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stubborn 2.5yr old. School pick up/drop off issue

  1. #1
    Biggie is offline Registered User
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    stubborn 2.5yr old. School pick up/drop off issue

    My 2.5yr old son is very stubborn and rigid on certain things. He likes his routine and not a tiny detail can be changed. He has been going to nursery for a few months before the summer, and usually, our helper dropped him off and I picked him up with my husband driving the car (he has been working from home, which might change and hence we want to change the routine this term).

    Ultimately, we want him to be flexible with who drops him off and who picks him up and with me driving (I only started to drive recently, he has only been in the car a couple times with me driving and he hasn't been happy as he thinks only Daddy should drive - that's how things have been for all his life).

    So should I do it in stages, e.g. first keep Daddy as the "driver", and get him used to helper pick up / drop off, then introduce Mommy driving and pick up /drop off. Or just mix it up every day and hope that he will be so confused that it's not routine anymore. Or just decide on one plan and stick with it, e.g. I drive and drop off, helper pick up. (I find that he is usually okay to switch from helper to me once a while but not vice versa)

    He has been to school only 4 days so far (a few sick days) and every day it was a disaster after school if it's not "Daddy drive + Mommy pickup". He would cry and refuse to get out of the car, we dragged him out and into the house, and he would be hysterical and kicking and crying for 1-2 hours and the rest of the day is ruined as he would have skipped lunch and be in bad mood.

    Maybe there's no good solution......any thoughts?

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    carang is offline Registered User
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    no, just do what needs to be done. if you give in now, he's won and will get exactly what he wants. you will be teaching him that this behaviour is (1) acceptable and (2) will alter your behaviour.

    kicking and screaming and crying? he goes into his bedroom (with or without the door shut) and stays there with ABSOLUTELY NO attention whatsoever. every 10 minutes, go to the door and calmly ask "have you finished yet?" if no answer then simply walk away.

    i, too, have a VERY VERY VERY strong willed daughter. she has been known to stay sitting on her bed screaming/crying for up to 2 hours. eventually, she tires of it and realises she's getting nothing of what she wants by this behaviour and when i go and ask "have you finished yet?" i will get a blabbering, "yes. i'm sorry mummy." and then she's allowed to come out.

    you MUST stop this behaviour now as it only gets more difficult as they get older/stronger.

    good luck. you ALL need to be on the same page and agree on how it is all going to be handled.
    shwetakhanna and solidstars like this.

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    Obiwan is offline Registered User
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    Hi Cara, I agree with your approach. Quick question, if I were to put my also very strong willed daughter in the bedroom, will she grow to associate the bedroom as a place of 'punishment' instead of a place of rest? Currently we have just left her where she is and announce that no one will be speaking with her until she says sorry ... She will sulk and refuse to back down, but will eventually after a very long deliberation, come out with a soft 'I am sorry'.

    We wanted to have a time-out corner but can't seem to find a suitable one ....

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    Frenchy is offline Registered User
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    I noted that my son would more easily accepts changes in his routine when he is informed before of who is doing what, who takes him to school, who comes back. Doesn't mean he says "yes, ok" everytime, but he has no surprise, and wouldn't make any more fuss.

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    carang's Avatar
    carang is offline Registered User
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    no, neither of my kids associate being put in the bedroom as "punishment" per se. it is a "quiet" time to "think" about their behaviour... granted that the quiet time is rarely quiet. i chose the bedroom because i was able to close the door if need be. if she isn't screaming her head off, i leave the door open. if she is screaming/crying loudly for attention, i give her one warning to quieten down and then the door is closed. now that they are older, i am able to say, that i don't start counting their quiet time until they are just that... quiet. so the longer they scream, the longer they stay in the room. but this is fairly recent. since they became old enough to understand. now, they are more often than not put in their rooms for (1) fighting, (2) answering back, (3) generally being horrid monsters.

    both of my kids are now not necessarily happy to be sent to their rooms for a break, but they both do it without much argument. it's take a LOOOOONNNNNNNGGGGGG time and a LOOOOOOOOOOOTTTTTT of patience on my part, but it seems to work. but you MUST do it the same way each and every time or else it fails.

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    lesliefu is offline Registered User
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    i would do what is necessary and not let his tantrums decide what needs to be done by the adults - he's only 2.5, what happens when he is older? he will eventually get used to the fact that not only daddy drives and that all the people he is familiar with may in fact pick him up from school. wouldn't worry too much - just bear with the tantrums for now, but eventually it will get better. my older daughter (at one point) only wanted me to unbuckle her seat belt, now, after much struggle and patience, anyone can unbuckle - otherwise she just stays in the car when everyone else is gone (of course we are all still within eye sight of her!)...you've got to let your kid know who's in charge.

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    Biggie is offline Registered User
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    When he had a tantrum, I would let him cry or try to put him in his room. "try" because he can open the door himself. And he even try to open the front door to go back to the car.
    Carang, so your kids are older now but they don't grow out of this tantrum thing, even with the approach you use? Does it get better eventually?
    The last time he was like this was after he was home sick for a week and then start school again. After a few days he tantrum subsided. This time is also after a few days of cold at home and back to school. Perhaps I shouldn't over think or over strategize. I am just the type who want to come up with a solution!
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    carang's Avatar
    carang is offline Registered User
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    of course it gets better! but all kids have tantrums. my son had had about 5 tantrums in his entire LIFE (he's 6)....BUT i also use the approach for things other than tantrums.

    my daughter (4) is VERY strong willed, as i said and has more tantrums than my son....but even so, she may have 1/month.

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