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toddler stage beginning - Help

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  • toddler stage beginning - Help

    I have a 14 mo. old who is the light of my life, but as she is becoming a toddler I am finding trusting my own instincts harder and harder. Especially when out at play groups. She has been walking since she was 91/2 mo. old and is very verbal, she can say a lot of words and is very good at letting you know what she wants. She is in the 95th percentile for height. All of these things add up to a child who is bigger than her friends and more physically adept then her friends. This is causing problems! She get's frustrated very easily and is throwing tantrums all the time. I feel like this has snuck up on me. Lately if a friend takes something or is playing with something she thinks is interesting she goes to them and starts yelling and crying. She has never hit thank goodness but lately she is pretend pushing, she throws her hands up and makes a pushing motion she has never made contact with another child. I am more concerned about the yelling and tantrums when she doesn't get what she wants. I am starting to feel like everyone is looking at me like that mom who can't control her kid. Please help any suggestions or advice on how to tackle this new stage with love and positive discipline.

  • #2
    First, I wanted to let you know that this is completely normal behavior for a 14-month-old! Children this age have huge emotions and little ability to control. I remember both of my children going through this, but it gets better over time.

    Second, every mom in that situation would feel that way. We all want our children to behave a certain way around others. I feel immense pressure, especially when I'm with my family, as most people in my family spank their kids.

    It's important to realize that this is normal behavior, and that your child is learning how to deal with disagreements but that she is really still a baby. Try not to get upset. Empathize with her. "Gosh, that really upset you!" And state what is acceptable/not. "But we don't hit. Hitting hurts! Instead, let's ask your friend if you can share the toy."

    It's important to remember that there is no "quick fix" -- you will have to do this over and over for it to sink in, just like creating a good habit, but it will happen.

    I recommend reading Discipline without Distress by Judy Arnall for great tips for each age of your child and specific situations.


    • #3
      It also might help to stay near her while she is playing - not to hover, but to be close to the "action" so you can anticipate situations and help her work through them right away. When my DD went through this phase, I was frustrated that I couldn't visit with the moms at playgroup, but quickly realized that I can visit them for years to come - the opportunity to respond to my daughter's needs at this age comes ONCE in a lifetime! The good news, as Rita said, is that your girl is totally normal!!