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SBlakeslee
SBlakeslee asks:
Q:

I need help with my 2 and a half year old.

My son and i went to the store the other morning and he insisted on running from me for 15 minutes in the store. I had to have to associates help me buy blocking him in a isle so i could get him. When i got him i told him i was very sad with him and took him directly to the car and we left and he went to his room. The next day he did the same thing at a different store but my husband was with me and took him to the car so i could finish shopping. I am to my ends with him and don't know what else to do with him please help me.
In Topics: Discipline and behavior challenges, Communicating with my child (The tough talks)
> 60 days ago

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Expert

Boys Town National Hotline
Sep 28, 2010
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What the Expert Says:

Thank you for contacting Education.com!

Your son is running away from you in stores because he can!  All children will test their parent's limits from time to time to see what they can get away with.  Your son sounds like he has a great deal of energy to boot!  This can be very dangerous however, if he seems to have no fear and could get lost or even worse go with someone he does not know.

Next time you go shopping, put him in the shopping cart and buckle him in the seat.  He is not too old for this. You will not let him out of the cart until you are done shopping.  Make sure you bring something for him to snack on like crackers, or give him a small toy or book to read while you shop.  At some point you may be able to take him out of the cart and allow him to walk, but put him back into the seat again if he tries to run away.  If the store does not provide a cart, use your stroller.

Do your best to try to not bring your child on long shopping trips.  It is too difficult for toddlers to sit still for extended periods of time.  If you would like to talk more about this or any other parenting issue, please give our hotline a call, or e-mail us.  Our counselors are avaialble 24 hours 7 days a week.  And, please check out our website for more great parenting tips.  Take care and best to you and your son!

Sincerely,

Cynthia, Crisis Counselor
Boys Town National Hotline
1-800-448-3000
www.parenting.org
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Additional Answers (2)

Dr.Monika
Dr.Monika , Child Professional writes:
Testing limits is the game all toddlers play!  It is the way they learn about what is expected of them and what is not.  You need to let your son know that running away is not acceptable.  Since he will not understand at his age other aspects of running away, like danger, do not go into long explanations of why you don't want him to run away.  For now, you can restrain him from running away by having him wear a backpack with a leash (monkey and bear variety are available at Target and probably other stores selling baby accessories).  After a while, when he cooperates and stays near you without fussing about the restraint, take him on very short store runs without the backpack and when he does not try to escape, praise him.  Gradually, increase the length of store trips and alway praise for his cooperative behavior.  Once he understands that not running away gives him the attention that he wants/needs, he will stop escaping!

Best regards.
> 60 days ago

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kidhelper
kidhelper writes:
my 3 year old did the same thing so people get kid leashes i might sound odd but i works it lets you hold on to you child and shop at the same time it works and i hope this helped
> 60 days ago

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