Family Magazine

Why My Toddler Whines More with Mom and is Calmer Otherwise?

By Shwetashetye

My daughter goes to playgroup. How does a day of a mother who's child, especially toddlers, goes to school of any kind look like? Imagine you woke up with the most pleasant smile only to realize that someone is giving you grumpy looks from the other side of the bed. And, before you can transform that grump into a smile, there it happens, the whine!! I am always found questioning myself "Why my toddler whines more with mom and not with dad"?

This question arose because let me tell you I am not an early riser. I know that in the long haul I have to be one, but for now I want to relish it. But, no, I sacrifice my sleep to get my daughter up and ready. Every step of this "up and ready" is laced with a constant whine. Not a full blasted drama whine, but a whimper whine for sure. That whimper whine is the worst, won't you agree? Here I am flipping sandwiches, pouring milk, fixing tiffins, while all the time I can hear a soft whimper in the background. Does it affect my productivity, no! Does it affect my piss off level - YES!

Part 2 of the story is when her dad is doing all tasks related to her, and behold witness the magic that is a daughter! Why would she become a diffrent person altogether with him and a totally not-good- version with me? As with all moms, I started self-analyzing. I must have been bad with her someday of the week that she is holding a grudge against me for. Hold on that lollipop I took away the other day since it was not lollipop time, that is it! That is the reason she is miffed. And so goes on the blame game, as happens with you too I am sure. But, I had to research about why do they whine with moms more than dad and so the research began.

After much research, my insight to why this behavior is triggered was found. Most kids whine when they are hungry or overtired. If both of these requirements are met, then it is plain attention seeking behavior. The second part is where the focus needs to be when dealing with whining.

How did I control my daughter's whining?

Stopped the need for making things better

I had this constant urge to please her, make things right for her and that is where she knew my weakness was. Unless she was hungry or tired, I just realized there was no point trying to make the reason for the whine go away. I can't always make chocolates appear magically!

Give her attention

Many times it helped when I came to her level and hugged her. It sounds cliche, but it works most of the times. I hug her, give her a kiss, and redirect her attention.

Model good behavior

What this technique means is to start saying what you want her to do. For example, I was having a tough time in the morning to get her to enter the bathroom and get undressed, no amount of shouting or coaxing was helping. That is when I said to her "Great job going in the bathroom. You are doing such a great job. You are excellent at removing your pants" That is all I said and it was magic! She came to me and started doing exactly what I said. I have just recently started doing this and it never failed me.

As for the initial question about why she doesn't play the whine game with her dad is because she knows my buttons. I won't call her manipulative, but just a deep bond me and her share. We both know when and what to say to make our whistles blow!

How about you? How do you manage this whining? Don't tell me you are whine-free! Share your comments of how to become one with us too

Why my toddler whines more with mom and is calmer otherwise?


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