Our darling little Lex has progressively become rather difficult in the last couple months. He is still two, but will turn three soon. I’ve found myself suddenly caught ill-prepared to deal with this stage of development. It is humbling. I thought I was doing a pretty good job, but lately it seems that for the past six months I missed some good opportunities to start providing better behavioral guidance. For example, giving him juice when he demanded it, just because I was pleased he could finally use “his own words” and express his desire. Now I am suddenly discovering that I need more developmental help than he does.
I have to try and resist with all of my will the urge to slap his hand and yell at him “No HITTING!!!”. Yes, it is ludicrous. I am the adult here and I know that example is the best teacher, and especially that bad example will override almost any other form of teaching. I need to step up my game fast before my own parental deficiencies harm my child’s development and even my marital stability.
Anyway, I have started searching the web for some help. I am also turning to my siblings for help. Some are in the same stages and some of them are ahead of me by years. I need all of the help I can get. Here are some of the published articles that I have found quite useful so far (this list should grow over time and I am open to suggestions):
I have noticed that I tend to do the same thing with my second child, Shemp,(a boy). At first we decided to flick him in the head when he bit (or bit him back – so he understood that it hurt others too), or hit his sister or dog. I thought that flicking was the way to go for him because he was so stubborn. He does do all of the bad behavior less and he listens to my words more and will even have a sit out for a short bit (he’s only 18 months) without getting up till I see he’s settled down. But… sometimes I have found myself reacting with my emotions when he does hit, by smacking his hand and saying “don’t hit” – then I feel like a bad parent and want to hit myself. I guess what I’m saying is that you are not alone in the learning. I will say that my daughter learned how to behave much faster then my son did, perhaps its the rough boy thing. Our kids have different personalities so what works for one might not work for the other, so trying new and different discipline tactics are called for, because we all learn differently. We will all get better at it as long as we are trying to improve our parenting skills.
Sadly that link 404s now.
Hi Julian, it seems that the website I linked to shuffled things around. I have corrected the link now. Thank you for pointing this out!