also, Amazon.com for books on prodigy & advanced children.
Hi all, my partner and I are really at our wits end and need some help. We have a son who is soon to be one. He has never learned to crawl and can only walk when you hold his hand. Basically every single minute of the day all he wants is to walk around holding your hand to explore his surroundings. I try to give him as much time as I can but to do this every minute of the day is impossible. I am a childminder and work from home, and am very busy. The result is as soon as you sit him down to go do something he cries, and cries and cries till you give in. The sight of his baby walker or anything similar triggers a tantrum from him as he feel these hold him back and restrict him, and hates being put in them.
I feel almost neglectful but have a house to run also, and I feel like I can only get the bare minimum done as it is. I know this will pass when he can walk and talk, and this is purely frustration but this is draining our family and raising tensions. I don't know if I should be trying to mildly discipline this behaviour so that he knows it is unacceptable to cry and be actively angry to get what you want. Can anyone realate and/or help? I hate this situation as I feel I am just feeling sorry for myself and should be doing more for my baby, but feel he is becoming far too quick to show his unhappiness and I don't want to encourage what is now just pure spoiltness. Where's the line between meeting his developmental needs and enabling him to grow up snapping and being very unable to see things from others point of view? HELP.
also, Amazon.com for books on prodigy & advanced children.
Hi A M:
SH offered you an excellent response,and some wonderful advice. Ditto what she said.: ) By the way,I must regretfully disagree with Julie L,in her belief that babies know how to manipulate.It's not manipulation,it's communication. Crying,and fussing are the only forms they know,until they are taught to converse.It's my opinion,that if you ignore,or play a deaf ear to your child's cries,you send him A clear message.( You aren't there for him.I wish you and your growing son the very best.J. M
Here's my advice (my kid did pretty much the same thing, though he did crawl)
1) make an appt with your ped. just to be sure there's nothing wrong.
2) encourage him to crawl. that is actually really important for his brain development (it helps coordinate everything together)
3) designate one person as the "walker". Sounds as if it should be your partner? since I'm guessing she/he works away from home? This limits the time your son expects to be helped out. In my family, it was my husband who thought (at first) that taking his boy around to explore was wonderful. It got to the point where he hated coming home, though, knowing that a child with an insatiable desire to "walk" and apparently unlimited capacity for screaming awaited him.
This doesn't help so much now, I know. Just remember that your son is doing what is really important for him; exploring his environment, and learning how to communicate to his parents.
4) empathize with his frustration, and let him know that what he is feeling is normal (yeah, it's crazy-making, but really normal)
5) skip the "discipline", in the sense of trying to get him to quit screaming/crying. He is frustrated, and that's a normal response to frustration at this age. Instead, try to re-direct him, and let him know that you "feel his pain".
6) I'd ditch the baby walker thingy. They develop the wrong muscles for actual walking, and they aren't really safe. (assuming it's the kind on wheels. the stationary excer-saucers are certainly safer, and i think not as much as a problem with the muscle development)
Take a deep breath, and realize that once you're a year down the road, you'll barely remember this (really! :-) ) I know this isn't so helpful in the moment, but lots of "trying" stages just need to be endured until your kid gets through it.
best of luck!
Hi A M,
I am a mother of 4 children. First off, you are NOT depriving him of anything if you do not hold his hands so he can walk every where. It sounds to me like you have a strong willed, determined little guy. He knows what he wants and throws a fit to get it. I don't think you should ignore him, but I also don't think it is reasonable (you have many responsibilities and obligations) reasonable to cater to his every whim all day long!
I think he could stand time of frustration to be "on his own". Doing things for himself, learning to walk on his own. Sometimes a child learns to do things on their own faster if they have a motivation. It sounds like your little guy might have a low threshold for his frustration. I would just do a lot of talking to him. When he is throwing a fit, I would put words to his emotions. "I see your are frustrated, but mommy will help you when I am finished washing all of the plates. Then I can help you walk to the living room." This is a challenging time in a toddlers life, for the child and the parents. You do not need to be his slave.
The other thing I would suggest is that you get down on the floor with him and play crawling games with him. The skill of crawling is very important for development of children. Yes, it is also a mode of a child getting around, but it is also important in other developmental situations when they are older. Encourage him to crawl....actually get down on the floor with him and try and get him to move his arms and legs in the right way. Make it a game.
Keep hanging in there. It sounds like your little guy is busy and demanding. These are good traits, yet can be challenging for the parents. But, no, it is not your job as a parent to do everything for him, not even now! You do not want him to be dependent upon you for everything his whole life, do you? TEach him he can do things on his own. Do you still need to do much for him, yes, but we want to teach our children they can do it on their own. They learn that at an early age.
Best of luck with your little guy!
Stop constantly helping him. He's going to cry alot in the beginning, but eventually he will figure out how to solve his problem and resolve his frustration. Life is not about instant gratification - there is no better time to start teaching this, he's old enough now. Good luck.
My business partner and I started a company called Special Beginnings: An Early Intervention Network to provide early intervention services to keep children on track with achieving developmental milestones. My first suggestion would be to consult with your pediatrician to determine why there was no crawling, and why the walking is presenting a challenge. Could be an orthopedic issue which can be corrected medically or therapeutically, and beautiful son is unable to communicate that it hurts and wants to cling on to you because you will be the one to fix it. Second, if you find that you need additional help, please call your local regional center for assessments. If you are on the Westside, the Westside Regional Center's number is ###-###-####, and they will refer you to the proper agencies (like us) for help. They will provide assessments at no charge to you, and proper therapy, e.g., physical and occupational therapy, up to the age of 3. Best of luck! It will be okay!
Hi Scotland! Crawling is truly important to his brain development. Have you found Brain Gym? Look it up and get someone to help you out. Hand him objects in such a way thay he has to reach across his body to get it from you. Crossing midline is important to his learning. Crawling does that. Do exercises with him, such as.. taking his right foot and left arm and cross them over his body then his left foor and right arm - you get the idea. Also check into Touch 4 Health. Good luck. V./California
Babies need "floor time" to learn to handle their body, to balance, crawl, pull themselves up and stand alone. Bilateral movements of arms and legs later help in tasks such as reading.
It's definitely more exciting to toddle around holding your hand and he is reacting with frustration that this exciting new activity isn't non-stop.
The thing is, he needs time on the floor by himself to develop skills. Put a big blanket on the floor, pop him down there with some toys and go about your work. When he cries, talk to him, blow kisses, play a little peek-a-boo, wave, etc, but let him have that necessary time to learn. Also, to encourage him to crawl. put something especially enticing a few feet away from him to encourage him to come get it.
I think you have a lot of good advice already but I wanted to add that my son loved to stand holding on to tables. He also liked eating those Gerber Puffs (any cheerio or snack will do) I placed the puffs on the outside of the coffee table so he could hold the table and take a step to the next puff then another step and he could get another puff. Its not bribing, it is teaching the child how to get what they want on their own. Slowly, I'd put some on the end of the couch and he'd have to take a step or two to get to the couch. At first, he'd sit and scoot to the couch. But figured it out pretty quickly. The climbing and standing on ones own gets those legs strong enough to walk. Good luck. If he's super fussy, I agree with the post that says let him be in a backpack and just wear him around - also - your last sentence... he will not be able to see other points of view until he is well past three. This is his world, we are here to comfort and foster growth. :)
Lord, no discipline for your baby boy at this stage, please!!! A one year old is still a brand-new person. He's just joined us in the world and is so new and it's wonderful that he's curious and wants to explore. I can totally relate to your feelings of frustration - I've been there, needing to get things done and having a tiny person who wanted me to do nothing but hold her and focus on just her. I'm sorry you are having to juggle so much because this is a very brief period of time (it just feels like it lasts forever when it's difficult).
It's likely he's frustrated at not being able to move about. You say he's never learned to crawl, but walks with assistance. Hmm -- the crawling is actually a brain stimulating function. I know he's sort of past that, but I think it might be worth talking about this with his pediatrician or whatever you call baby doctors in Scotland. I'm not saying it's a terrible thing that he didn't crawl, but he's apparently not ready to walk yet and needs to be getting around a bit.
At one babies don't have much available to them in the language department - he's crying because he needs something. And, really, he's way too young to comprehend what you're talking about in terms of becoming spoiled. Along the way as he grows up, you will be teaching him to see things from others' point of view & now is too early to worry about that. As much as you can, give him what he needs and he will feel safe, loved and as a result of that have confidence. That right there goes a long way toward having the generosity of spirit people need to have in order not to be completely self-centered. I've seen many spoiled older kids, but taking care of a one-year-old's needs isn't going to ruin him. I realize what I'm saying is probably making you feel like your balancing act is going to be too hard, but I hope you'll heed what I'm saying.
In your childminding work, are you the only person taking care of these kids? How many of them are there? Are they lots of different ages? Is there any way you can have them all together, so he's not feeling so alone?
Also - I know lots of mamas who continued to "wear" their children well past one, keeping them close, safe & happy. You may want to consider popping him into a sling when he gets fussy about having to sit it out while you're busy. That may seem really out there, but it's common in many parts of the world to carry kids around well into the toddler years. It makes great sense to me.
I wish you much luck with this. It sounds like a really tough situation to me, caring for one's own child as well as other people's. In purely practical terms - your child is the one you'll be with all your life, and it just makes the most sense to make him your priority. You can't neglect the other kids, but if they're older, they can understand. Also --and I can't believe I've left this to the last, but talk to your son, all the time, even from the other room. Explain to him what you're doing while you're doing it. Do you have a little chair for him in the kitchen? He sounds really smart & maybe needs more stimulation. Even though he can't understand everything at his age, he still wants to be a part of it.
Well, that got long. I hope you feel helped by my ideas & comments.
All the best,
just in case someone hasn't already suggested this, get a "Baby Signing Time" DVD. Your son (not sure how old exactly; but mine is 14 months) can start learning to sign the basic needs (eat, drink, please, thank you, sorry etc.) so that he doesn't whine and cry for everything.
best of luck.
Hi A M The problem i see is you and the baby;s daddy are allowing his crying to control you and your schdule. He's not walking on his own sweetie cause he does not have to, all's he has to do is cry and someone will hold his hand. Baby's/tots know how to manipulate as early as 6 months with crying. screaming and tantrums. If his crying gets him what he wants he has no reason to try and use words. Stop giving in, make him walk on his own and don't let the crying get him what he wants, You said you are a childminder, not sure what that is, but you are busy and you do have a house to run. I am a Daycare provider and I have a 5 month old, I try and get things done while she is sleeping but if she wakes up and I'm in the middle of something that has to get done, I finish what I am doing then I go her, I don't let crying, screaming or tantrums
control me. Get firm he'l get it. J. L.b
I recommend the books: "Your 1 Year Old" and "What To Expect The Toddler Years." Both can be bought from www.amazon.com
Try getting him a child sized push cart or grocery cart to "walk" with and it might be funner for him. Kids usually LOVE pushing toy grocery carts around... it may give him more 'mastery' over walking.
Walking, well your son is in the pre-walking stage.. is typical like this and the child loves to hold their parents hand... and they love to do it all the time, since this is how kids learn a skill and gross motor coordination. Repetition is how a child learns.
Yes, it is a phase that will pass, but other phases will occur at each age set and at each "milestone" in development.
Its a double edged sword, about punishing/scolding a child when they are simply doing what is wired into their development... at this age, they are also 'developing' a sense of self and their emotions aren't even fully developed yet... all they know is 'security' and 'fear' and the other more 'abstract' emotions are not yet mastered. Thus, they act this way. AND they are not yet expert at communication either.... so it's normal behavior for a mere 1 year old baby. So, do you snuffle their communication or their "ability" to express emotions... or not? For me, from this age, I taught my kids about feelings, the words for it, the sign language for it and the facial expressions for it. THEN that way, I was building a repetoire of "ability" for them, to communicate and that they were "allowed" to express their feelings, good or bad, and that I was there for them. BUT in tandem with this, I taught them coping skills and how they CAN do things on their own too, with me nearby. It takes practice.. small steps and expectations at a time. AND it gives them confidence etc.
It is a 'busy' time, at this age. That is a given. I went through that with both my kids... but as I mentioned, I gave them "toys" that "aided" their fledgling motor skills (ie: a child sized grocery cart) that THEY can push around as they "walk" and practice. Thus it makes it fun for them, without them feeling too 'dependent." But kids are dependent... its just normal. BUT, meanwhile, make your house child-proofed and safe for your child's fledgling motor skills... because it WILL get more active and the child more mobile, once he DOES "master" walking all by himself. And THEN, it will be busier... and busier. Each age has its demands, per the child's development.
Also at this age, they have separation anxiety and naturally get clingy with their Parent. Its just a sort of normal developmental occurrence... things like this normally happens at EACH juncture when a major "milestone" is about to occur or is already occurring. Its part of "growing pains" for a child... they don't know any better and at this age all "expectations" upon the child has to be age-appropriate.... they don't know Mommy is busy and going nuts and has stress...but they do know what frustration and helplessness is... and sometimes they get clingier as the Mom gets busier because they 'sense' that Mommy is else where... even if she is in the same room. ONCE the child gets older and more mature cognitively, it will improve. But expecting too much too soon per "punishments" or discipline is not, to me, the "solution." It will not miraculously CURE the child's feelings or sense of needs.
There is a difference between "discipline" and knowing that a child is not intending to do anything "wrong." They are just being and being a child. So do we scold/discipline a child WHENEVER they are doing something that is not pleasant for 'us', or recognize that they are just doing what is developmental? If scolding/disciplining for 'any' normal behavior... well, the child may get myopic and hindered, as you said. So, scrutinize the occasions that are TRUE mis-behavior, or just a child's plain and natural needs or difficulties. But at this age, redirection and distraction are more appropriate means of handling behaviors we don't want/like in a child. Its about their cognition... what would work for a 2-3 year old, won't be suitable for a 1 year old.
Yes, it is frustration for Mom, and I know totally how you feel. I went through that too, and still do. But oh well... kids grow up SO fast and one day you will wish they were still needing you. Even at this age, a child needs to "bond" with their Mommy. It is not only when they are a newborn or baby that they need to bond. EACH age juncture that a child is at... brings with it different needs to "bond" with their Mom. It is either an inconvenience (we Moms are always busy I know), or the child is just always waiting for us to be there "with" them, and it helps the child to grow and develop... usually for the better, when we bond with them. Even just picking up leaves from the yard is a special time for the child and Mom. It forms a sense of discovery and bonding that is indescribable... and both Mom and child learns from each other. Or, it can be just something irritating and 'mundane' to pick up leaves with a child.... its partly our perspective to "choose" from. Its a choice.
But yes, try also to "soothe" him verbally and with your tone of voice (even if you are 5 feet away from him)... it will take repetition... but some kids will 'learn' that this is 'safe' too and that Mommy's love is still there, even if she is doing another task. Once a child feels more secure, they will often be fine. Kids/babies cry out for us when they are feeling: insecure, frustrated, fearful, tired, hungry, lonely, helpless. Basic feelings. It's not "wrong."
Or, get someone to help you with him and babysit at home part of the day... so you can get your work done. This is the compromise all Moms need to do sometimes. AND thinking and planning ahead....as your son gets older, it WILL get busier... ie: a Toddlers needs will increase and increase in terms of stimulation and learning needs and activities. AND a boy is naturally very physical and needs activity and physical outlets AND they need to learn that it is okay to express themselves and let Mommy know what they need or can't do themselves. They will not just sit at a desk like an adult can. So, what then, when he is say 2 years old or 3? Think of an alternative for him, a Nanny or whatever, so that HIS needs and learning/activityy environment is in place, AND so that as a Mom working from home... you can actually work as well. Having a child at home and a Mom working from home, is a VERY busy combination. I know, I work from home too. But I can't afford a Nanny to help me at home... thus, I get most of my things done at night, when everyone is sleeping.
All the best,
I'm not sure exactly what you mean from a "baby walker," but if it is an enclosed walker that he is confined in, maybe a "push toy" would give him the freedom he wants and allow him to walk with the support he needs. Both of my boys had a push car (large enough to sit on and scoot around, plus they have a handle on the back so they can stand and push it around) and a Winnie the Pooh push toy for learning to walk. They loved these things, used them all the time at that age, and still often play with them at 4 and 3 years old. Good luck!
NAET.com for allergy eliminations. Mood swings can be caused by allergies.
also, Amazon.com for books on prodigy & advanced children.
Hi A M,
You are not helping your child by giving in. You son needs to learn to crawl. There is a developmental thing they learn by being on all fours.
My last two sons only wanted to stand and walk. Their pediatrician made me place them in a room where there was nothing he could do but crawl. His toys were in one corner, no handles on the drawers, no couch for him to pull himself up on so crawling and sitting was his only option.
When you bring your child in because they have problems in school, one of the first things child phychologist will ask you if your child crawled as a baby. They then put them in therapy and crawl on the floor with them as their therapy and tell you that you must crawl with them at home too.
By giving in your son, he will never except limits you set for him in the long run. You have trained him that if he yells long enough, he gets his way. It may take you as many months to allow him to yell as it did when you gave in and he trained you to walk with him.
Don't feel guilty. Oh you can be loving but make him crawl. Sit and play with him but make him crawl to explore. Yes, he'll learn to walk shortly. But get down on the floor and crawl with him as often as possible to help him develop properly.
Carpe Diem, F. :^D
full time childminder? Do that mean you are a stay at home mom=SAHM?
Please do not lose your patience! Your son sounds very spirited and is frustrated because he cannot yet walk for himself. I recommend Dr Harvey karp book/video: the happiest toddler on the block that teaches amazing techniques for communicating with toddlers and ending crying fits. I use them with my one year old son, and as silly as the techniques seem, they really work! Good luck, love your son as he loves you. He will be grown before you know it.
Hi A M. I think your son is understandably frustrated with not being able to get around on his own, and also he has trained you all to keep him moving. I hope that doesn't sound too severe, but that's how it sounds to me. He yells and tantrums partially because he's frustrated, and partially because it has worked up until now to get someone to come over to him. As a little one he doesn't recognize that he is being unrealistic- but you do, that's why you're so frustrated and tired. Just follow your instincts- take him around a little bit and then tell him that mama ( or papa) need to do some work- leave him on a blanket surrounded by some toys so he can entertain himself, or put him in the swing. I think if you guys can be firm, then he will learn after yelling for awhile- that he needs to either entertain himself with what he has, or get around somehow by himself- whether that's scooting, or crawling late- or walking. Best regards. I know it's "easier" giving armchair advice, rather than being there.
please don;t let people worry you about whether he should crawling walking or anything else. every baby is different - our son never crawled and did not walk until 15 months - yet he is beginning to read and talk earlier than teh average toddler his age, according to his pediatrician.
our son would also cry for us to walk him around and get him from point A to point B -- we finally just had to let him cry, and we would continue doing things around him -- he finally stopped with the crying and realized if he wanted something he had to it figure out on his own.
the crying is hard because you feel guilty, but i predict it will pass pretty quickly.
i would alos agre with anohter post that you should not discipline him - he is too young. the best way to helo him understand is through positive reinforcement (clapping, smiling, hugging) or negative reinforcement (ignoring unwanted behavior).
I can relate. My daughter is now 24 months old and is very spirited and yes that is draining. Your experience sounds very similar to what I went through with her. I could not go to the bathroom without her on my lap and bouncing her or she would cry hysterically.
You can get through it, as soon as you child learns to walk it gets a lot easier.
Maybe put a little maze of boxes so he/she can hold onto them. You can install a walking rail on the wall to hold onto if that helps and restores some sanity into your home.
Best of luck.
Hi A M,
I am a mother of an almost 2 year old. The first thing I may advise is to get and read the book "The Happiest Toddler on the Block". It has many helpful suggestions for various scenarios. Secondly, your child now knows, by previous responding that you WILL eventually give in. This only encourages him to cry until you come to the rescue. My advise is, and it will be hard to follow, let him cry. Even if it takes an hour or 2 hours. He is not going to hurt himself and he will eventually learn that crying is not going to get him what he wants. After he finally calms down, then you approach him and calmly and simply explain how to ask. After a couple of times of going through this exercise he will learn the appropriate behavior and that he can't always get what he wants.
Hi A M,
Take a deep breath and know that by reaching out you are doing the very best that you can for your baby. We are always filled with doubts as Mothers. I was told by a friends Mom to make sure my baby was shoe and sock free, bare feet help with resistance to the floor. My daughter was not crawling at 9 months and I was worrying that I wasn't doing everything I could to help her. We left her with bare feet and bare legs and she started crawling within a few weeks. The important thing to remember is that crawling is not a developmental milestone anymore. Babies that are placed on their backs to sleep don't get all of the extra practice we may have received in infancy. If you are truly worried, make sure you bring this up to your pediatrician. All babies develop at different paces and you are deep in separation anxiety territory. With his added strides in communication he is most assuredly voicing his opinion. Lots of love and cuddles are a good thing to add especially before bedtime. You could also try playing music, my daughter loves to listen to music as she is playing. Best of luck to you.
I am in a similar situation - my 2nd son wants so badly to walk and follow my older son around, but I cannot constantly hold his hand. I do carry him around in a sling more often than not, since I feel strongly about the importance of keeping babies close. I find that it is worse when he is tired, has to pee, or is hungry. Try getting him involved in an activity near you, or going outside (if you can bring your work with you). Do keep in mind what you said before - this is a phase, it will pass! Be in the moment with your boy and you will be proud of yourself for doing it. Time flies all too soon and you will wonder why you didn't just sit and enjoy him. :) That doesn't make it any easier to do it now, though! You know your baby best and you know what his needs are. Let other chores suffer during this short time that he needs extra help exploring his world. It will not be like this forever.
Hey A M
I'm 45, a mother of two and have been married 19 years. My son started crawling early and went from crawling to walking at 10 months old and my daughter at 11 months old. I use to put a blanket with colorful toys on it, in whatever room I was in cleaning and left them on their stomach to explore that way. It's important to have them try, and yes this means "crying" cause it gives them the ability to balance themselves and find ways to get to you. You say he cries as soon as you put him down, well it sounds like he already knows what to do to get your attention. Independence is something only they can learn by themselves, with your help of course. Good Luck....
honestly, the best thing to do is ignore him. by giving him any attention, be it positive or negative, he wins :) try giving him household items to play with while you need to be elsewhere in the home, such as a piece of tupperware and a spoon, or a frying pan and a spatula. engage him in "cooking", and then calmly walk away. if he fusses, show him to play with his cooking utensils and tell him mommy has to go, and walk away. do what you have to do and completely ignore him (unless he hurts himself of course!). once you're done, then go back and play with him. it'll take a couple of days, but he'll get it. it will also encourage him to walk on his own, or maybe even crawl, as a way to get to you. good luck!
here in California there are children who you can hire as "mother-helper" - the idea is that it's like having your own older child to help with the younger one. thee are usually (depending on the level of maturity) 8-11 year olds who you old enough to do the job, but not enough to be ligally "babysitting". the child comes to your home and walk the baby. the rate is usually 1/2 to 1/3 of what actual babysitter would get.
Good Luck! i know where you are. when my son was 10 month old he did not crawl but cried if you did not hold him by the hands and wald with him. oh, the endless hours after work i've spent walking around the house! - he was with my mother while i worked and she was not in a physical shape to provide "walking".
I know you will get lots of advice, but I have a 11 mo. old who is turning one in 2 weeks and even though he is happy, he is definitely wanting to be held more. You may try wearing him in a backpack style carrier so that you can work around the house and he can still be with you. He is learning to explore and needs lots of encouragement and play and even though you know this, it is just a season. Last night when my son was wide awake instead of sleeping, I gave up and played with him a little bit and to hear his laughter made me feel better even though I had been stressed wanting to clean my house since the kids were in bed, so I understand you want to get stuff done! I tell myself all the time, it won't last. Hang in there and enjoy this season and your little boy. He may also be hungry. That is when my little one cries or yells the most.
How would he do in a baby carrier? This way he not on the floor, helpless, and he can explore the surroundings from a new vantage point? The backpack ones would probably be easier so that you can still get stuff done in front of you. He can hear your voice as you describe what you are doing and what things he can see. When you do ahve time, maybe work on crawling with him so he learns he can egt around that way...? Hope you find some relief soon!