“He won’t listen to me!” my husband exclaimed recently, exasperated. “Well, he doesn’t listen to me either!” I countered, as I watched our toddler climb up the stairs to put the clothes that I had picked out for him back into the drawer, i.e., his reaction to us telling him that it was time to get dressed for school (“not today” was his response).
Expecting total obedience from a toddler isn’t exactly realistic. But after one particularly frustrating week when I found myself struggling to get my almost 2-year-old to do anything (go downstairs, put on his jacket, leave the playground), I decided to do a little digging to see if there was something in my behavior that was contributing to my son’s resistance. And, well, take a look at some of the examples below and see if you can spot a pattern.
“Two more minutes of playtime and then it’s time for bath, OK?”
“We’re going outside now, go and get your shoes, OK?”
“Not now, you can have a snack when we get home, OK?”
And a few more variations: