N is usually pretty well behaved. We missed the terrible twos.
Although we seem to have got a bit of the ‘threenager’ behaviour coming out now.
Most of his extreme behaviour (well, anger) when it erupts is down to his wanting to be independent. So there’re certain jobs that N thinks are his and woe-betide anyone who tries to do ‘his’ job because he’s not got on with it in time.
N loves getting his breakfast ready. At nursery, they’re allowed to dish up their own cereal and pour their milk out, so he’s pretty good at doing this job. Kind of! He’ll let me help and I suppose we have a slightly less ‘preschool’ friendly house/tools to let him do it all himself.
But toast is a different story. If he wants toast, he has to open the fridge, get the bread out, pull a chair up to the work surface, put the bread in the toaster, get out the butter, a knife and plate. Then put the butter on the toast. If I go to the fridge first there’s yells of ‘no’.
The same happens with running the bath (it’s his job to put the plug in and run it).
But apart from these few occasions, he’s usually pretty well behaved. Until the other day at Granny’s house for tea when he’d finished his food and was wriggling all over the place, mucking around. We’d given him a warning, including telling him what would happen if he didn’t sit still. He usually hates being told off which is why it’s a rare occasion. But this time, he would not sit still.
I can’t even remember exactly what he did, but he was whipped off the chair and into the dark hallway (well, semi dark, not pitch black) and put on the stairs. He’s never been put on a ‘naughty step’ before, and as there are toys under the stairs I wondered whether he would stay sitting there. I told him why he he had to sit there (not listening to a warning and continuing to do something he’d been told not to), and that he would be sitting there until I came back for him in 2 minutes (I said 3 minutes first of all forgetting that he’s still 2!).
He only got up the once straight away, and then on being returned, he sat. There was a bit of a whimper, but he sat there until I returned. The OH wanted to go and get him, but I wasn’t having any of that as I was the one who put him there, and I’m sure the OH wouldn’t have explained everything to him so he knew for future episodes.
I reminded him why he had to sit out there on his own, asked him if he had anything to say (a quiet ‘sorry’ was said), we had a hug and that was it. All sorted, although it was funny when the rest of us were sitting round the table while N was out in the hall.
I wonder what will happen next time he’s round for tea at Granny’s. Seeing as usually he’s totally ashamed when he’s told off, I’d hope that he doesn’t play up again soon.
Some people might say the ‘naughty step’ is horrible, but it’s one method, and in a group situation where he needed to be removed from the opportunity to play up and ‘perform’ in front of everyone, it was the suitable one for the occasion.
What methods do you use when your child is playing up?