Toddling with Toddlers
John Wilmot once said before I got married, I had three theories about raising children and no children, but now I have three children and no theories about how to raise them
When I gave birth to my child, I continuously wondered who had more woes. Was it me sleepless, with the human latched at my breast and unkempt
Or was it a mother of a 2-year-old waiting for a screaming match to stop in the middle of a shopping complex
The mother of 10 years old wasn’t Satisfied with the Upbringing they had given to their child, nor Alas
was the mother of an 18-year-old.
To learn that which age of the child is least troubling for the mother, I would have to wait for my child to grow up, but the more important question for me was when do you start to inculcate the values you admire And deem necessary in your child?
I learned the answer to this in the next two years; as the baby began to roll to his tummy and from then crawling, The little tyke was Toddling and running around the house, making us all overcome with aww.
But toddlers, along with extreme cuteness, retained baby fat undergo a multitude of developmental stages.
The scientific books tell you that your child will reach milestones in how they play, learn, speak, behave, and move. Science tells you to read the books, make them listen to music, take them for walks, play with them.
What science doesn’t tell you, that this is the time to teach your child values, manners, and all the things they don’t want to learn. This is the age when you introduce the children’s first archenemy, THE NO.
A newborn gets everything they want and need. Their universe (mom and dad) provides them with everything in the new parents’ glow. Along with that, there is a multitude of family members and elders to shower them with N number of materialistic things.
Toddlers live with the same mentality; they think they can get everything they want. But, when do you tell them no and how many no.s are sufficient?
Is it OK for you to cave when your child is crying their lungs out, tears streaming down their Apple cheeks?
A toddler will test your patience, and he will use everything in his Arsenal, shouting, screaming, crying. Mine would even lie down on the floor.
They will get on your last nerves for something as small as a new piece of chocolate as extreme as a new toy you can’t afford.
My child would cry every day when his father left for work. Wailing and knocking on the door, he would cry so much that sometimes I would look myself and the child in a room. But removing him from the stimulus provided temporary relief. What I did in this situation was to inform my child that the act would take place irrespective of his reaction every day. I tried to link the stimulus with the happy reaction; now, the baby stands with me on a balcony waving away to his father as he leaves for work.
With age, my child also developed a habit of lying face down on the floor if he is not picked up or his demands are not fulfilled in the first go.
My family and I turn shameless in this instance and inform the baby that he has to get up first, and then only his demands will be fulfilled. It seems harsh to relatives, But I have learned. The more I cave in, the more incessant Screaming is.
These are all but two examples.
But as a mother, I do cave in. Sometimes I give him extra chocolate, a tight hug, and a kiss on the cheek so that my child will give me a cherubic smile again.
Have I figured out how many no.s are enough?
The answer to this question remains- I don’t know.
Nor would I assume that any mother would know the answer to this question.
What I have understood is the importance of negation and how much important is it for your family to understand your authority when telling your child no.
No matter how much my baby and I hate it, No is important.
What you need to inculcate in your family members and co-Up bringers Is the authority of your negation when it comes to making decisions about your child. It won’t do for your child to turn to your partner or other members of the family, undermining your authority and getting what they want.
Your word will be deemed important till the time it is respected by other adults in your child’s life.
Your negation response should be firm, Yet kind. It won’t do well to show weakness, nor would it do
to raise a hand or shout at your child.
A child will test your patience at every point of age; a baby might scream and cry, whereas a grown-up might throw a tantrum and say that you are not a fun parent.
Telling your child no is the indispensable tool that we parents learn to use from the very early childhood of our children. I understand the importance of no, and along with that, I understand that it won’t be correct for me to be cruel to my child. So you say no, or you give in; there is no correct way of raising your child. If somebody knows the answer to how many no.s is enough, please do tell me as I am still toddling with my toddler.