Molly had her 18 month check up today. 22.5 pounds! Totally healthy. The doctor said she could give me a referral to the speech therapist. I declined. She got a couple of shots, and is now in the post-vaccine super nap that I admit I look forward to.
Porter went with us, and I have to say I got kind of annoyed. He knew it was just Molly who was getting looked at today, and was happy to go. The doctor walked in the room (she's very nice and not scary), and tried to engage him in conversation. She's a pediatrician, she's good at little kid small talk. Porter just glared at his lap, wouldn't talk to her, wouldn't make eye contact, and finally ended up clinging to me in my chair. She didn't push it, but she did try a couple more times later to talk to him, and he refused.
I know what's going on with him. He's shy (for lack of a better word). He doesn't do great with new people and new places. He needs time to warm up. I get it, because I am the exact same way. But he also needs to learn how to handle life since these things come up every day. It is important to me that he be polite. And he comes across as being quite rude a lot of the time in these situations. I don't feel like I should have to prompt his responses at this age. I think he should be able to respond to simple questions and say thank you and good bye, especially to someone like a doctor, when I am right there.
I'm really at a loss to know how to do this though. I know it's hard for him, but I need him to be polite. I've gotten mad at him in the past, but I know that doesn't do any good. We've had a lot of talks about how other people feel sad when you don't respond to their questions. How it is rude to not say thank you when the post man gives you a sticker. And he is very serious and says he understands. But it doesn't make a difference. I know that if I prepare him for a situation on the way there, like I could have done today, then things go a little better. But then nice old ladies talk to us at the grocery store or we run into a friend at the park, and he just stares at his shoes. And I can't predict everything.
I honestly don't know what to do. Except wait. But I'm tired of telling him what to say or talking for him when he is clearly old enough to do that himself. Any ideas?