Mama (mamawrites) wrote in gentleparents,

between baby and big kid

My daughter is 3 and a half. She seems to be really in a state of change. Some mornings, she's very "big kid" -- she wants to pour her own cereal and milk, clean up the table afterwards, choose her own clothes, etc. Other mornings, she wants me to carry her downstairs, and whines for a teether from the freezer (even though I really don't think she's teething). Some evenings, she wants to cut her own food, but other nights, she wants to be spoonfed.

I'm trying to let her have her own feelings, while also setting consistent limits about what I will and will not do for her. I can't carry her for more than a minute, because she's over 40 pounds and I risk throwing my back out. I ask her to use words, and say please, to get what she wants. I try hard not to reward whining, while also supporting her when she really seems to be honestly struggling to find words for what she wants. I'll propose two alternative things that she could say to me, when she's whining, for instance.

It's just really wearing on me, and I could use some support from folks who have gone through this stage. Advice would be welcome too...
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