Ahhhh My Sanity!!!!

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Old 03-11-2011, 01:26 PM
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Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

My 4 yr old son recently stopped napping which I knew was coming. Problem is he refuses quiet time. He wants to be right up under my feet all the time. I end up staying up late at night just to have time to myself.
The kids go to school on diff days of the wk so I feel as tho I never have a break. I need at least an hr to myself while my younger child naps. I don't understand why he will not play in his room by himself!
And his behavior had become uncontrollable! I thought 2 was bad.....I was wrong!! 3-4 by far have been the toughest ages for us. He aggravates my daughter all the time by picking at her....& she just screams all the time....:I feel like I'm goin to lose my mind!!!!!
Do your children participate in Quiet time? What do u do .....want ideas that he can do himself. My house looks like a tornado all the time. I went to shower while my DD was sleeping & locked him out....I know that sounds awful but I needed 15min.....to just breathe. After I got out he'd found the keys & had the door unlocked.
Yest when I showered I left the door to my room open & he had made a mess in the 15min I was in there. Sheets &'pillows on the floor.....stuff strung & strewed!!!
I'm just so frustrated
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Old 03-11-2011, 01:28 PM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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I'm writing you a prescription, take one bottle of wine as needed.
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Old 03-11-2011, 01:41 PM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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Not sure what to tell you but I hope you get it worked out!
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Old 03-11-2011, 02:04 PM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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Any way they can go to school on the same day?
Mine never leave me alone either. Quite time is the hour before they wake up and the hour when they go to bed. On nice days they can play outside on the swing set or on their little riding toys and I'll sit on the porch and read a magazine or something. That is nice.
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Old 03-11-2011, 02:06 PM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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How do you discipline? If you set a few rules and have consequences for breaking those rules, then I would assume that after awhile(YOU will need to be consistent) he should listen.
Do you think that his not sitting still is a medical problem? ADHD, ADD, ?
We are in the minority(so I've seen on here) and if our rules aren't followed there are consequences.
We do relax time here w/a movie.
If our son gets out(he watches a movie in our room w/a toy) then the next day he has to lay in bed w/books for 1 1/2 hrs.
He turned 4 in Jan.
Just thoughts that went through my head when I read your post.
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Old 03-11-2011, 02:17 PM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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OK, here's some advice from a grandma....

You are the adult and he is 4. Tell him that MOMMY needs a quiet time, and that it is not a choice for him to not participate. Set a timer for at least 1/2 hour (start with a little time to get him used to it.) He can read books or do some other quiet activity in his room, but he cannot come out of his room until the timer rings. If he does, he has to go to bed early (a logical consequence since he is not getting that time of rest).

Quiet time activities: color book, one of those learning-type games he can do by himself (Leappad, etc.), a puzzle, stack of library books, or the infamous TV (I'm a little iffy on that one, but Mom's sanity comes first).

Could you schedule a babysitter for 1 morning or afternoon a week - just for you? Or trade with a friend?

Believe me, I feel your pain. I have done a lot of babysitting for my 4 YO grandson, and there is seldom a moment's peace. I wish you the best - hang in there!
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Old 03-11-2011, 02:47 PM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueMoon187 View Post
OK, here's some advice from a grandma....

You are the adult and he is 4. Tell him that MOMMY needs a quiet time, and that it is not a choice for him to not participate. Set a timer for at least 1/2 hour (start with a little time to get him used to it.) He can read books or do some other quiet activity in his room, but he cannot come out of his room until the timer rings. If he does, he has to go to bed early (a logical consequence since he is not getting that time of rest).

Quiet time activities: color book, one of those learning-type games he can do by himself (Leappad, etc.), a puzzle, stack of library books, or the infamous TV (I'm a little iffy on that one, but Mom's sanity comes first).

Could you schedule a babysitter for 1 morning or afternoon a week - just for you? Or trade with a friend?

Believe me, I feel your pain. I have done a lot of babysitting for my 4 YO grandson, and there is seldom a moment's peace. I wish you the best - hang in there!
Great in theory, give it a try. If you son is anything like mine it won't work. I have a 4 year old dd and an almost 3 year old ds. My house sounds just like yours, except my daughter taunts my son, and in turn he taunts her back - they are literally the same size now. I stay up late and get up extra early just to have some peace and quiet. No matter what room I am in there is at least one of them circling me, most times both. They go to sleep in there own beds, but they always make their way to my room sometime in the middle of the night. They are always screaming - either because they are just being happy and loud or they are fighting about something. Honestly my sanity is slowly dwindling. Sunday DH and I leave them with his mom and go shopping at rite aid, have lunch or breakfast together. If not for Sunday I might have gone off the deep end.

So, my only advice is to find someone to babysit for 4-6 hours once a week - you need to be at peace, they need you to be at peace, and your dh needs you to be at peace!

Feel free to PM me if you just wanna vent, trust me I understand your pain!
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Old 03-11-2011, 02:59 PM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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Oh yes my children both do quiet time and they have no choice not to, I put my foot down! The baby takes a short nap just as they are getting home from school so I have them do a 30 minute quiet time so I can get some things done. I give them books and coloring stuff, they can sit at their desk and do playdough or whatever keeps them quiet.
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Old 03-11-2011, 03:46 PM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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I hear you. To be a great mom you need a little alone time to refresh yourself. When my kids were little, I rationed the TV. While they watched a show I had my alone time.
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Old 03-11-2011, 03:49 PM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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Reminds me of my DS21 who I swear stopped napping when he was a few weeks old. No kidding. Kid hated to sleep, night or day. He now sleeps all day practically when he is not working or at school.

It will get better. Find a video he likes with a nice snack and see if that will work.
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Old 03-12-2011, 06:04 AM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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Quote:
Originally Posted by mefreire89
I'm writing you a prescription, take one bottle of wine as needed.
As I would love to do this every night my husband quit drinking (he has a problem w/ ETOH) so I don't drink around him often. He will say it doesn't bother him but them he makes comments that I have a problem....and I don't. So I'd rather not deal w/ it.
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Old 03-12-2011, 06:10 AM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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Quote:
Originally Posted by cskrizan
How do you discipline? If you set a few rules and have consequences for breaking those rules, then I would assume that after awhile(YOU will need to be consistent) he should listen.
Do you think that his not sitting still is a medical problem? ADHD, ADD, ?
We are in the minority(so I've seen on here) and if our rules aren't followed there are consequences.
We do relax time here w/a movie.
If our son gets out(he watches a movie in our room w/a toy) then the next day he has to lay in bed w/books for 1 1/2 hrs.
He turned 4 in Jan.
Just thoughts that went through my head when I read your post.
I've wondered if he has ADhD, as I believe I have a form of it too. But I've never been tested. They don't diagnose it until like 8 from what our pedi said. Not sure about that. I don't want him to be prescribed ritalin tho.

And yes I'm the adult. When I've tried to get him to stay in his room for even 30min he's sat in there & screamed & I've been afraid he would wake my DD who still needs a nap. We have a old small house.
I will try the timer thing that someone mentioned
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Old 03-12-2011, 08:29 AM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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OK, I'm going to out myself on this one. I am a child therapist, and have dealt with this kind of thing so-o-o many times. It is so hard for me to see parents struggle to regain control of a child. The parent feels so inadequate and frustrated, and (believe it or not...) the child does too.

Re: the screaming...it is really important for you to "nip this in the bud," so to speak. If he gets what he wants by screaming, he will do more and more of it. So, come up with some logical consequence for screaming (losing TV time, go to bed early, time-out on a small carpet square, etc.) He can also "earn" special privileges by having a good quiet time - special time with Mommy, trip to the park, etc. Say something like "After your quiet time, and after DD's nap, we will go to the park..." Likewise..."we can't go to the park today because you weren't quiet during quiet time." You may have to sacrifice DD's naptime for a day or two to get the rules laid down (if he insists on screaming and won't stop...don't let him out of the quiet time, just enforce the consequences). So you make it LESS pleasant for him if he doesn't cooperate (he will lose something he cares about having).

When you're saying/doing these things, it is really important to use an authoritative, "in control" voice. Not a mean, mad voice. Not a "sweetie-pie...please would you do it...OK??" voice. Just a matter of fact, adult, "in-charge of this" voice. This sets the tone for him to know you mean business - follow through with what you say using this voice, and it becomes a tool in your bag for getting obedience.

Please don't think I'm trying to be a "know-it-all" about this, because I know how hard it is to follow through. But I also have seen how much WORSE this can get if you don't establish your own authority at age 4. Especially with kids who are hyperactive and/or have impulse control problems (ADHD type). They need clear limits to feel more in control of themselves. It is actually scary to be a child who is in control by misbehaving, because they know that the adult is supposed to be in charge, and they know they aren't capable of setting their own limits. It is hard, hard. HARD to get on the right track, but you will know you are doing the right thing for their future (and your sanity!)

I wish you every success, and will be praying for you!
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Old 03-12-2011, 09:48 AM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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So today while I took a shower w/ my DD (they didn't get baths last night so this is like a last resort thing). I locked the door b/c if I leave it open he gets into stuff in my room & makes a huge mess.
When I come out he's got stuff in his hair....:he got into the oxy clean & sprayed it all over the floor & walls.....I'm already testy today b/c DD woke up 3x last pm....& I'm exhausted....dh had to go to wk today so I'm by myself once again....& he's playing golf tomorrow.....UGh
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Old 03-12-2011, 10:17 AM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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I think you need nanny 911!!! My kids watch a movie in there room. I explain to them that sometimes they like to play toys by themselves sometimes mommy needs time. You could join like a YMCA we have one near us and they have day care for free to members from 8am to 8 pm and you have 2 hours to leave them there. Then you can take them to the pool after as a reward. I think sometimes you become so fusterated that its hard to think clearly. At the YMCA they said a lot of moms bring there computers and sit in the chairs and let the kids play in the day care just cause they need time alone!! I think it's easy to feel like your a bad mom cause you need your time. I get up before my kids in the moring and take my shower and get myself ready so that when the kids are up and ready I have ALREADY had my me time. I just feel better if I get a shower and get myself ready first. I also found that by that age they want to be a part of a school. My daughter goes to a preschool in the morings for 2 hours most communities have a cost affective programs for kids. I think also if you sit your husband down and explain that he has golf time and you need your time to be a better wife and mother most guys will understand. When all else fails book a hotel and leave for a weekend let your hubby take care of everything and then when you come back maybe he will understand being mom is not always a walk in the park!! We truly have a tough job. Oh you could go to some parks meet some other moms and trade some babysitting time after you get to know them better. Good luck hang in their cause they only get older and the job get tougher!!!
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Old 03-12-2011, 12:33 PM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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when my son was younger, our local grocery had a free daycare. Sometimes, I would drop my boy off at the day care and I would sit for an hour in the stores cafe and have coffee and peace. Anything like that in your town?

Also, many church youth groups and high school civic groups offer a moms day out, especially around the holidays.

One very last thought...take your husbands hands and look him right in the eye. Ask him for help. I will bet that between the two of you, you can find 2 or 3 hours in the coming week when you can "escape" and he can spend quality time alone with his kiddos. Time alone with daddy is just as important and enriching as time with mommy.

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Old 03-14-2011, 02:56 PM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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The only time he's away from me is at preschool....I can't really afford extra childcare......I will have them going on the same days next yr....well he'll be going 5/wk & DD will go 3/wk. Can't really expect to get them on the same days....believe me I tried hard but this was the openings they had available.....
Tried leaving him in his room today & after 15min he'd put color wonder paint all over the BR......seems Like no punishment is affecting him.....time outs, etc etc
So I went in his room & cleaned up put labels on his toy bins hopefully giving him motivation to clean up & it hasnt helped....I really think I need super nanny. I feel so helpless w/ his behavior
Ugh !!!!!!!
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Old 03-14-2011, 03:16 PM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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Your DS sounds like a bigger handful than my DD, but this may help you anyway. I couldn't get her to stay in her room for quiet time either until I taught her to look at the digital clock in her room and when the first digit is 4 then she knows quiet time is over and she can come out. It gave her a definite end time to look forward to instead of thinking she was just at my mercy. The first time I did this she didn't quite get it (turned 3 in January) so when she came out too early I spent the rest of the time in there w/her and showed her the clock turning 4 and then we celebrated that quiet time was over and we could come out of our room now. The clock thing has been working really well for me for a couple of months now.

If she makes a mess - books everywhere or the one time she emptied every single dresser drawer! - then she has to stay in there until we get it all cleaned up together. If it's a simple mess like books that she can put back herself then she has to do it herself. I don't keep things like paint or crayons in her room so I don't have to worry about that. The worst she'd done besides emptying her drawers was tearing some books. So she loses those books.
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Old 03-14-2011, 03:42 PM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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Oh & he colored himself w/ a sharpie marker!! Thankfully nothing on clothes since he was already in underwear.
He can be soooo sweet sometimes
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Old 03-14-2011, 04:18 PM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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I know it's harder than it sounds, but maybe the time he used to spend taking naps you can make him lay on the couch and watch a movie? I do this with my daughter, she will be 4 next month. She gets to take her blanket and one quiet toy and gets to pick whatever movie she wants and lays down at the same time her brother lays down for a nap. I have explained that she doesn't have to go to sleep and can play with her toy while she watches her movie, but if she gets off the couch then she gets a 3 min time out. I have also told her that if she doesn't relax for a little bit then she goes to bed early and with no snacks after dinner.

Maybe you could try with him too by saying things like he needs to spend time relaxing so he can grow big and strong like his daddy?

Hopefully you can find something that works for your son!
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  #21  
Old 03-15-2011, 12:59 AM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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I know kids can make you crazy. I had two boys with ADHD. Getting them to stay in their rooms for quiet time was difficult. However, you need to have at least ONE ROOM where you can do quiet time or even time out and they can't destroy things or hurt themselves. If he's going to have quiet time in his room, you can't have paint or sharpies in there or you'll end up with the mess. These are things that should only be used when supervised. To expect an active 4 year old to leave them alone when they have unsupervised access to them isn't an age appropriate expectation. Same thing with your cleaning supplies like the oxy-clean. If you have a kid who can get into them, they need to be under lock. Consistent discipline is the key, and it takes time and a whole lot of patience for them to believe you mean business. The other posters have it right when they recommend identifying activities he enjoys and making them conditional on his behavior. A structured and consistent daily routine is also key.
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Old 03-15-2011, 01:26 AM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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Quiet time is so necessary for everyone. We all need a break, even if that break is to get something done! My son stopped napping around 3. At daycare, they are required to give the kids a 2 hour rest period! He's 5 and just doesn't get it, but naps about once a week. On the weekends, I need him to nap, but the fight isn't worth it. If he needed one because he gets fussy, that would be different. In the beginning, I struggled with him and he would cry through his entire rest period which was counterproductive for both of us. And while I don't condone the use of a tv babysitter, I did find that a special movie (anything Leapfrog was great) would often settle him enough to where he would sleep. It got to the point that he would ASK ME for rest time a little after lunch on the weekends. 10 minutes later he'd be asleep. Now a days, at 5, he still asks for rest periods. I know that if he grabs a blanket, he plans to sleep. If not, he just wants some quiet time. Doing something he enjoys really made a difference. Sometimes he chooses just to look at books in bed or do puzzles. And on days he really has no desire to nap, he helps me with chores until he's bored to tears!
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Old 03-15-2011, 08:49 AM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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Originally Posted by cyndibru
I know kids can make you crazy. I had two boys with ADHD. Getting them to stay in their rooms for quiet time was difficult. However, you need to have at least ONE ROOM where you can do quiet time or even time out and they can't destroy things or hurt themselves. If he's going to have quiet time in his room, you can't have paint or sharpies in there or you'll end up with the mess. These are things that should only be used when supervised. To expect an active 4 year old to leave them alone when they have unsupervised access to them isn't an age appropriate expectation. Same thing with your cleaning supplies like the oxy-clean. If you have a kid who can get into them, they need to be under lock. Consistent discipline is the key, and it takes time and a whole lot of patience for them to believe you mean business. The other posters have it right when they recommend identifying activities he enjoys and making them conditional on his behavior. A structured and consistent daily routine is also key.
These things were out of his reach or so I thought they were! I dont leave things out for him to get into. He's gotten bad about climbing! I've had to put up my knives b/c he's gotten those before too.....I don't have a place to lock things up per say. The oxy clean is in the laundry room on a shelf, I don't think it's unrealistic for me to expect him to know better about some things. He's very mischievous
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  #24  
Old 03-16-2011, 01:53 AM

RE: Ahhhh my sanity!!!!

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If I came across judgemental, it wasn't my intention. Each kid is different, and from what you're describing, you're going to have to be extremely vigilant with this one. Based on his personality and the history you're describing, that's what I based my recommendations on. I had to get a box and lock it to keep my son out of certain things. I think the problem is that you can't keep him in sight every minute of every day, and you need to get a few things done occasionally, right? Then you need to have a safe and confined space that he must stay in and not be able to do any damage in. I had to completely rearrange my son's room and move certain things out in order for that room to work for him......i.e. nothing higher than the bed to climb on, nothing he could write on walls with it, etc....things like that. He refused to stay in the room. So I put a lock on the outside of the door. Now, I didn't leave him there like that.........I stayed right on the other side of the door during "quiet time", and I gradually lengthened it, until he got the idea that you are not coming out of your room during quiet time and throwing a tantrum isn't going to change that. THEN I could have 15 minutes to take a shower, perform a task or something like that without worrying the house would be destroyed or he would injure himself.
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