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<p>Lately, I've noticed DD (almost two) has developed selective hearing :0 and I'm not sure how to respond. Like if I ask her if she is thirsty--before she would have said yes or no or nodded/shaken her head, but now...nothing. So I'm forced to hold the cup of water right in front of her face. If she's thirsty she'll drink, if not she'll get really annoyed and shove the water away. Lots of other similar situations come up every day, that would be so much easier to deal with if she just answered yes or no.</p>
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<p>Another recent development is that she'll do exactly what I ask her not to. Probably pretty typical toddler behavior, I guess, but I have no idea what to do about it! For example, today we went out for a long walk and her hands got pretty dirty touching all sorts of things. We were almost home and I had my hands full holding her and she started sucking on her fingers. I told her, "Please don't put your fingers in your mouth. They're dirty," and she laughed and kept on doing it. Was curious what other moms would have done in such a situation, since there was no way to physically stop her from repeating her actions. She's also not the type to be distracted--she is a very determined kid!</p>
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<p>She also does things like say "kick" and then kick the dog. And when I stop her and tell her, "Please don't kick the dog, that really hurts him," she'll say "kick" and try to kick the dog again. I know in such a situation, I need to remove her or the dog, but if we're all out on a walk, for example, it's really tough to keep them apart because we *need* to stay close together (esp. when there are a lot of cars/bicycles around).</p>
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<p>Would appreciate any advice. Thank you!</p>
 

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<p>DS ignores me sometimes, I think they just get engrossed in whatever they're doing/thinking and don't want to be disturbed? I just let him continue whatever he's doing, or if it's important, get right down at his level & look him in the eyes to get his attention.</p>
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<p>As far as doing what you ask her not to do... Can you reframe your requests to be positive? Rather than, "Don't put your fingers in your mouth," try something like, "Put your fingers on your belly. Now put them on your head." Make it a game. With kicking the dog, try something like, "Can you pet the dog gently? Can you give him a big hug?" or if she really wants to kick something, give her a ball or let her kick a tree stump or whatever. I swear DS doesn't hear the "don't" or "no" in my requests -- or if he does hear them, he thinks it's funny to do the opposite. So I try as much as possible to make positive requests & to pick & choose my battles (like I probably wouldn't care if DS put his dirty hands in his mouth... oh and maybe you can bring hand sanitizer on your walk next time if dirty hands in the mouth bug you, that might be the simplest solution!)</p>
 

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<p>In language development, contractions like "don't" are learned later than most other words, so "Don't put your fingers in your mouth" might sound like "Blah put your fingers in your mouth."  Also, even if she does understand the contraction, talking about putting her fingers in her mouth puts that image in her head.  Sometimes it works better to find a way to state it in the positive.  "Keep your fingers out."</p>
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<p>For the other thing, kids for a long time sometimes need a physical touch to get them to listen.  So I would get down at her level, gently touch her shoulder, and then ask her a question, and see if she's better able to pay attention.</p>
 

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<p>Thank you so much for your suggestions, Crunchy Mommy! I guess when she was sticking her (really) fingers in her mouth, all I could think was "oh no, gross, please stop!" and totally blanked out on how to divert the situation! Also, we were so close to home, I didn't want to put her down, open my bag, dig through it for the sanitizer, struggle with her to get her hands sprayed, etc., etc. </p>
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<p>As for the ignoring part, I'm pretty sure she hears me because the other night, I must have asked her a million times if she was done with dinner (she was roaming about and picking at her food here and there), and then I asked her if she wanted some grapes and her head snapped up and she said "Yes!" almost before I finished the sentence. And I do try to get down to her level to talk to her, if she doesn't respond, but she'll still refuse to answer me. I'm not really sure why she does this, since it's not like I'm asking her about something undesirable, like brushing her teeth. </p>
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<p>I agree that sometimes telling her "don't do XYZ" only makes her focus on the action even more. </p>
 

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<p>I am reminded of a cartoon I saw about what a dog really hears. Basically it was "blah blah blah blah walk blah blah blah blah dinner blah blah blah cat..."</p>
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<p>I think toddlers are like this in many ways-the sheer volume of words that flow around them necessitates occasionally just tuning it all out.</p>
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<p>I find myself doing two things that I really try to avoid-talking to my son too much or talking right over him. I think both of these habits cause him to tune me out because he simply gets tired trying to figure out which part of my endless speech is important or pertinent to him.</p>
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<p>So, I try really hard to be clear and concise with my requests and remember that sometimes silence is golden.</p>
 

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<p>It's more about paying attention than hearing, and sure they'll pay attention to something that interests them more.  But if you get down to their level and gently touch their shoulder, you're more likely to get their attention.  Sometimes with my daughter though I'll take advante of this.  "Sophia, have you done your homework yet?"  Silence.  "Wow, where did all this candy come from?"  "CANDY?"  "Is your homework done?"</p>
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<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>sobamom</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1278555/23-mo-old-ignoring-or-doing-the-opposite#post_16036184"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border-bottom:0px solid;border-left:0px solid;border-top:0px solid;border-right:0px solid;"></a><br><p> </p>
<p>As for the ignoring part, I'm pretty sure she hears me because the other night, I must have asked her a million times if she was done with dinner (she was roaming about and picking at her food here and there), and then I asked her if she wanted some grapes and her head snapped up and she said "Yes!" almost before I finished the sentence. And I do try to get down to her level to talk to her, if she doesn't respond, but she'll still refuse to answer me. I'm not really sure why she does this, since it's not like I'm asking her about something undesirable, like brushing her teeth. </p>
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