2 Years Syndrome?

The ‘2-year-old syndrome’, which is the period that all healthy children go through, is usually seen between the ages of 1.5 and 3 years. The concept of ‘terrible two’, translated from English as ‘two-year-old syndrome’, actually includes the general developmental characteristics of the age of 2. Calling this change in behavior, which is a normal process, as a syndrome raises concerns that there is a developmental disorder in families, but it should be known that this process is one of the expected developmental stages of the child, and the correct approach of the parents is of great importance in order not to affect the child’s further developmental processes. In this age period, children often try and push the limits, and the responsibility of the parents is to try to understand the needs of the child and draw definite limits.

The child, who gradually begins to separate from the mother and feel himself as an independent individual, thinks that he can do everything alone, but faces his physical inadequacy. This confrontation can cause outbursts of anger from time to time. Parents who cannot make sense of outbursts of anger get angry at their children’s behavior in this way, and their children become more angry at this angry attitude and enter a cycle that is difficult to get out of. Although families are worried that this tense process will always continue and that their children will have a permanent character trait, it should be known that it is a temporary period.

Symptoms of This Period

Children who experience intense ups and downs in the emotional world may begin to exhibit negative attitudes during this period. With the progress of language development, he tends to frequently use words with rejection by adding new words to his vocabulary. These; It can be words like ‘I won’t’, ‘I won’t eat’, ‘I don’t want’, ‘no’, ‘can’t’. When the child, who attracts the attention of the family and tries to prove his individuality by using these words, does not get the return he wants, he may have tantrums, throw himself to the ground and test your limits with these methods. So, how should parents who want to complete this process in the healthiest way behave?

How Can Parents Support This Process?

As always, it is critical to give the child the feeling of ‘understanding’ in this process. The child, who is in an existential struggle, will feel that he is understood from the person with whom he is connected, which will make him feel safe. The second important point is not to constantly give orders and expect the child to obey. Instead of constantly giving orders to the child who is trying to prove himself, it would be the right approach to give options on the issues he resists. For example; ‘No! Responding by saying, ‘You’re going to pick up your toys,’ will only create conflict. Instead of; ‘You want to dance and have some fun, I get you, and it’s such a good idea. Then quickly collect your toys, let’s start dancing right away.’ So, it both exhibits a more cooperative attitude than the previous sentence and allows us to give the child the feeling of being understood.

Another important point in this period is the consistency of families. If the answer is ‘no’ for any reason, then this no should not be yes. When this happens, children cannot learn their boundaries and they clash with families to hear yes when you answer no again in a different situation. To prevent this, children need to learn that the word ‘no’ only means ‘no’. In addition, parents should not give different answers on the same subject. That is, the father should not say yes to the mother saying no.

Limits should be set, he should hear good when he needs to, but every behavior he does should not be hindered, and his child should be made to feel that he can do what he wants by offering an option. The child who is constantly blocked becomes reactive and irritable as he is blocked.

There is no need to engage in a battle for authority. It is useful to remember that if you solve your problems in a strict way and by giving orders in order to gain your authority, your child will learn this as a solution.

At the beginning of the article, I mentioned that one of the greatest needs of the child in this process is the desire to prove that he is an individual. In order to keep this feeling alive, it is useful to bend down and speak to the child’s eye level while talking, warning or explaining a situation.

Since a 2-year-old cannot think about the end of what he has done, he will gain experience by testing his parents’ limits. They need you to stay calm and with your child during this process. And their biggest supporters are you parents.

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