My three-year-old daughter is extremely smart and even more stubborn. I know that she understands the questions or commands that I give her, but she refuses to listen the first time and I find myself repeating myself until even I can't stand to hear the command anymore! I believe I have tried all of the approaches that are common sense. I am very consistent, I enforce the rules, we have a daily schedule, I give her choices, and ask her to help. I know that she is testing boundaries, but I really need to find a way to make her more obedient and respectful! It took, literally, HOURS for her to pick up a single puzzle a few days ago. I refused to give in and help her and spoke very calmly about cleaning up our messes-- a rule she is completely aware of. Yet she repeatedly strayed from the task, told me no, cried, etc. It came to the point where I had to take her hand and physically make her pick up every single piece. Yes, the puzzle eventually got picked up and I did not give in, but I do not have hours to devote to every simple task! I am a young mother of two and a full time college student and am very busy, so I make a real effort to do special things with just her, but the experience is often ruined by her behavior. Aside from consistency, and positive reinforcement, how can I whip this girl into shape!?
Unwittingly you are encouraging thevery thing you want to stop. Why do you repeatedly issue the same direction? You're just taching her to not take you seriously. Do you see what I mean? Read Lynn Clark's book SOS Help for Parents (see www.sosprograms.com) and you ill see big improvements.
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