Tuesday, April 15, 2014

The Terrible 2's

The terrible two's. We are there. We are SO there.

I knew this was coming. Lucas has been having tantrums for quite a long time now. Definitely since before he turned 18 months. Ryan went through a tantrum stage around this age, although he was more quiet and determined about getting his way. Lucas is a totally different story. For the past month or so things have gotten much worse. This week in particular has been rough.

What do you think of when you think of a toddler tantrum? Screaming, kicking, crying, hitting, biting......Lucas does it all! He is so incredibly loud that sometimes his screaming makes my ears ring afterwards. He is a crazy combination of loud and physically strong. He kicks and bites and makes his body go stiff. I didn't know a 22 month old could test my muscles so much!

Lucas throws a tantrum when: being put into his carseat, being put into the stroller, arriving at home and being carried inside, I put the lid on his cup without him helping me, getting out of the bath, not being held immediately when he wants to be, strapped into a shopping cart, being strapped down for a meal, being told he can't be held, being told he can't have another snack, pretty much being told NO.

The worst for me is the fact that he throws a tantrum every time I don't pick him up. He hangs on me and cries to be picked up at least 100 times per day. And I just can't hold him all the time. Every time I ignore his request or try to divert him he starts screaming and crying and hitting. It's exhausting.

Here is an example of what he does in shopping carts:
video
Notice how Ryan doesn't even acknowledge what is going on? It has become so normal to hear Lucas having a tantrum. I would estimate that Lucas is in tantrum mode at least 50% of the day. And that is a conservative estimate. The thing about his tantrums is that they don't just start and stop a minute or two later. They go on and on and on. And I never know what will set them off. The other day his piece of bacon broke in half and that resulted in a 10-minute tantrum. I try to ignore it or discipline him, but it's pretty hard to ignore a screaming toddler who is hanging on your leg or pulling your pants off of you.

My new game plan for Lucas' meltdowns is going to be putting him in his room when we are at home. I think the ultimate punishment for him is being separated from me, so I am really hoping this works.

2 comments:

  1. I just read this. I can relate so much. I have been dealing with this with Julia the past few months, on top of her and Lydia fighting when they aren't having their own individual meltdowns. Also, I just looked the other day and Julia is getting in 2 molars... SLOWLY! I have had some good come from separation as well... she wants to be with me, so that seems to make an impact. Lavender and more sleep too. It's maddening though... some days, I want to put on the nose canceling headphones all day! Or, be able to wear pants and not have them pull them off in a fit! Ha! More chocolate? I guess so!

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  2. I used to give my kids snacks to eat or books to read while riding in carts and strollers. I even resorted to using one of those harnesses with a leash, which is something I never thought I would do, so we could have a pleasant experience out in public. It might be helpful to find as many opportunities to allow him to do things for himself. Get his own cup off the counter, instead of handing it to him, holding his hand while shopping and having him put items in the cart. Anything he can do for himself or anything he can do to help. It sounds like you may have a very independent little guy, like mine was. Any route you take will be a lot of work. Praying for you and yours. You're a good mommy, hang in there...This too shall pass.

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