There is no doubt that I was spoiled by my first child. Now, the first year was hard. She was never happy. I mean we even had to eat in shifts because she did not like to sit down. However, after that I must admit that she has been an easy going and enjoyable child for 99% of the time.
My second has been the exact opposite. The first year was great and then she turned one and all hell broke lose. Everything came in extremes. She is extremely hyper or extremely happy or extremely loving or extremely mad. The worst, however, is when she is extremely sad.
Now let me be clear this sadness is not due to some sort of manic depressive disorder. Nor is it due to some sudden loss of a binkie or beloved toy. There is actually no predicting what will bring on the tears. It could be that she doesn't want to go to bed or doesn't want to brush her teeth or is told no about something or sometimes there is absolutely no reason at all.
For example, today we got home and I told the girls to go wash their hands while I made them a snack. The next thing I know she has flung herself on the floor of the hallway and the tears have begun to flow. Why you might ask or I might want to scream as I fall to my knees throwing my fists up in surrender? I don't know. Maybe she wasn't hungry. Maybe she liked grimy hands. Maybe she was tired and thought the floor would be a soft place to lie down and found it was not.
Whatever the reason, the crying continued behind closed door (she chose to seclude herself in her room) until I went in 20 minutes later to offer a snack and for some reason it stopped. This is not always the case. We have tried everything! We have timed out, taken away things, rewarded her for good behavior, praised her, spanked her, tried hard to avoid all triggers like land mines laying in wait of destruction of the peace of our household. NOTHING WORKS! We have had 2 hour long crying fits!
Today I even created a chart with her help. We chose all the things we wanted her to do without whining and crying. I even searched for over 30 minutes for pictures of the Disney Princesses sleeping, getting dressed, and even brushing their hair. She gets a smiley face every time she does something without whining or crying. However, at bedtime she lied about going to the bathroom and did not get a smiley face. Once again, all hell breaks lose.
We tried everything to calm her down. We hugged her. We threatened her. We took things away. We pointed out that she could still get another smiley. Alas, nothing worked. Eventually, I lost it and started my hyperventilating hormonal crying, which seriously frightened my husband who is trying very hard to keep me from going into preterm labor. He took her outside to calm her down, which made her even louder, and we are still amazed that DFACS was not called as it sound like she was being seriously hurt even though no one was touching her.
Now, in the calm after the storm, I have searched many sites about what to do. There are all of these suggestions about what to do to prevent tantrums. None of which are helpful to us seeing as we are already doing them all. There are all kinds of suggestions about what to do during a tantrum. None of which help us because we have tried them all to no avail!
Now the real problem. Yes, she seems to be at her wits end, but now so are we! Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!! This will be a really bad problem to still have in 8 weeks when we have crying baby to add to the mix.