Sunday, July 21, 2013

Three Year Olds

Three year olds are a trial, be they horse or human.  I'm not sure what I was thinking, taking on two three olds at once.  Actually, I wasn't thinking... The cuteness of three year olds over-rides the rational part of the brain and results in "SQUEEEE!  ZOMG! SO CUTE! MUST HAVE!"  It's an evolutionary adaptation to insure the survival of the species beyond this hellacious year.  

My three year olds, clearly conspiring against me.

It's a tough age.  Their bodies are much more developed than their brains, which is problematic.  It makes them clumsy, confused and prone to tantrums.  Training a clumsy, confused creature who is prone to tantrums is ridiculously difficult, but must be done for their own benefit.  And, because training a clumsy, confused, emotionally unstable creature isn't enough of a challenge, they're also trying to learn their place in the social construct.  That's science-speak for "super defiant control freak".

Case in point: My son needs to learn to use the potty.  Physically, he is capable of this.  Mentally, he has no desire to change the status quo.  Up until now, he ran around gleefully oblivious to toilet etiquette.  He went where and when he wanted to and someone else took care of it.  While I can see the attraction to that lifestyle, it doesn't change the fact that he needs to start attending to himself, mostly because I'm tired of doing it for him.

Second case in point: Jack needs to learn to carry himself and behave in a way appropriate for a saddle horse.  He is physically capable of this, but his life on the track wasn't like this and he's at an age where he's clumsy and defiant.  He doesn't want to change his status quo and, because he's 17h, I can't do it for him!

So, what do you do with these three year olds?  You point them in the right direction.  You show them, through your actions, the correct way of going.  You have infinite patience.  You accept the mistakes, but make the "right thing" easy.

So I sit my son on the potty, no matter how much he resists, and I wait until he gets it.  I give Jack the aids and I wait for him to get it, no matter how much he avoids it.  And I remember to have patience, because they are only three and they will get it eventually.

I believe it was Einstein who said, "Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results". He obviously knew some three year olds.


12 comments:

  1. Interesting analysis. Wonder if Jack and your son are conspiring over the potty issue. Of course, Jack can "go" wherever he wants to and someone is always cleaning up after him...so why not? *G*

    Most three year olds I've met eventually make it to four and then you have a whole new set of issues to deal with. Have fun. *lol*

















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    1. HA! I can see the conversation now...

      "She's trying to make you do what?! Man, that's cold. She lets me go wherever I want and then comes out and picks it up."

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  2. I Have found That Four Is worse Than Three With The Equine variety. As For Potty Training I Have No experience With boys. Girls are Pretty Easy On That Front.

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    1. Four was worse than three with my daughter. But she was easy to potty train. Three wouldn't be so bad with Jack if he weren't so big and clumsy! I'm hoping by four he'll have better motor control.

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  3. My son was content to let things remain the same until I had enough and basically made him run around naked for a day, during which time he quickly realized that it was gross to potty on himself, and it has been a year with only a handful of accidents, for both #1's and #2's. I totally support the method that worked with my son.

    I'm dreading potty training my twin girls at the same time... one was hard enough!!! I have a few more years to avail myself to getting them potty trained, however, so maybe some miracle potty-training device will be invented before then :)

    ReplyDelete
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    1. My daughter was so easy, she just decided to use the potty one day and that was the end of it. My son just doesn't care. We tried the naked method, but he doesn't care about messing himself. We even made him clean it up, and he still didn't care. So, we just make him sit on the potty at regular intervals. It took a couple weeks, but he's pretty good now. Hopefully I didn't just jinx myself....

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  4. Your parallel analysis makes a lot of sense and those two really do look like they are in cahoots.

    So I get that potty training is going to be tough, but how do I get my newborn daughter to stop peeing before the next diaper goes on? I thought only little boys did that!

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    1. Haha! My son never peed on me, but my daughter peed on me several times! And don't even get me started on the BF poop explosions.... that's another thing they don't put in the brochure. :/

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  5. Love this post, I'm glad someone else compares horses to children. My friends get so offended when I do it, but it makes sense :-)

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    1. Horses, at any age, are pretty much just huge toddlers. I'm glad I had horses before children, though. It made dealing with the children much easier!

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  6. Potty training sounds terrifying! I'm not sure I'd be much better with the horse though ;)

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    1. I'll be very glad when we're out of this stage!

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