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Please tell me your 3 yr. old is making your life hell - Page 3

post #41 of 70
I just came on Childhood years because I am seriously loosing it over this little guy. I feel so bad that I am so resentful, angry and frustrated with him all the time I'm totally freaked that I'm screwing him up right now....This weekend has been particularly tough. I'm moving in three weeks, with my son, to live with my husband. We are in FL and he is in TX. So, I am responsible for getting all the pics off the walls and patching...and painting a bit. I have to steam clean the carpets and clean the whole house.
I am also still in school...the last 3 weeks of the semester so perfect timing Anyway, my son is into everything. I tell him to stop, no stop touching, please leave this along....blah,blah blah. He does not listen at all....I am loosing it. Today I yelled at him multiple times as loud as can be because he is just not phased. Seriously, I could look right him and yell at him to stop and he won't. Just now, I was sitting here and he didn't want to sit on the sofa, naked, because it's leather and cold so he kept jumping on me over and over. I told him to please stop and then I finally ended up yelling and he was sad and said that I need to stop yelling...

UGH!!! I am so stressed and I just need him to chill out for me for once.
post #42 of 70
nope, heck ds is 2.5 and my life is truly hell.
post #43 of 70
This is exactly the thread I was looking for tonight. DD and I went to the zoo. The first 1 1/2 hours was great! She loved feeding the animals, was so chatty and so adorable. All of a sudden, she turned a switch and I was left with a whiny, crying child intent on throwing herself in the zoo's pond!

My DD was awful starting two weeks before her third birthday. I couldn't take her anywhere without a huge scene. A parent of a 4 year old told me that her pediatrician told her these phases last six weeks. Like clockwork, six weeks after it started, I got my DD back. She just turned 3 1/2 and it is like it is happening all over again. I am praying that the six week rule works again!
post #44 of 70
The thought that it will only last six weeks makes me I hope it is true.

Not the OP, but it really does help to know I'm not alone, it isn't just my DS, and (my favorite parenting motto) "This too shall pass."

My DS is 3y5m and so OPPOSITIONAL lately. And aggressive and angry. Screaming, hitting and throwing things seem to be his only way of dealing with these intense emotions. It doesn't help that I am pregnant and just want to be alone most of the time. I got beaned with a board book copy of "Goodnight Moon" the other night and totally lost it.

I was chalking most of it up to transitions (not just the new baby, but moving things around in the house [to make space for the new baby], his preschool closing, Daddy [a teacher] home for the summer, encouraging potty learning, etc.). It's helpful to know part of it is three-and-a-half. Not sure why it helps, but it does.

I think at this point I'm just going to try and grin and bear it, and try not to yell back

(although I have to admit, I laughed instead when Daddy upset him the other day, and he said "Frickin' dammit, Daddy!")
post #45 of 70
Revisiting this thread to say that I've been trying to laugh as much as possible with DS and it's helping a lot.

He's starting to do it too. Sometimes I get serious and he says "Stop LELLING, Leah! Caaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaalm down!" and then he makes doofy faces at me. It's so hard to discipline him when he's making a growling face at me, but it really helps the tension.
post #46 of 70
Wow and I thought my 3 year old is the only one who goes through this. One day she is the sweetest 3 year old in the world, the type that makes you want to have 20 of them because shes so adorable and kind. The next day she is a complete and total terror that makes me want to get a part time job just so I can have some peace. It doesn't help I have an 18 month old (who seems to be determined to make up for the fact her sister wasn't a tantrum thrower by throwing tantrums 15-20 times a day) and Im 13 weeks pregannt with terrible morning sickness. I keep reminding myself that they are pretty well behaved for their ages and it helps.
Things I found helps:
DD1 LOVES to help me at the store so she will walk with me and put stuff in the cart. If she doesn't want to walk she will sit next to her sister and point to where the things are on the shelves. If its a "nothing makes me happy day" I try to get the bare essentials and come back for the rest or have DH watch the girls and go alone.
I try to turn the negatives now into positives. For example my daughter doesn't worry about going against the grain. She doesn't do something or like something just because others do (even if the others are her mom, sister and dad). Now its a pain because it causes a lot of fights but later it will be great because she won't give into peer pressure.
I ignore the little things so when I say something about a big thing she is more likely to respond to it. Honestly I almost don't blame kids when their parents nick pick about every little thing that they start ignoring them (Im not saying anyone here does but I see it a lot when I go out places) so I try to leave the corrections for the important things. Like I don't care if she wants to wear the pink dress instead of the blue one but she isn't going to tell me her opinion by kicking/hitting/biting me. The selection of dresses aren't to important, the way she expresses her opinion is.

There are a few more but DD2 is throwing a tantrum and trying to throw her head into the corner of the coffee table so I need to go stop her.
post #47 of 70
Does my 4 year old count? Seriously? Are we 4 or are we 14? Most days it's so hard to tell
post #48 of 70
Every kid is different...when dd1 was 3 she was a total peach, hell, 2 wasn't even that bad. But 4...oh 4...now 4 really sucked. so. bad. I think it had a lot to do with feeling displaced after dd2 was born.

But now dd2 is 3, and I have to say she is a PITA. She has some sensory issues though, so I'm sure that exacerbates it a bit. Mood swings worse than a super hormonal pregnant woman. I worry that the neighbors think I'm beating her or something because she falls into screaming tantrums at least 5 times a day. Anything can set her off into hysterics...but when she is happy she is FUNNY!
post #49 of 70
Ugh, three sucks (especially with a high-needs child).
post #50 of 70
So glad I found this thread!! DD was three in April and her behavior changed a week or two before her birthday. She's almost as bad as my 17yo sister! I can't wait for this phase to end and to have a few years of "peace" before she turns into a teenager!
post #51 of 70
there are so many of us, aahh!
My 3.5 year old was seriously the most easy-going, pleasant baby in the world (the whole world!! ha). We could go anywhere, do anything. But now... oh no.
Like someone else mentioned, he disagrees with EVERYTHING even if it makes no sense. Usually I'm just like, "OK..." and then change the subject, though I have seen relatives try to argue with him and it only makes him more upset. Oh and if I'm like, "You need to eat your food" (he's really into "baking" right now which just means pouring water into his food and smushing it around with his hands) he responds with this: "YOU need to eat YOUR food!!!" ZING!
Also, what happened to the pleases and thank yous?? I can tell my in-laws are tsk-tsking me in their heads.
Do not even get me started on our sleeping situation. He is so defiant AND terrified at the same time. I feel bad for him but also just want to him to shut up and go to sleep. Awful, I know!
I'm currently reading Playful Parenting by Lawrence Cohen which is helping. He really responds to that kind of stuff but it is hard for me to keep it up. Maybe with practice.
Of course by the time I think I have it figured out, he'll be on to something else. I'll get you next time, little one!!
Aaand my not-so-pleasant (sorry, dude--you are cute and I love you) baby (13 mo) just learned to walk. Every outing is... an adventure!
post #52 of 70
I was so at the end of my rope with my 3yo, that I bought as many used gentle parenting books off Amazon as I could find. I seriously ordered 4 in one day.

My favorite is Positive Discipline for Preschoolers. I have liked other books like Unconditional Parenting, but didn't really know how to implement them. Positive Discipline for Preschoolers has great practical tips, and things started getting better almost right away. It is still a journey, and things are still challenging, but I don't feel straight up DESPAIR anymore. I highly recommend it, especially the chapter about mistaken goals of misbehavior.

The book taught me that DD wasn't getting certain needs met, and that if I met her needs for a sense of belonging (including her in tasks) power (giving limited choices, empowering her to do things for herself) and connection (having special time where the entire purpose was to enjoy eachother) a lot of the misbehavior would disappear on its own. I was able to accomplish all of those things by cooking with her. I stand next to her and supervise while letting her do EVERYTHING that she is capable of doing. And at 3.5, she can do a lot with guidance, even cooking scrambled eggs with the spatula.

It has not gone from hell to roses, but the improvement was more than I even hoped for. I can not recommend this book enough. Who would have though DD would stop chasing the cat if I started letting her cook breakfast for me???
post #53 of 70
Isn't it amazing how much better they do if given a sense of purpose?! I include DS in chores where I can, but DH isn't as good with that. I wish it helped quell the "throwing things when mad or upset" behavior, but it hasn't...yet.

I found another reason for at least some of DS's aggravation and aggression - he was diagnosed with pinworms Apparently severe behavior is one of the symptoms. Which makes sense if you think about how mysterious the misery was to the little guy. We are just a week into treatment, so no obvious improvement in behavior yet, but
post #54 of 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by MiaMama View Post
I was so at the end of my rope with my 3yo, that I bought as many used gentle parenting books off Amazon as I could find. I seriously ordered 4 in one day.

My favorite is Positive Discipline for Preschoolers. I have liked other books like Unconditional Parenting, but didn't really know how to implement them. Positive Discipline for Preschoolers has great practical tips, and things started getting better almost right away. It is still a journey, and things are still challenging, but I don't feel straight up DESPAIR anymore. I highly recommend it, especially the chapter about mistaken goals of misbehavior.

The book taught me that DD wasn't getting certain needs met, and that if I met her needs for a sense of belonging (including her in tasks) power (giving limited choices, empowering her to do things for herself) and connection (having special time where the entire purpose was to enjoy eachother) a lot of the misbehavior would disappear on its own. I was able to accomplish all of those things by cooking with her. I stand next to her and supervise while letting her do EVERYTHING that she is capable of doing. And at 3.5, she can do a lot with guidance, even cooking scrambled eggs with the spatula.

It has not gone from hell to roses, but the improvement was more than I even hoped for. I can not recommend this book enough. Who would have though DD would stop chasing the cat if I started letting her cook breakfast for me???
Thanks so much for sharing this!
It made me realize that I have stopped including my son in those kinds of activities lately. Since his little brother became mobile, actually... It was beginning to feel like I was getting too much "help." But since reading this, I've been going through our day thinking of which things each of my children could probably help with and I think it would be doable again.
I'm going to see if I can find that book at the library right now! I don't think I could justify buying another discipline book (I bought 5 or 6 when my son was 2.5, heh), though it is tempting!
post #55 of 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by karen1968 View Post
Isn't it amazing how much better they do if given a sense of purpose?! I include DS in chores where I can, but DH isn't as good with that. I wish it helped quell the "throwing things when mad or upset" behavior, but it hasn't...yet.

I found another reason for at least some of DS's aggravation and aggression - he was diagnosed with pinworms Apparently severe behavior is one of the symptoms. Which makes sense if you think about how mysterious the misery was to the little guy. We are just a week into treatment, so no obvious improvement in behavior yet, but
Ooh, how did you discover the pinworms?
Maybe all of our 3 year olds have pinworms! Joking, but it would be nice to know anyway, just in case it ever comes up!
My son is having some major constipation issues and his mood definitely suffers because of it. I suppose I should start researching some tips for that situation now that I have a moment. ahhh
post #56 of 70
I feel your pain. I was so relieved when DS2 turned four...I get a small reprieve until DD turns 3 in 9 months. LOL. I feel it, oh yes I do.
post #57 of 70
LOL! Love the subject line. I don't know who is having a harder time with my cutie pie 3-yo DD - my 6 yo or myself. When I am at wits end, I am reminded to simplify life. Though we are tempted by a reward chart. I never considered this with our first daughter, but our second is truly a piece of work. Norasmama, my 3 yo has also drawn blood, pulled hair, and more!!
post #58 of 70
One more thought - when my first DD was 3 she loved, loved, loved the book "Contrary Mary". If you can find it, it is a great reminder to be playful!
post #59 of 70
While my DD is now 6 (and we certainly have our issues), I distinctly remember the first half of the 3s as being downright miserable in many ways. What really helped was adopting a strategy of turning everything into play. If her doggie (or piggy) puppet asked her to do something, it was way more effective than her mommy asking her! While it has (and still is, to some extent) exhausting to figure out different games to use as strategies, it is still way easier (and in the end less time consuming) than her meltdowns and my screaming. I used to have to flap the toilet lid up and down to make the "potty" talk and say it was thirsty -- she would immediately come running and say "dont' worry potty, I'll feed you..." Yeah, gross...but it worked and saved a lot of grief. I still have to think up crazy games and stunts, and she's 6 (and a lot harder to distract!).

DD was in an interage class at 4 (with a lot of 3 year olds) and I remember reassuring lots of parents that while 3 to 3 1/2 was an uphill battle, we coasted into 4, it got so much better!

Good luck!
post #60 of 70
W's good for this:

Me: "W, don't do that."
W: *looks at me and clearly understands me then does it anyway*

AGGGHHHH!!! It is so infuriating! Where did the kid that always listens go?!

EDIT: Wanted to add that up until now I rarely needed my own "timeout". I find myself needing to hide for a few minutes more often now.

Does anyone else's have a little "I'm not talking to you" fit whenever you tell them even the smallest thing? (No, Z doesn't want to put her hair up. *W pouts and gives the silent treatment*) I'm losing my mind here! Every. Single. Time.

I feels bad because I do get so annoyed now. I'm trying to remind myself that it DOESN'T last forever and that it'll cool off soon enough

...just in time for the other one to get started. *facepalm*
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