Landon is 3. Oh...he is definitely Three! I'm not quite sure what this stage is that he's going through, and we're getting through it together.
He wants it, but doesn't want it. He doesn't like it, but then he likes it. He's trying to figure out what he likes and doesn't like, I believe, and it frustrates him. Which frustrates me, admittedly. We will watch cartoons from 7am-9am, then I'll turn it to the Today's Show to watch some news. He will throw a royal fit and stomp around screaming "I don't like cartoons!" So I'll say "Ok, then we won't watch cartoons" and he'll scream "NO, I like cartoons! I want cartoons!" (He says cartoons like "cah-zooms" <3 ) If he gets unconsolable, I make him either sit down where he's at or stand in the corner until he can calm down and rationally talk to me. I explain this to him the whole time, saying "You are in control of what happens, Landon. If you want something, you need to politely ask for it. Screaming and whining will only make you stuck right where you are. If you want unstuck, you have to be nice and polite. But even if I say no, then that is BB's answer and I need you to be ok with that." Things along that line. I usually have to say that line two or three times before he calms down and is ok, and it'll typically start up in another 5 minutes or so.
One thing I'm not sure how to handle are his choices. With Nevaeh, if I am getting her something at the store, I'll hold up two options and let her decide. The excited screech she smile she gives is priceless, and she looks at each item a few times before reaching out and grabbing one. I hope this instills a sense of decision making and rationalization in her (or helps). With Landon however, it doesn't go as smoothly. Breakfast for example. I ask him what he wants, and he'll say "Cereal" or "Eggs." This morning he wanted cereal. I was fixing eggs for Vae and I, and I asked him a few times if he was sure he wanted cereal and not eggs. He instead he wanted "C-wall" So I poured him a bowl and sat him down. The second I sat down with the eggs he started his royal fit and wanted eggs. Sigh. I don't want to just fix the same thing for everyone as a way to prevent these fits. I want him to understand that he can choose what he wants, and understand that he needs to weigh his options carefully. His actions have consequences. With some things of course he can change his mind, but I am not about to throw away a bowl of cereal because he suddenly wants something else. We do not waste food in this house.
It's hard being 3! There are so many rules and guidelines, different instructions for different things. Ultimately I want him and Nevaeh to know that they are in control of their lives. They are not being raised to obey everyone around them. They can choose what they want. But I want them to know that their choices have consequences, good or bad. Fits will get them nowhere exept right where they are.