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Raising my determined, social child and surviving

Posted Mar 13 2013 8:58am

I saw this saying the other and day it pretty much sums up my daughter's behavior and gives me as a mom another way to think of the underlying reason. I know I am not the only one out there raising a child who is a drama queen and social butterfly and so determined to be independent, know all the answers and insists she can do everything on her own. Like I have mentioned before from early on there was every indication that my child had taken after me in my stubbornness and inability to relax, great! Now add to this the one personality trait I lack: being a social butterfly and you have a tough parenting role.

How do we survive...
1. Keep routine!

2. Make sure she naps: this is huge for us, time to reset and shut her mind down. No nap means miserable mommy, daddy and O!

3. Encourage quiet activities throughout the day: The combination of her energy level and outside stimulation builds without these little "breaks" we get to the point of no return. Throughout the day encourage time drawing, reading, anything quiet they enjoy. One of O's favorites is washing dishes, the water is calming for many kids.

4. Encourage time with other kids: Foster strong social interaction and teach appropriate skills at the same time. Right now we are in the ask or say anything stage! O walked up to an older woman and asked about her "skis" (crutches) and wanted the whole story about why she had them.

5. Choose your battles: It just isn't worth the fight to wear matching clothes when you know more important things are ahead.

6. Give small tasks: O's goal is to be "the helper" but her choices are often things beyond her level, so we always have small tasks for her even if they result in extra work for us in the long run it is worth the lack of fight!

7. Watch for signs of impending melt downs: Learn these signs and intervene early with quiet time not a punishment. Allow some control over the situation by "suggesting" she go read, take a deep breath, etc.

A few weeks ago at the review conference it was all reinforced in the child development talk when I was shocked that it is not until age 4 1/2 that most kids "draw a person (no torso) and understand how to fix a situation (hungry then eat). Well this was what my 37 month old did yesterday...
Photo: Ophelia's drawing of me! Oh my, not sure what she thinks of me!Looks just like me, right?!
So now I have this child who is too smart for her own good, wants to know everything and has the skills and social personality to ask and learn it all. Guess I better get used to the nonstop talking! I know this will benefit her as she grows but tires me out when the physical and mental energy are nonstop.
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