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(Note: My son is somewhat verbal - but not able to communicate complex things yet.)<br><br>
Some people seem to define all crying, complaining, etc. as whining. What do you think is ok and what is not ok or healthy? What should be encouraged or discouraged? Is all crying outside of being really physically hurt or sick out of bounds?<br><br>
Some people think if you let a 3 year old whine/ cry a lot they'll grow up in a number of distorted unhealthy ways. How does the way you respond play out into later years, in your opinion?
 

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With my kids, I see a clear difference between whining and crying. Whining has a horrid tone. And in general, whining is over a want, not a need. My kids want ice cream, but they don't need it. Crying is over a need. They want a hug, but they also need the hug (because they are upset about XYZ, angry, afraid... whatever).<br><br>
I don't know what you mean about growing up with distorted, unhealthy ways? Sometimes people get upset and need to cry. Or have a hug. Or punch a sofa... My kids sometimes cry a lot in one day. Often if they have had a bad day, then other things can easily set them off. Or if they are tired. Then they will go days without crying at all. I find that if it has been a really long time since I last cried, then I have a ton of tears when I am tired. I am not sad at all, in fact I could be completely happy, but for some reason the tears have to come out. Maybe there's even a scientific explanation.
 

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I have 3 year old and a 5.5 year old boys. It's pretty clear what is whining and what is not. I don't actually think I heard real whining until about 4-5 years old. To me, it's a fake crying-like high pitched complaint or demand, when he really has the capacity to ask better. I do often ask my 5yo to use a "regular voice" and not a "whiny voice". I don't like the sound of the sentence "stop whining!" so I don't put it that way. I might say "I really don't like that sound. Can you use a pleasant voice to ask me?" Or I say "I just can't listen to the whining voice!" And I'll ask for a nicer voice.<br><br>
The 3 year old - he's still at the point of not having so much control when he feels he neeeeds something. He doesn't really whine, doesn't know how yet. He does use a scream/squeal that has carried over from before he was as good at expressing himself by talking. So I do tell him I can't hear what he's saying when he does that and I ask him to try to use a regular voice.<br><br>
Crying is a different story. It's allowed. It's a real expression of emotion, or hurt, or anger, etc. If someone is crying so much that I can't hear what he's trying to tell me or ask me, then I have to say that I need to wait until he's done crying, or ask if he can try to stop long enough to ask me again. Crying is usually brief anyway, a release of emotion.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>AllisonR</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15482012"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Maybe there's even a scientific explanation.</div>
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When you cry, stress hormones are released in your tears.[/sidebar]
 

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Any crying or other genuine expression of emotion (that isn't violent or hurtful) is fine, and supported<br><br>
Whining is a different beast altogther, and involves a certain high pitched nasally tone that is designed to get a reaction from a caregiver.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>reezley</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15482779"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I do often ask my 5yo to use a "regular voice" and not a "whiny voice". I don't like the sound of the sentence "stop whining!" so I don't put it that way.</div>
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Today my 3 year old was seriously whining and wouldn't let up, so I pulled up the "STOP WHINING!" clip of Arnold Schwartzenager from Kindergarten Cop on youtube and played it repeatedly. It actually worked, and made him giggle. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
Okay, sorry about that brief threadjack. :p
 
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