Parenting a Stubborn/Spirited/"Strong-Willed" one year old...near the end of my rope. - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 5 Old 03-19-2011, 05:43 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm going to try to make this as short as possible, because I could really go on all day about this.


I have a 2.5 year old DD and a 14 month old DD.  DD1 was not the most laid-back baby ever, but she wasn't 'high-needs' (or whatever) either.  She's always been decent about rolling with the punches, with the exception of a whiny phases she's going through at the moment.  DD2 is very different.  She was pretty chill in the beginning, never really cried (though she wasn't ever a great sleeper, either).  But things have changed now, since she was 8 or 9 months old I guess.


She is....fiesty.  She has a temper like I've never seen in a one year old before (and I've been around a good number of kids).  Not doing what she wants results in throwing plates, screaming, stomping's how I expect an 18 month old or even a young two year old to act.    She's not distract-able (she wants what she wants and you can't talk her out of it.  She won't even take a blue ball in lieu of the green one that she wants sometimes).  


She doesn't sleep all that great.  (We coslept full time until just recently, she wouldn't nurse to sleep anymore and started waking every 60 minutes.  Now she goes to sleep in the pack&play and comes into our room at some point.  She does cry when going to sleep in the pack and play, sometimes for a while, but DH is in the room talking to her and reassuring her.  Rocking her to sleep doesn't work.  Wearing her to sleep doesn't work.  She sleeps better in the Pack&Play than she does anywhere else, it just takes a while to fall asleep.  When she comes into our bed after 1am or so, she's restless and crying periodically for the rest of the night.)  She does nap well during the day and goes down easily.


She's clingy.  She wants me to hold her all.the.time.  I try to give her the love and affection that she needs but there are sometimes that I just have to put her down.  (i.e. I can't get something heavy out of the oven while holding her), and that results in a crying/screaming fit that lasts for 5 or 10 minutes.  And I have to give attention to her sister as well (who also needs to be held and loved).  She is 20x worse with me than with anyone else.  DH and the babysitter both say that she's very different when I'm not home.  She still has a temper, but is much more laid back overall.  (and this saddens me b/c its like wtf am  I doing wrong??)  So I guess its partly me but its also just her temperment.  I hope part of it will get better as she learns to talk (she just says  2 or 3 words right now), but I don't know that it will improve much.


I don't think I'm doing a good job of explaining what life is like with her so I'll just say this:  She's crying or screaming 50% of the time it seems like (usually from being mad).  Looking at how she acts now, I'm terrified of what she will be like at two or three years old.  There are days that I'm coming home from school and I think "I really don't want to go back there."  


I am drained.  I don't feel like it's because I'm clueless about how to deal with this age group or how to be a parent.  I've done this before!  I've got an older kid; I've worked with a lot of toddlers in the past.  I've read dozens of parenting books (some helpful and some not).  Before DD2 came along, I was confident in my parenting skills.  Now I'm not.  I catch myself saying things like "I don't like her" or "I just want to sell her" way more often than I ever should.


She's crying in her bed right now, and DH is dealing with it, trying to calm her down.  But I'm half way across the house and I just want to pull my hair out.  I can't listen to it anymore.


I'm not dangerously close to abuse or anything, so don't think that, but we are on a BAD road.  I can totally see myself spanking her when she's older if she continues like this. (and i'm not ok with that)


I need advice, BTDT ideas, something....  Help me please.redface.gif

student momma to two great girls

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#2 of 5 Old 03-23-2011, 09:03 AM - Thread Starter
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Really? No one has anything to say?


The past few days have been ok, but only because I've been making a huge effort to deal with the stress better so my husband doesn't have a meltdown. I suspect the dynamic in our house will get the best of me again soon.


So...anyone want to contribute?

student momma to two great girls

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#3 of 5 Old 03-23-2011, 09:48 AM
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Don't get Post in the Toddlers sub-form. You could also X-post in the Gentle discipline forum. I think you'll get more traction in those forums.
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#4 of 5 Old 03-23-2011, 09:52 AM
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I have a spirited 15 mo too. But it is definitely not nearly as bad. So, here are some thoughts that may or may not work.

Is it possible that she doesnt feel intolerance, teeth, something not right with her...KWIM?

My son is happiest when he is outside!  or out at activities with other kids.  He is a little clingy at first, but warms up and has lots of fun.  He has energy and needs to get it out.  Outdoor is the best for him, but other activities work too.  oh-swimming, we have an indoor pool nearby.


Another thought-sleep?  If she isnt getting enough sleep she's gonna be grumpy-but I have no advice on sleep- I certainly dont have it figured out yet.  Try reading Sleepless in America (I started it, but havent finished it....Im too tired)
Wish I could be more help!


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#5 of 5 Old 03-23-2011, 10:59 AM
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Just want to say that my 25 month old is the same way. Never had this level of frustration with the other two. It's good that she is the third so I can see it is her personality not my parenting.  She doesn't sleep well and starts off the day crying and upset because she asks for something I am not willing to get her right away. 

The other day her older brother (4) was given the last of something that dd2 wanted. Even though she had a lot more than him she started to scream and scream and he said "oh just give it to her, I can't handle the noise!" 

More often than not I have been letting her have her way but I am done now. She will need to learn to deal with waiting and if I can't handle the screaming she will be removed from the room so that I do not turn into psycho mom. 

I am also thinking that a copy of "the strong-willed child" is in order!!


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