Originally Posted by pranava
OP here! Ditto this above exactly for my DS. Clearly understands no, talks like a 4 year old, re-direction is futile, can follow complicated directions, but still lacks impulse control. This is the kid who if I give him option A or option B will choose option 3 for the fun of it. The example I used of the stove was just one example, and I wasn't even cooking at the time. He was playing with the knobs because he was interested and they are fun to play with. When I told him "No", he grabbed hold with all of his might with a look that said "Don't tell me what to do!" If I had told him the stove was hot he would have said, "But it's not on right now Mommy" He's already an expert arguer. What I'm dealing with is Mr. INDEPENDENT!!! This trait will serve him well in adulthood, but it is exhausting to deal with in a toddler. I feel sorry for my poor Mom, because I was the same way.
Thanks for all the advice! It seems the common thread is - remain calm, repeat the rules, remove the child from the object, or remove the privilege from the child (as in, no playing outside if you can't stay out of the road)
When I had toddlers (twins) I really had to shift from reactive to proactive parenting. It is absolutely exhausting - no doubt especially when you have one who is so adept at finding the limits. So if the kitchen is an issue, can you change the environment to help deal with the situation? A play kitchen for him? A wall painted in chalkboard paint so he can create? A learning tower so he can help you and be somewhat safely contained, locks or different knobs on the stove, a line taped down in the kitchen that show the no-go zone? Can you shift your life a bit and do more meal prep work at night or on the weekend so that time isn't so harried, use your crockpot etc.
If he's very verbal, can you talk to him more? Thank him for following the kitchen rules, talk about being safe, have mom jobs (touching the stove) and kid jobs (working the salad spinner?). In your kitchen example (and I know that is just one of likely many) perhaps he's trying to connect with you and have your full attention at a very challenging time in your day.
The more proactive things you can do avoid the power struggles, the easier in the long run it will be on you.