March 02, 2006

Logic & a Two-Year-Old

Forget it. Why do I even bother trying to reason with a toddler?! Arden, my generally easy-going, laid-back, people-pleasing little guy, has been extremely difficult the last few days. Well, actually, the last couple of weeks, now that I think about it, but I guess it was easy to accept when I knew he was sick with a fever, cough, etc. He's almost 100% healthy again, so now I know it's just the stubborn streak of a 2 1/2 year old coming out!

A sample of our conversation at breakfast this morning:

Me: It's breakfast time! Come get in your seat!
Arden: I don't.
Me: OK, then you don't need to eat.
Arden: I DO!!
Me: All right, then get up in your seat.
Arden: No!
Me: [ignorning Arden] OK, are we ready to pray and thank God for our food? Let's hold hands.
Arden: Aaaaaahhhhh [whining and upset because we are about to pray without him]
Me: OK, we'll wait for Arden...
(Arden scrambles up into his booster chair, and we pray.)

Ten minutes later Arden begins asking for more cereal.
Arden: I want cereal. I do!
Me: You need to ask Mommy nicely, plus you still need to eat your vitamin. When you eat your vitamin and ask nicely, you may have more cereal.
Arden: I don't!
Me: That's fine. You don't have to eat your vitamin, but you won't get anymore cereal until it's gone.
Arden: I do!
Me: Well, you know what you need to do, then.
Arden: No!
Arden: I don't!
Me: [Big sigh.]


Megan said...

Ugh. Sounds like some conversations we've had here. Except I ask Sela, "Do you want a snack?" and she'll say, "No!" so I go on with whatever I'm doing, and she turns on the whiny wailing, drops to the floor dramatically, and begs, "Snack! Eat! Thirsty! Water!" Sometimes I even ask her two or three times to give her a chance to "come to her senses" and say "Yes" without having a fit.

Tina said...

Same thing is happening here with Will. I also had hoped it was adjusting to the new baby, sickness, or the dropping of his nap. No, we're just going through "That Stage" of 2 1/2...I guess this is where that nick name "Terrible Two's" comes from. Up until now, the two's had been great!

Ski said...

I found the book "The Emotional Life of the Toddler" by Alicia F Lieberman to be very helpful in dealing with these conflicts. One thing I learned from the book is toddlers love to say no and will say it even if they really mean yes. Like asking if they want to go to the park and they say no as they grab your hand and lead you to the park. The book also suggests giving toddlers time to process what you have asked/said and ignore their knee jerk "no" reaction.