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Old 05-06-2006, 10:37 PM   #1
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Need help with a few issues with my almost 3 year old

My daughter will be three on Thursday. I have just a few issues with her and need some advice. She is an only child and may be the only child because we have fertility issues.

1. She is still not potty trained. I have no idea how to go about doing this. During the week, while I'm at work, she stays with my aunt during the day, who takes her to the potty every so often during the day. I do the same at home. It's not that she can't be potty trained; it's that she won't. She wants to wear her diaper, not panties. Just the other day, we went to her cousin's softball game. She told me she wanted to play. I told her that when she was a big girl she could play. She told me she was a big girl, and I told her that she wouldn't be a big girl until she wore panties and went on the potty all the time. The next day, she told me she wanted to wear panties so she could play softball. I told her she would have to wear them and go on the potty all the time. She wore them for about two hours, went to the potty twice in that length of time and didn't have any accidents. She came up to me after two hours and said, "I'm not a big girl, mommy. I'm Tessa. I want my diaper back." I put her back in the diaper. Should I have made her keep the panties on? I've always heard that it's a bad idea to force kids into potty training, and I certainly don't want to punish her for not doing it. But, she has to be potty trained to go to preschool in the fall, and I'm not making any headway at all.

2. She still has her pacifier. I'm getting a lot of flak from people, especially my DH, about her still having it. Honestly, she still has it because I haven't wanted to take it away from her, and the longer she has it, it seems like the more attached to it she becomes. She's never been a good sleeper, but in the last few months or so, she's gotten much better. She will pretty much sleep 12 hours at night if she has her paci and can find it in the bed. I'm not sure I want to change that. Before she became a better sleeper, I became physically ill from lack of sleep. I was going on about two hours a night for several weeks. My DH is on the road during the week, and so, when she wakes up at night, I'm the only one who can be up with her. I would let her keep it, but I'm afraid of it messing up her teeth. How can we get rid of it?

3. All of a sudden, she wants to kill bugs. We'll see one on the porch or in the garage and she'll say, "I'll kill it." To hear these words from her mouth just kills me. She has never said anything like that about any person or about her cat, just the bugs. Is this normal or should I be worried?

4. I feel like she's ahead in some areas and behind in others. For example, she can count to 10, but she usually skips the numbers 5,6,7 and 8. I have actually heard her count as high as 16 one night when she counting some poker chips my DH let her play with. She didn't skip any of the numbers then, but if just ask her to count, she will skip them. Should I be worried about this or is it normal? Also, she doesn't know her ABCs. She can get to about "E" and that's it. Shouldn't she know them by now? The things she is ahead in amaze me, though. She can already draw all of the shapes and is starting to draw pictures that are recognizable, especially faces. She also has the most vivid imagination. She can make up stories off the top of her head. Right now, she's been telling us about a nice, little pink shark that is coming to her birthday party next weekend that she's going to ride, lol. One week, it was a snake and she told my aunt that her daddy hit it over and over again, lol. I love to listen to her make up these stories and even ask her questions to encourage it. I'm a writer, and I would have loved to have someone to work with me that way when I was younger. But, I want to encourage the artistic side, while trying to help her other side with the counting and alphabet. Any ideas on how to do that?

5. Last question, I promise. My grandmother is very ill. I have been taking Tessa to see her at the hospital and now that she is home, we've been going over to her house. We went at least once a week before she became ill, so Tessa has seen both the good and the bad. For a while, when Granny looked so bad, Tessa didn't want to kiss her goodbye, and I didn't force the issue. But, now, she is really clinging to her, kissing her several times in one night, hugging on her, wanting to sit with, etc. I'm fine with all of that, as is Granny, but when we get home, I get the endless questions. She always asks me "Is Granny Green better?" or "Is Granny Green still sick?" "Why is Granny Green sick?" etc. She talks in her sleep, something she gets from me, and I often hear something mumbled about Granny Green. The other night, she woke crying and asked me if Granny was better. I don't really know how to handle all of this with her. I'm having a hard time with it myself (one of the reasons I'm up so late; insomnia from worry is starting to take its toll), and I know it has to be even harder on a three year old. How do I explain it all, and when my grandmother goes (if it's any time soon and it looks like it might be), how do I explain that, too?

Thanks for all the help. I really appreciate it. I look forward to participating in this board.

Last edited by tamara29; 05-06-2006 at 10:40 PM. Reason: Needed to add something

 
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Old 05-08-2006, 11:47 AM   #2
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haileysheets HB User
Re: Need help with a few issues with my almost 3 year old

1. It's one thing to force very young children into potty-training. When I say "young," I am talking 1.5 years or younger. Their bladders often have not developed and potty-training is impossible. However, your daughter clearly can successfully use the toilet on her own. My advice? Don't put those diapers back on her. If she has an accident in her panties, clean her up and put a new pair of panties right back on. Be consistent in your decisions. Going back and forth between panties and diapers (when your daughter is capable of wearing panties and going potty on her own) will only send mixed messages.

2. Replace the pacifier with another object that makes her feel secure. In fact, let your daughter pick something on her own (a blanket, a stuffed animal, etc). Same thing as the panties--be consistent. If you take the pacifier away, do not give it back (even if this leads to tantrums). After a couple days of the pacifier being gone, she will probably have forgotten all about it. Be prepared for her waking up in the night and throwing a fit when she cannot find her pacifier. Remind her that her blanket or stuffed animal is there. She will eventually calm back down.

3. I'm wondering if she saw another small child kill bugs or saw something about this on tv. Everybody's comfort-level here will be different, but I'd explain to her the situations when it's okay to kill bugs: "If they are in the house, it's okay to kill them. But if they are outside, we need to leave them alone. It is their home." I would not be worried about this. She is probably just mimicing behavior she saw or heard elsewhere.

4. From my experience, kids learn best with repetition. Take 15-20 min. everyday to work with her on her numbers, alphabet. The routine and repetition will be very important. Also, putting her into a pre-school (if you have not already) will help out tremendously. Here's one idea for encouraging her artistic abilities and creativity: You mentioned that she likes to make-up stories and that she is an excellent artist. Why not have her illustrate the stories she makes up? For instance, have her draw pictures of what her "pink shark" looks like or draw what it will be doing at her birthday party.

5. Be as honest as you can with your daughter about your grandmother's situation. If she is not going to get better, don't say she is. If you are not sure, tell her. Do tell her that no matter how sick she gets, she is still the same grandmother on the inside. Many children will associate a changed appearance as it not being the same person any more. I also might see if there are any good books out there about teaching children how to deal with illness and death. I'm sure these would be extremely helpful. If you practice a religion, this might be a nice time to discuss the idea of God and that God is taking care of granny in a special way that no one else can.

 
Old 05-09-2006, 03:38 PM   #3
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Re: Need help with a few issues with my almost 3 year old

As a teacher and school administrator, I only have advice for #4. All of these things are developmental and will come with time. Not knowing how to completely count or say all her ABC's is nothing to worry about. Some kids don't totally catch on to these things until they are in kindergarten, and then they take off.

The poster above gave you good advice on your other questions. I really agree with her on #1. Let her wet her panties and let her be uncomfortable in them. She will learn to stop. In fact, you might want to show her that you are throwing out her diapers and there will be no more in the house. Then she will know she has no other options.

 
Old 05-09-2006, 06:16 PM   #4
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Re: Need help with a few issues with my almost 3 year old

My dd is not toilet trained at 3.5. If I don't put pull-up she is comfortable to have full load in her pants and never ask to change.

 
Old 05-09-2006, 07:31 PM   #5
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Re: Need help with a few issues with my almost 3 year old

could it be the stress from grandma being sick is prolonging her potty training?

definately take the pacifier away. do it when your husband is home (even if he has to take vacation - and since he wants it gone he should be more than willing to do this).
It will be a few sleepless nights but if you don't give in it'll be gone quicker than you think. We cut the ends of one of the pacifiers - so they couldn't suck on anything and cleared the house of them.

I wouldn't worry about killing bugs. She's probably seen/heard someone talking about killing whatever bugs.

 
Old 05-10-2006, 07:18 AM   #6
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Re: Need help with a few issues with my almost 3 year old

We have hard time taking away pacifier. We were consistent, just take don't give it to her and hide them all. After few days it will be solved.
In daycare our provider never gave pacifiers and she was fine with that, but she requested them at home.

 
Old 05-10-2006, 08:26 AM   #7
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Dark Stranger HB UserDark Stranger HB UserDark Stranger HB UserDark Stranger HB User
Re: Need help with a few issues with my almost 3 year old

It sounds like your daughter knows well enough how to use the toilet (or potty chair), and I concur with HaileySheets - keep her in panties, and expect a few accidents. I'm sure she won't like having to walk around in urine-soaked pants, shorts, or a skirt, and she'll get the point that panties aren't portable potties like diapers are. Also, don't worry about her age - my little cousin was still in diapers when she turned 4. Her mother tried putting her in those pull-up diapers that resemble underwear, but my cousin would scream blue murder when they were put on. She's potty-trained now, but just saying that your daughter isn't the only child her age that likes to wear nappies.

 
Old 05-10-2006, 09:20 AM   #8
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Re: Need help with a few issues with my almost 3 year old

[QUOTE=Dark Stranger]I'm sure she won't like having to walk around in urine-soaked pants, shorts, or a skirt, and she'll get the point that panties aren't portable potties like diapers are. [QUOTE]
My dd is fine with it and never ask to change. What should I do? She is 3.5

 
Old 05-10-2006, 10:44 AM   #9
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tamara29 HB User
Re: Need help with a few issues with my almost 3 year old

Thanks everyone. I never thought about the stress of my granny being sick having an effect on potty training. It might be. I am going to get rid of all the diapers on Sunday. That's my plan and I hope it works out. She is going to the potty more and more consistently now. We bought her some Strawberry Shortcake panties as part of her birthday present, so I'm hoping that might be a good incentive.

She is definately getting more and more attached to the paci. It's going to be killer to take away from her. We tried the cutting a hole in it, but she was just smart enough to say, It has a hole in it. I wish we had thrown the others away at that point, but we didn't. Thanks again for all the advice.

 
Old 05-11-2006, 08:05 PM   #10
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haileysheets HB User
Re: Need help with a few issues with my almost 3 year old

Quote:
Originally Posted by tamara29
Thanks everyone. I never thought about the stress of my granny being sick having an effect on potty training. It might be. I am going to get rid of all the diapers on Sunday. That's my plan and I hope it works out. She is going to the potty more and more consistently now. We bought her some Strawberry Shortcake panties as part of her birthday present, so I'm hoping that might be a good incentive.

She is definately getting more and more attached to the paci. It's going to be killer to take away from her. We tried the cutting a hole in it, but she was just smart enough to say, It has a hole in it. I wish we had thrown the others away at that point, but we didn't. Thanks again for all the advice.
Best of luck! Please keep us updated on how the changes go.

 
Old 05-11-2006, 08:48 PM   #11
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Re: Need help with a few issues with my almost 3 year old

I just HAVE to add my two cents about the potting training issues.LOL as your daughter sounds like my 3 1/2 yr old. I have 3 girls. My first two loved to sit on their small potty until they went potty. I started both my oldest and my middle child at 2 and within two months they were potty trained.

Well along comes my third. I tried that .......she wanted nothing to do with it. She would sit for 2 seconds and say. Ok Im done..I used every trick I had used on my older two. No way was she having it. Than during The week she was about to turn 3 I was beside myself thinking. When is this child going to be potty trianed??????

However the day after she turned 3 she asked to put her big girl panties back on and never looked back. She had maybe 5 accidents in that first couple of weeks but that was it!!! When she deicded she was ready........it was easier than my first two!!! LOL I could not believe it!!!

I think she will do just fine. She seems ready...just holding on to the little girl in herself. The longer she goes wearing under wear and than goes back to a diaper and feels how yukky that is the easier it will be for her to decide she is ready!!! and I bet in a few weeks she will be potty trained.

As far as the paci goes. Maybe take it down to just at night for awhile. Tell her it is only for sleeping. My oldest had her paci until she was 3 1/2. However no-one knew cause she only had it at night. I took it down to nights only at 1 years old. Than when she was 3 1/2 she decided she no longer needed it and threw them all away on her own.

Don't sweat it.....she seems right on track .....oh yeah as far as your grandma goes. Maybe try to focas on just that she is grandma and not that she is sick. That may help....Sorry about your grandma by the way..take care!!

 
Old 05-12-2006, 07:14 AM   #12
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Re: Need help with a few issues with my almost 3 year old

Ahh the 3 year old. I've got a little girl myself. She goes from Ms. Independent, go away I can do it myself to Mommy help me goo goo in an instant. I love this age, they can hold conversations with you and love to learn and experience new things.

For potty training, I did the panty thing. I let her pick out her own pack of panties and I bought a pack of rubber pants to go over them. When she wet them it wasn't so messy that way. When she had an accident I didn't make a big deal out of it. I just said oh well, next time we'll just try to make it to the potty right. She would say yep. After a couple of weeks of being uncomfortable in wet panties she was fully trained. She did this at about 2 and a half. She just turned 3 and I still put a pull up on her for bed because I don't think her little bladder is mature enough yet to make it thru a whole night. But if we with hold water or drinks for an hour before bedtime she sometimes wakes up dry and I make a big production of it.

The pacifier. Neither of my kids had one after 6 months but my sister had one of her sons who would not give his up until he was almost 4. What she did was tell him that the pacifier fairy was in the neighborhood and looking for pacifiers for babies and that for every pacifier she found she would leave a present. My nephew gathered up 4 pacifiers and put them under his pillow and my sister put 4 little toys on his dresser that night. He was so excited and proud of himself. It worked like a charm.

ABC and 123 We bought our kids those leap frogs things. I think they really helped. When our daughter came along they now have this leap frog thing that goes on the fridge. It's so great, it's letters and it sings the alphabet and it tells the child what sounds each letter makes. My daughter was singing her alphabet very early on because of that. I think it's called Fridge Phonics. The counting we just kept counting with the kids. When we go out we count trees or buildings or cars or people.

As for Grandma, I think your little one knows that Granny's don't last forever and she's squeezing in some special memories. Take pictures and video of her with Granny so she can have those special moments to remember the love she had for Granny and the love Granny had for her. My Grandma died when my son was 9 and my daughter was 8 months. But I took picture after picture and videoed all their times together to show them how special they were to their Nite-Nite (that was her special nick name).

Good luck and enjoy her now because it goes by so darn fast.

 
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