Originally Posted by addiesmom
How do you get your toddler to do the things that HAVE to be done (ie: get in the car seat , put on your coat, change the diaper) without turning them into a power struggle? Am I just expecting too much maybe? Do I need to adjust my expectations and learn to accept that at this age, she is going to throw a hissy and hit during certain activites and hope the stage will pass quickly?
Yes and no. In the beginning, GD takes a lot of thought but believe it or not (and I know you don't believe it!), it will come totally naturally before long. You will become the creative mama that you never thought you could become. Honestly!
Some of what you describe is just the age and will pass but there are ways to make it less painful.
Because my DD has SID, she was a horrible transitioner. I developed a ton of tricks to get her from A to B which DH had very little patience for in the beginning. He soon saw that my way, although it seemed complicated, was in fact much easier because I learned how to elicit cooperation from my DD instead of power struggle with her (which I would always lose, by the way).
To avoid the struggles, you run down your list of usual suspects: Tired? Hungry? Overstimulated? Wet? Poopy? You get the picture. First rule those out.
Now, to get DD into the carseat was very much of a struggle for me so I would do the following:
"Do you want to hop to the car or fly?"
"Do you want to unlock the car doors with this thing (car door thing)?"
"Will you carry this package to the car for me?"
"Can you look and see if there are any doggies on the way to the car?"
"Do you want to climb up yourself or do you want me to help you?"
"Can you help me buckle you in?"
"Are you going to have pretzels or water in the car?"
"Let's try to see how fast we can get buckled in - maybe we can do it before I get to 10"
The coat: "Will you help me zip up your coat?"
"Do you want to wear your blue coat or your red one?"
"Can you help me put my coat on and then I can help you put yours on?"
The diaper: "Can you pick out a diaper for me?"
"Do you want to run to the changing table or skip?"
"Can you hold lthe wipes for me while I change your diaper?"
"Let's change your diaper and then we can have a snack, play a game, etc."
By giving DD benign choices, she felt empowered. By empowering her, I got her to cooperate instead of fight me. Nobody would relish being stopped in the middle of something fun to change a poopy diaper - I had to make the diaper change as much fun as the activity we were doing beforehand.