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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So my boys are 19 months apart and are 2 and 3 and most days I feel like I am on the verge of losing my mind! I am also preggo with #3 (surprise!) and cannot even get excited yet because I am dreading the 18month-3year stage.<br><br>
For us, that has been the most difficult by far...and 2 going through it at the same time is making me crazy. My oldest is highly sensitive and high needs so that plays a role. About 60% of the time they are terrorizing each other...it feels like one is mad/crying/throwing a huge fit all of the time....they trade off or something.<br><br>
They don't sleep through the night so I am totally sleep deprived...as are they I am sure. No naps. Its just like a madhouse here!<br><br>
Anyone else feeling this way? Some days I think its got to be something wrong with me or my parenting style or something because this cannot be normal. But other times I think, nah, its probably normal with closely spaced kids this age. So, is this par for the course? Any suggestions to help things out at all?<br><br>
Oh and editing to add...we have no family around and we get no breaks ever...every doctor visit/outing/regular day is spent with 2 kids one of whom is probably throwing a tantrum for one reason or another.
 

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You need to find someone who can help you. You have got to find a friend or two that can give you a break. If nothing else, your dh needs to give you some space at least once a week. If not, you will break and that is not good for you or your family.<br><br>
As for fighting between close kids, well, I think that's probably normal. I know it's not easy, but you might need to change your style of disciplining. Take away privileges, separate them, etc. For all I know you do that already. You might seriously consider dropping almost all sugar for awhile and see if that makes a difference -- no candy, cookies, sugar cereal, kool-aid, etc. Use only natural sugar. I know it makes a HUGE difference in my DD's behavior to be only on natural sugar and not much sugar period.<br><br>
Is it possible that you could take a rest on the couch while they are watching a movie?<br><br>
Crystal
 

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5 kidlets here - they're 6, 5, 3 turning 4 in sept, 1 turning 2 in oct and 5 mo uncorrected age (3mo 1 week corrected - preemie baby). my two oldest are 12.5 mo apart.<br><br>
it's difficult at times but i've learned a lot of patience from them. have you considered a mother's helper?<br><br>
Sheal
 

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I'd like to echo the mother's helper recommendation. I have three different homeschooled teenagers that I rotate to help out around here and it makes my day so much better when one of them is around, even just for part of the day.
 

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My ds and dd are 14 months apart. Three days a week, I also babysit my cousin's baby who is 13 months old. So half of my week, I have a 3 yo, a 2 yo, and a 1 yo.<br><br>
I can definitely sympathize. It seems like no matter what you have planned for them to do (i.e., let's read now, or let's fingerpaint, or let's eaet lunch now), there is always ONE who will not cooperate. When they are playing, unless I sit right in between them all day long, they are fighting. The fight over toys, where they sit, how to stack up the blocks, how to put the train track together. It is enough to make you go insane after a while.<br><br>
I usually try to have a lot of things lined out for them to do during the day. Outside to help water flowers, in the swimming pool, fingerpainting, playing a game (which is virtually impossible when the 1 yo is here), eating, taking a bath, coloring, eating lots of snacks (seems like the more food I offer during the day, the better they all get along) and I have planned time that I take a minute to myself. I get out their trains or the little basketball net. I make sure they all have something to eat and drink. Then I sit on the couch and knit or get on the computer and let them play (supervised in the livingroom with me) on their own. Then we read or work little workbooks or play I Spy! This is usually about 4 o'clock and they have all had no naps. Sometimes ds and the one year old will fall asleep, but my dd never does. If she is still awake, I let her choose one video to watch. It's generally the only time the TV is on all day, except on the RARE occasion when I am ill or when DH is watching them. Then they are allowed to watch Sesame Street or Caillou (which I abhor but they really like since it is about a big brother and his little sister). While she watches a video (and the others, too if they are awake), I do all the prep work for dinner. Sometimes one of them will come in to help me, sometimes not. Then I prepare dinner and we all eat at about 5:45 when DH gets home.<br><br>
One this that has been really helpful for me is to allow them to help me do everything. I even encourage it. If I am cleaning, I give them a rag with some water on it and tell them to wipe the table, etc. When I do laundry, it is their jobs to match socks. Sometimes they get it done, sometimes they don't, but at least it takes up a little time without too much arguing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Gosh how I would love to find a mothers helper! We moved here a little less than 2 years ago and really don't know many people in the area. I have met a few friends but none that either don't already have their hands full or that I would comfortable asking for them to watch the kids.<br><br>
They get no sugar now...we are very strict on diet as it makes a HUGE difference in my oldest (very sensitive, high needs).<br><br>
We live on a mini farm and have tons of stuff to do, chickens, goats, various other farm animals, etc plus we do tons of activities but they usually find a way to annoy each other and a fight starts that makes it miserable for everyone involved. They are not always like that but a good portion of the time for sure.<br><br>
Work sounds so good right about now. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/duck.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Duck">: <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> Sitting at a desk stressing out over a major computer implementation used to be stressful but I don't know, it sounds like a cakewalk now. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">
 

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Mine drive me crazy on a regular basis<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
All 3 of mine take naps and have an early bedtime, I am not sure what I would do if they didn't. I need that time to re-energize. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/hug2.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Hug2">
 

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I am certainly having one of those days today!!! My boys are 6,4,2 and 2 months and I also babysit full time 6 days a week for a 4 month old,3 year old and 6 year old. (as a single mom with no vehicle its my only income) There are days I just need to lock myself in the bathroom and have a quick cry as I feel so overwhelmed. So you are deffinitly not alone in the madhouse!<br>
I second having a routine!!! Something as simple as a set little routine for naptime and bedtime and a regular story time and chore time is all that keeps us sane some days! And oh how I WISH i could get a mothers helper but its just not realistic on my budget right now.<br>
Since I have all boys so close together they do tend to fight alot, especially on rainy days when they dont get out to burn energy off! I hate when people say "oh they are just being boys" I understand they have a need for physical play, etc... but I still wish they could be more gentle with one another. kwim? It can get so frusturating that I practice GD and they go around shoving and hitting......
 

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<div style="font-style:italic;">Mine drive me crazy on a regular basis<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
All 3 of mine take naps and have an early bedtime, I am not sure what I would do if they didn't. I need that time to re-energize. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/hug2.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Hug2"></div>
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Amen to that early bedtime!!! So many of the parents here in my complex just let thier kids run around outside till they drop. I would lose my mind without that few hours of ADULT time! I need to be more than mommy for a bit so I can be full throttle supermom the next day!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thank you!!! I love hearing I am not the only one!<br><br>
7:30 is our bedtime...I would really seriously have gone insane long ago if they stayed up until 9 or 10 like I have heard of with other families. No joke. I would have committed myself gleefully. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
If I drive them around in the afternoon they will usually fall asleep so I know that they are tired but they just will not lay down to sleep...I have to strap them in a carseat and drive, drive, drive! On those days (like right now, but I hear my youngest waking already) I so enjoy them time alone!
 

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730 for the 3 and 1 yr old and 830\9pm for the 5 and 6 yr olds. I usually have them up (rather they have me up lol) at 630\7 am sharp!<br><br>
Earlier rise means earlier bedtime. If I didn't get up at 7 am with them then they'd be going to bed at 11 or 12 at night.<br><br>
Gotta love the early bedtimes!<br><br>
(of course the 5 mo old is with me at all times either in his carrier, my lap on on the boob - if he isn't, he's getting a bum change or sleeping in bed with me)<br><br>
Sheal
 

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I am right there with you! My kids are 3 and 20 months. They are not even 18 months apart. It is definitely a challenge most days! It is getting better though, for us at least. For the most part they play well together. We don't LET them fight, for the most part, and they are learning how to deal with each other in more positive ways.<br><br>
I'm also due with number 3 next week! That definitely is going to add to the chaos. I'll have three kids, three and under. YIKES!<br><br>
If you ever want to talk or chat send me a message. I can definitely relate!
 

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I don't have much to add, but will say-I CAN RELATE! My older two are 13.5 mo apart and then I have 14 mo twins to boot<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">: . We have fairly early bedtimes here as well-lol.
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/nod.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="nod"><br><br>
I've thought about a mother's helper. But we can't really afford it. I've also been thinking about a gym membership where they have a daycare. But again, we can't really afford it. And they'd probably get sick a lot and we have high deductible/emergency only insurance, so that would be even more expensive.<br><br>
Anyway, I feel ya!
 

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Wow, no naps!?! No sttn yet!! No wonder you're going crazy!<br>
My first 2 are 15 months apart, and #2 was/is a very difficult/sensitive child and he had colic for a few months in the beginning. But #3 has been a breeze. I think the change from 1 to 2 children was absolutely THE hardest. Personally I LOVE the stage from 9-18months the best. 2-3 years can be challenging from time to time, but I find it goes in waves.<br><br>
Routine is absolutely essential at our house. Only the baby still naps. But they all go to bed and wake at about the same time (#2 likes to sleep a little later sometimes). They definitely like to push each other's buttons, but they are also so sweet to one another.<br><br>
I've never really had any help except for my husband when he's home. We did enlist my mother to come stay with the older 2 so that I could take the baby to Paris since my husband was there on business.<br>
She moved to the area last year and now she will take the older boys one at a time each once a week for a few hours. Not a big help, but if it's all she's willing to do I'll take it! I think a mother's helper for a couple hours once or twice a week would be great. She/he could take them to the park or play outside so that you could just get a few moments to yourself before the new baby arrives!!<br><br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">
 

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I was/am in yoru boat.<br><br>
my kids are 3.5 and nearly 2. We have a 2 week old newborn. Neither of the older kids take naps. They like to terrorize each other too. My oldest just started sleeping throuhg the night (in her own bed!) and my son still wakes at night. We made a nest of pillows next to my dh's side of the bed and when ds wakes up, he goes to his nest and goes back to sleep. I have always drug both kids with me to appointments, shopping, etc. and am getting up the nerve to do it alone with the three of them.<br><br>
I've found that helping them find activities that they enjoy will keep them occupied. Make some forts, let the kids scream and play. We have a kid tent we set up in our living room and the kids have a ball in that for about an hour. I put it up 2x a week or so. My oldest loves puzzles and playing with things like barns/farm animals. my son likes cars, balls and stacking/nesting boxes so I try to find them activities they can do on their own, alone.<br><br>
I also make sure they're fed often. Sometimes it seems the smallest hunger pang can turn them into wild animals, unleash fits and fights.<br><br>
Try to have a quiet period during the day where you read to the kids, or just rock them (if that is comfortable for you - around 6mos or so with my last pregnancy I had to stop rockin the kids). Make sure there is plenty of outside time to let them run off that energy. Be sure the foods you feed them are healthy and not full of dyes, sweeteners, and other things that can influence their behavior. Put on some kid music and let the kids dance and sing.<br><br>
Hope some of those ideas help? :) Just remember they aren't little for long and this will soon pass... Get excited about that baby coming momma!
 

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My daughters are 15 months apart and the youngest just turned one year.<br>
She was not a planned for baby, she was a birth control baby.<br>
I had hoped for a 2 year age spacing.<br><br>
Well, no more babies for me!<br><br>
I am a SAHP and my husband WOH.<br>
I never get a break from my daughters.<br>
Some days are so hard on all 3 of us.<br><br>
Although they are only 15 months apart, the younger one is much tinier than her big sister.<br>
They love to wrestle and play together, but S always gets hurt somehow.<br>
The afternoon crabbiness happens when one is tired and the other isn't, or one is hungry and the other isn't.<br>
One will keep the other one awake, or will wake them up because they want to play.<br>
It can be very frustrating letting the tired babe sleep and entertaining the wide awake babe.
 

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Well I was just coming here to post about this same issue.<br>
My 2 girls are 4 and 2, so not super close, but they really go at it sometimes, I really try to stay calm, and not yell, but I do get very frustrated with them, and my whole situation.<br>
One of my issues is that I think about how other kids are, and how they behave and wonder what am I doing wrong, why do my children pull each others hair, whine for "treats" / tv, don't listen to me, oh the list goes on, but I bet you have caught my drift.<br>
Anyway, I personally think it is something to do w/ my parenting style. I am laid back and relaxed, but then when my buttons are pushed I can only take so much and it almost drives me nuts. I have to go and have a Zen moment in the bathroom until someone starts banging at the door!!!<br><br>
My oldest has loads of energy, is really active and social and has a pretty strong personality, which makes for turbulent times. Oh I can't wait to see how 15 will be<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">:<br><br>
Just glad to hear that I am not alone
 

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Girl, I could have written your post almost word for word.<br><br>
I have 3 kiddos, 5,3, and 15 months. I have to take all 3 everywhere I go. DH is a firefighter and also works part-time so I a pretty much a single mom most of the time.<br><br>
We went to Wallyworld today and I promise you, I looked liked the crazy baby lady<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">: , you know the one everyone looks at and says "she needs to control those kids".<br><br>
No advice here. But I feel your pain. You are not alone. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"><br>
Tonja
 

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There is no reason not get some type of help. Suffering as you are is pointless. If you can get any sort of assist, you'll benefit. It doesn't even have to cost much!<br><br>
If you go to LLL meetings, or know any hsers, you can try and find through these folks, some young teens (11 - 15 or so) who can help you out. You can pay a LLL kid or some sweet hsing 10 or 11 yr old yr old a couple of dollars an hour, 5 days a week, and reclaim your sanity. They can push kids on the swings in your own yard while you close one eye. They can also roll out playdough coils in your own kitchen, or read picture books in your own living room while you take a long bath or pretend not to sleep. If there is noise, or crying-- there you are.<br><br>
My kids always totally enjoyed having' big' kids over to play. You are in the house-- you are *right* there, but you can blink. YOu can pee. You can chop an onion. I found having someone come over at around 3:30 was a godsend. I could go to the bathroom. I could set water to boil. I could close the door to my bedroom and nurse a baby. I could do all of this as I kept an ear perked for trouble.<br><br>
Try not to go this period totally alone.
 
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