Why Don’t My Almost Two-Year-Olds Share?

Dear Mamas,
With my twin boys second birthday quickly approaching I am starting to fear the “terrible twos.” I am finding we are already having a hard time sharing. Any suggestions on how to work with them on this? I’m really hoping your going to tell me that the “terrible twos” is just a myth!

Thanks!

Gina

Dear Gina,
I always hated that phrase, “the terrible twos.” Frankly, I never got what was so terrible. It’s an incredibly exciting time for them and they make a tremendous leap in their ability to think. How they see and experience the world changes forever and they no longer need to rely exclusively on their bodies and senses in order to figure things out.

This is good! But….it can create headaches and annoyances if you don’t know what you’re dealing with. Forewarned is forearmed, so let me clue you in. Then I bet you’ll find that the twos can be a ton of fun.

Okay, so until about age two, children can only think about whatever is right there in front of them. Believe it or not, “out of sight, out of mind,” is how they see the world. When you leave the room, you cease to exist in their heads. They are totally “present” if you will…little Buddhas, right there in the moment. No worries about the future, no regrets about the past. Just tuned in to what’s happening NOW.

But as they get close to two, they begin to be able to “think about” things. Like the swing at the park or their bottle or you! Now they are starting to get that when you go away you can come back, that there are cookies hidden in the cupboard and that when they get sleepy, they must have their special blankie, and won’t settle for anything else. They start to develop the ability to imagine and pretend and will use an object or toy to represent something else, like a stick for a sword.

They can play near each other but not yet with each other, although that is coming soon. That is called “cooperative play” and it’s still a reach for them. So sharing, although wonderful in theory, is not something they are going to be too good at yet. Trying to impose it will just lead to frustration for you and tears for them. So best to keep your two two’s engaged with their own toys and not expect them to be able to happily hand them over to their brother quite yet.

Certainly talk about sharing and encourage it but don’t assume that something’s wrong or that they are being selfish if they have a hard time giving up the toy they are playing with. They’ll get there!

Email This Post Email This Post

Ellen W. Schrier, LCSW, is a family therapist and the mother of three adolescent/young adult kids.


Warning: Illegal string offset 'echo' in /home/mamasonc/public_html/mama/wp-content/themes/hybrid/library/extensions/custom-field-series.php on line 157

Leave a Reply

Loading

MAMAS ON DEMAND

PARENT COACHING
& CONSULTATION

With One or Both of Us


Go to AskDrMama.com & AskMamaEllen.com for the scoop!

Phone • Internet • Your Home or Group

Listen up

Trade Ya!

Raising kids can quickly sap your energy and empty your checking account. Here’s a pearl that could change things in a flash.

Watch This!

Learning about mental illness and how to talk about it is key to good parenting and healthy living. Take a look. It's oh, so common!

What You Said

  • RF: Well my baby had her first two bottom theeth at 10 months old and i tought so far so good and then now at 11...
  • ΠΡΟΓΝΩΣΤΙΚΑ ΟΠΑΠ: It’s remarkable designed for me to have a web page, which is beneficial for my experience....
  • sportsbooktop: Please let me know if you’re looking for a writer for your site. You have some really good posts...
  • Kristen: Cassandra, I get these little white bubble type blisters on my hand that sometimes dont itch and sometimes...
  • discount nfl clothing: discount nfl clothing cheap nfl jerseys free shipping paypal
  • Desley Joyce Brooker: I have a rash, that began over 5 weeks ago on my chest and within days it covered by entire...
  • hotcelebritywallpaper.com: This article is really a good one it assists new internet people, who are wishing for...
  • Paket wisata villa: Hello akan Anda pikiran berbagi Platform yang blog Anda menggunakan? Saya akan untuk memulai blog...
  • download ppt: Excellent beat ! I would like to apprentice at the same time as you amend your site, how can i...
  • ΑΠΕΝΤΟΜΩΣΕΙΣ ΧΑΝΙΑ: With havin so much written content do you ever run into any issues of plagorism or copyright...

Just so you know

The Mama ButtonThe information provided by MamasOnCall is not intended as a substitute for professional advice, but is for information purposes only. You assume full responsibility for the health and well-being of your family. Talk with your healthcare provider about any questions you may have regarding a medical or psychiatric condition.