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To be a bit concerned about my one year old?

49 replies

ExcusesHalfTruthsFortifiedWine · 15/10/2018 20:16

DD2 is 15 months. She and her older sister (4) are absolutely chalk and cheese. Always have been.

DD1 is a gentle soul who dotes upon her little sister. As a toddler DD1 was always quite placid. She didn’t walk till she was about 17 months and even then she would just toddle around near me. She never ran away. She didn’t really do daft or destructive things even back then. She would play with her toys for hours at a time. She was so easy.

DD2, on the other hand. Oh my god have my eyes been opened. She is non stop. On the go from the moment she opens her eyes till the moment she goes to bed (usually kicking and screaming). She hates sleep. Does not nap any more (although will doze in the car as long as it is moving). She’s in at everything. Destroys things. Demanding. Stroppy. That stuff I think is quite normal.

What I’m worried about is that she has suddenly become quite angry and aggressive with DD1. Example - today DD1 was playing with her My Little Pony dolls. DD2 grabs one from her, out of her hands. DD1says “I was playing with that one” and hands her a different one (which I taught her to do and it often works). DD2 screamed in her face and grabbed her arm, digging her nails right in. This is a common example. She does this quite a lot and I separate them and I tell her “No!” In a sharp voice but really, at 15 months what else can I do?!

They both go to the same nursery three days a week. It is excellent and they both seem to love it. Go in happily, look happy when we collect them etc. Nursery have not reported any instances of this behaviour there.

I mean I know siblings will fight but I’m just a bit concerned about the anger here. I don’t really know how to handle it.

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Stompythedinosaur · 15/10/2018 20:42

I think it is normal, but if your youngest is going through an aggressive phase you will have to watch her like a hawk in order to protect your eldest.

It is possible that you may be forgetting some of the challenging times from when your eldest was tiny, I bet there were some. It does sound a bit like you are closer and have a more positive relationship with your eldest too, if that is the case then you probably need to spend more 1:1 with your younger dd1 to build your bond.

ExcusesHalfTruthsFortifiedWine · 15/10/2018 20:51

That’s a fair comment.

I adore both my girls. But I won’t lie. I find DD2 challenging at times. I’m just never quite sure what to do with her. She’s obsessed with books - great, so we can read together? No. She comes up with a book. I lift her on to my knee and read one page. She grabs the book at angrily throws it away. And this just repeats with her getting crosser and crosser. She isn’t massively interested in toys.

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ExcusesHalfTruthsFortifiedWine · 15/10/2018 20:52

Her sleep is awful too which doesn’t help

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ItWasntMeItWasIm · 15/10/2018 20:54

How verbal is she? Could she be getting frustrated that she can't communicate?

ExcusesHalfTruthsFortifiedWine · 15/10/2018 20:59

She has a few words and I think she’s generally pretty good at communicating what she wants.

She’s quite jealous and can be clingy. Every time I sit down on the floor she climbs onto my knee which is nice but sometimes I need to get on with things and it’s so hard with two eg just getting them out of the door. If I give my older girl a cuddle DD2 will cry. I feel torn in two.

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ExcusesHalfTruthsFortifiedWine · 15/10/2018 21:00

I think she’s pretty clever. She seems to pick things up very quickly. Much quicker than DD1 did. The nursery have commented on that too. Maybe she is frustrated.

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DragonGoby · 15/10/2018 21:01

Feeling your pain, OP. I have three DC, and both the older two were gentle and well behaved pretty much all of the time. DC3 was a different kettle of fish! He went through a bad hitting/pushing phase when he was around the same age as your DD2. It was so awful when he hit other children, and as you say it’s so hard to stop them at that age as they’re a bit too young to understand most discipline techniques. Whereas DC1 and DC2 had never hit another child!

You just have to be very calm, firm and consistent. You need to be a bit of a helicopter parent and keep a close eye on DD2 so you can step in immediately if she hurts DD1 (or another child). Remember this is normal toddler behaviour (even though DD1 didn’t do it).

With my DC3 it was just a phase (although quite long and very stressful as phases go). He’s now 9yo and is a kind, gentle boy. Hopefully you’ll find the same thing.

DragonGoby · 15/10/2018 21:01

And DC3’s sleep was terrible too!

3luckystars · 15/10/2018 21:01


Good luck.

agnurse · 15/10/2018 21:03

Actually a lot of this sounds pretty normal for a toddler. Poor impulse control and short attention spans are common.

Rather than a nap, would quiet time be more appropriate? So rather than putting her to sleep, what about a time when you just do some quiet activities?

It does sound as if she may just be frustrated or else just a different temperament. Offering her choices may be helpful. "Do you want this or that?" This will give her some autonomy while allowing you to set limits.

IRememberSoIDo · 15/10/2018 21:05

Sound like my dd's. First was so easy, placid but full of energy and so good. Dd2 is a hell raiser and six years on I'm exhausted. She is utterly hilarious but Christ she knows her mind and is as stubborn as a mule. They actually get on like a house on fire but when they don't they kill each other.

ExcusesHalfTruthsFortifiedWine · 15/10/2018 21:06

This is really helpful. Thank you.

I feel like I’m always firefighting if that makes sense. I don’t get much one on one time with her at all. I’m always trying to keep on top of something else at the same time. That’s something I need to fix.

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ExcusesHalfTruthsFortifiedWine · 15/10/2018 21:07

That sounds familiar IRemember. DD2 is absolutely hilarious as well and they do love each other. She’ll sit in the pram on our walks and hold DD1s hand 😭

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MorbidlyObese · 15/10/2018 21:11

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Pleasedontdrawonyoursister · 15/10/2018 21:12

I’m sure we introduced the naughty step around the same age. I wasn’t strict about her sitting there for a set time but just removing her from the situation seemed to do the trick. Youngest is 3 now and just the threat of the naughty step usually stops her in her tracks. She was exactly the same with the nails digging in!!

Tawdrylocalbrouhaha · 15/10/2018 21:17

Maybe DD2 is less a toys/books child, and more of an outdoor playground/chasing a pigeon/retrieving a frisbee type child? Some children benefit from being exercised into a state of tiredness - she may be calmer at nursery because she is getting more of a workout there?

ExcusesHalfTruthsFortifiedWine · 15/10/2018 21:24

Maybe. We had her out in the park for her first proper run around yesterday (she’s only been on her feet a few weeks and the weather hasn’t been great) and she loved it but she’s not very steady on her feet yet so she kept falling over which was stressful. The other issue is that DH works full time and I find the two of them running around a busy park or soft play very very stressful on my own. DD1 still asks for help in the park and likes me to stay close to her and doesn’t quite understand that I’m chasing her sister to the other end of the park through necessity, not preference. It’s hard.

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Tawdrylocalbrouhaha · 15/10/2018 21:28

Could you get a little trampoline at home?

BluBambu · 15/10/2018 21:33

I second the naughty step. Everything you have said sounds fairly normal to me at this age but the naughty step really does help. I do a minute per year in age and then at the end they must say sorry (if can't say so must give a cuddle to say sorry). They will still test boundaries but will soon learn that they will end up on the naughty step. I know someone else who had a fairly easy going 1st child then a more boisterous 2nd child and it was a shock to the system.

Scotinoz · 15/10/2018 21:39

Sounds normal in my opinion.

Your youngest is 15mths, but thinks she's 4. She's pissed off at not being able to do 4 year old stuff, has the impulse control/attention span of a gnat (because she's 15mths)), has her own ideas as well as copying the eldest etc etc.

My daughters are much closer in age, nearly 5 and 3.5. The youngest is completely feral compared to the eldest. Eldest is and has always been calm, reasonable, emotionally mature...youngest is a tornado of craziness.

You just need to figure out a new way of parenting, which isn't easy. I have to be a bit firmer with the youngest, for example, 2 options - this or that, no negotiating.

We're also guilty of having the same expectations of both, and we have to remind ourselves that the youngest one is younger and we can't expect her to be as mature.

As going out. Put the youngest in reins of needbe? I take the view that in places like soft play, neither need to be helicoptered much; abduction and death risk is low (I take this view since all the centres near me check the kids in and out). Concentrate on the youngest since she needs to be supervised, and the eldest can potter.

waterrat · 15/10/2018 21:48

Sounds fairly normal and your elder child was easygoing for a toddler so you are just having a shock!

I don't do naughty step as especially at 15 months she will barely understand what she is being punished for. Her distress at being re moved and left alone will take over and she won't remember what happened. but would be very firm about thr scratching etc. Pick her up remove her make very clear you don't like scsrtching.

However she is very little I wouldn't worry too much. If she isn't napping she must be incredibly tired both mine napped until they were three.

Could you enforce nap/quiet time in cot whether or not she sleeps she might wear herself out and at least lie down with a cd or toys in the cot?

ExcusesHalfTruthsFortifiedWine · 15/10/2018 21:49

I do suspect that she isn’t getting enough sleep. She seems to loathe sleep. Will fight to the death any attempt to put her to sleep. We spend ages rocking her to sleep at night because otherwise she will bounce for hours in her cot. She doesn’t even try to put herself to sleep.

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waterrat · 15/10/2018 21:50

And sympathies about the park - the truth is you are at a very tirinf age wjth your youngest and in some regards its just a matter of lots of wine at the end of the day! 😁

GunpowderGelatine · 15/10/2018 21:55

Oh god I could have written this except my youngest is a boy and mine are a tiny bit older than yours (DS is 22 months). It's frustrating, but normal. What I find bizarre is often they're best of friends, when me and DS pick DD up from school he runs up to her and they have the loveliest cuddle. All the other mums thinks it's so sweet but little do they know that the second, the second, I strap them in to their car seats the fighting starts and then they go intermittently between adoration and pure hatred right up until bed time.

littlemisscomper · 15/10/2018 21:55

Do you have a garden OP?

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