Saturday, October 6, 2012

When do I start saying no?

Dear Kay,

Thank you for your time. I have 6 month old twin boys and I was wondering when to start saying no-no? They are just beginning to take toys from each other and make each other cry. I would also like to know if it is to early to explain sharing ?
Thank you.

Wendy

Dear Wendy:

Good questions. I avoid saying no as much as possible because that is usually all children hear until they are 2 and then they repeat it back to parents who don't have a high appreciation for hearing no from their children. It is a catch 22. Instead learn to redirect their attention to something else. There are great parenting resources, like positive parenting, nurturing parenting which give lots of suggestions on how to deal with children under the age of 2. As far as sharing their brains are not developed enough to understand sharing until they are about 3. So you and them will only be frustrated. Children do what is called parallel play until they are about 3 years old. The mimic or they play side by side. Often they will take anther's toy. It's common. Remove the toy or give it back or give them both something different to play with however don't make a huge deal over this behavior or it only gets worse by turning into a power struggle.

Best Wishes!

M Kay Keller