No joke, two-year-olds are freaking challenging. My kid isn't even two yet!! It's not going to get worse, right? It's this defiance nonsense. It doesn't seem to matter what it is that I'm asking/suggesting. She doesn't want anything to do with it.
Everything that was easy is now hard. Getting dressed, showering, getting into the carseat, potty time. Everything that was hard is now impossible. Eating, playing nice with the dogs, cooking with a toddler present.
I must have cleaned up 30 pee puddles this weekend. She REFUSED to pee in the potty. Normally, this wouldn't be a problem except that she also REFUSED to wear a diaper or training pants or even just pants for that matter. She just wants to run naked and pee everywhere. She also now REFUSES to eat at the table. She acts like her chair is trying to kill her.
I know I'm just being exceptionally cranky because DH and I have been sick for like 2 weeks but this whole toddler thing has got me reconsidering having a second child. Please tell me it ends at some point. Or, at least commiserate with me and tell me all the awful things your children do so that I know I'm not alone.
I've been told after the terrible 2s it's the terrifying 3s followed by the FN 4s. Yay.
Go for survival. Being sick definitely makes everything so much more frustrating because your mind isn't clear enough to think of creative solutions ...or any solution other than "OMG JUST DO THIS NOW!"
My creativity cap got lost in my sickness fog. I thought baking would be an awesome distraction. BUT apparently Teagan now has a paralyzing fear of chairs. She would not stand on the chair to help me or even to watch. So, I had to hold her while measuring ingredients and trying to get her to put them in the bowl rather than on the floor. I learned that you shouldn't try to add honey to your muffin batter while holding a toddler. Now, all this would have been solved if I'd thought to just put her in the Ergo but my sick foggy brain didn't think to do that.
LOL! Yep, Ergo would have helped there....but like we said, sickness brain does not work like a regular brain.
I get short with Aiden when I'm not doing well. Poor kid. He really needed this past weekend out since mommy was so crabby last week.
it's harder yet easier at 3. Communication is better and you can sometimes convince them to your way of thinking. However, the fits and stubbornness are worse. *sigh*
I've heard 5 is easier?! ha ha
I do think it helps to have two kids though, most of the time they can play together and Ethan actually helps out with Olivia sometimes.
Ethan - June 21, 2009
Olivia - December 5, 2010
5w3d - October/November 2012
My Ovulation Chart
Lyla has days where she is EXACTLY like that! Today she is being pretty good, but she is absolutely refusing to use the potty at all and throws a fit if I so much as hint at using the potty. I checked and there are no spiders or snakes in it, so I don't know what gives.
I would like to let you hold, squish and kiss my super fat little chunky monkey. He will very quickly make you decide that you do indeed need a second child. Even the days where Lyla is a holy terror and I just want give her away (give, not sell) I still want more kids because of my chunky squish squish. I'm also excited for when Kole gets big enough to play with her. Already I can put Kole on the floor and (with supervision) they entertain each other for a good while. Very helpful when cooking dinner, which can be very literally IMPOSSIBLE at times.
Good point about having two, ladies. That's what I keep telling DH and myself. Teagan will be old enough that I should be able to trust her with Next Baby for awhile once Next Baby is a few months old. And maybe her being Night Night Baby obsessed will turn into awesome Big Sister-ness.
We are really struggling about what to do in terms of discipline. She's been smacking us and the dogs and teasing the dogs. I simple cannot allow those two things. My dogs are fine around her except for when she smacks them or teases them with this super annoying growl that she does. I can't trust them around her anymore. It makes us mad at her and the dogs. So, we've been very serious about putting an end to the teasing. All the AP stuff we read says to distract, redirect, and reason. Riiiiight. I'm going to reason with a toddler who is cooped up in a 800 square foot house with two nervous dogs. We resorted to time out this weekend because nothing else was working and for her safety we had to do something. I felt like I was losing my AP credentials and that the hippy police were going to come and take her away.
Uh, yeah. Smacking the dogs is where I get into time outs too. Except that there is NOTHING WRONG with time outs as long as you see/use them for what they're supposed to be--redirection and time to calm down from a really bad behavior, not punishment. I give her one warning "Do you need to go have some quiet time in your room?" and that will often stop the bad behavior (usually replaces it with melting down, but that's better than smacking dogs). If it doesn't, I pick her up and take her in her room and I stay in there with her. Usually it involves her screaming for a minute or two, while I wait patiently, and when she calms down enough then I try to talk to her in an age appropriate way about why we're in there. We come out when she is calm and at least nods yes when I ask if she's ready to be gentle, or whatever.
I don't think judicious use of this type of time out is anti-AP at all. In fact, I got it from Dr. Sears.
And I agree with all of the above: Twos suck, being sick makes it worse, I've heard threes are even more defiant (but yes, better able to communicate, at least) and now you know a big part of why I am creeping ever closer to being sure I'm totally good with ONE kiddo. Sure, babies are cute. And then they, too, turn into two year olds. PLUS another kid to deal with. I am not built for that kind of parenting. I can handle dealing with one, but I think I'm at my patience limit, and I would like us all to make it out of this early childhood stage alive and at least mostly sane
The one GOOD thing I have to offer is that, in this house at least, it's come and gone in waves. Just like with babies, everything that's earth-shatteringly awful one week is a distant memory the next...more or less. One day she's pure joy and delight, the next it's all I can do not to leave her on the curb with a "free" sign. I just try to really cherish and enjoy those delightful days, and get through the others with as little drama as possible. And there's always wine.
I have tried telling Ronin we only use gentle hands in our house and show him gentle hands, usually running my hand down his cheek. He knows the difference because sometimes when I ask him to show me gentle hands he will hit my face to test me, not hard though, and when I say no we use gentle hands show me your gentle hands he runs his hand down my cheek and off he goes. It's just constant reinforcement and it's tiring to have to constantly reinforce everything, but they just want to test the boundaries and they test them with us because they feel safe.
I have been told often that three is just two, with intent. Basically at two they do stuff because they don't always know it's wrong or why it's wrong, three they know why and that it's wrong but damn it they will do it anyway.
Oh, and from my lofty vantage point of three months into the future, I can also share that a good trick for parenting in this stage is to harness that independent streak to your own advantage. The one thing Adair wants more than anything in the world is to DO IT HERSELF. So, the day is a constant game of choices...except they're not real choices, they're "Hey, here's what's going to happen now. Are you going to do it, or am I going to do it?" Which works about 90% of the time.
Me: Hey Addy, time to go now!
[Adair ignoring me, continuing to play/occasionally outright yelling "no!"]
Me: We're going now. Are you going to walk by yourself or do I need to carry you?
Adair: [dropping her toy like it's hot and running after me] I DO IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I also do the count to three thing, if she still doesn't listen after I give her a choice, and usually by "one"she gives in, because she knows when I get to three then I'm taking over the situation and it's the one thing in the world she wants to avoid. Obviously all kids are different, but if you can find a way to exploit their stubbornness...it can work WONDERS.