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Old 04-19-2013, 08:22 PM   #11
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I will give 2 choices. Then when DS won't choose because he's being sassy I choose for him. Usually the choice he doesn't want. But it solves it.
Daycare 1 day s week for BOTH kids. Even just drop in for a few hours. Then do nothing but ME time.
Also, give yourself a break from some chores if you can. They aren't that important. It is enough to take care of 2 little ones that young that close in age. You can fold towels when they are 4. Be gentle with yourself. It will make it easier to count to 10. Again.
It is a phase and it WILL pass. It WILL get easier.

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Old 04-19-2013, 08:23 PM   #12
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Re: I am a horrible mom

Just want to give you a , its not the terrible twos for no reason! Good news is being consistant now will pay off, and it's not forever. Check out my spirited child, it really gave me insight on toddler behavior and how to communicate better

Also, cut yourself some slack, there's a lot of adjustment going in for the two of you. Try to get a schedule set, set up some zones where you can put the newb somewhere safe and get some one on one with your toddler, etc. and insist on quiet time, put n classical music or a quiet TV show.
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Old 04-19-2013, 08:53 PM   #13
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Re: I am a horrible mom

Ok, I am back.

Sounds like she is totally normal. My third daughter is 2 hrs 8 months and she does EXACTLY that same clothing thing. Pulls every single item out while I am rocking the six month old baby boy.

I personally believe that true disciplinary techniques like "time out" are only just starting to carry real meaning and taking things away is probably not well understood yet.

Some suggestions...

Try to keep temptation away. I try my darndest to just not even have the laundry available within reach of my 2 yr old. I fold while she is napping or playing in another room or in bed for the night or even before she gets up in the morning. I have even been known to fold it as i pull it off the line when have have been line drying, while she is distracted with being outside And if I cat get it put away right away, it does go in a room that has a door I can close so she can't get to.

Next time she puts soap in her sister's eye, in addition to just telling her not to do it, you redirect also. Sit it would go something like this: Bend down to her level, look in he eyes and say "Mara, do not put soap in your sister's eye. If you do it again, you will sit in time out for two minutes. Here let's come over here, we need to wash sissy's eyes out now. Here can you find me the towel in here to dry her off while I wash her off?". And of course you take her hand and bring her into the bathroom with you.

Going along with that, this is a great age to begin having her "help" mommy. Lots of kids this age are getting into wanting to help. So when you are doing something, like folding laundry, you hand her a diapers, one at a time, to put away on the shelf. It might rake a bit to teach her where they go, and even after everything is all put up; you might discover that the diapers ended up in a pile in the dirty laundry pail (she say with experience in he voice) but at least she wasn't creating a huge mess somewhere else in the mean time.

But yeah, at this age, it's really lots of teaching, lots of re direction and lots of frustration. They don't call it the terrible twos for nothing. And not knowing how to deal with it doesn't make you a terrible mom.
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Old 04-19-2013, 09:01 PM   #14
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Just wanted to offer some hugs. I'm dealing with the same type of thing with my DD. I hope you get a break soon.
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Old 04-19-2013, 09:05 PM   #15
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Re: I am a horrible mom

Oh, also, when my now 2 yr old was 6mo, my now 4 yr old was 2, and my DH was in school full time and working full time. It does suck and they are gone a lot and doing homework etc etc etc. You still NEED and deserve to get a break. And as their dad, he needs to take a break from work and spend some time with the kids too. So, make some plans to leave the kids with him at a date/time when it won't have too much of an impact on his school work and just GO. Go garage sailing with a friend or to lunch with your mom or something. Sometime we don't realize how much we do need that break until we force ourselves to take it.
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Old 04-19-2013, 09:10 PM   #16
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Re: I am a horrible mom

Toddlers are so hard. I've cried on more than 1 occasion due to my DS1's behavior. A few things I've found work better than spanking/time outs - taking away privledges. I do it quietly. If he's asked not to do something and isn't listening I turn off the TV, or put up the toy, or whatever the action is. I don't say a word. He tantrums for awhile but gets over it faster. If he's in time up I see his guard immediately go up. It takes longer to recover from. I'm not proud of it, but I did try a small bout of spanking and it wasn't super effective for him (though I can see how it is with some kids, at an appropriate age.) Taking privledges and taking no BS is key. It's exhausting at times, but consistency will pay off. She'll start to get that her behavior won't fly. Don't let it visably upset you, just quietly and sternly take action. Also, if you see a meltdown close to happening for no reason sometimes it's helpful to redirect. I do "quiet time" with DS1 if he's on the verge of a meltdown. Basically I put on a movie, give him milk and his blanket and let him cool off.
GL, there is no miracle answers but I hope my tips might do something. It's never a fun place to be
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Old 04-19-2013, 09:31 PM   #17
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Re: I am a horrible mom

I try to always use the "if you do this, then this...." I try to use natural/logical consequences.

For example:
"If you take your shoes of in the car, you will go barefoot and might get owwies"
"If you splash water out of the bathtub, I will drain the water and you have to take a shower"
"If you dump your food on the floor, breakfast is all done and you don't get anymore food"
etc.

Sometimes it seems a little harsh, but most of the time it only takes one time of my following through before he listens the next time the same situation comes up. This seems to work better than time out because he remembers the consequence better than he would remember time out.

Of course, when I can't think of a consequence quick enough is when we have problems. But as soon as you say it, the very next time it has to be enforced. If you even slip once, they will push you every time. If you are consistent with the same punishment for the same behavior they learn quickly!
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Old 04-19-2013, 11:43 PM   #18
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Re: I am a horrible mom

Something that hasn't been brought up, and I know many people think it brought up too often, is diet. It doesn't always make a noticeable difference, but for some kids, their behavior is greatly affected by what they eat. Anything artificial (colors, flavors, sweeteners including high fructose corn syrup), gluten, and dairy seem to be the more common culprits.
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Old 04-20-2013, 05:45 AM   #19
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My son is 21m and has no expressive language. He understands everything and he can nod.

He is constantly into everything. Everything. Plus he escapes the house. (He did before we brought in a locksmith) We are in the process of locking everything down. But there are some things I cannot prevent. We have a baby grand piano in the living room, and I tend to use it to put papers and stuff on. William climbs on it and knocks everything on the floor. Nothing I can do to stop his climbing, but I won't store papers up there anymore just in case the reason he's going up there is to see what there is.

And now that I see how it's going to be with him, I asses every mess and try to figure out what I can do to prevent it. Because I think I have a way to go before I can change his behavior.
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Old 04-20-2013, 06:19 AM   #20
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I have two kids with crazy sensory processing issues, among other things This leads me to think an evaluation may be a good route to go with her, rule out the possibility that this is more than a young child's defiant nature. Or if it is, you can seek more appropriate methods of helping her.

I have most certainly been in your place Mama.
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