Archive for Wednesday, February 16, 2000

Are the ‘terrible twos’ here?

February 16, 2000

For 18 months, my job as a mom has also been as a cook, a nurse, a book reader and a playmate. I'm still all those things, but I feel like I'm becoming a dictator.

There never used to be the need for "no." Now it is said so often that Emily before doing something she knows is wrong tells herself "Emi, no!"

My mom, an early childhood educator, instructed me from the start to use positive ways of saying no. That approach works well in many situations, but sometimes it seems easier to say "no." It's short, it's simple, it's understood.

More often than not lately, neither approach works, and we recently sent Emily to her first time out for hitting one of our dogs with a toy after she had been told not to.

Surprisingly, she sat in the corner of the room quietly and without complaint. As soon as she was allowed to play again, she threw her cup of milk at the same dog's head actually making the 114-pound golden retriever yip.

Time out number two, in less than 10 minutes time. Maybe my daycare provider was right, the "terrible twos" are coming early.

I'm not ready for this. It has taken me this long to get used to the juggling act it is to be a parent. I feel like I have exposed her to all the educational things she is supposed to be exposed to at her young age. I've tried to give her some extras, without making her too spoiled, and now she is a brat (at times.)

Welcome to more of the joys of parenthood, you are probably saying without sympathy.

Emily caught onto the idea of time outs quickly. Now whenever she does something she knows is wrong, she promptly goes and sits in the "time out" corner without a word from us.

Hmm ... Maybe I won't have to be a dictator after all.

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