ARRRGH Children please please give me advice!

Any issues with what nappies to buy, home schooling etc. In fact if you have kids or are planning to this is the section for you.
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growingthings
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Re: ARRRGH Children please please give me advice!

Post: #217670 growingthings
Tue Dec 21, 2010 10:06 pm

I absolutely agree wholeheartedly with the being consistent part. Whether it is to say NO or anything else. Stand your ground and stick to it. With 2 and 5 year old girls their big thing is 'willfullness' rather than anything more physical, sometimes it takes a long time to get the message through but it does eventually.

I also find making them help clear up messes they have made, whilst not necessarily making things easier for me, are useful in re-enforcing that this is time wasted on 'jobs' that could be put to good use on 'activities'.

And as someone who works with learning disabled adults ( an average mental age of somewhere between 4 and 6) consistency is the key, back down even once and immediately they put you on the back foot. I find it's the same with my girls. My eldest is very stubborn, moody and prone to ignoring me when it suits her and wailing and screeching when it doesnt, she just happens to have very complex health needs, and when we first found out about her heart and all these other things it was very, very tempting to just give in as we were both terrified that the tempers she was having would affect her, but we resisted and it was well worth it. To be Frank she's been a bit of a sod for nigh on three years, but now the good most definitely outweights the (daily) bad. It's taken a hell of a long time but it is working.

Be consistent JB, get a plan of action and stick to it. I could have just said that really couldn't I? But I was trying to illustrate the point I guess!

Lorna x

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Re: ARRRGH Children please please give me advice!

Post: #217671 Jessiebean
Tue Dec 21, 2010 10:25 pm

Hi Lorna,
thanks for your reply- you could have just said the last line but I often find that people who dish out advice on dealing with kiddies often haven't really dealt with many difficulties themselves so it always good to read background info. I find it really upsetting that so many of us have such a difficult time with our little ones- if having children is what we are meant to do why are some parts so very very hard?
I hope that eventually the lovely nature of our boys will become stronger than their desire to dismantle everything and get their own way ( we do let them dismantle some things but getting through to them that not everything is theirs to do what they want with is tricky).
"Never, never, in nothing great or small, large or petty, never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense.”

my blog: http://thedullroarphilosophy.blogspot.com/

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Re: ARRRGH Children please please give me advice!

Post: #217759 citizentwiglet
Wed Dec 22, 2010 11:19 pm

I've only sort of skim-read this thread, so huge apologies if I'm just repeating something someone else has already said.

I have two boys, aged 2 and 4. When they are sweet, they are very, very sweet. When they are bad, they are demonic. I think most parents will say the same - I certainly know that my mum said it about me!

Honey, it's not them that have to 'change' - it's you. Or, rather, how you view their behaviour. At their age, they are just learning about the World and how it works. And, of course, how to break it. And then try to fix it so it works again, but better. (Some boys, of course, never grow out of this phase.. :mrgreen: ). They really don't care if it upsets Mummy that much, because they don't really notice - young boys, unlike young girls, are less 'socially aware' and are so engrossed in 'what is it, how does it work, what happens when I do this', they have yet to learn the more social side of things. Look at the differences in how children play - give a boy a load of bricks, he'll build a tower and knock it down, or crash a train into it. A girl will (usually) create a house with the action going on in the inside. Boys are about action, movement, chaos. Girls, even from a young age, are about nuture and social interaction (including the important skill of listening, and understanding when their actions are making people cross). It goes back to our ancient ancestors - young boys were soon expected to be with other males, carving out their place in society learning to run, jump, climb, hunt, escape difficulty and build things. Girls would be around the other women, in a more nuturing role, learning from the campfire. It sounds a cliche, but I don't think it is. Obviously, there are always exceptions, but on the whole I would say that, from experience, young children ARE very different according to their sex, regardless of whether you try to bring them up in a non gender specific way.

I'm not one for parenting manuals, but I got lent a copy of Sue Palmer's '21st Century Boys' - if you can get hold of it, it is WELL worth a read. Unfortunately a lot of it covers the UK's education system (so not relevant to you), but the whole thought behind the differences between how boys and girls develop and learn is absolutely fascinating.

So - firstly - you are not doing anything wrong. Neither are they. You are both just rubbing against each other the wrong way at the moment. You're kind of expecting them to behave like girls (because you were a girl), they are probably expecting you to act like Alpha Male. So, you need to meet them in the middle somewhere, by allowing them periods of being crazy wild things but having quiet time to learn those 'female' attributes of listening, responding to voices, sitting quietly, learning about cause and effect with regards to other people and their feelings, not just cause and effect with regards to the relationship between power tools and puddles!

You have to let them be boys, but not get so immersed into being boys that they get so old that they lack the social skills they'll need to get on with their peers (and their family!); and it is a very tricky business. It sounds very anal, but having the day seperated into 'silly time', 'messy time', 'building time', 'chatting time', 'story time', 'crafting time' really helps - boys absolutely thrive on routine.

With 'chatting time' we've introduced typical 'girl toys' like a tea-set and a toy kitchen or shop, so we are still playing but it gently opens up the chance for them to start to role-play, they start to play at being grown-ups. My 4 year old will say 'How was your day today, Mummy?', then I get the chance to say 'Well, it was OK until you decided to flood the bathroom / throw your brother's teddy in the toilet / have a silly tantrum - that made mummy sad and a bit cross etc etc'. Even with the 2 year old, he has a baby doll (I bought for his brother when I was pregnant so we could change nappies together!), and when it is quiet time, we put baby to sleep and then play at being as quiet as can be so we don't wake baby up, again, explaining that sometimes we need to be quiet / not slam doors / not scream for the sake of it. Don't forget that even though a small child may not SAY much, they understand something like 500 times as many things as they can actually articulate, so even a two year old understands far more than we often give them credit for.

Anyway, from one often stressed mummy to another - big hugs, and good luck. They WILL do us proud in the end. I'm already reaping the rewards with my 4 year old, who is now only monstrous about 5% of the time. Two years ago, I thought I was never going to stop crying. Just got over it, and now I'm going through it again with my 'angelic' two year old. When I'm stressed about it, though, it's a million times worse. Best thing I found is to just recognise it as a big developmental leap for them, don't freak too much about mess and naughtiness, and remember that they WILL come through it. And so will you!
I took my dog to play frisbee. She was useless. I think I need a flatter dog.

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Milims
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Re: ARRRGH Children please please give me advice!

Post: #217797 Milims
Thu Dec 23, 2010 10:41 am

:grouphug: I just wanted to say how lovely this thread is to read. We've shown how diverse we are but all with one aim. :iconbiggrin: :grouphug:
Let us be lovely
And let us be kind
Let us be silly and free
It won't make us famous
It won't make us rich
But damn it how happy we'll be!
Edward Monkton


Member of the Ish Weight Loss Club since 10/1/11 Started at 12st 8 and have lost 8lb so far!

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Re: ARRRGH Children please please give me advice!

Post: #217982 Jessiebean
Sat Dec 25, 2010 6:30 am

CitizenT- That was a really great post- gave me lots to think about. I will go hunt down a copy of the book to have a squizz..truthfully most of the books I read are from the UK so not particularly relevant to me anyway!
hope you all have wonderful festive season (my boys are playing with a (toy) recycling truck and dollshouses I received from Freecycle... I mean Father Christmas- wonderful sturdy things that seem to keep them a bit occupied....
eta have found acopy of 21st century Boys to put on hold at local library already!Gotta love the interwedb. I can browse the library on Christmas day!
"Never, never, in nothing great or small, large or petty, never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense.”

my blog: http://thedullroarphilosophy.blogspot.com/

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Re: ARRRGH Children please please give me advice!

Post: #218007 citizentwiglet
Sun Dec 26, 2010 1:32 am

So glad you've managed to track down a copy - I'm sure you'll find it fascinating. I usually find parenting advice books and articles a crashing bore, or a massive case of stereotyping with no reasoning behind it, but this book is well worth a read.We'll be chatting about 'S type' and 'E type' thinking in no time at all!

I think it's particularly hard, as mothers, to key into exactly how small boys think and view the World because we don't have any knowledge of it from our own upbringings as girls. Plus the fact that you desperately want to protect them, but let them be wild and crazy at the same time, because that's what they need to develop. Given the way our education system works here, too much TV, computer games and other passive activities, and other factors such as perceived threats from paedophiles on every street corner, accidents, illnesses and the increasing pressure to be 'helicopter parents' hovering around their every move in case they get hurt/hurt someone else/get into a fight/under-perform; it's no surprise that huge amounts of boys in the UK are being assessed for ADHD or Autistic Spectrum Disorders (most of whom don't get a diagnosis, but have been referred by educational psychologists simply because they are not acting the same way as girls of the same age). Many, perhaps, because they've been restrained too much, and left to indulge in the things that are typically 'boyish', but in the confines of home - so no running around in packs, climbing trees and bugging the neighbours; but sitting inside getting addicted to a computer game, or methodically sorting their Meccano into piles. So it sounds as though your boys are being brilliant boys, doing all the things a boy should do - their messiness and naughtiness are their experiments, and learning where their limits are, and what they can do better next time, and what they definitely SHOULDN'T try again, LOL! Perhaps they need to develop their sensitive, empathetic side in line with their strictly systematic experimental side, though - that's where the more feminine aspects of play come in. So, let them build a den in the woods, but then they have to serve you a picnic in the den and 'have a nice sit down and a cup of tea and a chat' sort of thing.

There's a brilliant quote in the book: Better a broken leg than a broken spirit. That just about summed it up for me.

You seem to have had a fairly chilled Christmas, the presents sound as though they were very well received - hope you all had a great day!
I took my dog to play frisbee. She was useless. I think I need a flatter dog.

http://reflectionsinraindrops.wordpress.com - My blog
http://www.bothwellscarecrowfestival.co.uk - Scarecrow Festival
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Re: ARRRGH Children please please give me advice!

Post: #218034 Milims
Sun Dec 26, 2010 12:24 pm

citizentwiglet wrote:There's a brilliant quote in the book: Better a broken leg than a broken spirit. That just about summed it up for me.



I love that! It applies to many cases - not just boys! :wink:
Hope you had a fabby funfilled day JB - and all! :santa: :iconbiggrin:
Let us be lovely
And let us be kind
Let us be silly and free
It won't make us famous
It won't make us rich
But damn it how happy we'll be!
Edward Monkton


Member of the Ish Weight Loss Club since 10/1/11 Started at 12st 8 and have lost 8lb so far!

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Re: ARRRGH Children please please give me advice!

Post: #221824 grubbysoles
Mon Jan 24, 2011 7:05 pm

Hi Everyone,

I've not been on these boards for a few months (shame on me!) but can I just say how relieved I am to read EVERYTHING on this thread!! I really thought it was only me who sometimes gets driven to complete despair by the wrecking-ball attitude of my children - well, the smaller one at least - the older one is pretty well-behaved. My one year old daughter is constantly playing with drawers, cupboards, sockets - anything dangerous, she gravitates towards it. She flings food everywhere, pours water everywhere, pulls everything out of the cupboard, etc, etc, etc. She climbs everything, falls off everything, bangs her head on everything. Sometimes I lose my rag then feel like I'm an incompetent parent, so it's a great relief to see that we're all facing the same trials and occasionally feeling a bit run down by it. I'm not a freak! Hurrah!!

I try to put her 'energetic' behaviour down to her very inquisitive nature and tell myself that her strong spirit will take her a long way in life. Hard work as she is, I wouldn't want to ruin that feisty-ness she has, and I'm especially keen not to repress it because she's a girl. If she wants to climb and be a tomboy, good luck to her! At least she's finally learnt not to play with a hot oven, so we're getting somewhere.

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chuck_n_grace
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Re: ARRRGH Children please please give me advice!

Post: #221976 chuck_n_grace
Wed Jan 26, 2011 1:42 am

Hi,
As a father of five children I spent a few years at sea on a submarine when the three older ones were younger (we've homeschooled for 22 years). We can truly understand everything we've read in this thread. I asked my wife what she thought. Here's our advice.

Dads....stay at sea until the kids have grown and have jobs!

Mums...rum OR velcro walls and velcro clothing for the toddlers. :lol:

Regards,
Chuck


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