Sunday, March 20, 2011

I just want a grocery trip without the tantrums

Even though technically Cameron isn't two yet her precociousness has resulted in us labeling her behavior over the past two months as "terrible" and unfortunately indicative of many more months, I'm sure. The battles are constant. The whining kicks in without warning. The crying over every little thing that isn't perfect in her eyes. Gah. It makes me want to run away for a day.

The grocery store is a prime example. DH and I usually go together and it's a good thing because for the past 3 trips I've had to take Cameron out of the cart and twice out of the store entirely. It's frustrating because I am so distracted the entire time trying to placate her and keep the other patrons from wanting to kill us that I can't focus on what we need at the store. I've been relying on DH to pick up the slack and he is good but a few things fall through the cracks. Plus, it's just generally frustrating for me because Cameron always wants mommy. Isn't it time for a daddy phase to kick in?

I know, you're probably thinking, why not grocery shop while Cameron is napping? Because I don't want to, dammit. Nap time is better spent exercising, getting a pedicure or maybe even a nap for me. Grocery shopping is one of those things (typically takes us 30 minutes) that Cameron should be able to endure.

During today's trip she got the special car cart, one of the free cookies, two balloons (one got away from her) and DH and I interacting with her. But she protested DH pushing the cart instead of me. Or she wanted to sit in the basket part rather than the seat. Or she wanted to wear the balloon and then didn't. The list goes on and on. And the latest trick is for her to stop and drop if she's not happy with what's going on. So Cameron will lay on the ground...anywhere.

I'm at a bit of a loss with how to deal with it and I'm feeling like a bad parent because I don't know what to do. I don't want her to have a temper tantrum when we are out running errands. But I also don't want to cater to her which is what I find myself doing far too often just to keep the peace. For experienced parents out there please help! Am I doomed to keeping Cameron in the house for the next 6 months? Are there good books to help with this?

Cameron's latest "smiling" face when I take her picture.

Wearing DH's disgusting hat. Mental note: run it through the dishwasher.

8 comments:

Miss Madison's Mommy said...

Well, I feel your pain, terrible 2's are just the beginning! Madison usually acts decent enough at the grocery store, I started giving her lollipops, but now she demands one everytime we go into a store :) Oh well, I'd rather give her one than deal with a tantrum. I also play sesame street videos on my phone and NEVER EVER let her out of the cart, I learned that lesson the hard way! If she wants to cry while strapped in the cart than she can, I don't worry about other shoppers, it's Walmart, do you really expect there not to be a screaming kid? She also does the whole, stop drop and lay down thing too, so frustrating now that it's 30 pds you have to pick up!

Amanda said...

Holden will throw a fit too. But I had a more experienced mom tell me that sometimes you just have to leave the store instead of giving in. I know it sucks b/c that means going back later alone. But its about being the alpha male right :)

Mommy, Esq. said...

We have a 40 min limit for grocery shopping with the kids. We bring juice boxes and a snack that takes a while to eat (like goldfish). We have done it 3 times and no one has cried or had to be removed. A little bit of jocking from the "car" to the "cart" but usually fine. If they insist on getting out they have to push. I also only get carts with buckles and I tell them "too bad, you're buckled". We also go to a very empty grocery store (Shaws) when I go with the kids. When I go with one kid or solo I do Market Basket zoo. A lot of it is about managing expectations - I figure, it's going to suck so limit the time doing it and get it over with. They always do better then I think they will. Turning 2 is actually a HUGE improvement over the 19-24 month period, you'll see.

LauraC said...

I think some kids are just tantrumers. Alex threw HUGE tantrums in the 15-21 month phase and then it died down around 2. We have a "you tantrum, we leave" policy so I left no matter what the state of things. We had to leave playdates, museums, grocery stores, etc.

They do outgrow it, but it is tough to know what to do!

We had to stop the "you tantrum, we leave" thing when the boys were 3 bc Nate figured out if he didn't want to do something, he could act terrible. No I tell him he has no choice and he is going.

I don't even know the last time Jon and I went grocery shopping together! Generally one of us will hit Target while the other grocery shops. But I've never had one kid so no idea if this is normal? If Jon forgets something, I make him go back.

Drew said...

I went grocery shopping tonight alone and it was heavenly. So far so good with Joel in the grocery store but I know I am in for it everyday. I think it was because I bring him every week, twice a week, that he just sits and goes. But I could be wrong and in for the bad any day now... I would just not worry so much about the other people. Some day they had their kids screaming in the store...or they will... Sometimes you just have to get through it. Though I know how a tantrum can curdle every last nerve. Hang in there!

Anonymous said...

Definitely follow the 'you don't get out of the cart rule'. Once they figure that they aren't getting out (regardless of how much they scream - maybe go when there is no one there for practice), you would be amazed at how they start to become interested in what you are doing. Especially if you let them help put things in the cart, find the oranges, etc.. (generally, get them involved and don't forget to bring a snack!). You have to get a routine now because they only get louder and more stubborn! LOL!

Donna said...

I am lucky, my boys love to go grocery shopping! But I would suggest you leave Cameron at home with Daddy (while she is awake). She needs more just Daddy time anyway. Run out get the stuff and come back.

Stacey said...

Thanks for the advice! We will definitely keep her in the cart but my resolution was tested at Wal-Mart when Cameron screamed her bloody head off. But we zoomed through the store and she didn't get her way and calmed down once we left. Here's hoping the incremental improvements continue...