I have been posting on Facebook and my local playgroups forum looking for help with my son. I've found really no valuable advice just a lot of "thats how five year olds are" and I have to admit that's not what I'm looking for. I also get a lot of "reward with TV" and "take away his toys" which is REALLY not what I am looking for. I realized what I AM looking for is a way to change what is quickly becoming our family dynamic even if it means adjusting my perceptions of how my son should act. If that means reading child development books and learning about brain development so be it. Something has to change.
My son Leo is newly five. He's very bright, talkative, cheerful, and has always been that all around Golden Child. He was a happy baby, never hit the terrible twos, he's eager to please, nice to his little brother, helpful, affectionate and loving. Really, if I were his brother he'd made me want to slap him and his perfectness. :) I suppose a lot of this is because we do expect so much of him all of the time.
Oh. And I'm pregnant, in my first trimester. So... go ahead and assume that at least 50% of my issues will likely suddenly disappear in a few weeks only to reappear postpartum for roughly 14 days before they go away again.
Anyway my real issues with Leo is his complete inabilty to focus and complete any sort of task. I would honestly worry his development was off if he hadn't only developed this issue recently. I do not handle it well, it irks me, irritates me, drives me bonkers. This one small thing is clearly a trigger for me. I can deal whole a LOT of annoying kid behavior, more than most for sure I have been a fulltime childcare provider for 15 years. But this... oh goodness. I end up yelling a lot. This sets the tone for my husband to then start yelling. For the last 3-4 weeks there has been a lot of yelling at Leo and naturally it doesn't do any good. I say a lot that he "doesn't listen" but it's not really that. It's more like he talks too darn much and is so very easily distracted. I have found that natural consequences work so well with him. The world is very black and white to Leo. He understand that if you fool around in the shower there just isn't enough time for a book. He gets that, it speaks to him. But I am finding a hard time applying any sort of natural consequences to this stuff which is probably why he's run miles over me. ;)
I need him to get in the van and into his car seat. I want him to start buckling himself in so that when I am finished with his brother I can get him. I make this very clear, every single time. What happens is he sees a rock he wants in front of the van, picks that up, I remind him to hurry, he gets in the car. He sees a toy/paper/whatever on the floor and wants to talk to me about it. I remind him to AGAIN get in his seat and start buckling up, we can talk about it when I am driving. He perches on the edge of his seat and starts engaging Auggie (who I am buckling at the moment) in something that undoubtedly makes it hard for me to get Auggie buckled. I yell "that's THREE TIMES now!" He "oh sorry"'s me and sits back. I may or may not have to repeat myself a few more times depending on how far I am in the process of getting everything and everyone in the car.
Basically, I have now managed to put all of my things in the car, walked around to the other side, lifted Auggie in the car, buckled Auggie, handed Auggie his blanket/breakfast, shut the van door, walked around to Leo's side all in the same amount of time it has taken him to sit down. At this point I am LIVID- somewhat irrationally, but I just am. This is probably mostly my issue, but I don't think it's too much to ask a 5 year old to get in the car and sit down in under 4 minutes. He's was able to do this 6 months ago without issue. His two year old brother does fine.
I can't take away his car seat/my van. I can't quit my job and just stay home. I can't physically put him in his seat himself. I am grasping at straws to find some sort of natural consequence for this or some sort of reward. Sure I could try to time him and give him a sticker or play around with a cutesy game like that. But I am honestly pressed for time and this is why I am having trouble to begin with. If I had the time to mess around with that, I would have the time to let him take 45 minutes to get in the darn car in the first place. I would be my preference to let him do his own thing rather than reward/punish him. I started getting up earlier in hopes having more time would correct the problem, but since I am struggling to also get him to stop talking long enough to eat, get dressed, put on his shoes, etc there is really no amount of time in the world that is suitable.
My other examples would really be those things: eating, dressing, getting in the car. All mundane stupid things we ALL have to do every day over and over again. He is always talking, always stalling, easily distracted, unable to complete steps 1-3 with any sort of focus. It's driving me insane. It sets the tone for the whole day. By the time I am arguing with him walking in the front door NOW! Get out of the bushes, and into the house NOW. I am done. I end up retreating to my room and leaving my husband to "deal with" the boys.
I don't want to "deal with" my kid. I want to enjoy him again!!!
Help! I will happily accept and and all book suggestions. Direct me to website, anything!