I am starting to understand how so many of the kids I teach end up so spoiled. It's way easier to just say, "yes," than to ever say no. If you are a busy parent, a single parent, an impatient parent, or even a perfect parent, I get why saying, "yes" is sooo tempting..it's quicker, it's easier and sooo much quieter then what happens when, if you ever say, "no."
I've not been as tough on my own kid as I used to think the parents of my students should be, but I also have not been able to say, "yes" to everything Ryder wants to do, especially now that he is almost 2 and wants to do soo many more questionable/dangerous/unnecessary (eating treats before supper) things. We started off, trying not to have to say, "no" all the time. We'd try to distract Ryder by offering him less questionable/dangerous/unecessary things to do, but the older he gets, the more committed he becomes to his requests. "Redirecting" no longer always works as a peaceful alternative to, "no." Ryder's favorite new sentences are: "No, Mommy, no Mommy, no Mommy," "I don't want to," and "I need it." These are all three very convincing phrases from the mouth of such a cute 21 month old, but.....I've had to start standing my ground. I want Ryder to express himself and his opinions, I expect him to test us and to test his limits but I need him to learn that Mommy and Daddy have opinions too and we have limits that can't be pushed....this is what we are working on, discovery..for all of us! We are all three learning our limits and boundaries and just how far we can each be pushed...I am telling you right now, it is a LOUD, lesson. Just to clarify, the "LOUD" refers what is coming out of the mouth of the toddler, not the mouths of Mom and Dad. We've worked really hard at not being as loud as Ryder. Ha ha! So "Tantrum Bootcamp" has begun! Marty and I are training ourselves to realize that it is ok to say, "no," and to stick to it, even if it's gonna make Ryder cry. Ryder is in training to find coping skills that don't involve crying at top volume or rolling around on the floor, to handle the word, "no," It's a learning curve for all of us, but I know it will be pay off eventually...right? :)
Don't get me wrong, there are lots of hours of the day, when we are all having fun together. No yelling, no tantrums, no rolling around on the floor....here are some fun times from today.
Ryder: No, Mommy, no Mommy, no Mommy.....
Me: let's go anyway....
Ryder: yelling, crying rolling around on the floor
Me: 26 weeks pregnant wrestling a squirmy, kicky, limp noodle into his winter gear
End Result? Fun Family time in the snow!!!!! Who knew it would be worth the loud, awkward ordeal? ME!!!!!!!!!!!! See, Ryder, sometimes, Mommy does know best. :)