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So, my DS1 is 3, and has become a very whiny, crying, bitching little boy over the last month or two. Its to the point, where I no longer want to do anything with him, because all I hear no matter what we're doing is how he doesn't like this or he wants to do that, or this is hard, or just, whatever. We used to love going for walks together (we're out int he country, with lots of very nice hiking), but as I told DH this morning, I'm done taking him for walks - because teh whole time, no matter how long or short, all I hear is how its too hard to walk, or he's tired, or hungry, or thirsty, or just whatever. And I'm sick of it. Doesn't matter what we're eating its never what he wants, and he whines and cries and bitches and moans about it. Doesn't matter if he wanted to paint or color or play with playdough or cars or whatever, as soon as its out and we're doing so, I get whining and crying about *SOMETHING* - that DS2 is 'bugging' him, or that he doesn't have the right paints, or now he doesn't want to do x and wants to get y out or just whatever. And I'm just sick of it. I'm to the point, where I no longer want to do *ANYTHING* with him, because it inevitably turns into whining and crying... and I just don't care. We pretty much just sit around and watch tv, because that way at least I only get whining/crying a couple times a day (time for meal, nap or bed, or if we're going somewhere, mostly).<br><br>
I've tried ignoring his whining and crying and that hasn't worked. I've tried yelling at him to stop, and that hasn't worked. Lately we've devolved to 'if you don't like it, goto bed' which usually gets him to stop crying, but if not, off he goes, along with lots of tears... I don't like the person I am these days w/ him, but I just don't know wtf to do to make it stop. And I just can't take it anymore.
 

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That really sucks, i'm sorry. If it makes you feel any better, it's really REALLY normal for three years old. Honestly, all of my kids have gone through it to some degree. It'll get better i promise!<br><br>
I'd just suggest staying calm (as hard as it is!), and honestly I'd keep with, "If you can't stop, go to your room". Try to empathize some, but don't let it take control. Kids can really get carried away with it.<br><br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/hug2.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Hug2">
 

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Awww, I hate that you are going through this! My DD is almost three, and she has little issues like this. I tried ignoring it, yelling, watching TV and trying to keep the peace, and none of those things worked. What has worked for us over the last couple of months is telling her to go sit in her room (or on the chair in the hall, with nothing distracting around) and that she can get up when she is ready to have a happy day/stop crying/act right. After she gets her self together, we have a 'talk' where I explain that whatever it is that she was so pissed about is pretty trivial, ("it's not a big deal") and that instead of screaming and crying, that she needs to use her words to tell me what's wrong, and what would fix it. Over the last week or two I have been able to sternly say "HEY! Lets have a talk" and she will sit down with me and usually tell me what her problem is.<br><br><br>
Don't know why the talks seem to work for her, but reminding her to try to think of what WILL make her happy at least re-focuses her.<br><br>
I hope that helps! On the really hard days, I just stick her in the car and drive to nowhere in particular... it helps us both zone out and forget the crappy situation we just had.
 

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My son has cycled in and out of this behaviour throughout age 3. Its really normal. He'll go months where he is SO much fun and a joy to have around but watch out when he's not!!<br><br>
My DH started talking about his "love tank" and when he is acting like this we make a big deal about whether his love tank is low. And it takes some physical connection to fill it. Hugs or snuggles in bed or even wrestling and roughing up.<br><br>
Maybe you son is trying to tall you something through his behaviour!! Good luck trying to decipher it!!
 

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My son hasn't hit that place yet, so I do not speak from personal experience, but it occurs to me that you could take him out anyway, and say, "if you have nothing nice to say, please be quiet so your brother and I can enjoy xyz," and then talk with your younger son about what a nice day it is, or how cool the bug on the ground is, or whatever.<br><br>
I also like lotus.blossom's idea of discussing a low love tank.
 

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I'm sorry you are feeling this way. It sounds like he is being a normal 3 year old, though. That age was definitely the hardest for us so far (my DS is almost 5, but 3 was awful!). I am dreading DD being 3. Literally on my DS's 3rd birthday it was like a light switch! By the time he was almost 4, he was back to my sweet little guy. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
HUGS, hang in there. It DOES get better.
 

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Wow, I feel the same way about my DD who is almost 2. She just turns anything that might be pleasant into a horror and is very disagreeable. I try to be around her as little as possible and feel guilty about it.<br>
Sometimes I feel like my life is over and she zaps the pleasure out of anything enjoyable. I miss the days of yoga and tea in the mornings and long hot showers before bed. Lots of times I feel like it's "her or me" and I am always at odds with her trying to take care of myself or her. I never yell at her or am harsh with her but she could sense how much I dislike her I think and how I try to avoid spending time with her at any cost pretty much.
 

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My DD is only 18 mo but she has some strong opinions already! Have you tried to give your son some choices? I feel like choices really empower kids even if they are small ones. Like, do you want to have your sandwich with milk or juice? Do you want to go for a walk this morning or after lunch? It really makes my DD feel special!
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>MamaPhD</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15436123"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">My DD is only 18 mo but she has some strong opinions already! Have you tried to give your son some choices? I feel like choices really empower kids even if they are small ones. Like, do you want to have your sandwich with milk or juice? Do you want to go for a walk this morning or after lunch? It really makes my DD feel special!</div>
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These suggestions ahve helped us when DS was in his super whiny crying phase. He still whines, but not nearly as much and it's been since he was 4 or so, that he has been such an annoyance that I felt much the same way as the OP.<br><br>
It does get better and it is normal! Part of what frustrated me so much was the fear in the back of my mind that I was raising my child to be a whiny crying horrible adult. I wasn't, of course, as it's a phase, but I did think so and that made the issues 10x worse.<br><br>
Let him make lots of choices, in which you are ok with either decision. A little empathy when he is whiny, and limits help too. "Oh, yes, it's hard when your feet hurt on the walk, I understand. Would you like to take a shorter route home or keep plugging on for a bit to the pond." (or big tree or rock or some destination you guys know about).<br><br>
Of course, much of the time during this phase the whining will likely continue, but providing choices, some control over his own destiny, empathy, and then a model for healthy behavior to daily frustrations (like his whining!) will help to get him through this very very TRYING phase.<br><br>
I wish you all the strength in the world!
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">s mama!
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/hug2.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Hug2"><br><br>
ITU. My almost 5-year old has been intolerable off and on for the last year, but even since he turned 2! He's a very sweet boy, but whines a lot and talks incessantly.<br><br>
What has helped us is doing things he likes to do. Not always, and not every day, but we will cycle through his favorite activities about once a week - his favorite play place, the zoo, even the mall. When we are able to do these things together, we re-connect. He's on his best behavior because he's happy, and I'm happy because he is.<br><br>
It's definitely a challenge. My son is also much more pleasant when he has gotten some "him" time, like at the gym's child care, or the drop-in day care that we use, or at preschool...when he plays with other kids, he's better with me. His preschool is at a daycare, and I ended up putting him in full days, 3 days a week, because he was so bored and challenging at home. I've come to realize there are some kids who just really need time with kids their own age more than we think they do, and this came as a HUGE shock to me. But honestly, he is so much happier with a life balanced between preschool and home.<br><br>
We still do a lot of the activities we've always done. We just don't do them as often, and it works. If DS wants to sit on my lap and watch Nick Jr., that's what we do, because he likes to watch it, and I like to snuggle with him. That's what's most important - what works for YOU and your child.<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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We go to playgroup 2x a week almost every week, and try to hit the storytimes at the local library too (though their down to just once a month due to budget cuts <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad">), but it just doesn't seem to help. I try to give him choices whenever I can, and try to do fun things with him, but it just doesn't seeem to matter - EVERYTHING devloves into tears and crying about *SOMETHING*! Like I said, we both used to love going on walks - we'd look for salamanders, toads, frogs, turtles, worms, etc, but these days, all he does is whine about how its too hard, or he can't see the house (duh! you've *NEVER* been able to see the house from most of our walk!), or he's suddenly starving, or dying of thirst, or just, whatever other lame excuse he can come up with to scream and cry about. Same for virtually anything else thats fun that I try to do with him - if its not a nice day, I'll ask him what he wants to do, and we'll start doing so, and then within 5 minutes he'll have found something to cry about - now he wants to paint with the other paints, or get out the playdough or the beans, or something else that makes a huge mess, but absolutely refuses to help clean up this one first, or just, something.<br><br>
I always thought I'd homeschool my kids, but I don't think so now. Not him anyhow. I can't wait till the fall when he starts preschool, I really can't. Just so I don't have to be around him for the mornings anyhow. He seems to listen and behave 100% better when he's with other people, but with me/dh he's just a little terror of a whiny brat.
 

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Ok, I only have a 2.5 year old, but I am not sure that what you are describing is normal. Yeah, every once and a while, maybe even daily, then maybe. But you sound downright miserable.<br><br>
My nephew was a lot like this. People told my sister that my nephew was being a brat and needed to be a) punished, b) made to realize his parents were boss, c) would go away at some point, etc. My sister's pedi was really great and my sister had a conversation with the doc without my nephew. What they decided was to have an occupational therapist (OT) to evaluate him for sensory integration issues. Bam, he definitely had them and OT has significantly helped.<br><br>
It was like NOTHING would make him happy. The tag in his shirt would be bothering him, but he would not be able to understand or tell you this. So, it was the wrong cup, the wrong beverage (even if that was what he asked for), the wrong place at the table, the wrong way to pour, and on and on (as he cried and looked so miserable). He knew something wasn't right and he was trying to communicate that, but he had no idea that it was the tag in his shirt (or how his sock was on, or the texture of the food, etc.). It was awful. But, once they figured it out, my sister was able to work with some things and do some things for him (in addition to OT) and you could really see the improvement in his mood.<br><br>
My nephew did better around other people as well. It was like he could control it more, but he was SO TIRED after holding it all in and sometimes, the outpour at home was 10 times worse because of it.<br><br>
I can't say whether or not this is your child, but I would definitely look into it. If you are miserable and your child obviously is, then I would actively try to find out the cause. Maybe it is normal and time will be the cure.<br><br>
I hope you figure it out soon, for both your sakes.
 

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What really helped us was understanding the difference between introvert needs and extrovert needs. DH and I are introverts, and DS is very much an extrovert. I kept thinking he needed alone time to recharge when he got like that, because that's what I need when I get cranky, but for him, doing things alone was like the worst punishment possible. If he doesn't get time with friends at least 2-3 days a week, he's a nightmare that gets gradually worse the longer he goes without age appropriate companionship.
 

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Have you tried dropping him off with a friend or relative for a bit--maybe an an hour or two? It helped me when I was feeling at the end of my rope with my 2yo. her behavior improved a little and I felt really refreshed.
 

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Can you go outside? Sometimes just letting them BE outside can help? On the days when my DS (3) is just plain challenging me on everything- we go outside and stay outside until practically dinner time. I find that I calm down too. And nothing buys time like letting DS flip on the garden hose and have at it.<br><br>
Other activities I set DS up with when he's being challenging are a texture box- dumping a whole bunch of rice or beans or marbles into a box and giving him measuring spoons to dig and scoop with. I take it outside so if he makes a mess I don't care.<br><br>
We also do sidewalk chalk, a water box (same concept as above but with water), sticker books, and I let DS "cook" with a whole bunch of cheap ingredients (flour, spices, sugar) and let him go nuts with mixing bowls and spoons and some water- again- outside.<br><br>
I like to set him up with activities and then step away. It keeps the day going and I get a mental break.
 

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was going to post my own thread about whining til i read this one. ds (almost 3) really can be the perfect little guy most times. lately his trying times have become a lot more often. he was at his friends 3rd b-day party the other evening & as we were leaving a few people commented on what a nice, quiet little boy he was. that evening he really was too, just quietly playing. at our house though he can be SOO crazy, looking for everything to play with that's NOT a toy (or i should say that he's not supposed to play with). i completely agree with pp on just getting them out, even if it's not your perfect idea of a walk. the fresh air & sun can do wonders for both of you. we luckily have a playground right in front of our house where we spend lots of time. we might not make it out til after nap time, but he's always happier after being out. we looked on dr.sear's site & he also suggests trying to figure out what "sets off" the whining-hunger, tiredness, etc. i know it seems obvious, but i always surprise myself when i realize ds is just being crazy because he was hungry. glad to read that this is a normal phase though, makes me feel better to know i'm not in the boat alone.
 

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Just wanted to add again, that you are not alone. My DS, three in August, FREQUENTLY cycles into the whining machine. You start doing something, he doesn't want to do it. You give him what he asks for, then he doesn't want it. Really really gets frustrating. I just try to redirect redirect redirect. Eating has been a REAL struggle and I've found that the less we push it, he goes in cycles there too. Some days he whines about everything, I will NOT make a special meal just for him, he can eat what we're eating, I am soo not starting that downward spiral, but then a day later, he'll eat like a horse and be totally amiable. From everything I've heard, witnessed with local children, etc, this is totally normal. With another little one around, it CAN be exhausting though, so I feel for you. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>lotus.blossom</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15434575"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">...<br><br>
My DH started talking about his "love tank" and when he is acting like this we make a big deal about whether his love tank is low. And it takes some physical connection to fill it. Hugs or snuggles in bed or even wrestling and roughing up....!!</div>
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Oh my gosh, this is brilliant! I am totally going to use this!
 

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We don't "allow" the whining anymore. (As much as that is even possible) I say "I couldn't understand you, can you please use your normal voice?" ... And now he knows how to ask properly for things, so i say "try again" when he whines or demands something.<br><br>
I also have to remind him that we need to focus on and appreciate what we are doing now, and not just think of other things we could be doing. "We are doing blue playdough now. Would you like to put blue away and get red out?"<br><br>
My son has an amazing memory, and will ask for some random toy we haven't seen for months or a year! This one is tough, so I have to do lots of reminding to play with the toys we have out. I can also say we will look for it at X time (after nap or whatever), and that helps him a lot. He knows we have boxes of toys in the attic so I can also offer to do a toy swap for him, and that helps him move on.<br><br>
Have you read "Simplicity Parenting" ? Great book. I haven't gotten there yet, but I would really like to declutter most of our toys. The point is that with fewer toys, the kids are less overwhelmed and end up enjoying the few toys even more.
 
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