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The violence has to stop (18mo) - Page 3

post #41 of 59
I agree with all the suggestions but also look at what he is eating. My DD is gluten and dye sensitive. I tell people if they feed her wheat they can keep her until it wears off.

Another thought is making sure you are saying "yes" more than you are saying "no". If he can't have the book on the mantle, what can he have. Is it possible for DH to pack up the house with all the "no-nos" for now so that you don't have to say No so much?

Also vote for the PnP. Set him in it (as gently as possible), say no hit and sit and a read a book near by. When he starts to get out, gently put him back in and sit back down. Keep doing it. It will take awhile but he needs to know you will be consistent.

He may be sensitive to sensory things going on around him. Does he like to be wrapped up? Does he hear every sound? Does he like hugs and to be cuddled? Look into sensory activities for him on line.
post #42 of 59
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LynnS6 View Post

Do you remember when he was learning to walk? How many tries do you think it took him before he learned to walk 20 steps without falling? How long did he do the 'Frankenstein' walk because he was in danger of falling over at any moment? Skills take time to learn. Self-control is a huge skill. One that most adults have trouble with. Self-control when your own emotions are out of control (my definition of a toddler!) is really really hard.

As for exercise: Do you own a decent stroller? Can you walk to a park where he can run? Or a mall? Have you tried a leash with him?
When my son learned to walk it was like this:
- Stand and slowly sit down 3-4 times one week
- Stand and step one foot out a few times the next week
- Refuse to try AT ALL for a few weeks
- Stand and walk across the room to daddy

His physical skills came oddly like that...he would practice a couple of times, refuse to try for a little while, and then have it down.

Exercise: Our stroller sucks! It's a cheap umbrella kind. There's nowhere in walking distance for us to go. DH isn't fond of the leash idea (I want to try)
post #43 of 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by AFWife View Post

Exercise: Our stroller sucks! It's a cheap umbrella kind. There's nowhere in walking distance for us to go. DH isn't fond of the leash idea (I want to try)
Who cares??? Your DH is not the one staying home with him all day. Buy a new stroller (my Maclaren Volo is the sturdiest, most awesome stroller EVER and it only weighs 8lbs!), figure a way to get outside.

I totally understand wanting to be on the same page with your dh, but somethings got to give. Get a leash, tell him you're going to try it for 2 weeks, and if ds still hates it in 2 weeks (using it regularly - it takes time to get used to for both of you) stop using it. But you need to make a change!
post #44 of 59
Someone might have already mentioned it but since you said that he hates to nap, have you considered that he might be exhausted and is acting this way because he is so tired and wound up? Maybe you can try to focus on his sleep for a week? I know you cannot make him sleep but perhaps encourage him to sleep as best as you can (try to borrow "Sleepless in America" (a book on sleep issues) from the library- it has a lot of suggestions for encouraging sleep.

Just a thought...
post #45 of 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by AFWife View Post
When my son learned to walk it was like this:
- Stand and slowly sit down 3-4 times one week
- Stand and step one foot out a few times the next week
- Refuse to try AT ALL for a few weeks
- Stand and walk across the room to daddy
OK, my suspicion is that his learning self-control might be like that too. I think that it's really really important to realize that the 'violence' is a loss of control, rather than targeted at you. There's a large part of developmental readiness in this. You can teach the skills so that when he's developmentally ready, he can take advantage of them, but you really can't speed up his emotional/intellectual maturity all that fast!

Quote:
Originally Posted by AFWife View Post
DH isn't fond of the leash idea (I want to try)
I would point out to dh that he isn't stuck at home with a high energy toddler. And he's not pregnant. How about getting one of those little backpacks with a leash on it. It might make your dh feel more comfortable. They work. They keep your child safe. I bet if he had to choose between biking/walking to work or a leash, he'd choose the leash.
post #46 of 59
another vote for the mclaren volo. I also have a thought that is probaby not helpful.

I think DS can sense that I'm pregnant, tired, exhausted, and don't have time for him. Over the past few months, I've seen him go from being fond of us equally, to becoming a total daddy's boy. I talked to our ped, and she said it was very normal to transfer attachment when a new baby comes.

I don't know what to do about it, i know that your dh has to work. But if your DS is sensing that distance from you, it needs to be addressed some how.
post #47 of 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by thyra View Post
Who cares??? Your DH is not the one staying home with him all day. Buy a new stroller (my Maclaren Volo is the sturdiest, most awesome stroller EVER and it only weighs 8lbs!), figure a way to get outside.

I totally understand wanting to be on the same page with your dh, but somethings got to give. Get a leash, tell him you're going to try it for 2 weeks, and if ds still hates it in 2 weeks (using it regularly - it takes time to get used to for both of you) stop using it. But you need to make a change!
post #48 of 59
I was SO glad to see this thread. M has just gotten to that stage. And so they fighting between my children has begun. And he's taking out his frustrations on me too. It's driving me crazy. And I'm worried that he wont outgrow it before the new baby gets here. I didn't do this with my daughter! She was so well spoken we could just talk everything out.
post #49 of 59
I am sorry you are going through this.
I have to say though that to look at life (from your brief replies online) from your sons perspesctive,it doesn't sound like he (or you) has any fun at all! I too was pregnant with a toddler last year and it is very hard but not half as hard as having the 2 kids on your own! You have got to take care of yourself and keep your sons happiness and development in mind. I found great relief for pregnancy antipathy in liquid iron supplements and essential fatty acids. Getting a good routine going is vitally important as is remembering that your son is living with a Mom and ad that are going through ahrd times and he has no one to talk to and very few outlets for his growth. staying home with a Mom that has had it up to here is just not healthy.I say get the car ,he won't scream once you arrive at a fun location to play. Childrens libraries are fun and free. There is no where that does not have a free toddler playgroup somewhere close by.
Somedays you have to pretend you are happy and have energy,its crazy but will make your son feel more childlike and help reduce his stress level if you just laugh play listen to music and GET OUT OF THE APARTMENT!!!!
Yeah and promise not to spank anymore,both to him and yourself.
post #50 of 59
I know you said earlier in the thread that money is an issue (re. babysitters etc). Don't forget to check craigslist to see if a decent stroller comes up for a good price. Or get the word out to other families that you're looking for a hand-me-down or loan.

I absolutely agree with pps that you should try out the leash. Get the cute animal backpack kind. I think this is an issue where your needs (getting out of the house, sanity, ds needing exercise etc) trump dh's dislike of the leash.

I also wanted to suggest more hmmm... I don't know what to call them... hands-on??? activities for your ds. I mean things like playdough, middle-of-the-day baths (water play), playing with a tub of beans and some measuring cups, finger painting, etc. I found with my kids at that age activities like that helped keep them calm and occupied. If I sensed the mood going down-hill then I'd set them up doing something like that and it would make a world of difference.
post #51 of 59
I haven't read all the replies because I'm short on time, but something really stood out to me. I have a 20 month old and when he is overtired he is a huge mess - a monster child. He bites, screams, hits, refuses to be held, kicks the dog...completely intolerable to be around. Luckily he loves to nap and sleeps through the night, so when he is well-rested he is sweet, loving, giggly. But if he doesn't get his nap he is just like how you described your son.

Have you read Sleepless in America?? I know it seems overly simplistic, but a child that doesn't want to nap often needs it the most. The book offers solutions on how to get a kid to sleep who fights it. At 18 months he NEEDS a nap every day. Basically the book says make sure your child is really, really well rested and THEN assess his behavior. You might find yourself with a whole different kid.

I agree that this age often goes through biting/hitting phases (I also have a 6 and 4 year old who did the same thing and outgrew it), but the level of his aggression seems higher than normal.

Good luck!
post #52 of 59
Have you read Sleepless in America?? I know it seems overly simplistic, but a child that doesn't want to nap often needs it the most. The book offers solutions on how to get a kid to sleep who fights it. At 18 months he NEEDS a nap every day. Basically the book says make sure your child is really, really well rested and THEN assess his behavior. You might find yourself with a whole different kid. >>>>>>

I third this suggestion. Also making sure YOU are getting enough rest too even though i'm sure it's hard. Since you said he wasn't really verbal perhaps you may want to teach him some signs to communicate more clearly b/c that can be quite frustrating for a toddler and cause them to act out.
post #53 of 59
My advice:

Use a pack n' play to calm down - both of you. He doesn't get out until he's calm and you're calm. Repeat as necessary.

Get a leash - my DH hates them too but I got one for when I needed it for my sanity. We didn't use it much but it made it possible for me to go out and do things that I just would not have done without it. And you never have to use it when your DH is around - so he doesn't have to use it or anything!

Sleep begets sleep. And sleep makes for a much easier time controlling emotions.

That raw milk might still be affecting him. My DS is a monster when he gets foods that don't agree with him. He doesn't necessarily complain, he just acts like a wild man and has a few extra bumps on his face.

Tjej
post #54 of 59
I have to chime in with Lynn re: the pack N Play and being persistent and consistent. Saying he doesn't "get it" and does whatever it is a minute after he comes out means he goes back in that minute later, and again 15 more times if he has to in the next 15 minutes. I remember when my very strong willed, persistent daughter was in a biting/hitting phase, I had to plop her down and walk away 9 times in a row one morning before she stopped (for a few hours, then something else ticked her off and started again, so we had to dal with it again). They key is, IMO, to not be cold/heartless when you do it, but also not engage in an argument with him. I never used physical separation with my DS, and never used them for DD for anything but the biting/hitting phase because she was just relentless and persistent and it was the only thing that kept me sane, and both me and DS safe. Prepare yourself for having to do things over and over and over, like, a LOT. Get to a Zen place about it, and that's how you keep from losing it. If you accept you're going to have to do this with him 100 times before it really starts to sink in, then you won't be angry the 5th time, you know?

Also, your life is very stressful and isolating, as others said. I agree with others that your DH doesn't really get a say on the leash thing if he's not able to help in some other way. You either need a better stroller or a leash. Period. If you have to sell something else to ge the money for it, so be it. If you have to look on freecycle, do it; hell, if I still had the backpack leash I used with DD (another thing I never needed with DS, but did with DD becasue of her personality) I'd mail it to you, but I gave it to someone else.

I totally get being exhausted and pregnant with an energetic toddler (DS while not violent as a toddler was VERY energetic). You need to do something to prevent both of you from going stir crazy. You need to get out of the house.

Also, I'll suggest finding a swing gate for his room door (or another room you can toddlerproof), get it set up safely, and even if he doesn't nap, start gently but firmly enforcing a quiet time every day. He'll be unhappy and protest for a while, but eventually he'll get it. My DD is very, very strong willed so it takes her much longer, and it is much louder in her protests for her to accept things she doesn't like than it does my other child, but she *does* eventually accept them. It's not my job to keep her happy all the time, it's my job to help her grow up into a functioning human being. It's tough around the 18-month old stage to go from "want-need" to "you aren't always going to be happy". It can be LOUD, and UGLY sometimes. And with a persistent kid, it can take longer...but you just have to keep the firm, gentle boundaries and do them 300 times if necessary....it will eventually sink in.
post #55 of 59
I personally have to second the "holding" in favor of the playpen. I was actually shocked to even read that huge article on it, since we just kind of did it out of frustration/ analysis/ instinct. Also, (duh from what I've already written) it's a phase and you can get through it! Also true about needing more sleep and all that, but you are preggo and we need to prioritize.

First of all, he's out of control. He's telling you so by the behaviors. He needs to be controlled because he is incapable of doing it himself. Both the playpen and the holding are strategies that put you in control of a child that is out of control and cannot control himself.

Here's why I prefer the holding and why I think I just naturally did it: you make the connection that you are in control. This is a huge boundary setter. And out of control kids want and need boundaries. From you, the in control adult. Sure, the "melting" sounds really sweet, but that not what I'm getting at.

It's good for your connection, sure, but also, there is a dynamic there that's hard to explain, because it's not a power dynamic so much as a parent dynamic. I'm not controlling you because I want to be in charge; I'm controlling you because it's my job to 1. control you until you control yourself and 2. teach you what controlling yourself looks like.

It also models appropriate expectations. As in, I expect you to not flail around before I put you down. (If we put DS in a playpen during an "episode" he would flail and kick and generally just be as angry as he was when he was biting/kicking/punching/scratching, so I really felt like nothing was being resolved there. He wasn't learning anything except you get locked up when you misbehave. What does that prepare him for down the road, I asked myself?) And eventually, well before age 2, he figured out how to rock the playpen on it's side, which ruined the "time out-ness" of it altogether.

PS. Totally there with you on the spanking. I know you will hear it - don't do it. Stop. Yes, but also, I know why you do it and you need a better option that you know will work. I also spanked out of frustration, and only felt worse about myself and - here's what really got me to stop - it didn't really work to stop the behavior. So what's the point? Good for you to look for better solutions.
post #56 of 59
Just a different POV that holding both of my kids makes them way, WAY worse and more angry than leaving them to flail things out on their own and then come to me when they're calm. If I try to restrain or "fix" things/work through with them, it makes it so much worse and last about twice as long as if I make sure they're in a safe space and let them get the uglies out themselves, *then* talk about it. In the moment, their brains are just so overwhelmed and for both of them being restrained is like the worst thing ever, so it makes things fire on even more overload than whatver overload they already had. They got SOOOOOOO angry being restrained, that they never 'melted into me'. They would eventually would stop resisting but look catatonic and be PISSED at me for restraining them like that, and refuse to talk at all. So, we stopped doing that with both of them. I just wish we would have stopped sooner, would have realized we were actually making things worse. They need to get their negative emotions out in a safe, contained but not *restrained* place, without someone 'helping' them through it. If I leave them be (I'm close by, but not actively engaging with them until they are ready...NOT ignoring them, just waiting for them to be ready while doing some kind of busywork to keep myself occupied) they work things out in 5-10 minutes and then we can talk because they're really, actually calm of their own will and we move forward in the day; if I try to parent them through situations where they're out of control (beyond getting them to a safe space), it makes it so much worse and they don't gain control for a long, long time and then are totally on a hair trigger the rest of the day because they keep thinking about being restrained and how much they hate it. This was really clear to me by the time they were both 2 or so, but I kept on stupidly doing it with them for another year or two on and off to see if it would "work" yet or not. I finally gave up holding/restraining them about a year and a half ago when DD was 3 and DS was 5. I hate to say it, but I almost felt shame when I was doing it, since they clearly were so upset by it...and upset in a different way than other times they were tantruming about things...it was like, I was disrespecting them in the worst way to them by not allowing them to be in control of their bodies. And this is from a woman who did, and still will haul a kid out of a store physically, or force them into a car seat - this was different, we were so close, and I wasn't transporting them anywhere to safety or anything, it just felt really wrong with both of them.

So, anyway - holding works great for some kids, so give it a try....but if it makes things worse, know that that's also OK.
post #57 of 59
Just wanted to jump in again and second the above. Some kids will respond to holding and some kids just DON'T. The worst you can do is try something and see if it works. For DS, if we let him alone in a safe but confined space like a playpen, the behavior never stopped... he would come out "swinging" as they say. But the holding really worked well for us, because he needed us to be "right there" physically enforcing the boundaries that we needed to enforce for him because he couldn't himself. That's just him
post #58 of 59
I really wish that would have worked with my kids, because my instinct is to collect them in to me when they're out of control and upset and comfort them. It's hard to fight that instinct!
post #59 of 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by The4OfUs View Post
my instinct is to collect them in to me when they're out of control and upset and comfort them. It's hard to fight that instinct!
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