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Author Topic: What to do when 3 year old refuses to go to bed...  (Read 6615 times)
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rickfc
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« Reply #80 on: December 03, 2010, 03:22:19 AM »

Quote from: Arkon on December 03, 2010, 03:08:57 AM

Well, my 3 year old came home today, an absolute grouch.  My wife was furious when she walked in the door.  All I was told is Annaliese spent most of the day yelling at her sister and Jackson, the boy at the sitters.  She had to eat by herself, and then spent most of the car ride home screaming because she refused to thank the sitter for filling her juice cup for her as she was walking out the door, so my wife wouldn't let her have her juice.  She did go to bed in only 35 minutes of screaming tonight, but she did not nap, so I know she was more tired.

That's good, though, Arkon.  Kids can surprise you at how long they can prolong going to sleep if they're grouchy.  Give it a few more days.
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Arnir
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« Reply #81 on: December 03, 2010, 05:39:08 AM »

I hope things work out for you.  If not, tell her that a dwarf throwing giant named Boulder will come to visit.
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« Reply #82 on: December 03, 2010, 09:06:05 AM »

Quote from: Arkon on December 03, 2010, 03:08:57 AM

Well, my 3 year old came home today, an absolute grouch.  My wife was furious when she walked in the door.  All I was told is Annaliese spent most of the day yelling at her sister and Jackson, the boy at the sitters.  She had to eat by herself, and then spent most of the car ride home screaming because she refused to thank the sitter for filling her juice cup for her as she was walking out the door, so my wife wouldn't let her have her juice.  She did go to bed in only 35 minutes of screaming tonight, but she did not nap, so I know she was more tired.

This is normal.  You changed her night time routine, so she is rebelling somewhere else for the attention she did not get by screaming.  Once again, do NOT give her any extra attention for this other than telling her she is not acting the way a "BIG" girl should.  Sounds like you all handled the day-time random change correctly.  Keep it up.  Things will get better.  IMO, I would try to push the dinner date back one week, so you can establish the routine with your child.  If they are good friends, they should understand.  Once the routine is established, anyone can maintain it  - ie a baby-sitter - making regular dinner dates with friends a real possibility without repercussions outside of emergencies - which don't happen that often when children have a routine.
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« Reply #83 on: December 03, 2010, 01:19:02 PM »

Quote from: Arkon on December 03, 2010, 03:08:57 AM

Well, my 3 year old came home today, an absolute grouch.  My wife was furious when she walked in the door.  All I was told is Annaliese spent most of the day yelling at her sister and Jackson, the boy at the sitters.  She had to eat by herself, and then spent most of the car ride home screaming because she refused to thank the sitter for filling her juice cup for her as she was walking out the door, so my wife wouldn't let her have her juice.  She did go to bed in only 35 minutes of screaming tonight, but she did not nap, so I know she was more tired.

This is natural and good news.  It means you're almost there.  Stay strong! 
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« Reply #84 on: December 03, 2010, 05:14:25 PM »

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« Reply #85 on: December 03, 2010, 06:54:25 PM »

Quote from: Purge on December 01, 2010, 04:24:29 PM


+20 on this. My eldest used to vomit on command because he was being instructed to do so by his mother. Fantastic times. The malevolent nature means any progress made was lost because he was getting positive reinforcement.

Imagine EVERY meal you have with a child having them vomit, and then having someone else encourage it.


Sorry for treading back, but I needed to hear the story behind this post. Why was your wife encouraging your child to vomit every meal?
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« Reply #86 on: December 03, 2010, 07:21:38 PM »

Quote from: Teggy on December 03, 2010, 06:54:25 PM

Quote from: Purge on December 01, 2010, 04:24:29 PM


+20 on this. My eldest used to vomit on command because he was being instructed to do so by his mother. Fantastic times. The malevolent nature means any progress made was lost because he was getting positive reinforcement.

Imagine EVERY meal you have with a child having them vomit, and then having someone else encourage it.


Sorry for treading back, but I needed to hear the story behind this post. Why was your wife encouraging your child to vomit every meal?

I too somehow missed that. The mom was a nut case. Had to be.
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« Reply #87 on: December 03, 2010, 08:36:32 PM »

Quote from: Teggy on December 03, 2010, 06:54:25 PM

Quote from: Purge on December 01, 2010, 04:24:29 PM


+20 on this. My eldest used to vomit on command because he was being instructed to do so by his mother. Fantastic times. The malevolent nature means any progress made was lost because he was getting positive reinforcement.

Imagine EVERY meal you have with a child having them vomit, and then having someone else encourage it.


Sorry for treading back, but I needed to hear the story behind this post. Why was your wife encouraging your child to vomit every meal?

To create a stressful and unhappy household. To disrupt as much as possible the "other home". To win, (in her small mind) essentially.

When my partner's cat of 18 years died, my ex had a celebration party for my son. Sure, he's allergic to cats, but somehow the cat at her moms house (where he is 4-5 days a week) doesn't seem to be a problem for him.

He couldn't even *name* our 3 cats because they were never around. I bought hepa filters, and a dyson pet vacuum, etc etc. The allergy specialist felt that our efforts were more than sufficient as we have hardwood floors, and his exposure to the cats in our home was minimal.

There isn't a day that passes that I don't spend some time thinking of the good times and missing him with all my heart.
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« Reply #88 on: December 03, 2010, 08:37:40 PM »

Quote from: Arkon on December 03, 2010, 03:08:57 AM

Well, my 3 year old came home today, an absolute grouch.  My wife was furious when she walked in the door.  All I was told is Annaliese spent most of the day yelling at her sister and Jackson, the boy at the sitters.  She had to eat by herself, and then spent most of the car ride home screaming because she refused to thank the sitter for filling her juice cup for her as she was walking out the door, so my wife wouldn't let her have her juice.  She did go to bed in only 35 minutes of screaming tonight, but she did not nap, so I know she was more tired.

Remind your wife not to let it get to her; you both need to rise above the dreck that is her attitude. Don't tolerate it, but don't get upset either (otherwise you've not accomplished your goal).
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« Reply #89 on: December 04, 2010, 12:09:07 AM »

Well we ended up doing dinner tonight with our friends as they weren't available again for 2 months, but we did get it moved up so that we could be home in time to start the routine.  Annaliese is almost done bathing, so we are maybe 4 minutes off schedule right now, but pretty darn close.
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« Reply #90 on: December 04, 2010, 12:50:59 AM »

Four minutes is negligible.  Let us know how it went!
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« Reply #91 on: December 04, 2010, 12:51:15 AM »

stay strong......watch Rocky tonight to keep you going...........

as I said two nights did it with my kid......

and it's not the schedule...it's the process........
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« Reply #92 on: December 04, 2010, 03:21:19 AM »

Tonight ended up taking about 15-20 minutes to fall asleep...slowly getting there.
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« Reply #93 on: December 04, 2010, 05:12:09 AM »

And tomorrow night should take even less time.  Voila!  A 3 year old going to sleep without too much hassle.  smile
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« Reply #94 on: December 04, 2010, 06:04:58 AM »

Quote from: Arkon on December 04, 2010, 03:21:19 AM

Tonight ended up taking about 15-20 minutes to fall asleep...slowly getting there.

Hell, that's not even slow from an hour and a half.  You're doing great!

How was the Early Bird Special at the restaurant?  Did you pay by check or use pennies?
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« Reply #95 on: December 04, 2010, 08:21:08 AM »

Quote from: Arkon on December 04, 2010, 03:21:19 AM

Tonight ended up taking about 15-20 minutes to fall asleep...slowly getting there.

Fantastic!  You'll be all done in no time at this rate.  Was your wife a lot happier this time then?
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« Reply #96 on: December 04, 2010, 12:22:16 PM »

Quote from: Bullwinkle on December 04, 2010, 06:04:58 AM

Quote from: Arkon on December 04, 2010, 03:21:19 AM

Tonight ended up taking about 15-20 minutes to fall asleep...slowly getting there.

Hell, that's not even slow from an hour and a half.  You're doing great!

How was the Early Bird Special at the restaurant?  Did you pay by check or use pennies?

Early bird special!!!

It was 5:30 when we sat down to eat.  That is a full hour later than I normally eat dinner!
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« Reply #97 on: December 04, 2010, 05:33:22 PM »

Quote from: Arkon on December 04, 2010, 12:22:16 PM

Quote from: Bullwinkle on December 04, 2010, 06:04:58 AM

Quote from: Arkon on December 04, 2010, 03:21:19 AM

Tonight ended up taking about 15-20 minutes to fall asleep...slowly getting there.

Hell, that's not even slow from an hour and a half.  You're doing great!

How was the Early Bird Special at the restaurant?  Did you pay by check or use pennies?

Early bird special!!!

It was 5:30 when we sat down to eat.  That is a full hour later than I normally eat dinner!

I bet you had a horrible time sleeping with that massive change in routine.  slywink
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« Reply #98 on: December 04, 2010, 05:36:21 PM »

My wife was watching Super Nanny, and by proxy, so was I...

This family was having the same issues as you, and what she suggested was, to put the child in their room, and you sit down in his/her room with your back facing them, and just sit there until they fall asleep.  Her reasoning was, he or she knows your there and he/she will feel secure, sure he or she will cry and yell until they wear out, but after a couple of days it will stop.

It pretty much did.  It went from 40 mins one night, down to 20 mins the next night, and then it was dad's turn, and he didn't follow the same strategy and ended up waiting over an hour.  But after starting over the next night, they eventually got it down to 5 mins.

I don't know if I could just sit there for that long, mainly because of boredom.
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« Reply #99 on: December 04, 2010, 06:03:51 PM »

Quote from: naednek on December 04, 2010, 05:36:21 PM

My wife was watching Super Nanny, and by proxy, so was I...

This family was having the same issues as you, and what she suggested was, to put the child in their room, and you sit down in his/her room with your back facing them, and just sit there until they fall asleep.  Her reasoning was, he or she knows your there and he/she will feel secure, sure he or she will cry and yell until they wear out, but after a couple of days it will stop.

It pretty much did.  It went from 40 mins one night, down to 20 mins the next night, and then it was dad's turn, and he didn't follow the same strategy and ended up waiting over an hour.  But after starting over the next night, they eventually got it down to 5 mins.

I don't know if I could just sit there for that long, mainly because of boredom.

Better hope the kid hasn't seen The Blair Witch Project.
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« Reply #100 on: December 06, 2010, 12:27:50 AM »

I demand updates! smile
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« Reply #101 on: December 06, 2010, 03:13:14 AM »

So Saturday night there was an "emergency" and my wife had the kids with her.  They did not get home until 8:30.  I took Annaliese straight from the car, told her it was time for bed and laid her down.  She fell asleep fairly fast as she had had no nap and was exhausted.

Today, we again had no nap.  My wife was a basket case thanks to my step mom basically saying flat out that we are horrible parents because we let our daughter wear shoes without socks today, when it was 30 degrees outside, and my daughter was outside for all of about 45 seconds to get her from the car into church.  She said people could call CYS on us for neglect...because we put socks on our daughter and she took them off and we didn't fight with her to make her put them back on.  I am sorry but some battles just aren't worth fighting.  If her feet get cold, she will put on socks.  (We have yet to find a pair of socks that don't "make her crazy" as she says.)

Anyway, tonight Annaliese was a real crab, my wife was an emotional train wreck.  She cried the whole way home from church, then for another hour and a half after church.  She took the kids to her grandparents and got home about 6:15.  6:30 I told Annaliese it was time for a bath, she told me that she hated me...my heart sunk.  I put her in the tub, read with her from 7:00 - 7:30, then took her in and laid her down.  She screamed for about 10 minutes and then was out, though was again exhausted because there was no nap.

While the routine is starting to work it would seem...my wife and I feel like even worse parents than before this all started.

I am such a failure at everything I do.  No matter what it is I set out to do, I fail miserably.

Most of all, it seems pretty clear I have done a great job of failing at being a husband as well as a father.
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« Reply #102 on: December 06, 2010, 04:04:07 AM »

you're not a failure.

You're daughter telling you she hates you is all about finding ways to get her way.  She doesn't mean it, and at that age, probably doesn't even know what the word hate means.

Now your step mom is an idiot, and don't let her tell you how to parent your child.

As you can see, the routine is working. 

If your daughter is behaving that way in the afternoon, and is genuinely tired, there's nothing wrong with her taking naps.  She's definetely not too old to take naps.  Besides, that gives you and your wife a small break.

My son is almost 10 months old, so I haven't hit that stage yet, but our plan is to do what everyone else had suggested.  I'm hoping it's going to be easy, right now we have a routine, and he goes to sleep within 5 mins.  But I'm afraid what happens when he becomes mobile.
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« Reply #103 on: December 06, 2010, 04:12:38 AM »

Sounds like this was an especially stressful day, Arkon.  I know how those feel.

I really hope that when you revisit that post tomorrow, you'll realize how great the separation is between the first three paragraphs and the rest.  There are a lot of terrible parents out there, but I suspect very few of them are starting discussion threads about how to ease their 3-year olds into a more independent bedtime routine.

-Autistic Angel
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« Reply #104 on: December 06, 2010, 05:14:15 AM »

Quote from: Autistic Angel on December 06, 2010, 04:12:38 AM

Sounds like this was an especially stressful day, Arkon.  I know how those feel.

I really hope that when you revisit that post tomorrow, you'll realize how great the separation is between the first three paragraphs and the rest.  There are a lot of terrible parents out there, but I suspect very few of them are starting discussion threads about how to ease their 3-year olds into a more independent bedtime routine.

-Autistic Angel

Very well said.

You're a good parent because you care enough to do that (and because it hurts when she says she hates you).

It does sound like she might still need a nap (it also sounds like the missed naps weren't planned), but hopefully the bonus exhaustion helped with the routine you're establishing.

Just to give you a heads up:  There might be a relapse, but don't let it panic you.  Not too long from now it'll all work out.
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« Reply #105 on: December 06, 2010, 04:25:44 PM »

I think it's easy to think that if you skip the nap the kid will be exhausted and easier to put down for bed, but that's not really the case... they need to recharge during the day, so making time for nap is as important as making the nighttime routine consistent.  At that age it's really hard to control their emotions since it's all so new, and every emotion feels 'really big' (what we say with our kid... 'Does your sadness feel really big?')... when they are too tired they don't have the composure to deal with those big emotions, and so you end up with a lot of crying and screaming and 'I hate you!/I'm not your friend!', and all that can just make them more and more wound up to the point where they have a hard time getting to sleep at night if they haven't gotten enough rest during the day.

You also might find some things go more easily if you offer simple choices as part of the routine (Not 'which jammies do you want to wear tonight?', but 'which one of these two pair of jammies do you want to wear tonight?')  When you are three you spend most of your time being told what to do, and it gets frustrating for them to not feel like they have any control, so having that illusion of a small bit of control over some things can pay big dividends.  We also have a couple different toothbrushes, and he picks which one we use on any given night... little stuff like that which sounds ridiculous, but it helps.

Hang in...
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« Reply #106 on: December 06, 2010, 04:38:44 PM »

Quote from: Autistic Angel on December 06, 2010, 04:12:38 AM

Sounds like this was an especially stressful day, Arkon.  I know how those feel.

I really hope that when you revisit that post tomorrow, you'll realize how great the separation is between the first three paragraphs and the rest.  There are a lot of terrible parents out there, but I suspect very few of them are starting discussion threads about how to ease their 3-year olds into a more independent bedtime routine.

-Autistic Angel

Your step-mother being one of them.  You did nothing wrong, and you are succeeding, not failing.

I do think you need to take your stepmom aside and tell her to step off a bit.  Things got really rough with my brother-in-law when our daughter was first born due to his thinking that she was the family's baby rather than my wife's and mine.  Long story short, I had to tell him to choose between having a relationship with my daughter our way or no relationship at all.  After a couple of weeks, things chilled out.
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« Reply #107 on: December 06, 2010, 04:52:25 PM »

Arkon - you are doing great.  I know when our youngest fails to nap, he can be a bear to get to bed at night.  Missing his nap totally throws him off.  I'd even suggest that her 5-10 minute sessions over the weekend were an amazing success in spite of those missed naps.

I really like kratz's suggestion of getting her involved in minor choices.  It not only gives her some measure of control, but it should also help reinforce the notion that bed time is coming.

Your step mom is way out of line.  Sure, she is entitled to an opinion.  But considering that you and your wife are already stressing over your daughters night time routine, sharing her opinion the way she did sounds incredibly rude and disrespectful.
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« Reply #108 on: December 06, 2010, 04:59:15 PM »

Quote from: Arkon on December 06, 2010, 03:13:14 AM

So Saturday night there was an "emergency" and my wife had the kids with her.  They did not get home until 8:30.  I took Annaliese straight from the car, told her it was time for bed and laid her down.  She fell asleep fairly fast as she had had no nap and was exhausted.

Today, we again had no nap.  My wife was a basket case thanks to my step mom basically saying flat out that we are horrible parents because we let our daughter wear shoes without socks today, when it was 30 degrees outside, and my daughter was outside for all of about 45 seconds to get her from the car into church.  She said people could call CYS on us for neglect...because we put socks on our daughter and she took them off and we didn't fight with her to make her put them back on.  I am sorry but some battles just aren't worth fighting.  If her feet get cold, she will put on socks.  (We have yet to find a pair of socks that don't "make her crazy" as she says.)

Anyway, tonight Annaliese was a real crab, my wife was an emotional train wreck.  She cried the whole way home from church, then for another hour and a half after church.  She took the kids to her grandparents and got home about 6:15.  6:30 I told Annaliese it was time for a bath, she told me that she hated me...my heart sunk.  I put her in the tub, read with her from 7:00 - 7:30, then took her in and laid her down.  She screamed for about 10 minutes and then was out, though was again exhausted because there was no nap.

While the routine is starting to work it would seem...my wife and I feel like even worse parents than before this all started.

I am such a failure at everything I do.  No matter what it is I set out to do, I fail miserably.

Most of all, it seems pretty clear I have done a great job of failing at being a husband as well as a father.

Dude.....there is no such thing as the perfect parent, perfect family or perfect household. Get a grip and man-up and do what you need to do. Anyone who has kids has wanted to throttle them at times or has felt they failed but there is no perfect.  Shit happens.....get used to it. Those kids, and your family still have a long way to go......

Just wait until the kids become teenagers and they quit talking to you or decide everything is your fault and start yelling at you. You will look back on these days as "the good old times" when the kids were cute.

Also...the stuff with your step-mom is a problem many people have with their parents or in-laws. But remember..the kid is yours. You control what he does in the end.
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« Reply #109 on: December 06, 2010, 05:56:02 PM »

Quote from: Arkon on December 06, 2010, 03:13:14 AM

So Saturday night there was an "emergency" and my wife had the kids with her.  They did not get home until 8:30.  I took Annaliese straight from the car, told her it was time for bed and laid her down.  She fell asleep fairly fast as she had had no nap and was exhausted.

Today, we again had no nap.  My wife was a basket case thanks to my step mom basically saying flat out that we are horrible parents because we let our daughter wear shoes without socks today, when it was 30 degrees outside, and my daughter was outside for all of about 45 seconds to get her from the car into church.  She said people could call CYS on us for neglect...because we put socks on our daughter and she took them off and we didn't fight with her to make her put them back on.  I am sorry but some battles just aren't worth fighting.  If her feet get cold, she will put on socks.  (We have yet to find a pair of socks that don't "make her crazy" as she says.)

Anyway, tonight Annaliese was a real crab, my wife was an emotional train wreck.  She cried the whole way home from church, then for another hour and a half after church.  She took the kids to her grandparents and got home about 6:15.  6:30 I told Annaliese it was time for a bath, she told me that she hated me...my heart sunk.  I put her in the tub, read with her from 7:00 - 7:30, then took her in and laid her down.  She screamed for about 10 minutes and then was out, though was again exhausted because there was no nap.

While the routine is starting to work it would seem...my wife and I feel like even worse parents than before this all started.

I am such a failure at everything I do.  No matter what it is I set out to do, I fail miserably.

Most of all, it seems pretty clear I have done a great job of failing at being a husband as well as a father.

Someone once told me parenting is like LSD, because you can only truly understand it by doing it, but once you've done it, you can't somehow undo the experience. And what you often don't hear before having a baby is that there are going to be lots of times where you are frustrated with your child. Heck, downright *angry* with them. Tears and pain in unexpected places. But those feelings don't make you a bad parent. They just make you A parent. Our daughter was hard to get to sleep and we had to go through the same process, including driving my wife to tears. But we got through it and now we have a beautiful just about to be 8 year old daughter that is a joy to be with.

I guess that's the other thing that noone tells you. Some stages of your child's life, you will enjoy much more than others. I enjoyed babyhood. I didn't much enjoy 3-5 yrs old because she and I didn't have a lot in common - all the stuff she liked to do, I really didn't enjoy doing all that much. But now, I really enjoy doing her activities with her. I'm sure at the teenage years, I will be driven insane. But that's okay. All the happy moments completely outweigh the rough ones.

In short, you're doing a good job. Hang in there. smile
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« Reply #110 on: December 06, 2010, 06:46:29 PM »

Ark, tell your wife that some big guy on the Internet wants to kick her mom in the shins.

You have not covered how you're a bad husband, but as a dad you're doing fantastic (and it sounds like your wife is doing well too). Your little girl is going to piss you off, hurt you, and disappoint you on a regular basis. If they don't, then you're not paying attention. They are also going to fill you with joy, happiness and absolute pride too; your job is to reinforce the good things they do, and help them past doing the bad things.

Think of their emotions as their motor skills- right now if you were to get her to assemble a 1000piece puzzle of a unicorn, there wouldn't be 3 pieces together before she had a meltdown that would irradiate the surrounding 6 blocks as uninhabitable for the next 200 years.

A 12 - 24 piece puzzle, however, is less acute, but is manageable by her. Right now her control of her emotions range from frustrated beyond measure to wildly elated, with only a few steps in between. Or, since we're on a gaming forum, consider your control of emotions is like the Steel Battalion controller and she's got a simple NES D-PAD.

So when she wants to reach for a word like "Dad, I'm really upset with you" she's going to say "I hate you" and not really mean it. I know it still hurts to hear it, and in our home we "take away" words that our kid doesn't understand. For instance, war, hate, bastard. This one came home from Grade 1 where some kids were playing "Name-Tag" running around and calling each other bad names. He didn't actually say bastard though, it sounded more like bastert. He also used to say "Yes, your Majesty" (from another daycare kid) but instead he said "Yes your Master-T - we let him get away with it because it was so darn cute.

When she's tired, two of the directions stop working. Don't stop with the naps - you're hampering her chance at successful manipulation of her emotions, and ultimately she's going to face even MORE disappointment due to her unacceptable behaviour*, and end up not having a good time of things. If you think she's stubborn and unmanageable, the longer she gets to behave in this fashion more firmly sets her in that mindset, and will ultimately make it harder to unlearn (if she ever does).

*A "U" belongs in that word, BTW. Welcome to Canada slywink
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Scuzz
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« Reply #111 on: December 06, 2010, 07:22:15 PM »

One of the amazing things about kids is that they can "hate" you one minute and "love" you the next as though the first never happened. Little kids are like puppy dogs that occasionally chew up your furniture. They need to be trained. But they will always love you.

It's when they get older they develop grudges and can act on them.             icon_lol
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Arkon
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« Reply #112 on: December 06, 2010, 08:22:28 PM »

Well, the no naps was not intentional.  Both days we laid her down for her naps, and while when she is awake she is potty trained, while sleeping, not so much.  Anyway both days shortly after falling asleep for a nap she ended up dirty.  The clean up ordeal interrupted everything enough that we laid her down and she screamed/cried/bounced off the walls for 2 hours without sleeping.

I am a horrible husband because I don't do enough to help out my wife, or at least that is the way I feel.  We don't talk, we simmer until one of us blows up, and despite knowing all of this I do nothing about it.  Instead when the kids go to bed and she gets all moody, I escape to the computer, put on headphones and let myself get absorbed into a game.  She is very big on grandparents and family...I am not.  Every Sunday she goes and has dinner with her grandparents on her fathers side.  I stay home because they drive me nuts and tend to just infuriate me.  A good husband would be there by her side no matter what.

I go on trips and she can't stop talking about how she misses me...I go on living as tho nothing has changed.

I am a bad husband because I can see issues in our marriage and I am doing nothing to fix them.

Edit to add: I do try and give her choices.  I let her choose between a shower or a bath, she gets to choose between a few sets of PJs, she gets to choose 3-4 books out of a set of 8-10.
« Last Edit: December 06, 2010, 08:24:16 PM by Arkon » Logged
rickfc
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« Reply #113 on: December 06, 2010, 08:33:34 PM »

Quote from: Arkon on December 06, 2010, 08:22:28 PM

Well, the no naps was not intentional.  Both days we laid her down for her naps, and while when she is awake she is potty trained, while sleeping, not so much.  Anyway both days shortly after falling asleep for a nap she ended up dirty.  The clean up ordeal interrupted everything enough that we laid her down and she screamed/cried/bounced off the walls for 2 hours without sleeping.

I am a horrible husband because I don't do enough to help out my wife, or at least that is the way I feel.  We don't talk, we simmer until one of us blows up, and despite knowing all of this I do nothing about it.  Instead when the kids go to bed and she gets all moody, I escape to the computer, put on headphones and let myself get absorbed into a game.  She is very big on grandparents and family...I am not.  Every Sunday she goes and has dinner with her grandparents on her fathers side.  I stay home because they drive me nuts and tend to just infuriate me.  A good husband would be there by her side no matter what.

I go on trips and she can't stop talking about how she misses me...I go on living as tho nothing has changed.

I am a bad husband because I can see issues in our marriage and I am doing nothing to fix them.

Edit to add: I do try and give her choices.  I let her choose between a shower or a bath, she gets to choose between a few sets of PJs, she gets to choose 3-4 books out of a set of 8-10.

It sounds like you know what some of your failings are as a husband.  The question is - what are you going to do about it?  Are you willing to continue with the status quo, or do you think that tonight is a good night to not go sit in front of the computer and spend some time with your wife?
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Arkon
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« Reply #114 on: December 06, 2010, 09:03:56 PM »

I have actually suggested to my wife that we go get counseling.  Last night I tried sitting with her and attempted to initiate conversation.  As always it just turned to useless chit chat.

It doesn't help that it is her time of the month.
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rickfc
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« Reply #115 on: December 06, 2010, 09:08:20 PM »

Quote from: Arkon on December 06, 2010, 09:03:56 PM

I have actually suggested to my wife that we go get counseling.  Last night I tried sitting with her and attempted to initiate conversation.  As always it just turned to useless chit chat.

It doesn't help that it is her time of the month.

Useless chit chat is better than no communication at all.  It's really hard on a couple to have small children.  You have to choose whether to spend the time without the kids doing your own thing or being with your spouse.  My wife and I went through something similar when our daughter was younger.  It gets a little easier when they become more self-sufficient because you don't need to be there all the time.  They can go play on their own and not require your constant attention.
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Arkon
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« Reply #116 on: December 06, 2010, 09:34:55 PM »

For Christmas I am working on lining up some friends that would be willing to watch the kids for a day or two so my wife and I can get out and spend time focusing on each other.
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godhugh
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« Reply #117 on: December 06, 2010, 10:14:54 PM »

Quote from: Arkon on December 06, 2010, 09:34:55 PM

For Christmas I am working on lining up some friends that would be willing to watch the kids for a day or two so my wife and I can get out and spend time focusing on each other.

Great idea smile.
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Scuzz
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« Reply #118 on: December 06, 2010, 10:19:26 PM »

Quote from: Arkon on December 06, 2010, 09:03:56 PM

I have actually suggested to my wife that we go get counseling.  Last night I tried sitting with her and attempted to initiate conversation.  As always it just turned to useless chit chat.

It doesn't help that it is her time of the month.


With women...wives at home with kids.....useless chit chat is better than nothing at all and better than conversing with a 3 year old....
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kratz
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« Reply #119 on: December 06, 2010, 10:51:57 PM »

Hasn't been mentioned, so I'll mention it, but what your kid is eating can sabotage your sleep attempts as well... I'll just assume you aren't giving her any caffeine, but refined sugar, and, for our kid especially, chocolate can really jack up a kid's sleep schedule, while a good, wholesome bedtime snack can really help them get a great night of sleep.

I think you gotta have the 'useless' chitchat if you ever want to get to deeper conversation...
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