They Must Have Performed a Mind Eraser on Her...

Aliens have abducted my three year old daughter. They left another child in her place, one that looks like her and sounds like her... but is not her. This one they left is a complete terror!

Sure sure, I know that I have just brought home a new child... but seriously folks, my daughter is making me crazy. Have you ever seen the movie "Problem Child?" She could play the lead role-no joke!

She no longer talks with a sweet voice, she screams with earth shattering pitches. She no longer asks for help, she now just does as she pleases and does not bat an eye when she is disciplined. She sticks out her tongue, she bites, she tells me that everything is her brother's fault, and she has decided to veto all grooming habits such as hair combing, teeth brushing and butt wiping.

She is a mess and I just don't know what to do. Do I send her away? I bet this is what they did in the 60's... they sent unruly kids away. Do I drug her? I bet that is what they did to kids in the 70's (I was a kid in the 70's and I bet my parents drugged us good). Do I spank her? That is what they did in the 80's before spanking was considered child abuse and parents were sent to jail for paddling little Johnny's rear end for setting the garage on fire and spray painting the cat. Do I put her in timeout? That is what they did in the 90's when all the parents were paroled from jail for spanking-they started decorating little benches and putting them in cute little corners of the house and called it the "timeout bench."

Well, now it is 2007 and I am not this child's friend... I am her mother. I am growing very weary of the whole "look, mom has a baby attached to her boob... she can't run after me." attitude my three year old is sporting. And what ever happened to whispering??? At 3 a.m. when she walks into our room to inform me that her covers are on the floor and she needs my assistance in placing them properly back on her bed-what ever happened to whispering? Now she simply screams "MOM! HELP! ME! NOW!" Any hope of having an infant sleep through that is sooo out the window.

Everything has to be done NOW for her... if I even say "wait until Mommy is finished" she will go into fits of screaming and crying and when we were in Target the other day I told the cashier that my daughter had Turrets just so I didn't look like a mother who had completely lost control of my child.

I did not ruin her life by bringing home a baby. When I brought home our son, I thought I ruined my oldest daughter's life and I used to cry outside of her bedroom because I felt guilty. Today... I do not feel guilty. Suck it up kid-this is life! It is time to grow up and move on the from the baby position. Siblings are a blessing-deal with it.

Is that a bad attitude to have? Should I be more sympathetic to my three year old's plea for attention? Should I feel bad for her even though she has a room full of toys and an older brother and sister who play with her all day long? Should I read her 10 books each night instead of 5? Should I do a song and dance every chance I get for her? Or do I just keep doing what I am doing... telling her how much I love her and how special she is to me?

I think I will keep on the track that we are on and this stage will run it's course just like the way hemorrhoids run their course. For a while the pain is unbearable, but with each day it gets easier and easier to take a dump. Let's just pray this constipation softens up real soon~


Dana said...

Two items you should keep handy: Duct Tape & Dirty Socks!

Phoenix said...

Thanks for the note on my blog... it made me smile ;o)

Shae said...

Have you tried giving her more responsibilities? My three-year-old is much better behaved if she has "work" to do.

Also, if you are nursing and she misbehaves remove the baby. Take the three-year-old and put her in her room (or wherever you have timeout) then leave her there for at least as long as it takes the baby to finish nursing. I know this may sound like abuse, but I have left my daughter in timeout for over an hour before.

Eventually, she will see that the baby is a blessing.

Shauna said...

I like Shae's idea. It often works for me, too. But, it often means more work for you. But, I remind myself, more work and a happy toddler is better than a meltdown (which is always more work).

AuburnGalAlways said...

Turretts? I'm laughing my head off! I've been tempted to explain my Stinkerbell's flailing around w/o a bone in her body over some ridiculous NOTHING on epilepsy before.

Chores/responsibility might just work.

Bribes might work.

Being mean like The Mighty Hunter and I did might work: When Stinkerbell was 2 or 3, she loved the show "Little Bill". About that same time, she decided she would defy every request/demand/instruction she was given. Timeouts, at the end of the hall, in front of a closed door (which previously worked wonders) no longer worked. So, we would put her in time out and turn on a recorded episode of Little Bill and talk VERY! LOUDLY! about how funny he was! and oh! look at him now! and gosh! LITTLE! BILL! you're the BEST! TV SHOW! EVER! It took her a few times to figure out that she had to calm down and comply before she could watch LB again.

mean? yup.
effective? YOUBETCHA!
recommended? oh yeah.

She's struggling to understand the world now and that's sad. I feel for you both.

Do what it takes to get her attention and compliance and smother her with love. You're a GREAT MOM! Don't let this little obstacle think otherwise!

Michelle said...

There must have been a recent 3 year old conference on how to make your mother's life miserable. The last few days with MY 3 year old have been...challenging. Yesterday, she required that I carry her all the way to the car from the hospital (shots for my other daughter). Now, she didn't want to be carried, she just required it by refusing (in a load wailing way) to walk there herself. She did get spanked right there in the parking lot for everyone to see (one big swat). I don't care. I just hope she gets over it in the next 5 months. It is very difficult to deal with it with a newborn, especially one who is attached at the breast.

It will pass, Cris. It will seem like forever, but it will only be a week or so.

Matilda said...

You guys are scaring me.

I will have a three year old in a week and right now I am wondering, "Will he still turn into a monster if we don't celebrate his birthday? Could we just skip it and tell him he's two until next year?"

Toni said...

Maybe it's from lack of sleep, or maybe I'm a bad mom- beat her bum!

Cris said...

I love the advice everyone gives... I am going to use the dirty sock and duct tape one from Dana. In the meantime, I think I will just drink a bottle of wine tonight and start singing "Memories" at the top of my lungs in our backyard. That always makes me feel better~

Jennifer said...

Yikes! Sorry it's been a rough transition.

No advice here. I'm clueless!

Kasia said...

I always advise against bribes, unless the child is stupid enough (mind you, I didn't say YOUNG enough) to not clue into the fact that it's a great incentive to misbehave. I like the TV show suggestion.

However, while I wouldn't reward the behavior itself, I would try to squeeze out a little bit of time for her if you can. Siblings are a blessing, but one doesn't always see them that way, especially when they first arrive and are occupying everyone's time and attention. I would try a combination of added responsibility (with some sort of treat if she behaves really well) with something like the TV show approach (deny her something she really loves until she shapes up). Pandering to the behavior will SOOOO make things worse! :-)

Good luck!!!