The screaming

Today has been terrible for a number of reasons.

I had a terrible headache when I picked my daughter up from school and managed dinner, evening time fairly ok. She was being pretty rude and demanding and I did my best to be patient and understanding.

However, putting my daughter to bed was a new form of torture. I told her we would go to bed after her show was over. She said ok. She even reminded me when the show was over that it was bedtime. We agreed that we would read a story after she brushed teeth.

We walk into the bathroom. I get her toothbrush ready. She tells me she wants to wash her hands. So I agree, she finishes. She wants me to wet her toothbrush again. I do. These are reasonable requests I feel. So far so good. She isn’t being polite, but we are on the same page.

I hand her her toothbrush. She says no. I remind her that we will go straight to bed if she fights me on brushing her teeth. She says no and this time launches her toothbrush at me like a missile. I pick her up and tell her we are going straight to bed. The walk to her bedroom is full of her shrieking. She scratches me. She puts her teeth to my shoulder and is seconds away from applying biting pressure before I put her down to change her diaper. She kicks and screams, literally, making contact with me several times. I put her in bed and turn on her fan. She darts out of bed to the bathroom screaming “teeth! Teeth!” Through her sobs. I follow her and she’s standing there, holding her toothbrush. I stand in the doorway and encourage her to brush her teeth. She continues to sob and then demands that I sit next to her. I tell her no and the screaming continues, louder. I take her back to her bedroom – she digs her toddler talons into my chest and arm. I have visible scratch marks. She screams so loud it actually hurts my ears. I put her in bed and tell her that when she calms down I will come tuck her in and talk to her. She stands at the gate, screaming. Crying. Throwing things. Hitting the gate. I’m worried that she’s going to cry so hard she throws up because that’s one more thing I have to deal with. I feel horrible and guilty. I am a terrible mother. All those negative thoughts I push away come creeping in.

I am exhausted, spent, emotionally drained. I’ve been on the verge of/actually crying on and off all day. I don’t have it in me. I’m spent.

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5 thoughts on “The screaming

  1. I’m sorry…I know it’s hard sometimes. It’s especially hard to act calm and patient when your child is being anything but that. And being firm and consistent is a much more difficult task when your child is having a fit. I will tell you that it gets easier as they get older. Especially if you do stay firm and consistent–it may not seem like it now, but they actually do start to learn when the fits don’t get them anywhere. I won’t deny that it takes awhile tho–maybe at 4 or so. However, I’ve seen parents who do not stay the course and instead of a couple of years with battling their kids, it turns into the rest of their life battling the kids. I think my children would say that I was stern and set rules, but I also had fun times with them and they seem to still love me now. ๐Ÿ™‚
    But I know it’s even more difficult when you are not at the top of your game. You may be tired, sick, or just feeling overwhelmed. It’s okay to give yourself some slack–you’re not being a terrible parent. And days when things seem more difficult, try to offload some of the hard things, whether that’s allowing more TV or whatever makes things go smoother.

  2. You’re a great mom – you did everything I hope I would have the courage and strength to do. You are raising one strong-willed, independent-minded human!

  3. I’m so sorry. Days like that truly suck. You did an AWESOME job! I don’t think I could have kept my cool. I would have either gotten upset back, or simply shut down and started balling. I hope you poured yourself a drink or something after all that. -hugs Try not to worry too much. Kid have their own personalities and some development stages are worse for some kids than others. Mine have been SUPPER moody lately. Especially the 2 year old. She will have a complete meltdown for the smallest of reasons. It’s like a foreshadowing of them PMSing at the same time. :-/ It’s better when we get outside, but its been SO HOT lately even they want to come right back inside.

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