My 3 year old has really bad behavior: Advice?

Another day where I feel defeated with my three years old. He’s so defiant and loves pushing my buttons. He even started having accidents on purpose now and thinks it’s funny. Instead of eating his dinner, he is feeding his little brother HIS dinner. I’m just so worn out. I’m going to look into play therapy next week. Not that I can really afford it. I just dont know what to do anymore.

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It’s a phase. My 3 yr old is in the same phase, he may need some more physical activity, with more of a structured routine. I had to start giving her more activity to help calm her down, rather it’s a walk, or an indoor play place

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You’re not alone. Mine is the same way. Took him to the park yesterday and he pushed another kid down on purpose. He hits and throws things and he does things he knows will drive me crazy. He throws things down on the floor after I just finished cleaning it. Spills things on purpose and tells me to shut up on a daily basis. I know some of it is probably my fault but its still so hard. I have to hide in the bathroom and cry some days. I yell more than I should and feel so guilty about it but my nerves are completely shot at the end of the day.

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A lot of the times it’s attention seeking behaviour, they’ll take the attention whether it’s positive or negative attention.

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My 3 yr old boy is like that with food. They’ll eat when their hungry we don’t force feed him. We do the carnation good starts just for some nutrients. Honestly for bad behavior its usually for attention. Try focusing on rewarding his GOOD behavior with treats he likes or a cheap toy from dollar tree or spend a few minutes just praising his good behavior. If that doesn’t help do that and discipline bad behavior by taking things away. When my daughter was 6 all she had in her room was her bed, books and a desk for almost an entire year.

Ignore the bad behaviors and praise good behaviors. This worked with my daughter.

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Try Conscious Discipline, it’s a total game changer! (I have worked with pre-k kids for 20 years) :wink:

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We were told a visual schedule. Use first _ then _ sentences. Example: first eat then play. Use positive reinforcement like crazy. Strict routines. And also during some meltdowns we use pictures. So if the meltdown is because they want to play outside but I need to go to the store we will draw a shoe, the store, and then outside and talk them through it. First we put on our shoes, then we go to the store, then we get to play outside. Also actives like crawling, jumping, and rough housing it supposed to help calm their behavior.

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You are not alone apparently there are quite a lot of us. My son is just terrible, it takes both of us to keep up with him. Public events are dreaded by us but we can’t punish everyone else so we go and regret it every time. Church is so hard. We discipline, but with no result. We are also very good at routine but it just keeps getting us down. We can’t even let him sleep by himself because he will actually get out of the house. I know there will be a day when he doesn’t do any of his antics but it does take toll. Hang in there, I pray a lot and cry and stay exhausted but we make it each day.

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It’s totally normal! Believe it or not, four was worth than three for me lol! With all of my kids!

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Look for PCIT, parent child interactive therapy! Been there done that, it won’t get better, he won’t grow out of it, get control of this situation while you can!!! Good luck!

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Highly recommend the book “How to Talk so Little Kids will Listen” and also Janet Lansbury’s podcast :heart:

He’s 3… Lol What are you expecting?

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I don’t see any “ bad “ behavior for a little person who’s only been on this earth for three years lol what does “pushing your buttons even mean? “ you sound like YOU the therapy and some patience while you’re at it

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I too have a 3 year old and started feeling the same way. But step back and realize I need to teach him that certain things are in fact not a game. When it his or someone else’s safety or comfort it’s not acceptable. He gets rambunctious and wild that is ok. Testing the waters and seeing what he can do is great. I will make sure he gets his wild time. Outside racing, inside painting or playing with monster trucks in shaving cream. Anything that he wants to explore and indulge in safely. This is such a big world and they want to explore all so quickly. Just patience and fun. You can do it. :heart::slightly_smiling_face:

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With little ones, no matter the age, you set boundaries and stick to them. Breakfast time, won’t eat? Don’t give them anything till lunch, they learn about making choices, it is a life lesson. They throw a fit in the store? Pick them up and leave, don’t give in. They rebel with spilling drinks, dropping or throwing food? Take them by the hand and make them clean it up. If they have a pretty good week, reward them, not for every little thing they do, the world isn’t like that and you are slowly getting them ready for the world…

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I am a 3s teacher… its part of being a 3 year old. They are far worse than 2s. They are testing the boundaries and trying to figure out what/why the rules are. 3-4 is the biggest jump you’ll see for awhile. Stay at it. Make sure they get plenty of exercise and try to get them working on things that use their brains. Super important to be consistent. You’ve got this mama. The things they accomplish this year are incredible and you’ve got a front row seat!

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Consistency phase they are seeing what discipline you stay consistent with. Figuring out what they can get away with and when their best chances are. Most important thing to do is stay consistent with what you do and don’t allow! It’s a tough one we all struggle in this phase but it is the phase that’s sets their foundation on their good and bad behavior.

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When my daughter was 3 she had some major anger issues (for a 3 year old), would constantly do things she knew better than to do. Come to find out she was full of anger and frustration because she couldn’t see well. This is when we realized she was legally blind in her right eye and the left wasn’t much better. Once we got her in glasses where she could see, it was like she was a completely different child. Not saying your situation is the same, just what we went through

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Mom said nothing about her way with this child which is obviously the driving factor