I am no god of parenting, and I screw up all the time. But occasionally I stumble on something that magically works. Yesterday was one of those days, and it worked again today. I thought I’d share for the other parents out there who might struggle with the same.
Oliver is three. He wants everything he sees. He wants everything he’s not holding. He has had a blue doll stroller (they were all the rage last year among the toddler set in NYC) for a year, and he and Hazel wind up fighting over it. So, and because Hazel so rarely gets anything new (besides clothes), I got her a doll stroller. She loves it.
Of course, that means that Oliver wants it. He only wants hers; his is unacceptable. Hazel only wants to play with hers too, which means that I am having the same fight, but now I’m $13 poorer and frustrated because I have two freaking doll strollers.
So, because the pink one is Hazel’s, and we generally institute a ‘you have to share, but you don’t have to share what you’re playing with rightnow or what you love most’ policy, Hazel doesn’t have to share her pink stroller. Which leads to mega-tantrums by Oliver. And if you know anything about our housing situation, you’ll know that that could lead to us getting evicted from our apartment.
When Oliver was throwing his tantrum, I kept my cool (woohoo!), and we talked about it. He said that he really wanted a pink stroller. I explained to him that we couldn’t go out and get him a pink stroller right then, but that we could start a list of the things that he wants, so that if we’re ever out and want to get him a treat, he can pick something off of the list.
So we made a special “Oliver’s Wish List”, and when he gets upset about something he wants, we add it to the list, and it seems to calm him down and I guess it makes him feel heard and understood. Right now, his list consists of three things–a scooter, a pink stroller, and a remote controlled Thomas train (I love advertising and its effects on children *cue eye-roll*).