15 November 2010

Suggestions, Anyone?

Henry is sitting on the couch at this very moment, moaning "My Pod," because I wouldn't give him my iPod this morning. Every time he plays with it, he tenaciously hogs it until the battery is dead.

Yesterday in Nursery he cried through the entire snack time because the nursery leaders took his Thomas train, which he takes to the table and to bed at home because we don't like to listen to him cry through our entire meal. The Nursery leaders are in the right of course. The children can't all be playing with toys during snack time, and it's not fair for Henry to get his just because he is stubborn.

So my question is this: Should I let him scream it out through meals all week? I was thinking I could suggest they tell him he has to keep it in his pocket during snack time, so maybe I'll try that? And a big picture question, what on earth will I do when this child is a teenager?!

14 comments:

Linz said...

Well... I am the #1 mean mom, and have mastered the art of ignoring screaming children, so what I would do is find a special place for the train during dinner (let him pick the spot) and then, if he cries, let him cry... In time out - not at the table. Then let him come to the table when he's ready to eat without crying. It may take some time, but hunger usually beats stubbornness.

But I'm mean like that. You should do what works best for your household!

The Stratton's said...

I'm with Linz. It may be a struggle at first, but at some point he'll "allow" you guys to be a little more in charge of him. Marshall is the same way... You have to be unwavering and consistent with these ones...

Jesse said...

I think it's better to train him when the smartest thing he'll do about it is cry.

I would also say that consistency is key. If they're taking it away while he's eating, I think you should too.

I'm a fan of letting him cry it out. He'll get it eventually and your efforts will be rewarded. Tag team if you must; two stubborn parents can definitely be more stubborn than one child, regardless of how stubborn he is.

amy said...

I am not above engaging a power struggle with a toddler.

For this reason, I fear for my life.

The Yoder's Four said...

Perhaps I am just a wuss, but as a fellow parent of a Stubborn Child, I think letting him keep the train in his pocket would be OK. You're not ever going to be able to change his personality, and he's a little young to reason with at this point. I was nursery leader of 17 kids for two years and it's not worth the disruption!

angela michelle said...

I have two children who would make fantastic prisoners of war because of their ability to hold their position no matter how untenable and no matter the consequences. One of those children is now a teenager.

I'd say, yes, put your foot down, but establish special spot of honor to accommodate Thomas during meals. And banish screamers to bedroom.

Oh, I see Linz already said that.

Tigger said...

I am with Linz too, but I am a mean mom too.

Good luck with whatever you decide.

Jansie said...

After reading these comments, I don't think you ladies are Mean Mom's. You're Good Mom's. We all have to learn eventually that we can't always get what we want..no matter how hard we cry. ;)

msjvd said...

Jenny,

I'm so glad you have smart friends like Linz and Mrs. Stratton. I particularly like Jesse's statement that it's better to train him now when "doing his worst" is crying.

Tough love, Sweetums, TOUGH. LOVE.

Project Maniac said...

I think Linz hit it the spot. You set your boundaries and don't budge. The only thing I would add is to give him the choice, then he stills feels somewhat in control. If the rule is - No crying at the table - then give him the choice, "Henry, you can cry in your room or stay here, not crying, and look at Thomas while you eat." I've started that with Hattie and she stops crying pretty fast. And it didn't take too long for her to catch on.

Project Maniac said...

Sorry, one more thing to add. It's all what you can handle. If you can't handle, or don't want to put up with the fight, then you have to deal with, and be ok and not get made at your kids for what happens with the other choice. I have to tell myself that a lot. I choose this so I can't get mad, but know I now this will happen, next time I'm choosing something else.

michelle said...

I'm WAY too laid back but since my kids barely eat as it is if they wanted a train at the table then I'd let them. I don't have the energy or patience to deal with the screaming. I pick my battles and having a little train at dinner is nothing in my book. Train in the pocket for snack time is a good compromise. I'd actually be a little mad at the nursery leaders for letting him cry the ENTIRE snack time so then he was hungry AND sad =( Sounds like I'm in the minority but this is realistic to my days and I'm a softy. (I've never spanked and rarely do time outs) ducking from the hard core mom's now LOL

The Yoder's Four said...

I've been thinking more about this....it sounds like Thomas is Henry's "lovey". It's very common for kids his age to be extremely attached to a certain object/toy/blanket. It helps him feel secure and he'll want to bring it everywhere. It's usually best to accommodate it (within reason) because a lovey is important for his development at this stage.

(You probably already knew that, but anyway....)

I can also say that as these stubborn kids get older, they get easier to deal with. Henry still probably can't communicate everything he's feeling, which will only improve with time. I've found that as long as I'm encouraging, positive and gentle with Madelyn, she'll do pretty much whatever I need her to do. She doesn't respond to absolutes, punishment or having her scream it out just for the sake of me being "right". It never works. Look at things from the kid's point of view.

Saddie said...

I love this post and the ensuing comments. I frequently find myself torn between the two mothering sides: be strict or easy-going. I was raised more on the cry it out side and Levi more the easy-going, so we kind of go back and forth. I can see that both positions have merit, after all Levi and I both turned out okay (I use this term loosely :). But I hear that consistency, more than your chosen parenting method, is what is really important. So do what feels right for you and your child and stick with it. Perhaps one of these days I'll take my own advice. :)