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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
It seems like there is a constant power struggle going on with dd. I know it's since the birth of Samson. I'm good at 'choosing my battles', but these all have to do with baby's safety!<br>
Example 'Soleil, please to not touch the swing'. I go to the kitchen to grab a cloth, hear a crash and swing has collapsed with baby in it! First of all, what kind of freaking swing is that? Samson hasn't been in it since. Secondly, she said she was just trying to crank it, and obviously, didn't mean to make it fall...but man, I told her *not* to touch it.<br>
"Soleil, do not pick up Samson when I'm not in the room". I leave the room, come back two seconds later, she's picking him up.<br>
"Soleil, please do not wake up Samson". Um, she wakes him up. The only way the baby gets to sleep is in the sling.<br>
I'm so *frustrated*. I don't know what to do.<br>
Any words of wisdom out there???????????<br>
TIA,<br><br>
Mamasoleil/samson<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hippie.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hippie">
 

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First rule of being a toddler: <i>If told not to do it, do it!</i> No self-respecting toddler can possibly hear the words "do not ________" and not be completely attracted to the challenge. Hang in there.<br><br>
Instead of saying, "Don't touch the swing" or "Don't wake the baby" you might try, "the baby is sleeping, let's see how quiet we can be reading this book together/making lunch etc." or... "the baby is in the swing, if you'd like to crank it for him, please ask for my help and we'll do it together." As for picking up the baby you might try, "you may pick up the baby when I'm in the room with you. If you'd like to pick up the baby and I'm out of the room, please come and get me and I'll help you. "<br><br>
Requests in the negative are not only frustrating but are an unresistable challenge to the toddler, who possesses a high lack of impulse control. Sometimes by shifting our words and empowering them rather than the reverse, it can make a huge difference. If they are given <i>a way</i> to do something rather than being told simply NOT to do something, it sometimes never occurs to them to do it in a way which is not acceptable. I'm not sure if that made any sense... it makes sense when I think it, but's it's hard to put into words I realize.<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin"><br><br>
Best of luck and hang in there.
 

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I'd also suggest finding things to get her pre-occupied on something else. Could you please help me do this? It's a way of distracting her away from the swing or baby or whatever without the obvious "don't touch the baby".<br><br>
I found the constant "don't" just meant my oldest would and when he felt like he was helping me do something important, his focus shifted away from the babe & we both felt much better.
 

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Sounds hard, Mamasoliel! The examples you give are when you aren't in the room with baby. Maybe being alone in the room with a baby without mommy around to supervise is just too overwhelming? I dunno....
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">Requests in the negative are not only frustrating but are an unresistable challenge to the toddler, who possesses a high lack of impulse control.</td>
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She's not a toddler anymore, she's 4. But those a good suggestions, and of course I *know* this, as this is the approach I used with her as a toddler...why does it seem I've lost all my positive approaches???<br>
And it does mostly happen when I'm not in the room, but half the time, he's in my room, and Soleil sneeks in there...argh.<br>
I *know* it's because she loves him and is intrigued and fascinated...but holy moly, it's really wearing me down! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad">
 

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My first thoughts in reading your post is that it sounds as if you've fallen into an antagonistal relationship with your dd. (ie. the words of "choosing your battles, everything being a fight" and so on) If you're feeling this way *at all*, she will pick up on this and it will feed her misbehaviour. I would imagine she's feeling very insecure anyway with a new little one in the house and all.<br><br>
My ds was 3 when my oldest dd was born and I talked with him about us being a "team" and working together to take care of the baby and in keeping her safe. It helped a lot! He felt as though him "obeying" the rules was important because Mommy obeyed rules as well to keep our baby safe. ( things like don't holding a hot pot and baby at the same time, not running when I carried her, not throwing things in the house, etc <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngtongue.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Stick Out Tongue"> )<br><br>
I also think that at 4, she's still too young to be trusted in the room alone with him. If you have to leave to do or get something, take her or the baby with you.<br><br>
HTH somes! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">My first thoughts in reading your post is that it sounds as if you've fallen into an antagonistal relationship with your dd.</td>
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Yes, you're right, we have fallen into that. And I don't know how to change this. She will be accross the house from the baby, but will sneak and wake him. I know she's adjusting, I know she's had the last 4 yrs of us to herself. I know all this. It does not make it easier. She does not hear me. I feel I've become this little fly that she fully ignores. I'm reading the "How to Talk so your kids will Listen ...", but it's just not working for me.<br><br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/mecry.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="crying">
 

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Have you considered involving Soleil in the activities that take you away from the baby? It could be time you spend with your dd <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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Sorry about the oversight, mamasoleil. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/redface.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Embarrassment"><br><br>
As to why you've lost the "positive approach" I know that when I'm tired and/or preoccupied my usual positive approach to parenting falls off in a big way. Hang in there, you have a lot on your plate right now, as does she.<br><br>
Im reading "How to Talk" right now as well. I have to say that the second line ("how to listen") has been really invaluable for me. Perhaps setting some time aside to hear what she's feeling about the big changes in your life? Talking also about how you are feeling? Perhaps the two of you could work together to come up with some workable solutions to particularly difficult parts of the new daily routine? This would not only be a way to work out a routine that would be helpful, it would be a great way to get some time together just the two of you. Could be she just needs to express some feelings about the changes and being that you're there to listen, it may help just to get some things off her chest?<br><br>
Just my .02... best to you!<br><br>
Em
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Soleil and I have always been attached, with this deep bond. Well, it seems we've grown appart a bit, and I know she's responding to my cues. I've become impatient with her, and therefore, she's giving it right back to me. So I am manifesting for us to get thru this, to grow together again, and to continue on with our beautiful bond. I am the one who needs to take the first step, I am the adult.<br>
So, I do thank you all for your posts. At first some made me defensive. But hey, I need to spend more time with her, instead of leaving her to her own 'playtime', I need to incorporate her more, and get her involved in the new family. I've actually alienated her more than I realized. We've been having many talks, many hugs, and without getting too deep on her, I think I am on the road to reconciling with my beautiful daughter.<br><br>
Peace,<br><br>
Mamasoleil/samson<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hippie.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hippie">
 

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I read this post because I'm in a similar situation with my 3 yr old ds. He's been through a lot lately. Baby sis was born 6/24, started using the potty 3 weeks ago, started pre-school 2 weeks ago. He's been through some major changes. I've found myself becoming very impatient with him when he does things to his baby sis (yes he pushes her in her swing, wakes her up, etc). He's been having all kinds of melt downs in addition, pulling my hair, punching, etc... it's been crazy!!! It's nice to be reminded to take a step back and see things from his perspective. I know he's just wanting love and atttention. I think I will peruse my copy of How to talk/listen...it's been a while.<br>
Thanks<br>
Denise
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I read How to talk.... and am now reading Giving The Love that Heals. I'm really loving this book. I can't believe I never saw that angle before! I think this book will also do wonders for my relationship with dh!<br>
Soleil and I are getting in tune with one another again. I realized that when I was not taking care of Samson, I was either doing dishes, laundry on the pc <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/redface.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Embarrassment"> or just chilling. Well, how fair was that to Soleil? What message was it sending her? That I only have time for Samson right now. Not the case!!!<br>
So, I have reawakened, and am enlighted and things are much much better!!!<br>
Thanks for all your words, even though I got defensive at first, I needed to hear them.<br><br>
Mamasoleil/samson<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hippie.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hippie">
 

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You should be so proud of yourself for getting things back on track so quickly!<br><br>
I could have written your post almost verbatim last year. I promise that it does get so much better. Life with a second baby is just incredibly overwhelming at first and it's so easy to put off the older, more independent child, especially when you are exhausted.<br><br>
It sounds like you are doing fantastic, so no words of advice, just a bit hug. "This too shall pass."
 

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Mamasoleil,<br><br>
It sounds like life has really turned around for you, I'm so happy that things are on the upswing and that you are your DD are connecting again.<br><br>
The book you mentioned sounds excellent and very intriguing... I'm going to check that one out for sure. Thanks for the mention of it.<br><br>
All the best,<br><br>
Em
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
THanks sistahs. We still have the odd struggle, but overall, we are reconnecting beautifully!!!! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love"><br><br>
Mamasoleil/samson<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hippie.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hippie">
 

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i needed this thread..<br><br>
hey mamasoleil.. i am in the same boat as you (were).. my son is somewhere between 3 and a half and 4 and things between us are not going well either. he is pushing all of my buttons, most of the day, and i'm losing patience with him often. it seems he's cranked up his demands 300%, so on top of meeting a newborn's needs, i have his too.. and the fact that he can do so much for himself, but choses to whine instead really gets to me.. but i know it is a viscious circle, and i'm the adult, so i have to make the choice to stop it. right? i think he could definately use some good one on one time with mama. we grew so so close these last few months and i really miss that <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> my only problem now is to figure out how to get anything else done, since baby likes to be held by mama the entire time he's awake, and doesn't sleep too well alone either..<br><br><br>
i have the book 'how to talk..', and should read it again. i also checked out 'giving the love that heals' from the library a couple of months ago, but only read the first few pages. seemed good tho. i think i will pick it up, definately..<br><br>
thanks for the inspiration! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love">
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">we grew so so close these last few months and i really miss that my only problem now is to figure out how to get anything else done, since baby likes to be held by mama the entire time he's awake, and doesn't sleep too well alone either.</td>
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Exactly!!! I so hear you! Ah, it's not perfect, but you know, it's so so much better. We are connecting again, and just tonight, she was watching me rock Samson and said, You are a beautiful mother!!!! Can I just say how good that felt??????<br>
Okay, have you invested in a sling? Cause really, if it wasn't for that, ....Samson loves/needs to be held too, so the sling works for everyone!!! Two free hands, just what I NEED!!!!<br>
And my partner works out of town, and just last week started commuting back and forth. I was doing everything on my own before that, and it's hard and stressful. I know you're on your own right now, it's tough. Is there someone who could come over and hold baby for an hour and give you full on free time with ds1? I asked my mil to do this when dh was gone, and it was good for our spirits!!!<br>
Thinking of you dear sistah, and I'm glad this thread inspired you.<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love"><br><br>
Peace, and reconnection to you and ds,<br><br>
Mamasoleil/samson<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hippie.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hippie">
 

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thanks, mamasoleil <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
well.. i went and got the book (giving the love that heals).. have only gotten throo a few pages so far. firstborn and i are doing a bit better, but it is still SO hard. one of them seems to always need me, either that or both of them. and obviously i'm not going to tell baby to leave me alone or please go play with your toys, so poor firstborn gets this more often than we'd like..<br><br>
but i am totally finding even just 10 mins here and there of focussed one on one time is soooo helpful. and i am loving watching him grow. it's so much more apparant with a tiny one in the house..<br><br>
congrats re: you and soleil! i hope things continue on an ever-smoother path for you guys.. and you are a wonderful mother!
 

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Hi! I haven't been on here in awhile- internet down and too busy! Anyway, I wanted t share something that helps me with my dd (she just turned 3) when I get caught in the negativity trap. I didn't read all the posts, so forgive me if I repeat!<br>
What I do (or try to do!) is pick a day where I am feeling pretty positive and in a good mood and and then I stay really involved with her- not doing chores or anything more than absolute bare necessities. And I praise her a lot- do things she likes, let her help me and praise her for getting so big that she can carry her dish to the sink, stuff like that. When she does somethine "undesirable" that has been a sore spot for us, I either completely ignore it, or minimize it. Like in your case, if your dd woke the baby up I would just go get the baby back to sleep and either not say anything to Soleil, or keep it very brief and positive "Whoops! You woke the baby, let's try to be as quiet as mice so I can get her to take a nap". Forego the lecture or reprimand.<br>
Now, I'm not saying do this everyday! For one thing, I have never met anyone capable of being that damn cheery all the time, and it wouldn't be good for Soleil either, IMO. But, I have found that "letting it go" for one day, maybe even two if you think you can manage it, really helps.<br>
The 2 ways it helps are 1. Soleil gets attention for good things, not for bad, etc etc etc.<br>
and 2. It helps you look at her good behavior and set the tone for a more positive relationship.<br>
My dd and I usually fall into the negativity trap when I am frustrated by something I feel is not age-appropriate (like she should know better by now), or if she's being crabby/defiant a lot (which, as I am sure you are aware of- is a vicious cycle of Mom being negative- so kid is too, on and on). By giving myself permission to just ignore all the bad stuff (Meaning I am off the hook for the day on trying to "fix" any problems we are having), then it opens us both up for more positive communication.<br>
Also, it always amazes me how quickly dd repsonds and becomes more pleasant to be around.<br>
So anyway, it took me way more room here than I needed to to say that, but that's my advice! Good luck!<br>
Sara
 
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