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#61 of 152 Old 11-04-2007, 12:07 PM
 
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I countdown until bedtime some days too, but it gets depressing when there is still 7 hours to go Luckily DS has began playing alone in his room when I ask him to. When he's really pushing my buttons and I'm at the end of my rope I either ask him to play quietly in his room or put a TV show on for him : We have DVR and I record Clifford and Little Bear for emergencies.

Zen doula-mama to my spirited DS1 (2/03), my CHD (TAPVR) warrior DS2 (6/07) & a gentle baby girl (8/09)
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#62 of 152 Old 11-05-2007, 08:32 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Ds went through a strange peeing stage, too. He's been potty trained for years, but for about 2 weeks he was peeing everywhere. He stood on his brothers bed and peed all over his sheets (what???). I was totally unprepared for this. Wasn't an accident, but how can I really control his pee?? He went behind a desk on his carpet a few times too, then just stopped. : He's been spitting, too. That is really hard for me to deal with. Being spit on just violates something inside me-- but he knows that and it seems to be a way for him t o say "I'm REALLY mad." I get that, but I still don't want to be spit on.


We 've had a good weekend (though, we did have a bit of a battle about Halloween decorations, too!). I'm trying to be careful to keep food in his body, but so often he just doesn't want to eat, then seems to have a hard time from being hungry. We are working on hugging each other when he feels bad instead of lashing out at me. He agreed that that was a better option!
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#63 of 152 Old 11-05-2007, 08:39 PM
 
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My ds spits on his sister all the time. Today she came in to see me and had chewed up carrot all over her head. I have routinley seen him spit water on her. He also does it to me. He also coughs in peoples faces so they can "see."

it sucks!!!!
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#64 of 152 Old 11-05-2007, 11:56 PM
 
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dd can be the most amazingly wonderful, sweet, funny thing. OR, she can be 4. moods can change on a dime. i can't keep up with all the questions and incessant talking.

i find that we definitely feed off each others' moods which makes for a craptacular combination PMS was misery this month & she & i had a horrendous week! she doesn't give dh nearly the misery she gives me and i know part of it is that his feathers just don't get ruffled the way i do but i also think we're just wired really similarly which can be great & awful all at once.

it's so good to hear similar stories! i question myself all the time!!!
You describe my DD and myself almost exactly. I get a much harder time from her than DH does, but he doesn't get upset and feed into it as much as I do. DD and I are extremely alike as far as personality goes, and we butt heads all of the time. I went through the same thing with my mom, but now we are the very best of friends (so at least there's that to look forward to)

And the part about questioning yourself.....I hear ya sister. Just before I logged on here I was crying to DH about how much I suck at being a mother to my 4 yr old.
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#65 of 152 Old 11-06-2007, 12:12 AM
 
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My ds spits on his sister all the time. Today she came in to see me and had chewed up carrot all over her head. I have routinley seen him spit water on her. He also does it to me. He also coughs in peoples faces so they can "see."

it sucks!!!!
My DD does both of these things. She's mostly stopped spitting on us, but she'll still do it on the floor or on the furniture, sometimes on the dog.

DD also does the "cough" in peoples' faces and when she's mad, she'll either "bum" us by sticking her bottom out at us, or more often lately, she'll blow air through her nostrils at us - annoying and rude at best, completely disgusting at worst.

Guess maybe she's not so weird as I thought.

I am a 40 year old unschooling, belly dancing, artist-mama of one almost 8 year old. I just had brain surgery and blogging.jpg about it a bit because it's just so surreal.
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#66 of 152 Old 11-06-2007, 12:27 AM
 
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Wow, so many of these stories sound JUST like my 4 yr. old!
He's a very, very sweet, affectionate kid. He has lots of friends, gets plenty of time outside every day, loves his brother to death, but sometimes he just gets out of control. He even tells me, "I can't stop!" when he's just freaking out tantruming or crying.
The most irritating thing is the crying-- he will start sobbing at the drop of a hat. If someone speaks to him too sharply, "WAAAAAAAH!" and it takes several minutes to make him stop. I've started sending him to his room when he starts because it grates on everyone's nerves and he just can't cry ALL the time! I swear, 5 minutes of picking up toys takes 20 minutes because he cries every time I ask him to do anything!

One thing that has been helpful lately is his observation that when I get cranky, he gets cranky, and vice versa. So we've been trying not to let that happen in either direction-- if I'm getting cranky, I'll say, "I'm getting cranky now." He'll say "Well when you get cranky it makes me cranky too!" so I'll say, "How about you finish picking up your toys and give me a few minutes of quiet time so I can stop being cranky?" and it works! It wouldn't have 6 months ago, but it does now. We're both learning how to deal with each other's personality and how to maintain a happy, healthy relationship.

I'm actually thinking 5 will be okay. It's getting better. The "F#^& you!"s and "I hate you!"s are few and far between these days, hopefully not to return for another 10 years.
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#67 of 152 Old 11-06-2007, 05:21 AM
 
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Today was just awful.

It started out OK... I had an unexpected day off from work, so I kept DS home from school (he was a little under the weather and I needed to take him to the doc for a refill on his allergy meds). The morning was fine, we had lunch with my Dad, went to the doctor, went shopping, then we came home and tied up a bunch of wood bundles for the recycling pick-up... and then things started to suck.

The mosquitos were biting so I wanted him to come in the house rather than playing outside because he always wants Benadryl spray and can't have any right now because he's already being medicated for allergies. Anyway I made him come inside, so he had a screaming fit.

He also had screaming fits over me wanting to watch a TV show, me correcting him for being too rough, various other indescrections, and finally for UNFOLDING all my FOLDED laundry. Yeah, I was a total shrew to him all evening, but that last one took the cake. Of course, he bawled the whole time I made him put away the laundry, but I was about to freaking lose it.

I feel totally unequipped to deal with this right now. I want us to have positive interactions, but it's just not working out.
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#68 of 152 Old 11-06-2007, 10:49 AM
 
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Just before I logged on here I was crying to DH about how much I suck at being a mother to my 4 yr old.
Me too
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#69 of 152 Old 11-06-2007, 12:13 PM
 
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*sigh* two steps forward, one step back...

Ds got mad while drinking and dumped his entire juice on the floor. He was fine one second, an instant later, furious. There was no chance at all for me to do anything to help him or stop him.

I just went to a meeting for the county's preschool/ece workers and we learned about a program that teaches social/emotional skills. It sounds like just what I need for my four year old. It systematically introduces the concepts of empathy, identifying feelings, managing strong emotions and problem solving. It is being taught to teachers at every level so that they can use & teach emotional skills in age appropriate ways all through the grades. But I can see that using it at home would likely have the most impact. I wonder if there's a resource just for parents that would be useful as a guide for those of us who aren't in areas where this program is being used.
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#70 of 152 Old 11-06-2007, 12:26 PM
 
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Interrupting DH and I when we talk. If I say in a minute he will yell "Mommmiiieee!!!" until I snappishly ask "What IS IT DS???" and he will say "Nothing"
My 4 year old dd used to interrupt us constantly at the dinner table. We were also interrupting ourselves to remind her to say excuse me. That wasn't working, so we came up with a sign to remind her to say excuse me. I would touch my nose with one finger. Then another sign to show her that I heard her lovely request and would answer her as soon as there is a pause in the conversation.

It was like this:

(Mom and Dad having conversation.)
DD: Mom!
(Mom touches nose.)
DD: Excuse me.
(Mom touches ear.)
(DD waits.)
(Mom answers DD.)

The first few times we did it, I didn't make her wait too long. I wanted to show her that it will work. Now that she's used to it, she can wait a few minutes until we're done talking about whatever it is we're talking about. We've been doing this for a few months now and all I have to do now is touch my ear. Hope this helps someone. I'll be : for more solutions too!

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#71 of 152 Old 11-06-2007, 03:12 PM
 
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And the part about questioning yourself.....I hear ya sister. Just before I logged on here I was crying to DH about how much I suck at being a mother to my 4 yr old.
Oh, I've had that conversation with my husband too. My therapist told me the other day to go easy on myself, and she is so right.

How do these little people make us feel so completely inadequate?
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#72 of 152 Old 11-06-2007, 03:37 PM
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My 4 year old dd used to interrupt us constantly at the dinner table. We were also interrupting ourselves to remind her to say excuse me. That wasn't working, so we came up with a sign to remind her to say excuse me. I would touch my nose with one finger. Then another sign to show her that I heard her lovely request and would answer her as soon as there is a pause in the conversation.

It was like this:

(Mom and Dad having conversation.)
DD: Mom!
(Mom touches nose.)
DD: Excuse me.
(Mom touches ear.)
(DD waits.)
(Mom answers DD.)

The first few times we did it, I didn't make her wait too long. I wanted to show her that it will work. Now that she's used to it, she can wait a few minutes until we're done talking about whatever it is we're talking about. We've been doing this for a few months now and all I have to do now is touch my ear. Hope this helps someone. I'll be : for more solutions too!
I MUST try this. Thank you!
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#73 of 152 Old 11-06-2007, 04:48 PM
 
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I MUST try this. Thank you!
I'm gonna try it too. They use something like this at DS's school. It is the peace sign, and it is supposed to mean peace and quiet. I can think of a few other signs I'd like to use instead of the peace sign when DS interrupts me for the 20th time! :

Zen doula-mama to my spirited DS1 (2/03), my CHD (TAPVR) warrior DS2 (6/07) & a gentle baby girl (8/09)
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#74 of 152 Old 11-06-2007, 06:39 PM
 
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Thank you everyone for keeping this thread going. I really need it.

DH and DS pick me up from work at 5:30pm. It's a 30 minute commute with traffic. DS talks (and interrupts) DH and I the whole car ride home.

Before I get in the car, I ALWAYS give him a hug and a kiss before jumping in the front seat. It's draining because I haven't had time to transition from Employee-->Wife-->Mommy

Because they BOTH (DH and DS ) require my attention at the same time. DS will start asking questions, I try to answer them patiently with as much information as I can(sometimes, I just.don't.know. the answer to his questions and he will have a complete meltdown if I don't know so then I start making things up enough to satisfy him)...then DH proceeds to tell me about his day. DS interrupts and asks "What's that Mommy?" "Is that a Police?"

So I've been stopping DH in mid sentence to answer his questions (hoping that was the last question...but it's not!).

So when I become firm with DS and say "DS, Mommy is talking to Daddy okay?" He then starts kicking the back of my chair (in the car). And kicking it hard!

DH yelled : at DS yesterday for kicking the back of my seat. He apologized to him but he was frustrated as it was dealing with bumper to bumper traffic.

So, I'm dealing with that. Kicking my chair when I'm talking to DH to gain my attention.

And again, he refuses to go to sleep. Last night, he went to bed at 12:30am. I tried laying down with him and tried to pretend like I was sleep (you know to make it boring for him) and when I peeped my eyes open, he was wide awake! After I've layed with him for 30 minutes.

So, to keep from being resentful because I hadn't taken care of myself (had dinner, had a hot bath and wash my hair to get ready for the next work day), I got up, kissed him and told him to good night).

He starting crying for me to come back and I did until he finally passed out...at 12:30am...

But I understand the culprit there (a 5:00-5:30pm power nap) which is something DH cannot control. He and DS leave the house at 5:00pm to come and pick me up from work and DH says the minute he buckles in DS he's fast asleep. And he gets to me by 5:30 so that's a good 30 minute nap. Which is ALL DS needs for his second wind for the evening and he goes non stop.

That's why I'm so tired all of the time.
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#75 of 152 Old 11-06-2007, 06:49 PM
 
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I feel totally unequipped to deal with this right now.
You've hit the nail for me. I couldn't quite figure it out, but there it is. There are lots of good suggestions here, I just need the time to internalize them.

Between work and home, there never seems to be enough time to reflect.

But now I have a starting point.

to us Mamas today.
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#76 of 152 Old 11-06-2007, 06:51 PM
 
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Originally Posted by olliepop View Post
My 4 year old dd used to interrupt us constantly at the dinner table. We were also interrupting ourselves to remind her to say excuse me. That wasn't working, so we came up with a sign to remind her to say excuse me. I would touch my nose with one finger. Then another sign to show her that I heard her lovely request and would answer her as soon as there is a pause in the conversation.

It was like this:

(Mom and Dad having conversation.)
DD: Mom!
(Mom touches nose.)
DD: Excuse me.
(Mom touches ear.)
(DD waits.)
(Mom answers DD.)

The first few times we did it, I didn't make her wait too long. I wanted to show her that it will work. Now that she's used to it, she can wait a few minutes until we're done talking about whatever it is we're talking about. We've been doing this for a few months now and all I have to do now is touch my ear. Hope this helps someone. I'll be : for more solutions too!

I'm going to try this, thank you!
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#77 of 152 Old 11-06-2007, 06:51 PM
 
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I'm gonna try it too. They use something like this at DS's school. It is the peace sign, and it is supposed to mean peace and quiet. I can think of a few other signs I'd like to use instead of the peace sign when DS interrupts me for the 20th time! :
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#78 of 152 Old 11-06-2007, 07:01 PM
 
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OMG. DD will be 4 in two months, and I'm losing my mind. I still love the child, but I don't like her very much right now : I think I'll read this whole thread and hopefully be reassured that it's not just MY child...
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#79 of 152 Old 11-06-2007, 09:06 PM
 
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DD is a bit rebellious but we have had good luck dealing with this at home. Our problem is school, specifically naptime. DD1 cannot nap. She just does not need it and the few very few times she does, she goes to bed late. Like, really late.

At naptime, she refuses to listen to her teachers. She is up off her cot, defiant, loud and a general nuisance. I understand that it is from her boredom, and I have been trying everything to get her to behave. We have a behavior/chore chart. She has a behavior chart at school. She has rewards form a good day (mac n' cheese, chocolate milk, tv time, and bigger rewards like right now we have a Cinderella outfit her mamaw sent her waiting for her to earn it (4 great days in a row or 5 good days). Tonight we have her on extended time out (like in a chair with a book ect) because she had SUCH a bad day. I send her a note in her lunch everyday to remind her to have a great naptime and that we love her. She has books, coloring books, and paper for naptime.

I don't know what to do. I have tried just about everything, and it is now embarrassing to take her. I am a teacher in an alternative school and I see 7th graders with stepped up behavior just like this, and it is truly horrible to see my kid doing the same thing (except only to a 4 yo extent).

I wish I could just stay home and take DD out of daycare, but we need both of our paychecks (we have already cut back, but we are also trying to buy a house to get out of the condo).
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#80 of 152 Old 11-07-2007, 12:47 AM
 
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DD and I are extremely alike as far as personality goes, and we butt heads all of the time. I went through the same thing with my mom, but now we are the very best of friends (so at least there's that to look forward to)

Me too! Ok, only 20 or so years to go...... where's that foot tapping smilie???

We've been working on being respectful of each other needing time/space. She's gotten much better at vocalizing when she needs "private time" or even telling me "can you not be in here?!?" when i walked into the living room :

I had a HUGE talk with her a few weeks ago when i was at the end of my rope. I explained my anxiety in terms of feeling like my skin hurts & it making me feel very very grumpy & needing a break. i'm learing to stay calm enough to use more descriptive language when i need the space.

I have a MUCH tougher time with transitions than dd! I need decompression after i get home from work & picking her up from school. it's just like "What About Bob?" .... baby steps....baby steps....

This thread is very helpful for me. I can feel very alone in my frustration sometimes. My 2 oldest friends are SAHMs and one of them is the very model of gentle parenting and overall calm & love. She's my idol! The other does struggle more but she definitely handles the stress much better than I do. I've got a hair trigger a lot of the time & it's not fair to dd.

Of course, i don't think it's fair to her to be nasty to me because i won't allow her to stay in the shower for 90 minutes!
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#81 of 152 Old 11-07-2007, 02:02 AM
 
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I'm so relieved to see this. In the last month DS1 (3.5) has gotten very very difficult to deal with. It's nice to see it's not just us.
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#82 of 152 Old 11-07-2007, 08:24 AM
 
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Well today was definitely better... I resolved before I went to pick him up from school that I was not going to make mountains out of molehills and to let things ride. It helped. We only had a couple of minor meltdowns and I made an effort to spend time down on the floor with him. Luckily he wasn't into kicking me today which has derailed many of our floor encounters in the past.
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#83 of 152 Old 11-07-2007, 01:23 PM
 
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One thing that has been helpful lately is his observation that when I get cranky, he gets cranky, and vice versa. So we've been trying not to let that happen in either direction-- if I'm getting cranky, I'll say, "I'm getting cranky now." He'll say "Well when you get cranky it makes me cranky too!" so I'll say, "How about you finish picking up your toys and give me a few minutes of quiet time so I can stop being cranky?" and it works! It wouldn't have 6 months ago, but it does now. We're both learning how to deal with each other's personality and how to maintain a happy, healthy relationship.

The toy room has been an absolute disaster for about a week. I'm tired of stumbling over everything but I also am tired of being the one to clean it up.

So yeasterday I talked about being cranky, how I don't lime being cranky, how they didn't like me being cranky.

I asked for the twins help in cleaning the room so we all wouldn't be cranky.

Guess what? They did it! No screaming, no fighting, no tears, just cleaning! I am amazed at how well they worked together and got it done!

They even helped me straighten up the rest of the house too. Just so we wouldn't all end up cranky.

Very good idea hottmama! I think I'll keep trying this and see how it goes!

:
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#84 of 152 Old 11-09-2007, 05:17 AM
 
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The toy room has been an absolute disaster for about a week. I'm tired of stumbling over everything but I also am tired of being the one to clean it up.

So yeasterday I talked about being cranky, how I don't lime being cranky, how they didn't like me being cranky.

I asked for the twins help in cleaning the room so we all wouldn't be cranky.

Guess what? They did it! No screaming, no fighting, no tears, just cleaning! I am amazed at how well they worked together and got it done!

They even helped me straighten up the rest of the house too. Just so we wouldn't all end up cranky.

Very good idea hottmama! I think I'll keep trying this and see how it goes!
As my 4-yr old DD would say "Big thumbs up!"

I just wanted to check in here because I really like this thread.

Yesterday DD & I fought a bit, mostly due to my own unrealistic expectations. (My lesson of the day? If you take your 4 kid to a pottery painting place, don't expect to do anything artistic of your own. But at least the melt-down was just vocal and I didn't have to buy any broken stuff!) Yeah, it's funny now - but yesterday I was seriously on the edge of my sanity.

Today was pretty good. I sure love my DD. :

I am a 40 year old unschooling, belly dancing, artist-mama of one almost 8 year old. I just had brain surgery and blogging.jpg about it a bit because it's just so surreal.
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#85 of 152 Old 11-09-2007, 12:16 PM
 
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Hi mama's, just checking in. DD and I have had a good week. It has of course had it's ups and downs, but we've had far more ups this week.

Reading all of your stories has really helped me to get a grip on this whole situation. Knowing that my DD isn't psychotic, and that her behavior is extremely normal has helped me to take a much calmer approach to dealing with her. When we are in the throes of a tantrum I keep reminding myself of all of you guys, and keep reminding myself that I am not alone in this, that it will pass, and to just let it go.

I hope this thread is helping yo guys out as well.
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#86 of 152 Old 11-09-2007, 12:19 PM
 
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Yesterday DD & I fought a bit, mostly due to my own unrealistic expectations. (My lesson of the day? If you take your 4 kid to a pottery painting place, don't expect to do anything artistic of your own. But at least the melt-down was just vocal and I didn't have to buy any broken stuff!) Yeah, it's funny now - but yesterday I was seriously on the edge of my sanity.
this is funny, actually, painting pottery is one of the few places that DD and I don't fight at all. She gets totally involved in her project, I get totally involved in mine and we really enjoy each other's company. When we are having a particularly rough week we leave little sis home with dad on a Friday evening and head out to paint, it's a good way for us to connect when we've been at each other's throats all week. Our only pottery painting fights happen because DD wants to paint the one thing in the store that costs $50 plus the studio fee.....she's no Picasso, I try to keep her to the $5 items
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#87 of 152 Old 11-09-2007, 12:39 PM
 
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Originally Posted by twopinknoblue View Post
When we are in the throes of a tantrum I keep reminding myself of all of you guys, and keep reminding myself that I am not alone in this, that it will pass, and to just let it go.

I hope this thread is helping yo guys out as well.
It really is. I thought about everyone's post last night and reminded myself I am not alone as DS was kicking me. It kept me from bursting into tears.
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#88 of 152 Old 11-09-2007, 12:40 PM
 
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My DD is given a very clear boundary (we have to be quiet, Daddy is sleeping), a choice of solutions (an action she can take that's acceptable, like going outside, or a consequence she won't like, such as time-out), and then I count out warnings (I count to five, then the stated consequence is enacted). I try to use distraction/redirection before resorting to a countdown, but when DD is engrossed in herself, it doesn't always work. For a redirect, I'd have suggested that a dinosaur stalking prey would need to be very quiet to sneak up on it, then tell him I saw a herd of tasty brontosaurs in the backyard, maybe T-rex should go hunt there. A physical demonstration never hurts.

Ignored, "Go outside, or play quietly." followed by a countdown gets attention. Somehow, DD always knows I mean business when that count starts, because I always follow through. (In this case, I would take her outside if she wasn't quiet, and if she resisted, I'd give her the choice of outside or a time-out, which is generally the consequence for getting wound up/hitting or throwing a tantrum.)

If she makes the good choice, we talk about it later and I reinforce WHY it was a good choice (thank you for going outside, Daddy needs his rest and we don't want to wake him up), and if a bad choice, we talk about it after time-out (I spur her to come up with why she should have chosen a different action, or at least what a better choice would have been because she's still fuzzy on "why").

breastfeeding, babywearing, homeschooling Heathen parent to my little Wanderer, 7 1/2 , and baby Elf-stone, 3/11!

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#89 of 152 Old 11-09-2007, 03:48 PM
 
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I tried something yesterday that worked. When I got really upset with DS I said "I am going to leave the room and take some deep breaths because I'm feeling angry. I don't want to yell, so I'm going to take deep breaths." I left the room, took deep breaths and came back in and all was well. He got to see that I was at the end of my rope and he changed his behavior. Then, later that night HE said he needed to leave the room to take deep breaths! He did, and it worked. I was thrilled

Zen doula-mama to my spirited DS1 (2/03), my CHD (TAPVR) warrior DS2 (6/07) & a gentle baby girl (8/09)
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#90 of 152 Old 11-10-2007, 08:35 PM
 
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I'm glad the 4 yr olds have calmed down lately! I too have had a really good week my DD I'm freaking a little though because she will be 5 in two months and her sister will turn 4 the same month :
but I do try to redirect, what has worked more times then not is me saying "I'm not going to fight with you, I'm not going to yell, I'm not doing that anymore, you can take a time out, you can go in your room or you, whatever, I'm not going to fight" I think a lot of the time she was just bored or restless and liked to fight with me in some weird way, I dated a few guys like that
dont really get what she gets out of the fighting though, she was not attention starved or anything, the 4 yr old brain I will NEVER get no matter how many kids I have!!

~Susan
widowed from Marc Nov. '09(love you more babe) mom to Sophia (9) Emma (8) Lily (5) :

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