Disabled Parenting Project Message Boards › Help wrangling a toddler
May 11, 2018 at 4:39 pm #1558
I am a father of a two year old little boy. My problem arises from trying to contain him while getting from the car into the house, as he loves to run off, and because of MS, I can’t follow. I usually get around with a walker at home, and I have a mechanized wheelchair for longer distances. My home isn’t wheelchair accessible, so I can’t just wheel him into the house.
I’ve tried a harness, which lasted all of 30 seconds because he went into full tantrum when I put it on him and wouldn’t get up. We have a lovely, fenced in back yard, but the driveway isn’t enclosed, so I can’t just let him run around without risking him running into the street. Anyone have any advice?July 28, 2018 at 1:46 am #1754
Hi! I am blind and my husband uses a wheelchair. Here are some things we have done with our 2 year old and 4 year old daughters. Our youngest daughter is a runner. Last spring she took off with me and her older sister in hot pursuit! I did not enjoy it so here is what worked for me. I got her 2 of those kids stuffed animal backpacks. They each had about 3 foot long leashes attached to them. She really liked them! I let her ware it around the house for a few days. Now when we go out, she wares her backpack and I either hold the leash that is attached to it or she holds my hand. Both my girls love going for rides on their Dads lap as he drives his power wheelchair. This system works well enough with our girls that we independently take them on adventures using public transportation. our girls particularly love to go to a local children’s museum. I have found that there are a few rules that I am very firm with even if it means a massive temper tantrum. For me, I need to know where the kids are at all times so I know there safe. So for example, when we go outside or go to the kids museum they have to respond to me. If they don’t we leave! I hope this helps.October 15, 2018 at 8:16 pm #1942
I have cerebral palsy and a 2 and 4 year old. I am also a preschool teacher. I play the freeze game with my kids a lot in a controlled area, then if they do try to fun I yell freeze and they usually stop. I also use a lot of things like playing a if you can hear me game. So you say if you can hear me put your hands on your tummy, if you can hear my put your hands on your head. Then I would say if you can hear me run to the door! Hope that helps!December 14, 2018 at 10:41 am #2285
Hi there, I have a spinal cord injury (paraplegic), and use a wrist to wrist harness for my 21 month old. It prevents him from running off, especially when we’re on walks. I got it from Amazon. https://www.amazon.com/Toddlers-Wristband-Toddler-Harness-Senyida/dp/B07G7BXXV1/ref=sr_1_2_a_it?ie=UTF8&qid=1544801990&sr=8-2-spons&keywords=wrist+harness&psc=1December 14, 2018 at 11:43 am #2286
Hi there. 🙂 My kids are all out of the toddler stage now, but I well remember how scary it was when they would run off. (My husband and I are both legally blind.) One of the biggest things I can recommend is consistency. Whatever method you use for getting your child into the house, you must be consistent about it and not afraid of a tantrum. Tantrums are a part of life with lots of children. It’s their way of expressing themselves when they are overwhelmed with raging emotions. If you decide to use the harness, use it consistently even if he has a tantrum. Tantrums can be frustrating and embarrassing, but no big deal in the larger scheme of things. A lost kid or a kid struck by a car is a big deal, and you have to remind yourself of that each time you deal with a tantrum. Let him have his tantrum with the harness on, and when he’s finished, head into the house. Once he realizes you are serious about it, he will get tired of having a tantrum every time. Also, think about having a ritual of something you do each time you return to the house, something he likes and will want to go into the house for.
Another thing, we used lots of timeouts in my house. My kids knew that if they didn’t behave when we were out of the house, they would go straight into timeout when they got home. There were no exceptions to this rule. And my kids HATED timeouts. Again, consistency is key. If you don’t follow through even once, it’s like you have to teach the rule to the kids all over again.
In my house, we talk about being good citizens and part of being a good citizen is following basic safety rules. I’ve always told the kids if they can’t follow rules when we leave the house, then I won’t take them with me to special places because they are a safety hazard (which is very true). Even toddlers can be taught about safety. You can use a stuffed animal to play act the right way to do things and to even show consequences of not following instructions. A stuffed animal would also be a great tool for getting your toddler in the house. You could buy a dog harness for a stuffed animal, and your toddler could be in charge of getting his stuffed animal into the house while you’re in change of getting him into the house.
I wish you the best of luck. But I can’t repeat it often enough: do not be afraid of those tantrums. Let the tantrum play out and then get your kid in the house safely. He does not know what is best for him–you do. You’re doing great, Dad, just by asking for help, you’re showing how committed you are to your child.
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