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3 year old parenting help

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#1 rubyskye

Posted 14 October 2019 - 05:44 AM

Hi everyone,

I'm finding my 3 year old challenging at the moment but I don't know if it's me, him or a combination.

Who do I go to for advice/help/support? I did a google and Parent Line came up, I also thought maybe my GP or paediatrician.

He's 3y4m and having great difficulty with toilet training, sleeping, changes in routines, picky eating, tantrums etc.

I don't know what's normal or not. He's always been a 'high needs' baby/toddler and maybe my feelings are heightened being a SAHM but just wanted to see if there's anything I can be working on, improving my parenting etc.

Please be kind, thank you so much.

#2 Toddlerandme

Posted 14 October 2019 - 06:03 AM

Three year olds are challenging, it is a difficult age.

I’m not sure where you are but in South Australia there are children’s centres (often a kindy/preschool, which also has other services) which can offer parenting courses, playgroups, etc.

I took my DD to a playgroup run by an occupational therapist and it was great. Lots of ideas for play, plus of course the chance to talk to other parents.  

If there is something similar near you that might be another option for help and support.


#3 rubyskye

Posted 14 October 2019 - 06:49 AM

Thanks Toddlerandme, I'm in Victoria 😊 really appreciate your post.

#4 Kiwi Bicycle

Posted 14 October 2019 - 06:56 AM

Do you have a maternal and child health nurse? In Victoria there is a 3.5 year old check up. I found they were great at answering questions or pointing you to resources.

#5 ~J_F~

Posted 14 October 2019 - 06:57 AM

I am firmly in camp if you have any concerns, any at all, get it checked out.

I would be seeing a GP for a referral to a paediatrician.  

It might just be age and nothing more and that’s great. If it’s more, early intervention is so important.

#6 José

Posted 14 October 2019 - 06:58 AM

Id use parent info line if needed.
There are many parenting courses available. I think you can even do triple p online.
Psychologists can also asist with parenting strategies.

#7 Mmmcheese

Posted 14 October 2019 - 06:59 AM

Maternal health nurse can be a good option. Do you have any playgroups around you you can join? This can be a good way to find out if other parents are having similar issues and how they manage?

#8 lou246

Posted 14 October 2019 - 07:01 AM

Oh I’m feeling exactly the same way as you. I have an almost 3.5ds and I have no idea what’s normal and what’s not. I guess there’s no normal 😂. I often wonder what is the best approach with him. I feel like I need someone to come into my house and watch and provide advice.
I’m hoping someone can offer advice. You are not alone!

#9 SM3s Fight Song

Posted 14 October 2019 - 07:03 AM

View PostJosé, on 14 October 2019 - 06:58 AM, said:

Id use parent info line if needed.
There are many parenting courses available. I think you can even do triple p online.
Psychologists can also asist with parenting strategies.

Yep you can do triple P online.  Free for QLD residents or it was last time I looked and $90 in other states, might be a bit more now.

#10 WaitForMe

Posted 14 October 2019 - 07:06 AM

I would start with your child health nurse, if you have a decent one. If they just fob you off then try a GP.

Having problems with the things you list is very "normal".

My advice is to pick just one of the problems you listed, and work on just that. Let all the others go for now.

#11 MsLaurie

Posted 14 October 2019 - 07:09 AM

Call and book in your 3.5yr check up with Maternal & Child health. They can do it a bit early, doesn’t have to be right on 3.5yrs. They can often get you started on a referral path via community health services if need be.

#12 james_c

Posted 14 October 2019 - 07:41 AM

I was having the same kind of issue with mine 6 months or so ago, she is now almost 4. In our case it was compounded by the arrival of a baby last year and me being very tired and impatient as a result. Not a good combo!
Anyway, I mentioned it to the nurse when we were having the baby 4 months check-up, and she straight away put me in touch with a psychologist/parenting advisor that works in the same MCH centre. It only took a few chats to get some good advice, and be able to look at things from her young and overwhelmed point of view. She is still a sometimes trying 3 years old, but we are in a much better place. I'm in Melbourne, these kind of resources can be accessed in Victoria, don't hesitate to contact your local MCH centre or GP.

#13 Soontobegran

Posted 14 October 2019 - 08:22 AM

I agree with PP.
Book your little boy's 3.5 year old check up at the MCHN. It is the best place to start.

#14 rubyskye

Posted 14 October 2019 - 09:41 AM

Thank you so much everyone - yes we have a really good MHN here, don't know why I didn't think if her. I'll make the appointment today! Completely forgot we had a 3.5 yr check up due soon.
I'll also look up the triple P parenting course too.
Thank you so so much for sharing your experiences and advice :)

#15 Lou-bags

Posted 14 October 2019 - 11:29 AM

Good idea to visit your MCHN, I hope you get some good support.

3yos are HARD. I have one right now too (3yr1mo). He is much easier than his higher needs older brother was but still it’s just a hard age.

It’s hard to know what’s typical-hard and what is not, though, especially if it’s your first and if you don’t necessarily have a lot of other kids the same age to get a feel for what’s normal and what’s not. So I agree with PPs that it’s best to just check it out.

Hang in there!

(Also, one book recommendation from me- ‘how to talk so little kids will listen, by Joanna Fabre and Julie King. So many great approaches to parenting little kids that in my experience have made things easier and de escalated some of the sticky points in our home. When I’m able to think clearly enough to implement them of course... ).

#16 movingonup

Posted 14 October 2019 - 11:42 AM

Hi ladies, I have a DS at a similar age; I read the attached article and oh boy, did it sound like it was written by someone watching us!

It might be of help to you?

#17 rubyskye

Posted 14 October 2019 - 11:56 AM

View Postmovingonup, on 14 October 2019 - 11:42 AM, said:

Hi ladies, I have a DS at a similar age; I read the attached article and oh boy, did it sound like it was written by someone watching us!

It might be of help to you?

I just laughed out loud reading this thank you movingonup. My DS literally does all these. He has an incredible obsession with everyday objects and its gotten to the point he might have 30 things in a bag he is carrying around. To the car on outings, in bed, in the bath. Its a bit much.
And yes, his world ends when the banana breaks. One bad morning I let him go through 4 bananas, each one breaking, him getting more and more distressed.
I feel so incompetent as a parent and I've never felt like this before. There's heaps of other stuff too. First step - MHN!

#18 Toddlerandme

Posted 14 October 2019 - 06:07 PM

My almost four year old has just stopped wanting to carry all the random things around... it is so lovely not to have random uncomfortable objects (spoons, little shop food, a peg) turning up in my bed!

I’m glad you have a good MCHN and a plan forward.

#19 Lallalla

Posted 14 October 2019 - 07:01 PM

3 is the hardest age I’ve dealt with so far (bearing in mind my oldest is 5). I have twin 3 year olds at moment and They are absolutely doing my head in.

Also I keep finding as soon as I start thinking this has to be outside the realm of normal they’ll reign it in for a while. I swear it is like they know.

When my oldest was 3 I did the Circle of Security course which I found really helpful. Maybe it’s time to look into the triple p course too....

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