Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

My toddler is now a big sister... And the defiance and tantrums have started. Help me!

Posted by on Dec. 18, 2013 at 4:40 PM
  • 7 Replies
My otherwise happy and well behaved 2 1/2 year old has become defiant and just plain mean at times. My newborn is 2 weeks old, and I know it has to do with the huge change of being a new big sister. Normally I handle her tantrums and "bad" behavior well... But I am so exhausted I can barely think straight let alone deal with her. She constantly tells me no, throws tantrums, she takes things away like the baby's paci or bottle and won't give them back. She won't eat unless it's "candy" she throws massive fits if she doesn't get her way. How can I help her get through this, while keeping my sanity????!!!
by on Dec. 18, 2013 at 4:40 PM
Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Replies (1-7):
by Silver Member on Dec. 18, 2013 at 5:04 PM
A big part of it is being 2.5 - of my mom friends, all sign kids the same ages, all around 2.5, some of us have baby #2 & some don't - they all seem to be going through similar things (except those of us with babies can't pick up & move our kids as easily, etc!)

I recommend babywearing the baby - that's helped me a lot

For the toddler, we do a sticker chart - I was doing one with stickers & a chart from the teacher store but recently downloaded an app on my phone instead (easier to give stickers on the go). When he gets 20, he gets a prize (you don't take them Away if they are misbehaving, just redirect with how to earn a new one). It doesn't solve everything but it has made a huge difference in our home.

Another thing that's made a big difference is I found a gymnastics class that I babywear the baby during & do with my toddler - it gets us out of the house & tires him out. They also have a 'free play' twice a week that tires him out & is much easier than going anywhere else (indoors, bathroom there, somewhere to change baby, adults in case of an emergency, and no one lets kids out on their own so the toddler runs around)
by Robyn on Dec. 18, 2013 at 6:12 PM

Oh boy! It's the age combined with the sibling rivalry, I'd say.

Make her feel IMPORTANT. Give her jobs to do to help you with the baby (and other jobs, too). It can be tiny little things (to you) but you can make it feel like a big deal to her. She needs to know how valuable she is in the family. :)

Also, I always recommend the book "Julius, Baby of the World." So cute!

Also, do NOT give her what she wants whenshe throws a tantrum--that will only teach her that tantrums work and she'll keep doing it. Good luck!!

by Platinum Member on Dec. 18, 2013 at 6:15 PM

 The food issue is easy:  candy isn't an option.  she'll eat when she gets hungry enough.  don't even engage in the battle.  it's a control thing so take the power away by offering her a healthy choice and walking away.  kids will eat their shoelaces if they are hungry enough.

the other stuff will ease with time as she adjusts.  of course do not let her get away with unacceptable behavior but really pick your battles.  have her help as much as possible and praise her SOOO much for every little thing she does that's helpful. 

another thing is to make a point to carve out as much mommy/daughter time as you can.  make a point of saying things like "i love getting to spend this time together, just the 2 of us".

my son was about that age when my dd arrived.  his issues didn't start quite that early but by the time she was mobile he was hell to parent.  somehow we made it thru.  i'm 20w pg with #3 so my kids are older now but it'll be interesting to see what kind of adjustments we'll deal with at their ages (they will be almost 7 1/2 and nearly 5 when baby arrives).

Good luck, stay calm and congrats on your new addition!

by on Dec. 18, 2013 at 6:23 PM
I had this problem with my dd. It would always be when I was nursing baby, dd would climb on the shelves, on the tv stand and knock everything on the floor. She would scream at the top of her lungs and throw things.
My advice, show her she's still mommy's little girl. Make her feel important. Let her color while she sits next to you while you feed the baby or read to her. Give her a baby doll to take care of and show her love and affection. She's mostly likely jealous. Mommy has someone else to take care of. Make her feel loved. And good luck.
by on Dec. 19, 2013 at 2:38 PM
I feel your pain. I have a 15 month old and an 8 week old. I try my best not to hold my youngest too much when my oldest is awake. When I'm feeding my youngest or holding her, that's when the problems start. Try giving the baby all your attention when your oldest is napping and in bed for the night. I know it's hard but the baby doesn't NEED to be held all the time. Also, if you do hold the baby when the oldest is awake, focus most of your attention on your oldest. Talk to her, get excited if she does something like stack a few cups etc. It's helped me. She realizes that even though I'm holding my youngest, she's still very important too!
by on Dec. 19, 2013 at 7:59 PM
I know where youre coming from my now three year old was two when her sister was born. What you have to do is love on her kiss her hug her tell her shes awsome and beautiful...also try to spend some alone time with her ...i know its so hard cus of the new baby but maybe when the baby is taking a nap show interest of what she has to say and show you. Also something that really helped my dd out was letting her interact with her sister showing her how to love her and telling her that they are both beautiful and should love and protect e/o. Trust me it will get better but it does take alot of effort. Best of luck to you and congrats on the nb.
by Member on Dec. 19, 2013 at 8:10 PM

timeouts have worked wonders for us. when she does something we sit her in a chair in the kitchen corner and make her sit their untill she stops her tantrum and then once she does we give her hugs and kisses and explain why we dont act/do that. also im pregnant and due in jan and we will be bringing her a gift from the baby to her and tell her its from the baby. maybe expalin to her what a big girl she is by being a big sister.

Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)