Yesterday, the whole family enjoyed a walk in the country park, with the low sun coming through autumn trees. Lady walked alongside Thomas, and I smiled to see her arm protectively on his shoulder when were on the narrow path along the road. Duncan rode on my back until we reached the forest and he dashed off along the beech leaf strewn path. It really was beautiful. We passed under the viaduct, just missing a passing train, and carried on to the waterfall. Duncan was in front all along, and I was running after him calling for him to stop or slow down. He didn't want to go home, and wanted me to carry him again when we were back on the road. Gordon and I tried to get him to walk; I walked on ahead and he sat on the ground crying. Soon, he ran up to me and I gave in (as usual) and picked him up again. We will be getting a buggy for him soon, so perhaps this particular issue will hopefully be sorted out, but...
This is a recurring thing round here, Duncan cries long and loud enough, and I cave in. It's not right. There are some things that are causing problems, that have built up over time, and I can see now that I have set up these situations Oh, it's not all the time, I can distract him most of the time, and I don't even mind the low level whining for things that he does when we're at home. What is the biggest issue of all, and what I would most like to change right now, is the problems we have about going out. Everywhere we go, he knows where there are sweets and cakes available. And worse still, are the trains, oh god the trains!! Every time we are driving home, having gone out anywhere in the car, he starts shouting and crying asking for whatever train is next on his wish list and saying 'No go home!' I used to buy one every week when I took Lady to drama, and had to wait around in the town for an hour. That wasn't too tricky as they were cheap and easily available. But now, he's looking for engines which aren't available anywhere except via the internet. I've bought a few, to give him as presents when (for example) Gordon returns from a conference, but sometimes he's just had them from the postman as they are delivered too.
Oh dear, this is very boring to explain. But if anyone is still reading at this point, how can I get us all out of this. I don't want to punish him when he starts shouting. He's not doing it to be naughty; he's learned that there's a good chance that he'll get what he wants from that kind of behaviour.
I don't usually use reward type systems with the children, but perhaps this is what is required now. Gordon and I were talking about some sort of way to let him build up credits to earn the toy he wants, so he knows that they would still be available, just not because he's shouted at me. I would not punish him for doing the wrong thing, he takes really badly to being told off, so if I was to remove stickers (or something), he'd be freaked out.
I need to go off and analyse my behaviour now ;-)