Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Father asks about kid problems

Questioner:Cornell in Mississippi
Subject:Kid problems

I have a couple of issues as a father who is in need for advice. First of all, let me introduce myself. I am 26 yrs old, married to an amazing wife, with two kids, and a dog. We stay in a 2 bedroom apartment. Now let's get to the issue.(the kids) They are both boys; one is 2 years old and the other one is 1. They are sweet at times, but are very frustrating to me when it comes down to keeping the apartment clean. They trash this apartment like it's a trash bin. I constantly cleans up to the point that I feels like a janitor. I puts all my pride into cleaning up because I love breathing cleanness of a house. Me and my wife tries to keep it clean, but them two as a team is a nightmare. We even made the 2nd bedroom out of a play pin for them by putting toys in there and a TV with cartoon on it, but instead, they drag the toys into the living room. 

That's not all, they love to stay up late to where me and my wife doesn't have any alone or quality time together. The attention between me and her are blocked by those two rascals.
And they wakes up so late like around 11am-12:30 pm at the most.( My 2 year old son's bed is next to our bed and our 1 year old sleeps in the bed with us. The 2 bedroom is across the other side of the apartment, but my wife does not like them that far from our bedroom due to safety reasons of fearing that someone would sneak in and take our kids. 

Also, it's hard to teach my 2 year old to brush his teeth...all he wants to do is suck the tooth pasted off and bite down onto the tooth brush. Another issue is getting my 2 year old off pacifies. When we takes his away, he cries like some one is dying or he looses his, he steals his little brother's. Even when he goes without a pacifier, the moment he sees that we gave his brother a paci, he cries for his, especially at bed time. 

Another issue is that all my 2 year old wants to eat is junk food (chips, candy, cake,etc.) I really need your advice. I am dad who wants to change a few things around the house professionally. Thanks in advice.

Dear Cornell:
Wow! I feel honored that you wrote to me. First I want to say that there are several issues going on here. Your children are 2 and 3 years old they sound like they are doing what 2 and 3 years olds do! The expectation that they would be otherwise is more for 6 or 7 year old children. At their age they will certainly mimic you if you make a game of picking up with them. They love having your attention so anyway you can make cleaning up fun they maybe more inclined to keep you company at first and then join in with you. They are however, too young to be responsible for the cleaning up.

You are to be commended for being so involved with the housework! Not all fathers would be so diligent. Your involvement in housework is not the same as care-giving. Care-giving means you spend time playing with your boys, it means nurturing them when they cry, maybe bathing them. You may find that letting the house not be so perfect and spending more time enjoying your children will make you more happy in your fathering role. It is not a criticism as society does not yet support  fathers. I can tell you with absolute certainty that in ten years, you won't regret playing more with them and cleaning less!
As for the sleeping issues, I just published a book on the topic, Hassle Free Bedtime! Check it out!
You are right in desiring time with your wife! It is important to keep your relationship healthy with a date night. Try to get family to sit or swap time with another couple with children or get a baby sitter!
I wish you the very best!

Dr. Mary Kay Keller
Book now!

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