Ugh. Welcome to the Terrible Twos.
Alex, despite being a dangerous child, has a fairly tame temperament. He doesn't hit or bite other kids. He values his life, so he doesn't hit or bite his parents. He's always listened to me (and others) extremely well.
Then, all of a sudden, he went CRAZY.
Typical Alex Fit:
Alex climbs up on dining room table. Me: "Alex. Get down." Alex: Totally ignores me. Me: "One, twooo, THREE!" Alex: Totally ignores me. Me: "That's it!" Alex: Finally realizing I am going to physically remove him from the table, climbs down. This isn't the fit. (Whenever he has to stop doing something, like climbing on the table, he immediately transfers his frustration onto something else.) Alex: "Mama, I want JUICE!" "Mamamaaaa!" "Mamamaaaa!" Me: "Alex you need to ask nicely, say please" (I know that he's pissed at me, so he isn't being polite on purpose). Alex: "NO MAMA!" Me: "Then you aren't going to get juice."
That does it. He snaps. He usually runs over to me, smacks me in the leg (or smacks a random, inanimate object), throws himself to the floor and starts SCREAMING. I tell him he can come talk to me when he's done and I walk away. He rolls across the floor until he hits a wall, then he walks over to the couch or a chair and starts ripping the pillows off. He flings himself on the floor again, screaming/fake crying the whole time, and starts rolling up my rug...If I don't stop him, this could continue until my entire apartment is trashed.
I have tried talking to Alex about how "his behavior is unacceptable" (laughable, I know, because it always turns into a yelling match), blatantly ignoring his fits, tons of Time Outs and spanking*. NONE of it is working. He could give a crap about Time Outs, although I almost won when I buckled him in his infant rocking chair, but Little Ninja figured out how to get out of that soon enough...whimper. Talking might help in the long run, but it doesn't help my temper when he's screaming and mocking me the whole time. I'm not some superhero mom. I'm human and I get pissed.
I really don't know what to do because this kid has stamina. If I ignore him, he can go for HOURS. No joke. When I punish him, he truly does not care. (I guess that's what I get for wanting a confident, independent kid). If he "learns his lesson" on Monday, he's already forgotten by Tuesday, so we do it all over again, but then he forgets on Wednesday, etc. It's been about two months since this started and it's getting worse. I know parenting a toddler is a long, hard process and by sticking with it, I'm teaching him lessons in the long run..blah...blah...blah, but that doesn't help me when I feel my sanity slipping away day by day. I can't even remember how many times I've told my husband, "I really don't like our kid today."
The best thing I can do is let both of us cool off. When Alex is obnoxious as sin, I stick him in his room and let him annoy himself.
*(I support spanking as long as it's controlled, not out of anger, and used as a last resort).