easier.

MrsPnut Thu 28-Aug-14 21:41:17

It doesn't get easier but it gets different. At the moment your kids can't be left unsupervised and they are both very dependant on you. As they get older the supervision gets less and less but the dependency varies as they want to pull away and come back for comfort. Above all the amount of maternal worrying increases exponentially with their age.

My eldest is nearly 18 and the time has flown by so quickly, I remember her being a whiny toddler and occasionally now I can see it reappearing so clearly.

spritesoright Thu 28-Aug-14 21:45:15

Thank you Maddaddam (love the name), that's what I wanted to hear. Everyone else I am covering my ears and humming loudly.
How can it possibly be harder than newborn/toddler? I am so much better equipped when I've had more than two hours' sleep.

MoistSponge Thu 28-Aug-14 21:53:03

It gets easier in some ways (physically less demanding, more ability to discuss things and greater understanding on their parts) and harder in other ways (knowing how much independence to give them, helping them through relationship issues, defiant behaviour)

When people tell you to enjoy this time and Not wish their lives away it's because it goes so quickly, so unbelievably fast. You will blink your eye and there in front you will be two grown women, waving goodbye as they head off to begin their own lives.

You have so much lovely stuff to look forward to, Christmases, birthday parties, sneaky cuddles, little hands holding yours...[sigh]....and those bits are the bits you'll remember when they're grown, and that's why people tell you to enjoy it! It's rose tinted glasses.

stillenacht1 Thu 28-Aug-14 21:54:41

I am so jealous of all of you who feel it's easier. DS1 is NT and 15. So so easy compared to his severely autistic brother. Aged almost 11 he is still in nappies, I still have to feed him, chase him about etc etc I am so fucked off with my groundhog toddler life existence.

MoistSponge Thu 28-Aug-14 22:00:26

I'm sorry to hear that still. Do you have a decent support network?

DramaAlpaca Thu 28-Aug-14 22:09:29

I have a 16 month gap between my first two, and I can honestly say I hardly remember DS2's first year - it was such hard work. I found the baby & toddler stages difficult. I used to say that a successful day was one when nobody cried much, including me!

That 16 month gap got much easier as the boys got older, and once the toddler stage was over they did become each other's best friend & playmate. It must've got easier as I found time to have a third child wink.

I found the easiest stage was when they were all between about 4 & 11 - after the toddler tantrums stage and before the teenage dramas started. It gets easier as they get older in that you don't need to be so hands on, but you just move on to different challenges in the teenage years, and have to provide much more emotional support.

The older two are 19 & 20 now and they are great friends who share lots of interests. Yes they still argue, but on the whole they get on, and they mostly get on with their 16 year old brother.

I guess what I'm trying to say is hang on in there, it does get easier.

givemecaffeine21 Thu 28-Aug-14 22:18:53

Thank you - so much support here, feel much better.

stillenacht I have nothing but respect for you; I know you didn't choose this path, but walking it every day must be incredibly hard. I follow a craft blog called Little Cotton Rabbits and her situation is the same as yours, her DS is 11 and severely autistic. It might be worth a look. Thank you for putting it in perspective.

I've been told different things by different people, and it know from other kids in the family that it still has plenty of challenges as they grow up, it's just the constant crying, whining, fighting and neediness 24/7 that I find hard as I am, I realise, someone who craves and loves peace....and I never get any. I long for a bit of time to do my own thing and for them to be ok with that. Ah how we learn who we are when little people enter our lives!

DramaAlpaca Thu 28-Aug-14 22:25:44

stillenacht1 we x-posted because it took me ages to write out mine & I hadn't seen yours before I posted it. Sorry things are so hard for you.

LovingSummer Thu 28-Aug-14 22:48:20

I've got two, and I find the 4.5 yr old hundred times easier than the 15 month old!

violator Sat 30-Aug-14 13:59:04

Every stage has its own challenges and we deal with them all in our own way.
I hated the newborn stage. I found the toddler stage exhausting and frustrating.
I love the preschool age I'm at now.

My sister loved the baby stage. She found having 4 kids under 10 hard work. Teens were fine for her barring the odd hormonal outbursts.

It's a cruel trick that for many mums, the hormonal teens coincide with the hormonal menopause.

MoistSponge Sun 31-Aug-14 22:17:48

Oh that longing. I remember it well, I now long for them to spend time with me. I long for their attention.

I can have a bath that lasts for hours, I can soak and lather, rinse and repeat. grin

I can't explain it to you because I felt the way you do when my children were small - I think it's just one of those shitty things really, the desire for a soak in the bath versus the reality of being able to soak in the bath are two totally separate things.

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