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my 3 year old is driving me nuts with his up and down moods

just recently my 3 yr old (march) has been getting scared when he doesnt want to go somewhere or do something. ie... we had to get him dressed for school, he was scared of the fan light on the ceiling, so we had to turn it off. in his room, in daylight, he was scared of the blind in the window. at night he is scared of shadows.

his moods have been horrific. crying when it doesnt go his way or crying when he doesnt get what he wants. shoving things out of his way, ie. his cup of juice on the table, not wanting to eat dinner but just eat fruit snacks which i recently cut out of his diet.

he cries over taking a bath but as soon as he gets in he is fine. screams his lungs out about his blue sparkle toothpaste being YUCKY but loves it when he is done brushing his teeeth. screams bloooddddy murder about getting ready for school, gets pumped in the car for school but cries when we drop him off.. help please! help!

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Asked by NicksAshALee at 3:22 PM on May. 12, 2009 in Preschoolers (3-4)

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Answers (10)
  • it is a phase like the terrible two's but much worse. my son is going through them now. he was 3 in february. unfortunately you just have to put up with him. he is going through a huge growing spurt right now. yes he still should get punished for throwing, hitting, pushing, etc. but there is nothing you can do about the attitudes. as for being scared of the light, blinds, and shadows, I couldn't tell you.

    Answer by 2wndrfl_btrflys at 3:28 PM on May. 12, 2009

  • sounds about right for a three year old.. but its not acceptable. You need to help him learn that. We have a tiem out chair in our laundry room, were there is nothing fun to do and it is out of the way of the rest of the house, the very second any of the kids start whineing.... not even a full blown temper tantrum, but anything that looks like a precurser to a temper tantrum, they get sent to the chair, and there they stay till they are calm. It doesn't take long for them to get the picture. As far as things like, pushing a cup away, then don't give it back, and don't replace it with anything till next meal. Screaming about bath, make him go to time out, if he misses a few baths, he will survive, chances are he will stop the screaming, most kids love baths. As far as the toothpaste, my second would scream his head off every time ne saw a tooth brush, I finally got tired of the constant battle and asked for advice.....

    Answer by daughteroftruth at 4:43 PM on May. 12, 2009

  • cont... and was told by my mentor, to make him stand with his nose to the wall till he agreed to brush his teeth without throwing a fit. I had him stand there, and ever 5 min wold ask him if he was ready to brush his teeth, he would say no.. two hours later, he finally gave in and said yes, brushed his teeth then never gave me any more fuss about it... it sounds harsh, but that son of mine sounds like yorus, used to scream about everything.. now after some guidance from older more experianced moms, I have helped him gain control of his emotions. He is now 3.5, and if he gets too emotional he will take himself to time out till he calms down and lets himself out, then comes and talks to me about what is bothering him...most adults don't even have that much self discipline.

    Answer by daughteroftruth at 4:47 PM on May. 12, 2009

  • wow i like those ideas. im going to discuss them with Paul later tonight and see if we can work on using them on him. Paul is so gentle and kind of a "pushover" with him. where i am. on the otherhand a little more sterner with him because he has to learn. He constantly questions our authority adn defys us left and right. Its getting to the point where it puts Paul and I in tear with one another because we dont know what to do were so upset! but thank you for the great advice!

    Answer by NicksAshALee at 5:02 PM on May. 12, 2009

  • My dh is a bit of a pushover too. He has such a strained relationship with his dad. His dad is a very standoffish guy and has never said "i love you" to dh. So Dh has a really hard time standing his ground.... my oldest can manipulate circles around him, and our daughter just bats her eyes and the world is hers.. and she is only 22 mo!! But he recognizes it, and is trying to be more of a parent and less of a buddy!!

    I am the stern one. I have had sooo many struggles wtih my own emotions, growing up, no one ever really taught me that I had control over them...and it s taken me a while to learn to taek control and not allow my emotions to over take my actions. So to me its is soo important to teach my kids NOW, sot aht they don't struggle with it later. and my second is sooo stuborn and emotional!! But that is a good charecter trait if harnessed corecctly!

    Answer by daughteroftruth at 5:17 PM on May. 12, 2009

  • your kids seem to be great! what does dh mean? sorry Im like 2 hrs new to this! lol wow you have alot to handle ...4 kids i give you kudos... Yeah Paul is the same way with Nick whatever he says goes whatever he wants is his. with me, it doesnt work that way. Paul( Nicks Father) was the only child and still to this day you can tell he is... you know what i mean..... as in spoiled....

    Answer by NicksAshALee at 5:25 PM on May. 12, 2009

  • DH means dear husband... your see dd and ds alot, meanding dear son or dear daughter.. sd means stepdaughter, ss step son, sk step kids... you get the pic.

    yeah, four is alot, but now that the baby is sleeping through the night, its alot of fun. they are eachothers best freinds. Its great becasuse they do have eachother to entertain... but on the other hand, it makes discipline hard!! One night my second refused to say "exuse me" after dinner, so I had him sit there till he said it..but I had to sit there with him... 3 am he finally looked at me and said "may I be exused please.." then went straight to bed... course it has never been an issue since, but man.. taht was a looong night, and I had to get up and just go on with the next day lilke normal...

    Answer by daughteroftruth at 5:33 PM on May. 12, 2009

  • Hey, this sounds really familiar. Look into sensory integration dysfunction or sensory processing disorder. You sound like I did when my son was that age!

    Answer by SusieD250 at 12:56 AM on May. 13, 2009

  • This works for me when I am dealing with any of the toddlers around me, including but not limited to my son. I tell them "listen to me" generally if you say it enough times, and calmly enough, they will atleast look at you. I tell them, acting like this doesn't get them anything. I am sure you have heard it before, but reward good behavior. Set your foot down, calmly though. That is my suggestion. These kids have melt downs all the time, and even if they are not my kids (babysit) when I set my foot down and demand their attention in an appropriate way, they too calm down and start behaving. GOOD LUCK!

    Answer by MyReason329 at 12:24 AM on May. 18, 2009

  • As for the fear of the blinds and such. My son, when given the chance to touch, feel and do things with it, he will get over the fear. He too was afraid of the blinds, we just put a heavier blanket over them for a while. now curtains are just fine. The ceiling fan I let him pull the strings, and when it wasn't moving I would let him touch it. not afraid anymore. I find letting him explore the things he is afraid of is definitely helpful. once again good luck!

    Answer by MyReason329 at 12:28 AM on May. 18, 2009

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