Stability and Consistency are Key to Toddler Happyness

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Ok I know it’s said very often but children really do need consistency. Over the last few months Seda has been shuffled around for childcare from one situation to the next; Inlaws, mama stays home, etc. Also over the last few months she has had some real behavioral issues. Our beautiful well behaved daughter had turned into an unhappy, tantrum two year old.n She wouldn’t eat dinner well, wouldn’t listen to us, fought bed time and pretty much stopped using the potty. We had kind of chalked it up to age but that wasn’t it. Over the last week she has turned back into the happy, loving, and well behaved kid that she is. She’s eating better, uses the potty and even though we put her in pullups during the day she asks to wear underwear in the evening and over night. She hasn’t had a night time accident in a few days and generally is really happy. I’m not sure if this is due to the fact that she has consistent care or the fact that Will and I are considerably less stressed now that she has consistent care. Either way now that our family life is less stressful and more stable she is again back to normal and much happier.

This brings up a thought … What if some of the “behavioral problems” that people see in their children are really do not to the personality of the child but that child’s reaction to their situation. I think all too often parents look to an external cause for their children misbehaving and or being unmanageable or uncontrollable, including stating that it’s the child fault. Parents should also evaluate the internal workings of the family and see what’s going on there. It’s too easy to forget that our children are affected by the same things we are. If you didn’t know where you were going to go to work every day or who was going to be your boss you would be highly stressed and that would have an effect on your mood and behavior. In essence swapping care givers often has the same effect on a two year old. Wanting/Needing the attention of your spouse or partner and not getting it makes you sad and resentful. The same is true of the parenting relationship. If you child wants/needs your attention and you are unavailable either physically (working too much) or emotionally (too stressed out) that will cause them stress and in turn cause “behavioral issues”.

Jennifer

Jennifer Pohlhaus is a busy working mother of two who, along with her husband, has chosen to unschool her children. She currently blogs about her experience with the challenges and fun of unschooling along with her love of crafting and cooking at HarmonicMama.com.

2 thoughts on “Stability and Consistency are Key to Toddler Happyness

  • October 24 at 2:53 am
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    That all makes sense.

    Chance is difficult. I know…sometimes I feel like throwing a tantrum or two myself! 🙂

    ~Dan C.

    Reply
  • October 24 at 2:54 am
    Permalink

    That all makes sense.

    Change is difficult. I know…sometimes I feel like throwing a tantrum or two myself! 🙂

    ~Dan C.

    Reply

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