Hell on Wheels

In the past two weeks, Jack has gone from being your run-of-the-mill toddler to Rosemary’s baby. While he was once a bit whiny if he didn’t immediately get what he wanted, and he could certainly hit if he was in the mood, he wasn’t all trouble, all the time.

This is the report we got from day care today:

Crazy this morning. Jack was anti-(baby) and (little girl). Jack kicked baby 2xs and little girl 2xs. Hit little girl several times and grabbed her hair. He pulled her hair really hard and a chunk came out.

Please talk with Jack about kicking and pulling hair. The kicking scares me especially with baby.

Then, there’s a smiley face.

Now, two weeks ago, day care woman (DCW) was fine with Jack’s behavior. It wasn’t angelic, by any stretch, but she said he was normal. She said that another boy there had had a problem with not being the baby, and that Jack would probably grow out of it.

Just last night, I talked with Jack specifically about the baby. We worked out what to do if baby wanted his cup or his toy – which was, to say “no” and then go and get the baby a cup or toy meant for baby. Max talked with him this morning about little girl, and how to be nice to her.

Jack isn’t overly violent at home. He does have his moments with the cat, and I know we need to watch that. I just don’t know what to do about his behavior there.

When I came home tonight, he was crying in his high chair. We figured out that he was exhausted, though he had a normal nap, and it took awhile to put him down to bed because he had worked himself into such a state. He is currently having a hard time getting comfortable. He’s “peeping” through the monitor. I’m really quite worried about him.

Anyone have any thoughts?

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3 thoughts on “Hell on Wheels

  1. All I know about kids wouldn’t slop over the sides of a thimble. But you teach the kids right from wrong, good behavior from bad behavior, as many ways as you can think of, as many times as they need it, and when their brains are ready, they’ll learn it so fast it’s like they never didn’t know it.

    That’s how Dad did it. That’s how America does it. And it’s worked out pretty good so far.

    Hee hee.

    But otherwise, is there an environmental trigger that may be influencing his behavior? A change in snack at day-care with more or less sugar, a new kid, something around the house that he’s taking with him to day care? There needn’t be, as kids change on their own all the time, but it might be something to look for.

    Or so I’m led to believe. Not actually being a parent makes me really good at giving advice to them.

  2. Sure he’s not hitting a growth spurt or getting some new molars or something? Both of those totally threw my kids into a funk for at least a week.

  3. Congratulations….you’ve hit the terrible twos! It’s all about ego at this stage. While I agree that Jack is a smart cookie, he cannot say “I’m frustrated and I just don’t understand why you are trying to take my toy.” I’m not sure about the baby, other than jealousy? The family dynamics have changed with you going back to work, and having two different people’s discipline styles could be confusing for Jack. I would think that an experienced DCW would have more ideas and tactics to handle this common situation. I know my DCW is very strict in regards to the kids respecting each other, and I’ve never had a report of Wes hitting (yet!). Honestly, I think it is her firm yet loving discipline that keeps him in line. Maybe he is acting out because he went from undivided attention from you to sharing attention with 4 other kids and he’s still adjusting to that. Maybe it’s just a testing phase. In any case, I think the key is consistent and calm discipline. Whatever technique you use, just do it every time (even if you are at the park, at the store, etc)

    I remember Owen abusing our cat and no matter how many time-outs he got, the temptation to pull that cat’s tail could not be resisted. He laughed when the cat squealed in pain and I was mortified. Wasn’t one sign of a serial killer cruelty to animals? Then one day a few months later…it completely stopped and he was back to his sweet self.

    Be patient…its not a reflection of anything you are doing wrong. By all means, take it seriously, but don’t stress out too much. I think all you can do is keep talking to him about it (especially if you aren’t there when it happens) and if he sees consequences for his actions, he will soon enough figure it out.

    Hang in there!

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