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  • How do I get my son to quit wanting baths and showers?

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    Old 10-07-2002, 07:26 AM   #1
    JennyBear
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    Question How do I get my son to quit wanting baths and showers?

    My 4 year old wants to take baths and showers all the time. First thing in the morning I hear " I want a bath" or "I want a shower" Late afternoon it's "I want a bath" If I say "NO" he cries and whines and throws a fit. I try to tell him he can only have one a day, so he needs to choose what he wants and when he wants it. That doesn't work. I need help. What can I do. Why is he like this?

     
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    Old 10-07-2002, 08:41 AM   #2
    Greenberry
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    You have to keep standing firm. Your son has learned how to push your buttons and is trying to control you. When he asks/demands, tell him no--remind him of the once-a-day rule ("You already had a bath this morning" or "Bathtime is after supper"), and not to ask again. If he whines, tell him you don't want to listen to his whining, and leave the room. If he pitches a fit, he pitches a fit. Leave the room when he does, or at least just stand there looking at him to make sure he doesn't hurt himself or destroy something. There's nothing wrong with letting him pitch a fit sometimes. My daughter, who is two, wants to put on chapstick constantly all day. I have told her once a day, and that is all she gets. If she pitches a fit, then she just pitches a fit. If I give in once, she will expect me to give in every time. After the first few times of pitching a fit, however, she has stopped and accepts the once-a-day rule. Let him pitch a fit, and when he quiets down, distract him with some activity or something he enjoys. It will be hard at first, because he may expect you to give in if you have before. But don't give in. Eventually he'll get it. Too bad if he's not happy with the rules. He'll get over it! Good luck.

     
    Old 10-10-2002, 03:00 PM   #3
    mydog8mybrain
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    It would be a good thing if you could somehow bottle that desire he has and save it until he is about 10 years old! Seems that when they get around 10 or so they do all they can to avoid the tub!
    Bruce

     
    Old 11-05-2002, 01:09 PM   #4
    Chelle1977
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    What does it hurt to let him take a bath or shower if you have the time? I say let him do it. It'll be soon enough when you'll have to beg him to bathe at all.
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    Old 11-06-2002, 12:50 AM   #5
    HeartOfGold
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    Hi,

    I feel the same as Chelle. My first thought was so what, I mean if the bath or shower doesn't conflict with your schedule. What's the harm? It might seem quirky to an adult but he's a child and its just fun for him at this stage in his life, it won't last. Also I really don't understand why the other woman that posted what she does because her daughter wants to apply chapstick? This is what she uses as her "teaching her a lesson method" .....its chapstick for goodness sakes not Este Lauder's red red ruby from your makeup bag she paid $35.00 on. I would buy my daughter a tube and just say, " Here Honey condition and sunscreen your little lips to your hearts content". I guess I just don't see these as BIG issues. Think about it, why so angry over such issues, could you benefit by taking a step back and saying to yourself ," Is something else going on in my life?" I'm not handling this not so harmful request my child is making to me very well, Why? "
    Make the short time they are small happy memories and don't sweat the small stuff. They will be adults longer than they will be kids. We all know as adults we associate the quality of our adult lives to the few kid years we were at our parent's mercy. How do you want yours to remember you? The chapstick Nazi? Or having said something to the effect of......... "Sweetheart? Do you think Mommy needs some on her lips too, will you apply some to Mommy's lips, because if she's going to have a chapstick princess for her Daughter, she should look like a chapstick Queen". Give her a memory, it will be 1 or the other, you choose.

    Best to you,
    HeartOfGold

     
    Old 11-06-2002, 05:54 AM   #6
    Greenberry
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    I thought the original poster wanted help in breaking her son of the demand-give in cycle that seems to have developed. My original advice was based on the fact that I just don't believe in catering to every whim of a two-year old. The reason that I do not cater to my child's every whim is because I am trying to raise a civilized human being. If she gets every single thing that she DEMANDS, then what am I teaching her? That if she lays down on the floor and screams, people will jump to do whatever she wants--a situation which does not usually happen in the real world. My job is to prepare my child for adult life in the real world. Giving in to her every whim is doing her as great a disservice as never giving in to anything. I am not angry at my child for acting like a child, as seems to have been implied above, but I just don't see that children have to be given everything they demand. When she is 10 and demands a television in her bedroom, we will not be giving in to that whim. When she is 13 and demands to go out on a date, we will not be giving in to that either. Those will be easier to refuse because a relationship has been established where the parents make the rules.

    I provide my daughter with everything she needs and a lot of what she wants, spend most of the day playing with her, reading to her and taking care of her, and I doubt that her most outstanding childhood memory will be that her mother didn't let her put on chapstick whenever she wanted, especially since this is not a day-to-day issue anymore. She asks occasionally, and I pass the tube over to her. But not 10 times a day, which is what she started out asking for. This is not a really big deal to me either, I used it as a example of how I handled a similar demand that is no longer an issue because of the fact that it has already been handled. (Besides, chapstick is bad for your lips because if you use it all the time, your lips eventually lose the ability to moisturize themselves.)

     
    Old 11-06-2002, 09:10 AM   #7
    Chelle1977
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    I think there are better battles to fight though. I mean a bath/shower isn't harmful (I agree that the chapstick is). I'm sure there are other things that he would want to do that ARE harmful and that he would whine and cry about. You can't give them everything, but you can choose your battles.
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    Old 11-06-2002, 10:57 PM   #8
    HeartOfGold
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    Greenberry, when I read my post again today I was embarrassed by my over sensitivity. I realized that I was over the top. Let me explain, see this is a very difficult time for me as Thanksgiving nears. I lost my 9 year old Son on this Holiday. This will be the 3rd year he won't be at our table and it is no easier than the 1st and I imagine all of them until I am with him again. I was expressing my anguish over my loss. I was having a pretty bad night(coping). I had those tantrum problems with my son when he was 3 and after I re-read the post I understood what I was writing had so many between the lines to myself. I disciplined my child for behavior unsuitable to us. I was wishing I could have him again. I wouldn't care about those things, but of course I would realistically speaking. But at the time I wrote that post I was not using my head but was coming from the broken heart of a Parent. I have 2 other children and for my Daughters I do all the things to create fond memories for them for the Holidays. I don't want them to associate this time of year with dread because of me. So I unknowingly used this vehicle to release. Please except my apology for over reacting to your well intended, innocent account of one mothers experience to another.

     
    Old 11-07-2002, 06:02 AM   #9
    Greenberry
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    Hey, I understand. I have never lost a child, but I can identify with having a bad day and taking out those emotions somewhere else. Thanks for responding again. My heartfelt condolences on your loss.

     
    Old 11-09-2002, 07:49 AM   #10
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    I tend to go along with the "fight the battles that need fighting" routine. I suspect that if you let him have a shower whenever he wanted, the novelty would wear off pretty quickly! Alternatively, get him into swimming training, that way he will get wet on a regular basis - DS2 swam almost every day from the age of 5 (wouldnt get to sleep until some utterly inappropriate hour if he didnt get the exercise) and just quit national level competition at age 20.

    HeatofGold, my condolences too!

    Angela

     
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