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Thread: Where to go for support of a 3 yr old who's driving me nuts.

  1. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by goin'crazy View Post
    Um, yeah. When I was 7 months pregnant hubby came home and said he was losing his job. Throw in 8 years of ttc DS in the first place, and I've probably been depressed for a very long time. Then we had to move back across the country to live with my parents for 2 very long years. Good God how did we get through that. My parents are wonderful people, but we don't see eye to eye on many things so it was hard. And then our son was born with a heart/lung condition that tortured us his first week he was born and now it just tortures me daily until something happens and he'll have to have heart surgery. It's coming, we just don't know when...its the not knowing is what kills you.

    That's a very good question: Why do they want to get a rise out of us?!?! I feed, clothe, hug, kiss, change his freaking diaper because he doesn't want to use the big boy potty. AT ALL. And he still pushes every button I have. I swear to God he's the smartest kid I know.
    Then it's very likely that it's not ppd but that's it's just a continuation of the depression you had before you had him. You've been through a lot!
    My son wasn't fully potty trained until K. To this day he sometimes still wets his pants. He just gets so preoccupied he forgets to go.
    He's also very smart. He does great in everything and really only acts up for me. I think maybe the smarter kids have a harder with the emotional stuff and following directions kind of things.
    People have suggested that maybe he's feeding off my moods. Maybe the same thing is happening to you.

  2. #32
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    I honestly don't think anything you have posted should make you feel guilty. I think that we've all had seasons where we felt that we were doing nothing right with our kids. Age three is really tough, too, and at least for us we didn't see the dividends of all the work we put into disciplining/training/etc until age four. Things became less of a battle then and I am really not sure why. We certainly learned a lot about what works with our DD by then and since we had been pretty consistent with discipline she knows to take us seriously now. Yes, she still does test and get a consequence these days but they don't happen nearly as often now. She is strong willed but totally normal developmentally. I know that this might not be the case for all children and clearly being consistent in a way that does not work for your child won't get you anywhere either.

    Do you have family close that might take your DS for a weekend? A weekend that you can just sleep away or do whatever you want? Will your DH take him for a whole Saturday and you stay home and do whatever you want? Friends are hard for me, too, but I am an introvert so staying home by myself can be pretty great.
    Jessica (32) and Ryan (32). Madelyn born August 5, 2009; Malachi born December 23, 2010 and Nathaniel born July 19, 2013. Lost a loved baby 02/29/12, 05/14/12 and 07/05/12 all due a serious allergic reaction to fabric softener.
    My Ovulation Chart

  3. #33

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    Quote Originally Posted by JJorn View Post
    I honestly don't think anything you have posted should make you feel guilty. I think that we've all had seasons where we felt that we were doing nothing right with our kids.
    I agree.


    Meg (30), DH (40) & the 4 J's (Almost 7, 5, 3.5, 21 months)

  4. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by goin'crazy View Post
    I do knit, but I think I'm the only one who doesn't 'relax' while doing it because I'm so afraid of screwing it up and having to rip it out and start over...I'm such a mess. The only problem is since he's the only one, he want's me to play with him. ALL. THE. TIME. We have a nice back yard, swing set that he loves with a sandbox but he wants me in there with him. And every time I re-read these posts I want to delete them because all I'm doing is complaining about him and that makes me feel horrible. Ugh, why did I post this...the guilt is so overwhelming.

    don't worry about what you have posted. its healthy to vent out your feelings. and here on apa is one of the best places to do it simply because so many of us have been there, or are still there. we know how you feel.
    encourage him to play by himself for a few minutes at a time. i did that with both my kids and now i can get up to an hour of good playtime out of them before one of them needs something from me. my ds used to require my presence in the sandbox too and i would have him play alone for 5 minutes then i would join him then it was 10 minutes and i would join him... now he just plays and will ask me what he should make for me.

    with the knitting, i was worried about mistakes that i would have to go back and correct too.. practice makes for less mistakes.... but i still make big mistakes.... just this past december i was making an afghan. dh noticed a mistake and pointed it out... it was an obvious mistake, and i had to rip out about 9 inches of work. i was upset, but i fixed the mistake and finished the afghan. with other projects if the mistake is not noticeable i will leave it and dare people to point it out...
    when i know i can't give full attention to my yarn i will pick a simple mindless project to work on


  5. #35

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    some ppl do better with infants... some with teenagers. This just isn't your age. It's not a big deal; you may find that you're more comfortable with him and yourself in a few years. That's normal. (god knows what's really bubbling under the surface of those facebook moms who claim pure joy in every second of every day as if there's never perfectly-behaved, perfectly-developing kid poop on their perfect designer clothes or their perfectly arranged hair.)

    You may need some help to get through it so i would try to find a non-profit or low-income or community group (perhaps via a hospital or county community ctr) where you can discuss your issues. There may be some depression, ppd, anxiety (about your son's health, your husband's health, money, etc) and/or more. Again, some of which I have had surrounding motherhood so i totally get how you feel (even if we don't have exactly the same ailments/situation). I think that will help you to start to see that you may be better off letting go of some of what has gotten you to this point. e.g., do you have to discipline every single bad act? Choose your battles. And do you have to use time-outs as punishment as opposed to quiet time so your son can calm down and so you can, together, discuss his behavior. (The TOs aren't working; maybe the positive reinforcement and empowerment will... but it's hard to get there when every little thing gets under your skin.) Etc,... Maybe talking to other moms who are where you are or, better, were there previously, will help you to step back and better evaluate your situation. Get concrete tips, encouragement, and support. And truthfully, you may need medicines, too, to give you a better chance of healing.

    As for the question about do they have to get a rise out of you? Yes. In fact, that's a good thing!!! It means that you have succeeded - really! - in raising a well-developed, confident young boy who's starting to feel out his independence. It can be a tough age, but it's all because he's exactly where he should be. Again, because you're a good mom! yes, behavior and discipline are necessary - because this is where they start to learn that there are boundaries - but that's ok. He can do this with you because he knows that you will still love him even when he's feeling out those lines. (That's not just me being ra-ra... it's stuff that i've found in many child development books.)

    hard to do, but give yourself a break. you're not failing. you're just mired, in mood and stress and finances and health issues... That would get anyone depressed.
    Last edited by ibisgirldc; 04-11-2014 at 04:33 PM.

  6. #36
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    Big big hugs, momma I'm glad you are here, letting it out, and looking for support. Everyone needs that. The more we bottle things up, the more magnified they feel. I hope you will continue to post here and get to know us better. There are so many wonderful women on here, and as you can see, we are not looking down on you at all. We know its hard, and it sounds like you have some life circumstances that are making it even harder.

    You've been given some great advice. I especially agree with finding some way to get some support for yourself as far as possible depression goes. If you are depressed, getting help for that will make a world of difference for you, like a crushing weight that suddenly becomes manageable.
    As far as your son goes, I agree that 3 is a really tough age. I don't know if more is going on with him or not, but even developmentally normal children can be maddening at that age (which, as mentioned, is right on track and healthy... For them anyway. Us mothers may come out a bit loonier for it.)

    Every child is different, and is motivated by different things, so what works for one may not work for another, but have you read any books about discipline strategies? A lot of moms on here have recommended 1-2-3 Magic. Others like Love and Logic. I'm sure there are others I can't think of that have been given good reviews here. But my point is it might help to have a solid plan for yourself of how to respond each time something happens. It helps both in staying consistent and in keeping emotions down. I am waiting to read 1-2-3 Magic but have already started using the basic system that Ive heard it uses and can already tell a difference, both in me and my daughter.

    I hope things turn around for you soon, whatever route you choose to take. You are not doomed to feel like this forever. There is hope for life to have more peace and enjoyable moments!

  7. #37

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    Different idea, but check out www,thehonesttoddler.com and maybe get the honest toddler book. This won't cure your problems, but I was thinking 1) you could use a laugh, 2) it may help you to see the humor in some of what frustrates you, and 3) if it resonates, it proves that you're not at all alone. It's a best selling book and a website/blog with millions of followers... What is described is common enough that it speaks to so many other moms and dads... That might boost your confidence in your own skills/successes and be a comfort, too.

  8. #38

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    Quote Originally Posted by daylilies View Post
    Then it's very likely that it's not ppd but that's it's just a continuation of the depression you had before you had him. You've been through a lot!
    My son wasn't fully potty trained until K. To this day he sometimes still wets his pants. He just gets so preoccupied he forgets to go.
    He's also very smart. He does great in everything and really only acts up for me. I think maybe the smarter kids have a harder with the emotional stuff and following directions kind of things.
    People have suggested that maybe he's feeding off my moods. Maybe the same thing is happening to you.
    This is my son to a T! He always so engrossed in playing that I have to remind him to go poop! And I've found, although quite amusing after the fact, that when he gets a time-out for something and I go to get him he's says "No momma, I'm pooping!"

    I've not heard of the smarter ones having a harder time with the emotional aspect. But he sure saves it all for me if that's truly the case.

  9. #39

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    Quote Originally Posted by froggie83 View Post
    don't worry about what you have posted. its healthy to vent out your feelings. and here on apa is one of the best places to do it simply because so many of us have been there, or are still there. we know how you feel.
    encourage him to play by himself for a few minutes at a time. i did that with both my kids and now i can get up to an hour of good playtime out of them before one of them needs something from me. my ds used to require my presence in the sandbox too and i would have him play alone for 5 minutes then i would join him then it was 10 minutes and i would join him... now he just plays and will ask me what he should make for me.

    with the knitting, i was worried about mistakes that i would have to go back and correct too.. practice makes for less mistakes.... but i still make big mistakes.... just this past december i was making an afghan. dh noticed a mistake and pointed it out... it was an obvious mistake, and i had to rip out about 9 inches of work. i was upset, but i fixed the mistake and finished the afghan. with other projects if the mistake is not noticeable i will leave it and dare people to point it out...
    when i know i can't give full attention to my yarn i will pick a simple mindless project to work on
    It's so strange how they change. Up until about 6 months ago he was content just to play by himself. I never needed to entertain him - ever. Now, I can't go 5 minutes without him wanting me glued to his side. And it's not like I've left him for a long period of time or anything. Meaning overnight or something so I have no idea why he's so glued to me now.

  10. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by goin'crazy View Post
    This is my son to a T! He always so engrossed in playing that I have to remind him to go poop! And I've found, although quite amusing after the fact, that when he gets a time-out for something and I go to get him he's says "No momma, I'm pooping!"

    I've not heard of the smarter ones having a harder time with the emotional aspect. But he sure saves it all for me if that's truly the case.
    I'm not sure if it's true. But I was just thinking, when Josh was younger, he was ahead physically but behind with speech and the pedi said that was common, and it just made me think that it could be the same case when they get older--they're working so hard on being smart that they are a little behind on emotional stuff. Just a theory, really.

    Josh saves it all for me too, but that's common too because they feel safe around their mothers. It's sweet, really, but oh so frustrating. LOL

  11. #41
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    There are kids out there that can understand things on an intellectual level, but cannot process them yet on an emotional level. DD is like that, and it leads to DRAMA! For us, Raising Your Spirited Child' has been tremendously helpful.

  12. #42

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    Quote Originally Posted by goin'crazy View Post
    He's just not independent at all. He wants me to do everything for him. He still want's me to feed him for crying out loud!
    I have a VERY independent nearly 3 year old and even he still has some troubles getting his shoes on and off and following through with directions, so I'm thinking perhaps your expectations are a bit too high in that regard. DS1 was the opposite and he'd probably still like for me to rock or pat him to sleep ... I don't think he really hit any kind of independence until closer to 4. Sounds like your DS and my DS1 are similar in that regard. Just to give you a little perspective on the independence front.

    And, just to make you feel a bit better I have completely lost my cool on both my kids today and on any other day I would classify them as completely awesome and easy kids. Some days we just aren't the parents we'd like to be. We ALL go through that.
    Dorcas (35) DH (36) 3/13



  13. #43

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    Hugs Momma!

    There's been great advice given, and not much I can add. But I will agree that you can always vent here, we all understand and have been there to some extent!

    I can say that my now 4 year old started getting SUPER dependent at around 2 1/2. Which is strange because she is SO independent. To the point that I was really worried about her, she would say she was too tired to do anything herself. I posted on here asking for advice! After a lot of research and talking to pediatricians and behavorists, the conclusion was that she needed (NEEDED) time away from me. I am a SAHM, and even though we were almost never at home, and always, always out doing things with so many people and other kids and such, for some reason she started getting depdent on me. My theory, which the behavorist does not think is insane, is that her personality is just such that she needs to get away from me and be on her own, and since she was never away from me, that need kind of got warped and caused a downward spiral. Kind of like... When you spend too much time sitting down, and it makes you tired, and you know you need to get up and move to wake up, but you're so tired that you just continue to sit there, which makes you more tired... That type of thing.

    So, I put her in preschool. It took a while, and even the teachers noticed and were concerned. But eventually she started doing things again, and getting less and less clingy. It has really helped! Which makes me sad, because I kind of wanted to homeschool, hah.

    I know you said that you don't have money for something like that, but have you looked for a co-op or similar? I live in a VERY high cost of living area, and most preschools and daycares cost a fortune, but there are some very affordable ones that the mothers are more involved in. That may serve a dual purpose, too. It would be good for him, and maybe could give you an outside activity, too, with some new friends...?

    Good luck!



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