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Toddler Independence

It starts around two. Maybe a bit later.

One day you will hear the word “me” or “alone”, and you will be so happy your child wants to do things by himself. Afterwards you might get slightly frustrated as from that moment on they will want to do everything by themselves.

Wash hands, get dressed, take a bath, And the list goes on. This really isn’t a bad thing, as a parent you should be happy your child is showing signs of independence. This is the road to adulthood and maturity. But that’s all in the future

Now, in the present, you are rushing out of the door, already late, when your child decides to tie his shoes alone for the first time. Nothing you can do there. Rushing them or stepping in and doing it for them will produce an argument and will probably delay you even more.

Have you ever heard the phrase “choose your battles”? very true for this stage. If you have a conflict every time your child shows a desire of independence you will not only conflict with your child a lot, but you will also risk discouraging your child’s sense of independence and his self confidence.

So what do you do? You take a lot of deep breaths, you realize that life has a new pace, and that these experiences are valuable; Tying their shows, showering by themselves, eating alone.

Yes, it is more messy and slowly but at the end of these experiences you will end up with a child who is more mature, who believes in himself and his ability and who can also be of more assistance around the house as a bonus.

Start giving out little tasks like, please put this on the table of dinner, please put this is the laundry hamper. Your child will do these things happily, because they will feel included and helpful. And so will you. 

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