Sunday, August 02, 2009

This repetitous phase will be the death of me? The death of me?

That's it. I'm taking the Munchkin back to the manufacturer to have her controls reset.

She has a new glitch in her system that causes her to say everything 47 times. And by "say" I mean, "whine at a pitch that makes blossoms wither and neighborhood dogs go berserk." It is driving me bat-shit crazy.

Usually a question, generally a demand for food, entertainment or both, she always begins with that classic, albeit earbleed-inducing, toddlerism of swapping the "Can I?" for "I can?" It goes a little something like this:

Her: I can have a piece of cheese, Mommy?

Me: I will get you some string cheese when Kitt finishes her bottle.

Her: I can have a piece of cheeeeeeeese, Mommy?!

Me: Yes. When Kitt is -

Her: I CAN HAVE A PIECE OF - (throws head back, screeches like Alien coming to kick Sigourney Weaver's ass) - CHEEEEEESE??

Me (gritting teeth, resisting urge to palm her head like a basketball and deposit her outside): Munchkin, you have to wait. No crying, no whining, no scream -


And at some point I hear a dull thud as she flings her tiny self to the floor.

Much to my dismay, it doesn't matter how I respond. She reacts as if I've said "no" and kicked her in the shins. And I can't just give her the cheese. Are you kidding? That violates Rule #586 of the Toddler Obedience Manual, clearly outlined in the chapter titled, "How to Beat Them Into Submission Without Technically Using Your Hands."

Sometimes, I just repeat myself every time she repeats herself. I sort of get sucked into the rhythm of it, which keeps me from saying something I'll later regret. However, this tactic produces genuinely insane conversations like this one:

Her: I can have another cookie, Mommy?

Me: No, we're saving them for Daddy."**

Her: I can have another cookie, Mommy?

Me: No, we're saving them for Daddy.

Her: I can have another cookie, Mommy?

Me: See previous response.

Her: (blink blink.) I can have another cookie, Mommy?

Argh. Hey look, there's my tail! There it is again! Round and round we go...

....ahem. Anyway, I really mean it. I'm taking her back. She should still be under warranty, right? In the meantime, I welcome all words of moral support, babysitting vouchers, and offers of liquor and chocolate. Thank you.

**Lie. We all know that in fact, Daddy will get whatever is left when I'm through with them, and that's only if I'm feeling generous.


Kelli Blood said...

Though I promise it will backfire on you later, I always found it interesting to teach Soph words and phrases that sound absolutely ridiculous coming from a two year old. "I can have a Frappuccino Mommy? I can have ennui?" It's the silly stuff that gets you through sometimes. :) It will end, I promise! Now she's one of the funniest people I know!

mommygeekology said...

So Kelli Blood is hilarious, and I'd totally do that.

Also, my daughter does this. We have finally decided upon the following plan:

1. Give the answer to the first inquiry.
2. Repeat the answer, and tell her that there is no whining.
3. When she (inevitably) continues to whine and screech, tell her that I will not speak to her while she is behaving badly.
4. Don't talk to her. Possibly leave the room.

It works about 30% of the time (meaning she stops). About 40% she dissolves into tears, and about 30% of the time when she dissolves into tears, she apologizes and acts like a human being afterwards.

Basically it's as good as I could expect for a three year old. :)

NHGirlDisplaced said...

Aw, I sympathize. LB has been in a hitting stage, and sometimes I feel like if I say "No hitting" one more time, my brain will explode. Wish I had advice! Mommygeekology seems to be onto something, though- Hubby does that with LB, and it seems to work for him.

Susan said...

over and over and over and over and over.....

yep. we actually are now reprimanding, "do NOT say xxx one more time or (fill in the blank)" sometimes it works. more often, it doesn't.

MA Mom said...

Sweetness is in the same stage. I totally get sucked in and repeat my answers also. Once my needle bumps off and I reset, I give her a warning, then a timeout. If I'm nursing the boy, I ignore her completely. I'm glad you're posting lots now :)

DysFUNctional Mom said...

OK, I love this post. Sorry the cost of it was your sanity.

Alison said...

We have repeatedly stated that she is welcome anytime and you can FedEx her overnight with no warning!