At the end of our rope! - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 8 Old 09-07-2010, 10:45 AM - Thread Starter
 
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My DS is 29 months and is just getting increasingly difficult. HUGE major tantrums and meltdowns....screaming crying whining over the littlest, tiniest thing. It is insane. When he gets frustrated he slaps us or hits us. We are GD and don't spank, and I never thought I would want to, but I tell you (and this is super hard to admit out loud) when he hits me, sometimes I really want to smack him back.

Sometimes it gets to the point where we have to do a restraining hug where we hold down his arms and legs while he screams. When we are in the position to, I will leave him in a safe area and walk away. We try to watch for any triggers (hungry/tired/whatever) but it seems like any and every little thing will set him off. We try redirecting. We try warning ahead of time.

I am running out of ideas and my DH is out of patience. Is this normal? Any words of wisdom from you ladies who have BTDT? We really need help. I can't imagine how much worse it would be if I SAH. Right now, thank goodness for daycare!

goorganic.jpgwife to footinmouth.gif, currently WOH and geek.gif on my doctorate. (I'm dissertating!) We: novaxnocirc.giftoddler.gifgd.giffamilybed1.gif  with DS (4/09)!
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#2 of 8 Old 09-07-2010, 12:08 PM
 
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What feedback have you gotten from your daycare provider? Is he the same way there? Have they noticed certain triggers? Could it be related to separation anxiety? What about his diet? You could try limiting sugar and food additives/colorings. Sometimes those things affect behavior, though they're linked more to behavior problems like ADHD.

I'm so sorry you're going through this. Hugs!

I should probably be doing something else right now.
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#3 of 8 Old 09-07-2010, 01:00 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by katmann View Post
What feedback have you gotten from your daycare provider? Is he the same way there? Have they noticed certain triggers? Could it be related to separation anxiety? What about his diet? You could try limiting sugar and food additives/colorings. Sometimes those things affect behavior, though they're linked more to behavior problems like ADHD.

I'm so sorry you're going through this. Hugs!
He is really good at daycare (and when he isn't melting down is the perfect kid at home.) We eat 90% organic, no sugar, no artificial colors, etc.

ETA - it is way worse when he is tired, but he has been fighting naps on the weekends....I don't know how to force someone to sleep. We put on soothing music, dark room, etc.

goorganic.jpgwife to footinmouth.gif, currently WOH and geek.gif on my doctorate. (I'm dissertating!) We: novaxnocirc.giftoddler.gifgd.giffamilybed1.gif  with DS (4/09)!
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#4 of 8 Old 09-07-2010, 04:17 PM
 
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First of all, if you can read my last post please do so (it's in this same section called "How do you calm yourself when you're just SO frustrated?"). My DD is 32 months and is incredibly feisty. Seems like she fights us on EVERYTHING and it is so tough. She also is much MUCH worse when she's tired, and since birth she's not been the greatest sleeper, so that doesn't help. In addition, she goes to daycare 9 hours a week and is PERFECT there. I notice her worst days are on daycare days, and sometimes I feel like she might work really hard to hold herself together and let's it all come out when she's around her parents. Which really is how it should be...but it STINKS for us!

While this is much easier said than done, I've almost resolved myself to the fact that this is going to be more about my husband and I managing OUR anger and frustration rather than trying to figure out a way to change her. Of course we're going to keep trying different things but in the meantime, our anger and frustration absolutely makes her worse. I am trying to accept the fact that she's just going to keep saying "No!" and refusing to do things, and I'm trying to figure out what is and is not important when we are trying to convince her to do something. And of course in the meantime, working really really REALLY hard to do what I need to do to stay calm.

Hang in there. I KNOW how it can be so hard, I've been where you are. You are not alone...try to take care of yourself as best as you can.
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#5 of 8 Old 09-08-2010, 12:19 AM
 
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We are GD and don't spank, and I never thought I would want to, but I tell you (and this is super hard to admit out loud) when he hits me, sometimes I really want to smack him back.
Same here, except I've had to admit this so many times already to my husband that I'm not even surprised about it any more. And I'm not even (yet) having the level of fighting back that you are.

One thing that works for me is to quit trying to fix the tantrum in the early moments in its specific issue. I mean, if he falls apart about the banana "cracking", and I've tried to offer the options that are available - we could smush it back together, you can hold it in the peel, you can put it in your belly and your belly will put it together again - but NOTHING will do, then I say "I'm sorry that you had a disappointment. Let me know if you think of something I can do to help. Meanwhile, did you know that at the grocery store I'm thinking of getting a special new food? I am! I'm gonna look for blue food at the store! Will you help me?" Obviously this only works if he's not crying too hard to hear me.

For the wild and crazy tantrums, I have no real advice. For the aftermath though, I would probably try to talk about it when he's calm and happy and slightly distracted (playing with trains quietly.) Example "I want to talk about what happened earlier when you were so upset. Are you feeling better now? Oh good. When I'm upset, sometimes I want to hit and yell. But we're only allowed to yell, and it's really hard not to hit." etc etc Would that be possible for you when the tantrum is over?

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#6 of 8 Old 09-08-2010, 10:02 AM
 
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No real advice, but wanted to send hugs and say that I have read COUNTLESS posts here and elsewhere that say this is very common both for the age and for kids in daycare. They're angels at daycare and nightmares at home, and the consensus of the posts I've read say it's kind of a tension release for the kid. They know they're loved at home. They know that they're safe there (not that they feel UN safe at daycare, but it's different.) So of course at that age they get all wound up about everything and need a tension release at the end of the day, and they know that mommy will love them no matter what, whereas in daycare tey might get a timeout or something, sooo.... guess who gets the brunt of all that tension and excitement?

I know this doesn't help minimize the tantrums or advise on how to deal, but I think it helps to understand where it's coming from sometimes. (It does for me, anyway, b/c it helps to me have more empathy when I consider DS's perspective.)
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#7 of 8 Old 09-08-2010, 10:37 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the replies. He was better yesterday. I find he is more tantrum-y on the weekends. I think it mostly revolves around sleep. It is SO HARD to get him to nap on the weekends so he gets overtired and mean. I kind of pinpointed that as a cause but don't know how to make him nap.

I feel like I have this deep dark nasty secret. I was spanked. A lot. I knew it was wrong when my parents were doing it and I knew I never want to do that to my son. The fact that the instinct and the urge is there to do so is so shameful. I haven't even admitted it to my DH because I am really embarrassed and ashamed.

goorganic.jpgwife to footinmouth.gif, currently WOH and geek.gif on my doctorate. (I'm dissertating!) We: novaxnocirc.giftoddler.gifgd.giffamilybed1.gif  with DS (4/09)!
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#8 of 8 Old 09-08-2010, 10:51 AM
 
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Not sure if this will help or not, but our DS (25 mo) naps great at daycare, but at home on the weekends. Here are a couple things that we do....

1) We get outside in the morning and have lots and lots of activity. We time snacks about an 1.5 hrs after breakfast and then lunch is around 11:00. Naptime immediately follows lunch. No more playing..no more running around.

2) We make his room cool and dark

3) We read 3-4 books and rock before nap

4) He goes in the crib and then he fusses. Every single time, he fusses. I've tried every trick in the book from rocking, to rubbing his back, to sitting in the room...but he fusses. So...I let him fuss for 5 minutes

5) After 5 minutes I go back in the room with a BOTTLE of milk. Yep! He naps 5 days a week at daycare without a bottle, but at home...he REFUSES to nap without a bottle. So, he gets a bottle. It works, so I go with what works.

6) I rock him and he listens to lullaby music while he drinks his bottle. He drifts off to sleep and I wait a couple minutes and then put him in his crib.

....I've tried letting him drink his bottle while I read to him to avoid the fussing (like we do at bedtime), but that doesn't work. I've tried reading and then the bottle...that doesn't work. The only way that works is if he fusses for 5 minutes. Crazy...but it works for him.

I know that many people would NEVER allow their LO to fuss, but I've tried EVERYTHING else and this is the only method that works.
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