Can't cope with 3yo dd. - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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#31 of 42 Old 07-29-2009, 08:14 PM
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Hi, NYCveg! I haven't seen you around in a while!

Phoebe can be the same way some days. The other day was SO draining I went to bed crying about what a terrible mother I am. I recently read "Your 3 year old: friend or enemy" (by Ilig?) and although some things are pretty dated, it is so comforting to read what is developmentally normal and what is reasonable to expect from a kid this age, which is conflict, limit testing, and whining. It cracks me up that their advice is to get a babysitter as often as you can. But know that the issue here is not you! This is a normal and very difficult stage of development and it will pass. Keep trying to be as patient as possible and you should all come out the other end unscathed.
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#32 of 42 Old 08-15-2009, 11:39 PM
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Hey mama, didn't you guys move in the last couple of months? If so then perhaps that is adding to the 3's issues.

Also, I also think the Louise Bates series and Playful Parenting by Alfie Kohn are excellent resources!

by the way, I remember reading somewhere, don't remember where though that kids that are in preschool are often angels there because they feel the need to be and they stuff all their frustrations until they get home and then they blow off the steam...don't know if anything like that makes sense?

Good luck with everything, sounds like your making some progress

Laura mama to Caitlyn 12/26/06 and Frenchie dh non vaccing unschooling multilingual family
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#33 of 42 Old 08-16-2009, 05:27 PM
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Hi NYCVeg. I'm sorry you're going through such a tough time mama. Is this behavior consistent at her daycare too? I ask bc I know she has a lot of food allergies. Could there be something else she's allergic too, perhaps that she is responding to? I'm sure you're familiar with Doris Rapp's book "Is This Your Child?" She writes a lot about this kind of behavior in allergic kids.

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"And now," cried Max "let the wild rumpus begin!"
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#34 of 42 Old 08-16-2009, 05:50 PM
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Same here. Three was super tough for us. I won't say that four was a piece of cake, my son is still difficult. He's a tough kid. But three for him was especially tough. Take comfort in the fact that she does fine at school. At least I did. As rough as it was at home, and unpleasant, and hard to be a decent parent, at least I felt that it his capacity to function well there was a very, very good sign.

eta: I do recall at that age being rather sick to death of the playful parenting ideas. Horrible, I know! I didn't want to play games all day just to get his shoes on or get to preschool. At some point, I really felt like No just had to be no, shoes on just had to be shoes on. I didn't get forceful if he resisted, but I was less worn out if I was more direct. IME the playful parenting type ideas or distraction were less effective when the behavior was extended, as opposed to a minor upset. Also, is it possible to get her to bed earlier? My son was sometimes down for the night at 6 when he first went napless and got up at 6-7. That helped a lot.

Originally Posted by BoGiBoBo View Post
I just wanted to chime in and say that I distinctly remember 3 being a very difficult time with my dd. And I also remember that by 3 1/2 it got a lot better. Hang in there momma.
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#35 of 42 Old 08-17-2009, 02:02 AM
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OMG, none of you can be the worst parents ever because it's surely me. I don't know what happened to my sweet, helpful 2-year-old, but right around 3.5 she turned into a monster child. First it was shoving other kids (think she picked that up at preschool) and it's only gotten steadily worse from there. Yesterday we went to her first "ballet recital" and OMG, she was so awful I wanted to crawl out of there crying. And there are 9 other 3-year-olds in that class, and if I was any of THEIR mothers I would pray that THAT KID wasn't in my kid's class next term. The rest of 'em acted like kids and mine acted like she'd been inhabited by demons. I could go on in detail but it would be a very, very long list....

Erin, mom to DD (1/06) and DS (10/09)
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#36 of 42 Old 08-17-2009, 10:11 AM
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OP: This was DD to a "tee." Just wanted to mention two things. First of all, there's a light at the end of the tunnel. DD turned 4 in July and had been getting better for months before that.

Also, regarding the DH responses: DD would do this as well. She'd push him away and say "Go away, Daddy. I don't like Daddy." I read somewhere that part of this is that she doesn't really have the language precision yet to address her emotions and preferences. So, while she's saying she "hates" Daddy, that's usually not what she means. DD still shows a preference towards me, but we haven't heard any language about "hating" Daddy for at least 6 months.

Stacey teaching teens to read & write... Daddy plays ska, DD1 (7/05) loves trees & princesses, & DD2 (3/10) loves mommy-milk! Please get your kids tested for lead.
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#37 of 42 Old 08-17-2009, 12:36 PM
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One very simple thing I learned with my 3 year old. If I phrase something like "if you don't stop doing....or if you keep doing such and such, then..." he will inevitably keep doing it. But if I phrase it: "do you want to keep playing with such and such" or "do you want mama to stay and play with you". He answers YES. then I say "then you need to stop doing...such and such". And he then cooperates. It works like magic with him. That's only one small parenting victory. Many more things I need to work on and figure out!
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#38 of 42 Old 08-17-2009, 01:12 PM
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Has the book Your Three-Year-Old by Louise Ames-Bates been mentioned in this thread? Regardless, I must mention it - I just managed to get a hold of it through interlibrary loan and it is such a good read so far. I'm not sure if it will make dealing with Three any easier, but it explains it all so well and makes you understand why and that's it's all so normal.

Some of it - the discipline techniques advice - is terribly outdated and anti-AP/GD, but the general message - that the most important thing is to nourish and preserve the relationship - is great.

DS 12/22/05 and DD 5/24/09
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#39 of 42 Old 08-17-2009, 01:15 PM
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My DS is also 3 and a real handful, to say the least.
As for the difficult morning, my DS functions better in I sit with him on the couch for 30min, before asking him to do something.
He is also extra difficult when we are in a hurry, so if we have to do something early we have him set out his clothes ahead of time or just sleep in the next days outfit.
I sure hope this phase passes soon!
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#40 of 42 Old 08-17-2009, 03:01 PM
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sounds like we are all in the same boat. dd just threw a fit because i don't have her favorite bread. lasted a good 30 minutes and alot of breathing on my part..


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#41 of 42 Old 08-17-2009, 03:23 PM
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Just want to say that we have the same 3 yr old.

I've had it twice (2 DDs).

4.5 and 5 are MUCH MUCH better...
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#42 of 42 Old 08-17-2009, 06:12 PM
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Oh, mama, I hear you.
I have been feeling like a parenting failure lately - my 3 yo DD is such a handful. Fussy, unco-operative, contrary, rude; spitting, hitting, throwing things, hurting her older sisters, pulling the dog's tail, every naughty thing.... as well as refusing to use the potty or sleep in her own bed. My IL's dote on my other two girls, but have very little to do with her - and no wonder, given the way she acts at their house! Honestly, I don't know how she will do at preschool, which starts in a week. I can picture her being the girl no one will play with.
And yet I know she is bright, funny, sweet, observant, caring and compassionate. I just don't know where that side of her is right now.
Three was a hard age with my older two as well - worse than two for sure, but this DD is sooo much harder than they ever were. Ay ay ay.

meemee, I teared up about your DD saying "mama, you understand me, daddy doesn't" - you are her safe place to release. Wow.

I keep thinking about an article I read once comparing motherhood to those who work on cathedrals, spending every day of their working life building something they will never see.....

~*The days are long, but the years are short.*~
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