I am not going to say we are over the worst because with a toddler you never really know what the day may hold. We do, however, seem to be having a calmer time than we were a little while ago.
I have stopped trying to figure out what caused those rough two weeks – it was what it was and for now it is over.
I have often blogged about Kiara’s tantrums and how hard I found them and how long they went on for and they were draining for me, my parents and Cameron but I do think her situation was slightly different and once I realised what her triggers were I was able to manage them a lot better but Mr Jack didn’t seem to have triggers which made it so much harder!
Every single parenting book out there has chapters on taming toddlers but the reality is, every single child is different, they each have their own currency, their own triggers and what may work on them today won’t always work tomorrow.
It’s a process of elimination and maybe you get lucky and the first thing works but maybe you have to read through 27 books and on the final chapter you will find the answer.
I have had 3 different experiences with all 3 kids. Cameron was the easiest, he got a smack or two and then the mere threat of that would change his behavior and even now when I count, I barely get to 3 and he has responded.
The only thing that works with Kiara is speaking her language which isn’t always easy. A smack does nothing for her, she would stand, fists clenched and stare me down when I tried smacking, she would take stars of her star chart herself, counting to 3 ended up counting to a million, time outs where great fun for her. Now that she is older it is a littler easier to deal with bad behavior but it is still a challenge some days.
There was recently a flurry of blogs and twitter debates about smacking and I am not going into that now but one thing that bugs me is the anti-smackers who maintain they don’t want to control their child through fear and I do agree with that BUT I also feel that a child needs to be controlled (within reason obviously). You don’t want to kill your child’s spirit but they MUST learn certain things – like manners, to not run into the car park, to not throw their plates off the table, to not break their toys, to listen when their parent speaks. I am not here to be my kids friend, I am here to prepare them for real life and there will be a time where our house is not a democracy and my way (and David’s way) is the way we move! Finished!
These stages are milestones and all about testing the boundaries, learning what is acceptable and not. It is not always easy but the easy option has far reaching consequences for your child later on when they have to join the world.
So my advice – find your child’s currency, learn their triggers and then do what works for you, your child and your family! And get a bottle of rescue because it is going to be a bumpy ride!!
How was TWO’s for you?