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How do you deal with a fiery toddler when you're fiery yourself?

(4 Posts)
wtfhappened Fri 09-Jan-15 18:50:16

My ds will be 3 in March and has a terrible temper. I know he's got this from me, I've always had a temper but in a 'shouty' way.

I find myself getting quite cross but get wound up more because he gets more cross. It's like he knows which buttons to press and I feel so ashamed about this as I'm the adult and should know better!!

This morning he awoke at 4.30am. I spent 1/2 an hour telling him it was the middle of the night and not an acceptable time to get up and he just screamed at me that he'd had enough of sleeping. I had to leave the room as I could feel myself getting angrier and angrier and in the end my OH had to go in and talk to him as the level of anger was too much. I know this is because I am utterly exhausted, his sleep has always been dreadful and I have nearly 3 years of sleep deprivation on top of a fiery nature.....not a good mix!

Any tips on how I can deal with him without biting? I don't want to be a 'shouty' mum, my SIL screams at my nephews constantly and I hate it but I feel that's the way I'm going blush

SeagullsAreLikeThat Fri 09-Jan-15 20:11:20

I feel for you. If you have the energy to do some reading, two brilliant books are "When your kids push your buttons" by Bonnie Harris and "How to talk so kids will listen and listen so kids will talk" (mind has gone blank on authors... Adele Faber, I want to say, and Elaine someone).

The How to talk one is practical advice - simple tactics but honestly, brilliantly effective. The hard part is forcing yourself to stop and breathe instead of shouting, then you can use the advice they give.

The Buttons book is simpler but looks more into why you clash with your children - it's all about agendas usually, and the fact that you both feel your agenda is more important than the other person's. It's quite uncomfortable reading sometimes but useful and again, gives you some strategies to use.

If you haven't got the energy to read, the only other things that help me are to not take it personally, to keep remembering it's the behaviour that is the problem, not the child and to keep reminding myself that I do not want my children to remember me as shouty mum!

AnneofCheese Fri 09-Jan-15 20:14:11

God I don't know, I'm the same! DS and I seem to have the same explosive temper - it only lasts a short time though and then it's all over. I am only at year 2 of sleep deprivation, I was hoping things would get better sad

SeagullsAreLikeThat Fri 09-Jan-15 20:15:56

Oh, and if I've been grumpy and shouty with them, I try to explain why (lack of sleep, migraine, just spent hours tidying / cleaning and they've just completely destroyed the house again etc) and I apologise and tell them that no matter how grumpy I am, I absolutely love them and that will never change.

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