Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Whine, whine, whine

The whining will be the death of me, I am sure. My 4 and a half year old Monkey Boy is driving me to the brink. I am feeling frustrated and angry with him a lot of the time. Have to keep reminding myself that this is an adjustment period for everyone, especially my little people. To be honest, today that wasn't helping that much.

The whining starts soon after waking. We usually get a nice half hour cuddle in bed before he gets going, thankfully. I get up with him and we go downstairs to get milk. It does not matter what kind of cup I get, it is the wrong one. This morning there were no clean sippy cups, so it was, "Why do I have to have this cup? I want my sippy cup!" complete with tears.
Yesterday I asked, "Sippy cup or not?" His answer was sippy cup, so I made it and then he pushed it away angrily, refused to drink it and cried that I gave him a sippy cup and he didn't want one.

Then it is time for food. "What do you want for breakfast, Monkey boy?"
Him, "Nuffing. humph."
Me, "Well it is time to eat and this is your one and only chance to have me make your breakfast. What will it be? Oatmeal? Cereal? Toast? Eggs?"
Him, "Hurumph. I don't like any of our food. I want waffles."
Me, "I am not making waffles."
Him, "Fine then, I will have butter toast."
Me, "How about some peanut butter on that, for some nutrition?"
Him, "No. I hate peanut butter now."
So I make him the buttered toast, unwilling to fight with him. I am careful to butter it completely and then place it on his plate just so, with no cutting. Usually he will whine if I cut it, that a) he doesn't want it cut or b) I cut it wrong. Any way I cut it is wrong. He will also whine if I don't cut the toast, but at least that is undoable. Today he whined because I put one piece on top of the other and he wanted them side by side. "I hate it like that. I don't want that, I hate toast!"
He will then usually bring on tears and push the plate away and stomp out of the room.

I tell him that this is breakfast. He may eat or not, but there will be no other food. I will not stand for any more whining and if he wants something he needs to ask, rather than whine. This brings on the 'hurt feelings' crying. His face looks like his heart is utterly, irreparably broken.

I am so not falling for it. I am done with this freaking whining all the bloody time. I proceed to be a good parent and ignore him. Eventually he will eat the toast, today it took until about 10:30 and I found him at the table, eating with a smile on his face.

Every interaction of our day is like this. Everything I, or anyone else does is met with whining. Whatever we do is wrong, even if it is done exactly the way he asked. Instead of asking for what he actually wants though, his first reaction is to whine at what is there.

The most oft repeated phrase out of his father and my mouths is, "What do kids that whine get?"
"Nothing!" Monkey and his sister chant in unison.
"How do we get what we want?"
"By asking! With words!"

Today though? I had enough. When he started that crap at the dinner table, because I had put his ketchup on his bun instead of his salmon patty, I started ranting to his daddy.
"I have had enough of this whining crap! He has been doing this since he got up! Every single thing I do for him is wrong or not good enough! I am going insane, I can't stand one more second of this!"

Monkey boy paused in his whining and tears and shoving his plate at me, to stare at me with a slightly hurt, but more 'my mom is nutso' look on his face. But he still wouldn't eat that burger for another half an hour.

I bailed to take the teenager to youth and let Daddy deal. I could feel the steam rising from my ears already.

I do realize that my stellar parenting of late is not helping the situation. And that he is only 4, and we are about to add another child to our family, and he is probably in need of more reassurance and attention than usual. But some days I just want to stick my fingers in my ears and scream lalalalalalaala at the top of my lungs while running to hide in my bed.


  1. and honestly some of them just have more "glass is half full" personalities. It sounds like you handled it better than I do.

    How do you let them know they are loved, while still setting firm boundaries and not putting up with whining? This is my great delema....cuz most days I feel I'm loosing it!

    Love you. Your kids are a joy (most of the time) and I think you're doing an amazing job. Hugs.

    ps:love looking at the count down to baby!

  2. You did a great job with him. Ben and I bicker like this pretty often. And it hurts me, it frustrates me, and I often wonder what I'm doing wrong. The answer is, I think, that I'm doing NOTHING wrong. Just like you. We just do the best we can.

    And I started to send him to his room when he wanted to have a whiny meltdown. Seemed to curb them somewhat.

  3. Sounds like you are doing the right thing. I have had many "lalalala" moments, and I HAVE hid from my kids! Sometimes a half hour locked in the potty helps! (I mean me locked in, not the kids! lol!)

  4. I like your whole "whining chant" and will have to remember it.
    I feel your pain (kind of, only have one right now.) Little Elvis was the same way yesterday, except he just outright cries. He will moan and whimper, but it's not whining yet. I'm pretty sure he's cutting a 2-year molar, and will blame that, but I didn't do anything right yesterday either. It's draining more than anything else.

  5. I feel your pain....I usually have Olivia pick her cup out, so that I can't pick the wrong one out. Same goes for the plate, spoon, fork etc. Clothes are included in that mix as well. If she can't choose in the time alloted then mommy picks and she has to live with the choice or she gets NOTHING. End of story. I give her one chance to use her big girl voice or I walk away until she does...My ears I think are bleeding by the end of the day sometimes....Stick to know they grow out of it if you stick to your guns. My worst nightmare is to have whiney teenagers.....

  6. Oh Lordy! Lorelai isn't even two and I already feel like this!!! If you come up with the solution, let me know. Then, write a book about it and become rich and famous, because by the sound of it, it seems nobody has the real answer!

    I'll be thinking about you today!!!

  7. Man, sounds a little too close to my own home, complete with a whining four-year-old. The past two weeks were just torturous, and for some reason (as of last Sunday) he turned a corner and has been his usual pleasant self. Hope there are some turned corners in your future ;)!

  8. The whining will do you in...

    I really do think it is the age. Both of mine are 4 and 4 (next month!) and we have frequent whine.

  9. I think that your Monkey is related to my Tractor--

    I feel for you, Hun. . ..

    It makes me nuts!!!

  10. I so feel your pain! Will has already learned "what does whining get you?" he answers "nosing" but I still have to remind him oh a million and seven times a day how to ask for things, cause holding up a cup and yelling "chocolate milk!" doesn't really work for me!
    I think you just gave a picture of Will in 6 months!

    hang in there, you have older ones, so you'll probably make it through this stage again!

  11. There might be no other trait as grating as whining. It sounds like to me you are handling it very admirably. It's tough to stay patient in the face of relentless whining. Very, very tough.

    I'm sorry Monkey boy is having a tough time with the transition. I'll be praying for you both!!

  12. You handled that much better than I handle the little guy when he does that-which is a lot lately.

    Think maybe your boy smells change in the air. He isn't going to be the baby boy anymore.

  13. This sounds like my three year old right now. I know a lot of it is transition issues. But, still, you did the right thing. Transitions or not, they still have to learn appropriate behaviors.

  14. It must be a stage - mine is doing the same thing - and it is making me want to run to my bed for cover too!

    Hang in there - sounds like you are doing great!

  15. bless your heart.
    the whining is about to be the death of me around here!

  16. Sorry its been tough. I understand where you are coming from. This, too, shall pass.

    blah blah blah- not much comfort I know