What possessed her?

By March 22, 2012Motherhood, Parenting

Violet has always been a spitfire, but today she was possessed.

Violet Skirt

She has a mind of her own and I usually find her enthusiastic personality hysterical and adorable, if exhausting. She likes to destroy things and dislikes the time outs that follow.  No surprise there right? Most of my friends with toddlers can place them in the crib if they are inconsolable or out of control. Both the parent and the child need a time out sometimes. Violet has been able to climb out of her crib since the tender age of 17 months and nothing could keep her in. For her own safety and because what good is a crib that can’t keep the darn child in, we removed the crib and gave her a big girl bed. Click on that link for a video of her getting out.  It’s ridiculous.

Today 1 needed to contain her. The normal flamboyance turned flat out ugly.

She is obsessed with a pink fluffy dress up skirt. I gave up on limiting its wear months ago. Some battles are not worth fighting. She wears the skirt to school, to bed and when at home she is usually topless. Whatever, she is 2 so who cares?

Well, it all started with that damn skirt. She and her siblings dumped their milk and juice on each other so the evil skirt had to be washed. The fit she threw when I tried to take it off her was epic. She was hysterical
and she hit me repeatedly. When I put it in the wash she began to beat the washing machine with her hands, kick it and even head bash it.

Yes, I tried timeout. Total waste of time with a possessed toddler. She refused to apologize and with an evil grin said she had to go potty. For a potty training mom I let her go. Sophia made the mistake of giving her
my phone to use the potty app. The little terror looked at me, looked at the potty and tried to throw it in. She missed thanks to bad aim and a bounce off the kiddie seat but she was smiling. She thought it would be
hilarious.

l grabbed the phone and she began to physically maul me. If Sophia or Miles went near her she hit them too. She pulled on clothes, she pulled their hair and grabbed the precious Blue Puppy from Miles and bit it.  Miles says his tiny stuffed puppy is his little brother, so this was traumatizing.

Honestly, we were all at a loss.

And she was naked.

And refused to put on any clothes or a diaper.

She threatened to pee on the floor. I mean it. She threatened. She said “I wiw pee here.”

She became a tiny ball of anger and I was overwhelmed.

What were we supposed to do? She literally seemed possessed and I was worried.  Nothing could calm her down and I could see that she was extremely upset.

We tried to go on with our normal bedtime routine.

We cut the bath short when she started dumping water over the side of the tub.

We didn’t get through any books because she would grab each one and try to rip the pages. Then she hit us with books.

Without Ross here I told the kids that their baby sister was simply very upset and was having a hard time controlling her anger.  I held Violet tightly and told them a story.  It was the best I could do.

When it was time for bed, she protested.  You may remember that Sophia has an over active bladder, so we went to the bathroom at least 15 times.  It took an hour just to get Violet to put her pull up on.

Miles feel asleep without me even saying goodnight.  He was so tired he just climbed into bed while I was attempting to control Violet.  It broke my heart a little.

Sophia finally fell asleep and I laid with Violet while she started to cry. These were angry tears from a very frustrated little girl.  She really wanted that skirt.  She said no to every song I tried to sing and after 20 minutes of arguing and trying to calm her down, she finally passed out with tears on her cheeks.

I cried too.  Physically and emotionally exhausted, I wondered if I had done something wrong.

So I ask you…

Did I have any other options?  What would you have done? And if you had a never ending meltdown feel free to let me know that your child did not in fact turn out to be possessed.

Join the discussion 15 Comments

  • Oh hon, I’m so sorry to hear this. That sounds like a nightmare of a day.

    My toddler is 2 and yes, sometimes, he acts like he’s possessed. He gets angry quick and starts using his hands to express his anger – at the object in question and very often, at my face.

    However, he calms down quickly too. I have no real method. He recognizes my sharp tone when he commits an infraction, and his first reaction is to hit. I usually then grab his hand, and say firmly, “No hitting Mama.” He then cries and puts his head into my chest and that’s his way of apologizing. He usually stops in a couple of minutes and all will be well. I then take time to explain to him what he did wrong and why he shouldn’t.

    His episodes are getting less and shorter, so I think he’s getting the message that acting out will get him nowhere.

    I don’t know if that’d help you. Just know that you’re not alone. Hugs.

    I don’t
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    • Brittany says:

      Usually Violet calms down too. She has been really upset the last couple of days. Honestly, Miles has such bad allergies and I wonder if she has them too just not as visible but maybe with the headaches and stuff because she is now inconsolable when she is upset.

      You know it helps to know I am not alone. Thank you!

  • Buy a back up skirt!!

    But, when my kids’ lovies (little blankets) needed to be washed, they threw the same kind of fit. I would give them the option – YOU can put it in the machine and help me start it, or I can do it. That usually worked.

    It sounds like she was really upset over the skirt, but maybe there is something else going on in her little head?
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  • Candice says:

    Tons of sympathy for you and Violet. It’s SO hard to watch your little one be angry and not be able to have a fully reasonable conversation with them about why they can’t have what they want. It’s what I find to be the most difficult now. Nate immediately throws whatever he has, as hard as he can, when he gets angry (which is why he is never in possesion of any of my electronics). It has to suck to feel like Mommy doesn’t understand that everything would just be fine if you could have THAT ONE SIMPLE THING you want. It’s a hard life lesson, learning that you can’t always have what you want (cue The Rolling Stones).

    She has all her two year molars, right? Nate just started getting two of them and they definitely affected his temper. I have to assume, like the comments above, that there is some physical ill feeling going along with this unhappiness of hers.

    Hang in there, Mama… you’re doing a great job. And thank you for sharing this. It helps all of us feel less isolated in those moments.
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  • Autumn says:

    It sounds like you might have a “spirited child” on your hands. My daughter June is pretty spirited herself. There is this book called Raising Your Spirited Child, I don’t know if you’ve heard of it, but it might help. It made me feel a lot better. Well, that and wine.

  • Amy says:

    Ohhh Brittany, it sounds like you had one of THOSE days & then some. You are an amazing momma & it sounds like you did absolutely everything right in a situation that was spiraling out of control. Maybe it’s the allergy thing? They certainly can get crazy when they don’t feel good & can’t express it.

    For our almost-three-year-old, when she gets really naughty & is totally out of control, she gets a time-out that we can enforce. We have a pack-n-play set up in the dining room for this very purpose, and we’ve also started buckling her nto her booster seat & sliding it over to the corner for time out. We set the kitchen timer for 2 minutes & we don’t interact with her whatsoever until the timer goes off. It’s the only way that we could contain the toddler meltdowns…obviously things can go downhill in a heck of a hurry!

    Most importantly, just hang in there and know that you’re in good company and that you’re a AWESOME momma! Great post~ it helps us all feel a little less alone during these trying toddler times! 🙂
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  • Debbie R says:

    Oh honey, I am so sorry. That tantrum sounds horrifying. I imagine you were shaken and your self-doubt monster must have raised her ugly head. I can’t paint a picture of what Violet will look like when she is 30, but maybe now, in the light of a new day, it MAY help to remember that that pig-headedness which in a two year old can drive you to drink looks very different in a 30 year old. It looks like Steve Jobs committed to his ideas beyond the point of rationality or Louis Zamperelli, the hero of the book Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand. In fact, the best advice I could give you would likely be to read that book. Zamperelli was hell on wheels as a kid but his stubborn independence and insistence on his own self got him to the Olympics, into a fighter jet, across the Pacific on a raft and through two Japanese prisoner of war camps where he was tortured. Violet may be hell on wheels, but maybe she will grow up to be someone’s hero. In the meantime, feel free to cry after an evening like the one you had. My mother swears that crying over your parenting helps you get over the rough spots and she had three children in 18 months (twins and then me).

  • Oh. I just have no idea what I would have done. I am sorry she had that horrible day. I hope days like that are few and far between!
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  • Oh you, I have no advice, but I am so, so very sorry that this happened. Those days are LONG and HARD.

    (Passing the wine from here!)
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  • momOf3 says:

    Thank you for sharing this. i often wonder if my child is possessed. I go through this almost daily. Just now, at nap time, i was bit, hit, had hard toys thrown at my head all while she was naked. Oh, and did I forget to mention that she was grunting like the child from exorcist during all of this. I have started to wonder if she has a gluten allergy as I have read that children with Gluten allergy will and can act this way. Has it gotten any better. Have you found any answers. Is it a diet/sleep thing. Desperate and exhausted.

  • josh says:

    omg me and my wife have the same problem when he gets overtired at nap or bed time he turns into a possessed beast, droolong, hitting, head banging, and throwing anything he can get his hands on. H e is my first child so i don’t know if this level of a tempertantrum is normal i have never seen any other kids act like that before. i look into his eyes when hes doing this and its like he is a completely different person he wont do time outs and its hard to restrain him he is way to strong for a 2 year old everyone including his daycare always comments on how unnaturally strong he is for his age kinda stuck in the same boat. if you find a cure let me know

    • Brittany says:

      No cure although she is older now and not quite as violent. She still barely sleeps and acts like she is pumped with caffeine, which she is not. When she gets upset it is still pretty tough, but there are things that have improved. Good luck!

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