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(((HUGS))), Empathy... you got 'em. Here are my thoughts.

Hang in there. Ride it out as best you can and remember, it's not a lasting personality trait, but something he very normal for him to go through and it will pass. Not the most earthshattering advice of all time, but it's gotten me through on a number of occasions.

My DS is usually an easy going, happy kid. And then, he goes through times (usually days, weeks) were he's just darned contrary and yes, the stepped up nursing is an issue for us as well. Since his teeth have been in since his second birthday, I attribute these times to growth spurts (emotional, physical or both). I do find that being extra tired, not feeling well or needing food will intensify this sort of thing so I'm extra careful during these stages, to keep on top of those things.

Moreover, I've found that whenever I can give him any power at all over his own world, it makes a huge difference in how we relate. It's easy to get wrapped up in these stages, and he and I will get into this visious circle of me just be plain tired and he stepping it up more and more. When I can relax, give empathy and allow him to just be as much as possible, it helps.

The nursing thing is hard. DS hasn't been through this in a while now, but early last summer he was nursing all the time and it was starting to drive me bonkers (hey, he was abut 29 months at that time!). I found that I could distract him sometimes, and also put conditions on the nursing session. "Ok, we can nurse for 5 minutes and then we'll go and get a snack, or play or go out, or whatever." I was surprised that this actually worked some of the time... if I fought him and just said no, not now, he would lose it, walk off and usually in his emotional state hurt himself and really need to nurse... *sigh* All in all, I just rode this one out too...

Anyway, I'm rambling but you have my sympathy. Know it will pass, remind yourself as often as possible and try and do something nice for yourself in the meantime. Treating myself well, is usually akin to dealing better with life overall. (HUG)
 
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