Dealing with a Barrel of Whine
Whining, it's the new pointing.
Somewhere around my daughter’s second birthday, her voice changed. No, it wasn’t a super early puberty. It was the addition of “the whine.” Since age 2, it has barely changed.
Instead of speaking to me or to her father in her typical toddler voice, she began to ask for everything in a droning, ultra-sad, pleading whine. I suppose you could say we are allowing it to go on too long, but really we don’t.
“Mooommmmmmyyyyyy,” she whines. “I wannnnnttt a juuuuuuiiiice.”
I hear it. I’ve heard it most of the day. I make her fix it.
She has to request things again in a normal tone of voice in order to get what she wants or needs. We try not to ever succumb to the whine.
But, then of course, you go see grandparents for a weekend, and she is super spoiled. It is the grandparents’ prerogative, right?
Since she rarely sees her grandparents, it clearly is not the cause of or continuation of the problem. It has to be something at home, but I have not quite put my finger on why she does it, nor why it continues.
I’m hoping in time, it just disappears on its own. It seems the biggest of parenting concerns resolve themselves in this manner. For example, my son is finally, at age 6-and-a-half, trying new foods. He just up and decided he was tired of the same five foods, and has since, in the last few months, been open to trying a few new ones. I think we are up to maybe eight or nine now.
I also think this is how potty-training occurred for both of my kids. You can lead a child to a toilet but you can’t make them use it. They certainly have to decide they are fed up with a wet-bottom diaper and are going to use a potty instead. And when they do, it all happens rather naturally. Until then, you can watch videos, read books, and forcefully sit them on it via a clock-set schedule, but in my honest mommy opinion, none of that works. They decide when to do it. You can’t.
While there is no lack of nutrition or costly diaper bill pressuring us to make our now 4-year-old stop speaking in an ultra-whine voice, I’d still like it to stop as soon as possible.
My daughter is much more challenging than my son was at these ages. Timeout worked wonders for him. She could not care less that you sat her in the corner. My son has video games and favorite TV shows you can take away. She could take or leave either, and finds countless ways to entertain herself, so while that seems like a real positive in the parenting department, it makes it tough to punish her.
Again, our main attempts have been to ask her to repeat in a normal tone any request. But, that doesn’t seem to be stopping her from saying it the first time in whine mode.
I’m at a loss. In the meantime, I’m all ears on suggestions. Have any? Tell me here in comments. Otherwise, I’ll keep praying for the day she decides she’s done with this stage.