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Help me please... gonna lose it

696 Views 14 Replies 13 Participants Last post by  RedWine
Ugh.... my 2 year old (on Monday
) is into kicking while i'm trying ot change her diaper and its driving me batty. She's kicked me in the face before, and it is so frustrating (especially when i'm trying to change a poopy dipe) i'm about to go nuts.

I've asked her to please be still, I've tried counting to 10 (which we do for lots of things- not threatening just giving her a gauge of how long she has to do something, how long something- like combing hair- will be done), I get up and stop changing her (we do it on the floor) which makes her cry and I calmly tell her I can't change her diaper while she kicks. I ask her if she can be still, she says yes, and 50% of the time she is, and 50% of the time she goes back to kicking. She laughs. I explain that i'm angry and that i need her to be still, etc... etc... etc....

The thing is sometimes she is fine, and other times she's not. I don't force her to change her diaper- if she doesn't want to, we wait. If its'just pee and she's kicking, I get it off and worry about wiping, putting on a clean one later.

What can i do about this? today i got soooo mad I was raising my voice and walked away from her several times. I feel like I'm not doing this in the best manner possible, but am a bit at a loss for what else to do.
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Uggh. I feel your frustration. My son is doing that now and it drives me crazy mad. I'm hoping someone else has amazing advice because this doesn't work great, but it's all we have for now.

He calls it "juggling". So, of course, we remind him that it is really kicking. The only thing that works (I can't wait until the day I can talk to him rationally
), is to tell him I'm going to wait until his feet are gentle. I stop changing his diaper if he's kicking. Now, we are not big into rewards and punishments, but I do believe in natural consequences. So, if he's doing this at night, I remind him that we have a certain amount of time for reading/playing/whatever and that if he wants to spend it kicking, that's okay. For reading, especially, he usually stops.

So, that's it. Not great. My best suggestion would be to get as much sleep as possible so you can stay as calm as possible.
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argh, I know that's frustrating!

Some things that worked for us, some of the time - standing up diaper changes, standing in the bathtub diaper changes, a really appealing book reserved only for diaper changes (maybe she can hold it and you can already know it by heart or at least enough to tell some kind of story,since you need your hands!)

also, just prepping yourself beforehand by putting towels around, wearing ratty clothes yourself, not being in a hurry for somewhere, convincing yourself that cleaning up poop from all over is just part of the process right now.

also, I know some people don't like this suggestion, but could you let her go diaperless at home, that way poop will be easier to clean (from the floor) and there's a chance she'd get it in the potty some of the time.

Things that have worked to avoid kicking during diaper changes for our kids included:

Having a special toy for dc to hold/play with just during diaper changes

Making diaper changing into a silly game

: giving snacks to dc to hold or eat while being diapered-especially helpful when putting on a diaper is absolutely necessary

Honestly, often during kicking phases I just plain walked away, like you, as many times as necessary and without saying anything more than "no kicking." And if that meant dc didn't get a diaper for a long time that was okay. Nakedness increases awareness of bodily functions anyway (great for potty readiness) and accidents are easy to clean up
If dc cried about not getting a diaper, we'd try again but only a few times because I would get really frustrated after a few times. Usually with my kids these things only lasted a few days at a time.
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thanks everyone... i knew it probably wasn't just my kid! There are some good suggestions here, and I'll try them all.

We have been really lax about no diaper in the house before, but she started thinking that going on the floor was an option, not just an accident
. She can totally control her bladder (tho not BMs yet, but she does know when they're coming and will ask for a dipe) but just isn't ready to give up dipes yet. I don't care.... except for the kicking!

anyway... keep them coming- seems like others are benefitting too
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My ds (almost 3) has been doing this for a long time. At first I would get mad, which he found hilarious. I would explain that kicking hurts etc.. which he ignored totally. So what works best for us is I calmly place him on the ground naked (I can usually get the dipe off) and walk away. I tell him mama doesn't like being kicked, and I will finish when he is done kicking and ready to let me do it.
He likes routine, and dislikes not following through with an activity, or stopping in the middle of something. He gets all concerned, and will come running after me asking me to put a clean diaper on.
We have to go through this every time, but it works!

Not sure if you're anti tv or not, but if he has a bad poop or I'm desperate, I'll put on a favorite video and change it while he's watching, he has no problem with this.
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I wanted to share a couple things that have worked for us in the past. Meaning, they don't always work!

I try to tell my kids that if they help me we can go REALLY FAST! And say it like you're all excited, and make big, exciting movements. So I'll repeat "Really, fast, fast," etc, and act all harried and silly, and make weird head movements. If it works, it works really well, and we all end up laughing. Just go crazy with it and try to keep them distracted by acting like a goof while you're quickly changing them.

We do a lot of standing up diaper changes, which were hard to do quickly at first, and nearly impossible to do for poopies, but work well for wet dipes.

And my favorite, though a little more pricey
I'll take a sheet of stickers, and plaster them all over their bellies and arms, and they'll transwer the stickers one by one on to my PG belly, which for some reason makes a great canvas. But you can reuse the stickers a couple times before they lose their stickiness. Lately, though, the drawback has been that they don't want me to take the stickers off, LOL.
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i totally feel your pain. my 23 month old is doing similar, and also screaming NO! every time a diaper change is coming. my most recent solution is to tickle him silly right before, and change his diaper while he's catching his breath.

thank you for posting this - i have more ideas now from reading responses. good luck! (and happy birthday to your little girl!)
I restrained his legs with one hand (gently) and said that I would not let him hurt mommy. That is what I usually do when he is being aggressive during a time I need to do something for him. We are consistent in that he will be restrained if he is doing something that will hurt hiim or someone else, explaining that kicking is not appropriate at that time.

We have the series of books too, "Biting Hurts," "Kicking Hurts," etc and he likes them. Somehow for him it helps to read it in the book than just hear it from us and we remind him in the book. The book does the "what can you do instead" and we do that too. Like asking him what he could do instead of kicking. He is big on "helping" so usually for us asking him to "help" by holding up his legs, hold the clean wipe, whatever worked the majority of the time.

And thank goodness he finally potty trained (he just turned 3). :)
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My almost 2 started that at about a year, so i stopped using a changing table and put her on the floor instead. I have her sideways and I gently place one leg over her legs (although this doesn't work when wiping poop.) I also sing a song she knows that has hand motions (the itsy bitsy spider or the wheels on the bus, etc.)
dd started doing all kinds of 'tricks' around this age during diaper changes, and it was the sign for me that she was ready for toilet learning (she had other sings of readiness) and underwear.

what about getting her panties and trying to go diaper free?
annabanana... she has done the potty in the past (see my previous post) and is showing renewed interest in it... I hope she takes to it! While I have resigned myself to going completely at her pace, I would *love* for her to get it any day now.

tanyaMT- can you give me more info about those books? like who wrote them, publisher, etc...? they sound good.

thanks for the tips. I've tried a few and just venting and getting my head around it a bit has helped me deal. I know my little girl gets it, she's just in big testing phase right now. thanks!!
I Feeeeellllllllll your pain.
: DS thinks it's a great game. He clocked me in the eye last week. I know I may pay for this in the future but I use distraction. at 25 months reasoning is out!
There are items that he can only fiddle with when we change. They're usually butt paste, vapor rub, anything with a cap to take off & put on. When all else fails I redirect by 'nibbling his pigs'. I just hope beyond hope this doesn't reinforce the behavior later on.
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I always tried to do it as quickly as possible, while handing the most wonderful thing I could think of as i was doing so. Some things are challenging, and this is one of them. Do the best you can and know that's just the life of a toddler in diapers. It will pass and try not to get too crazy. It's not the big deal it restrospect.
There aren't going to be any emotional ramifications later regarding having tried to change a diaper really fasr, while handing a child a piece of playdough, as the child wriggled madly.
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Soooo very glad to know I'm not alone in this! My 2 1/2 year old does this, also about 50% of the time. Sometimes she asks for her diaper to be changed, other times I have to chase her around. I don't mind waiting to change her, but there are times when it must be done right away.

I've tried reasoning, I've tried giving her something to hold, I've yelled at her
: (not proud of this, this is an area I am trying to work on), I've pinned her down. Everything I try results in laughter and increased kicking...
: It is really frustrating sometimes, and I wish I knew how to handle it in a more effective way.

Mickiswing -- I like the game idea ("okay, let's do this FAST!"). I will try this next time.
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