Friday 20 May 2011

Living with a threenager, difficult behaviour in children

Well we've all heard of terrible 2's but no-one warns you about the onset of the threenager, an apt name to describe the strops and tantrums that you may have to endure as they approach 3!

I remember all to well how Jasper turned into a little brat at the drop of a hat, and it didn't help that I was pregnant at the time too!   Of course he was an angel for his nursery teachers, I've learnt all too well that children reserve their challenging behaviour for their parents, as quite rightly it’s their boundaries they are trying to find!

My daughter at three had her moments, but in fact nowhere near the levels of difficult behaviour I found with Jasper.  2 of my friends are currently enduring the same with their sons, so this led me to investigate more about the "testosterone surges" that I had heard whispers about.

Having looked around, it appears that testosterone levels in boys double between the ages of 3 and 4, which should settle to normal levels again at around 5 years old.  Growth spurts can also affect their ear canals, so it may be that they can't hear you, not that they won't listen!

I found this website useful

It appears therefore that we need to show them patience and understanding, and I know all too well how difficult this can be sometimes.  Try not to beat yourself up if you deal with it wrongly on occasion, the guilt started at the onset of the blue line on the test stick and I can't see it getting any less any time soon.  I also find when a child is shouting at the top of their range, instead of shouting louder, almost whisper your request and they have to be quiet to hear it - thanks mum for that one :)

Thought it was worth sharing?
Thanks for reading.
Annie x


  1. Yes, I have to whisper often as my daughter has an unnaturally loud volume! I think parents often give their children roles; i.e. boys will be boys and girls will play with dolls, if you know what I mean. Shouting for boys doesn't seem half as bad as when a girl shouts, and a lot would prefer to allow their boys to be loud and heard whereas their girls to be shy and sweet.

    But once they get to school, teachers won't put up with loud boys and so it's a good idea to nip it in the bud beforehand. We also get the "boys have selective hearing" excuse from many parents and what you say about ear-trouble is very interesting. No child is an angel and all are far from perfect. Though many parents would have us believe their child is most definitely perfection personified.

    CJ xx

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