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Old 02-19-2011, 11:27 PM
 
Location: southwest TN
8,175 posts, read 14,253,018 times
Reputation: 14776

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I'm concerned with a few issues:

1. At 2.5, your child is not bad. She may be acting out, rebelling, misbehaving, but she is not bad. I know you are considering it as a phrase of speech, but it is reflective of a mindset. It is important to distinguish the behavior from the child. She "does bad things" or "does not obey".

2. Screaming in the night MAY BE night terrors or it may be behavioral manipulation. She has already learned how to get her way with you. There are a few ways of dealing with this, but I strongly urge you to seek the advice of a behaviorist (behavior therapist, child therapist) - specifically a professional who is trained in changing behavior through the use of conditioning.

3. Parents permitting a child to control what goes on. Your child is in control. That is very frightening to a young child who needs to know that she can depend upon you. By allowing her to control situations (even just for a few minutes) she is not feeling secure.

As other posters have said, it is not necessary to scream or yell at her. In fact, a quiet voice will get better results. It is a look and a tone of voice. My husband WAS a platoon sargeant and he has perfected that look and tone of voice. I loved watching him with his son through the teen years. We didn't have yelling in this house, we used behavioral methods to elicit the desired behavior.

Routine: What worked for my sons and grandsons was to have bathtime followed by reading time. First it's a bath - 20 min or more. Then it was a drink, kisses and hugs, getting settled into bed, then being read to.

Rewards: given for appropriate behavior especially when trying to change behavior. Since your daughter is giving you a hard time about getting her jammies on, it's time to introduce a reward for the nights when she does it without fuss. Something small - BUT IMMEDIATE - perhaps a special doll to hold, blowing some bubbles.

Screaming and neighbors. You live on a base, go to your neighbors and let them know you are planning a new routine and are intending to permit your daughter to scream for attention. Betcha they've all done it before.

Behavior Correction Tips for Kids - Behavior Therapy for Children - Strategies for Teaching Good Behavior to Child

Good luck to you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Deez Nuttz View Post
I wonder how many of you who had a toddler so bad she woke up at 1 am screaming and wouldn't even let her mother leave the room (after going in) at night without screaming her head off plus wanted to stay up all night long with the lights on. I'm serious. If her mom even tried to leave the room she would literally throw herself on the floor and go into a huge tirade, screaming her head off. The sad fact was the household also had 2 other adults that needed sleep to drive 80 miles the next day to catch a flight. That meant mom literally had to sleep on the floor while the child played in her room so others could sleep. It's enough to make you either give in or want to strangle the kid. The mom is an emotional mess because of it. This can't be normal.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Deez Nuttz View Post
No she doesn't play in the playpen. We use it solely for when she's bad. However it won't be much longer that "time out" playpen won't suffice b/c she can almost crawl over it now. Not sure what to do next for a time out place. She wouldn't stand in the corner at this age. Or sit in a chair. I'd like to find a place away from everything where she can't see what's going on because it's out of sight of everything else.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikey likes View Post
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Old 02-20-2011, 10:21 AM
 
32,538 posts, read 29,325,866 times
Reputation: 32238
A few more random thoughts:

I'd put her back on the 9pm bedtime. I'd also eliminate the nap and see if getting her good and tired helps her sleep through the night.

You said she "mocks" your wife. She's learning language. Re-think "mocking" and substifute "immitate". Once toddlers pick up a phrase they may repeat it until you have gone nuts hearing it. Totally normal. If you have it in your head that she is "mocking" you wife your BP is going to go up. She's learning words. It's part of the process. She's not 16. She's 2.5.

When she goes to bed give her something to do if she won't lay still and just fall asleep. As others have suggested, toys, books. Does she have a special night time stuffed toy? She needs a friend in that lonely bed. I'd see which doll/animal she likes best and make that her "friend" when she goes to bed. AND when she needs comforting. Let her hold that doll and talk to it when she's upset.

When she throws something. Make her put it back. Warning: This is going to try your patience. She's going to not like this. Don't yell. Presence. You are the boss. Remember that, "Oh, damn" look she had in her eyes? That's what you want. The moment she knows you and your wife are the boss and she is the little girl.

Tantrums. For a while you just have to let them cry it out. Someone here nailed it: Walk away. If she doesn't have an audience she's not going to go into her act. If she's throwing herself on the floor and kicking and screaming and she doesn't have an audience (that's you) she'll realise it's not getting her anywhere.

"Momma hungree" IS expressing hunger. I'd feed her before she goes to sleep. Something calming. In the good old days before it became a nasty word, we kids would get a glass of milk. Warm milk. Sometimes the old fashioned cures actually work.

If this goes on and on and on maybe she does need to be evaluated. But right now it sounds like what several million parents have gone through. I feel for you. But I was that child and I had that child. Working through it is part of being a parent. (Your daughter did not invent all this.)

And when she does something right? Reward her. Lots of hugs. Lots of kisses. Maybe a special treat. If you're in the mall and she's a good girl, stop and give her a hug and tell her, "You're such a good little girl! Mommie and Daddy are so proud of you!" She has to know she has value and she has your attention when she isn't acting up. All kids need to be reminded they are loved.

Last edited by DewDropInn; 02-20-2011 at 10:46 AM..
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Old 02-20-2011, 10:51 AM
 
9,056 posts, read 6,723,723 times
Reputation: 11008
Quote:
Originally Posted by DewDropInn View Post
A few more random thoughts:

I'd put her back on the 9pm bedtime. I'd also eliminate the nap and see if getting her good and tired helps her sleep through the night.

You said she "mocks" your wife. She's learning language. Re-think "mocking" and substifute "immitate". Once toddlers pick up a phrase they may repeat it until you have gone nuts hearing it. Totally normal. If you have it in your head that she is "mocking" you wife your BP is going to go up. She's learning words. It's part of the process. She's not 16. She's 2.5.

When she goes to bed give her something to do if she won't lay still and just fall asleep. As others have suggested, toys, books. Does she have a special night time stuffed toy? She needs a friend in that lonely bed. I'd see which doll/animal she likes best and make that her "friend" when she goes to bed. AND when she needs comforting. Let her hold that doll and talk to it when she's upset.

When she throws something. Make her put it back. Warning: This is going to try your patience. She's going to not like this. Don't yell. Presence. You are the boss. Remember that, "Oh, damn" look she had in her eyes? That's what you want. The moment she knows you and your wife are the boss and she is the little girl.

Tantrums. For a while you just have to let them cry it out. Someone here nailed it: Walk away. If she doesn't have an audience she's not going to go into her act. If she's throwing herself on the floor and kicking and screaming and she doesn't have an audience (that's you) she'll realise it's not getting her anywhere.

"Momma hungree" IS expressing hunger. I'd feed her before she goes to sleep. Something calming. In the good old days before it became a nasty word, we kids would get a glass of milk. Warm milk. Sometimes the old fashioned cures actually work.

If this goes on and on and on maybe she does need to be evaluated. But right now it sounds like what several million parents have gone through. I feel for you. But I was that child and I had that child. Working through it is part of being a parent. (Your daughter did not invent all this.)
Dew has given you some very thoughtful and useful advice, throughout this thread. These are all good things to consider.

One thing I would like to add - we never had any problems with sleeping with our DD - but people would likely tell you we did it all wrong. The thing is - it worked for us.

We are not terribly strict about turning the light off, she can watch a dvd if she likes, and if she wants to eat an apple in bed before brushing her teeth, that's ok with us. We've always done whatever it is that makes her comfy, and we've never had any issues. Now she has her stories and falls asleep. My point being, that just because people say you must never do a, b or c when it comes to bedtime - I think you should do whatever works for you and your kid, even if it goes against the conventional wisdom of the day.

Sleep is a personal thing for everybody, and there's no one size fits all solution.
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Old 02-21-2011, 10:04 AM
 
1,688 posts, read 2,029,740 times
Reputation: 2583
Quote:
Originally Posted by StilltheSame View Post
Dee Nutz - after reading your most recent description - i would have her evaluated by a neurologist and occupational therapist - she may have a sensory integration - or similar disorder. Some of ti sounds like behavior, but neither you nor your wife sound extremely lax - and it may be more than just a "strong will." My son had SID and weekly visits to an OT made a world of difference in just a few weeks - years later we can finally chuckle about the "hell years."
I'd second this. My little girl deals with SID and OT has been very helpful.
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Old 02-21-2011, 10:25 AM
 
Location: Earth
4,227 posts, read 20,285,035 times
Reputation: 2209
Thanks I'm going to talk to the wife in having her evaluated, especially since last night she went to bed at her usual time and woke up at 12 am and didn't want to go back to sleep....instead she wanted her overhead light on in her room (not her night light which was on)..she wanted a sucker (we hid them from her and told her they were all gone as we usually give her one in the day), she kept wanting mama for some reason...she wouldn't let us sleep...it's very frustrating. My wife ended up taking her downstairs and letting her play just so i could sleep and my wife really didn't get any sleep. I feel bad for her.
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