I knew that we’d have some changes in life as Eudora became more mobile. We’d have to get used to having a tiny person who puts things in her mouth. One thing that I did not anticipate was an unbelievable increase in toddler jealousy.
Norton has always had issues with his baby sister. Granted, the birth and homecoming wasn’t exactly what we’d had in mind. Our plans for a VBAC didn’t work out. The husband was so sick with a stomach flu that he couldn’t come get us. My mother-in-law had to pick us up. I was also starting to come down with that same stomach flu. In short, Norton ended up spending five days at his grandparents’ house. It was the longest that he’d ever been away from us. Then he finds that little baby sleeping in his old room and riding in his old car seat. Toddler jealousy was pretty rough for that first little while.
For a couple of months, we kind of reached a sort of uneasy truce. Norton had stopped napping altogether. Eudora was still taking two naps a day. We usually had our Mommy and Norton time while Eudora took a nap. Then all at once, Eudora started crawling and dropped a nap.
That was was the end of the truce. Norton was no longer able to just ignore her. Oh, he’d try, but Eudora would commit the intolerable acts of touching his toys and petting his puppies. That was what caused the resurgence of toddler jealousy. At first, it was manageable. He’d snatch a toy from her. Maybe he’d push her if she touched something of his. It was always dealt with swiftly.
The more mobile Eudora got, the worse the toddler jealousy issues got. Now I can’t turn my back for a second. Even going from the living room into the kitchen to get a bottle is enough time for toddler jealousy to rear its ugly head. He’ll push her or hit her. Eudora is no angel, either. She will pre-emptively scream like he’s killing her because he brushes up against her or even looks at her.
I’m completely at my wit’s end. I can’t get anything done. My house is in shambles. I have to try to minimize bathroom breaks even. And him telling her “no no” when she does anything (including climb on me or play with her own toys) is getting beyond old. Sending him to his room for timeouts has no effect.
Have you ever had to manage toddler jealousy?