Tuesday, 7 August 2012

The battle begins

Yesterday Leo ran into the road.
The sun was shining and we were spending the morning in a beautiful park, picked especially as it only has one gate to get in and out - perfect for speedy toddlers. Still, before I knew it the little man had squeezed through the gap and was hot-footing it down the road. Thank goodness it was a quiet country road and there were no cars but the whole experience knocked me for six.
I ran to him (possibly at Olympic gold medal pace), told him off and carried him back to the park. The moment I set him down, he did a quick loop and started heading back to the gate. And here lies the problem. When it comes to discipline, I haven't got it sussed. That was why, mixed with nightmares of what might have happened if it hadn't been such a quiet road, I cried all the way home. I felt I had failed. All the other mums seemed to have control of their offspring - it was only mine running off without a backward glance.
I don't think I am a bad mother, it is just the terrible twos have taken me a bit by surprise. I thought the hardest part - interrupted sleeps, night feeds etc - was the hard bit and, having got through all that, I knew what I was doing. I realise now the learning curve is only just beginning.
So I spent that evening trawling the internet and was quietly soothed to discover that I am not alone. Far from it. There were hundreds of books and articles written by parents for parents advising the best way to get through this stage of parenting unscathed. I am devouring them as if my life depending on it.
To begin with I need a plan and it starts here. My aims:
- I will not be a walk over
- I will be listened to and respected
- I will be able to keep him safe
Now I just have to work out how to do it.


  1. O.K. I'm a man....Hang on...Yes l am...!
    I'm 65 next month, l became a single parent back in 1981. When my daughter was five...After a couple of years of marriage, we decided to start a family.
    The day my daughter was born, she is now 36. Things went down hill fast, Six of One...Half-Dozen of the other as they say..Neither to blame, just did'nt work out..!
    So, l fought for custody, and won. But, even before this, l became Mother and Father to my daughter, that's just how it was. I even changed her nappy, far more times than my wife..A bond developed, which is the way of Sicilian families.

    One word you've used, a very important word to...!
    RESPECT....Three words, my Mama always taught me...Respect...Honour...Love.....(And, in that order....)!

    The bond between Mother and child is unbreakable and full of love and care...Even now, l would give my life for my daughter...Of course l always was a Mum and Dad to my daughter...They even let me enter the Mothers and Fathers race at school.....!!! :).

    Finally....Books on 'Raising Baby'...Neah!
    Sorry! Don't agree with them...Each and every family are different...I've lived my life on my feelings and emotions...And, bringing up baby is not easy...Yeah! l,ve been there....Tears...Worry...Heartbreak...(Hang on ...I'm still do'in it)..HeHe!

    "Learn From Yesterday, Live For To-Day, Hope For Tomorrow..".

  2. I agree that the best way to go is on instinct but I am going to do a bit research to help along the way! Happy birthday for next month. x

  3. We're going through the same thing, I never realised terrible two's would be so intense, so much love and laughter and learning, but also so much naughtiness, upset and anger. We're at a bit of a brick wall at the moment, my son has started saying "go away ..." all. the. time. He picked it up from another child at nursery and won't stop saying it. We've explained that it's rude, we've told him off, made him apologise each time he says it to someone, but even though he will, eventually, apologise it doesn't stop him saying it 5 minutes later. I guess the only thing you can do is take a deep breath and stay consistent with your reaction, eventually they'll learn but I'll be relieved when this phase is over!

  4. Thanks for your message. It is a comfort to know others are going through it too! At least your little one says sorry - mine hasn't learnt to do that yet but I am working on it.

  5. I remember going through the same phase with my own son. On a playdate one day, I reached the tipping point and had a complete meltdown in front of the other mums when I just felt I couldn't control him. Whatever I said, he just would not do as he was told.

    Once I'd regained some self control and had some time to think about it, I made much the same resolutions as you. I also bought the Supernanny book 'Confident Toddler Care'. She's not to everyone's taste, but I found the suggestions given in the section on discipline very helpful. In fact, dipping in and out of that book I felt gave me some real clarity of thinking about the approach I wanted to take with my son going forward. By no means did I take on board all her suggestions, but it was food for thought.

    Good luck with it, and stay strong. The toddler years are testing times, but if you decide on an approach and are consistent, I do believe that everyone is happier in the long run. x

  6. Thanks for yuor message of support! You are right, consistency is best, it is just working out what your strategy is! My parents got the Jo Frost book for us for Christmas and we love it. We always watch Supernanny - we just seem to find that she makes complete sense.