GRAND Magazine - September/October 2008 - (Page 28)

ask grand “I’m a separate person. I’m me, not you. I’m terrific!” around the mastery of tasks. Your granddaughter’s developmental stage identifies her emotional tasks. Two-year-olds, according to psychoanalyst Erik Erikson, are working on autonomy, which is another way of saying “I want to do it myself.” As she asserts herself, her physical development is cooperating. She can walk now and even run away from you to prove that she’s a separate person. Saying “no” in defiance is actually “Yes, I’m a separate person. I’m me, not you. I’m terrific!” This self-will inspires acts of resistance or protested independence that will be revisited during her teen years. Recognizing her need for independence can help you avoid power struggles. Remember, the underlying message of defiance and self-assertion is autonomy. Go around the “no” instead of meeting it headon. For example, when she announces “no” to going inside, don’t argue, just take her hand and walk her in. You may be surprised by her lack of resistance. Avoid questions that require a yes-or-no answer. Instead, offer simple options: “Do you want eggs or cereal?” Encourage her sense of mastery with activities such as playing with Play-Doh, doing large-piece puzzles or climbing on the jungle gym. Two-year-olds like routine. Your granddaughter will feel more secure with the predictability of a regular schedule. Two-year-olds are the center of their world. So when your granddaughter wants something, she sees no reason not to take it. You can help to socialize her by teaching her to share and wait using patience and understanding. Avoid shaming and anger. Mastering control of aggression takes time. As a grandparent, you’ve “been there, done that.” You are more able than parents to be accepting and offer unconditional love. By helping to shape your granddaughter’s experience and values, you are influencing her future and forging a significant relationship with this little girl who will carry your legacy beyond your years. What important work! G Two tired By LiLLian CaRson Raising toddlers doesn’t get easier the second time around Q A I have recently started babysitting my 2-year-old granddaughter while her mother works—and I’m surprised that it’s so difficult. She’s very delightful, but often she’s not very cooperative, refusing to obey simple requests like “It’s time to go in now.” Also, she can be very aggressive with other children, grabbing their toys and even hitting. I’m worried and exhausted. What can I do? HeaRing you say tHat CaRing for your 2-year-old granddaughter is exhausting is not surprising. We grandparents forget what 2-year-olds are really like, much as we forget about the pain of childbirth. Children of this age are not only oppositional but also full of energy, and they require close supervision. Following your energetic granddaughter around can certainly wear you out. You might consider hiring a neighborhood teen to relieve you from time to time. And do resist the impulse to catch up on work while she’s napping—that’s the time to put your feet up for a rest. As you are experiencing, your granddaughter’s behavior is unpredictable. She can be tender or terrible. Understanding her developmental stage will shed light on what her behavior is expressing. Physical development and emotional life are organized Tips for surviving The care of 2-year-olds PhOTO By juRiAh MOSin/dREAMSTiME.COM • Make sure you are rested • Don’t teach by shaming • Let your sense of humor temper your frustration • Don’t expect cooperative play with others • Give praise and hugs to smooth rough times • Plan activities that promote accomplishment 28 GRAND SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2008

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of GRAND Magazine - September/October 2008

Grand Magazine- September/October 2008
Grand View:Priceless
Isn't it Grand?: Picture Perfect
Winners!: GRANDparent of the Year
Grand Central
Toddler Town:Grand-proofing
Ask Grand:Two Tired
Tips on Teens: The Bar Mitzvah Trips
Just So We Know:BPA Not Our BFF
Full House-Full Heart-Full Time:Confessions of a Backyard Grand
Grandbloggers: It Takes a Village
Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner?
Family Food = Fun
On the Cover: Nora Roberts A Fine Romance
Everything Was Fine Until You Showed Up
Happy Big Sister Day
Looking Grand:Elementary, My Dear
All in the Family:Pasta, Present and Future
Inspirations:Grandpa's Violin
Grand Bazaar
More to the Story
Grand Finale:Long Ago Under the Sun

GRAND Magazine - September/October 2008