hey anna, thank you for your perspective.
first I have to say I use the time out technique since he is 1,5 years old. his time out space is his room, he has a carpet in there and can throw himself on the floor and cry as long as he wants to. I tell him he can return after he finished crying and most of the time this is what he does. so, this worked for a while, but now he just refuses to go to his room when I tell him, cause he knows I am not able to physically move him there, I am pregnant and he is 17 kilo of weight. this situation with time out happens every day, sometimes only once, sometimes again and again and most of the time I actually don't see any results in it. I mean I'm doing it 1,5 years and the whining did not get better. I usually talk to him after the time out, when he calmed down and explain why I asked him to do or not do something. I also try to keep it simple, it's not always easy.
we also have quite similar scenarios like you with viktor. he plays along with the food or leaves the table etc. I ask him to sit down again if he didn't finish. and guess what, he doesn't sit down, so I remove the plate and he starts screaming. then I ask him to go to his room and return when he is done with being upset. this can happen almost every day. at day care he is able to sit down and eat his food, the teachers are fond of him and always tellin me how easy he is to handle, how good his motorics is etc. also his social skills, he is using the words thank you and please, he is being kind to the other children there. When we started day care he would stay there without any problems or crying. then after 2 months he started to cry every time I would go. the teachers assisted me with telling me just the same you did. to give a kiss, say good bye and just go. I know he calms quickly after I'm gone and plays or he is having breakfast. the point is, when we step into the room where his group is, I can't even walk, cause he is literally wraping himself around my leg. we don't get to go inside like normal people, that is why I am now removing him from my leg and putting him into the arms of his teacher and I just walk away (still giving him a kiss and a goodbye).
I also don't praise him much, only for stuff that is worth it. like his first pee in the potty. If he has done something nicely I tell him he has done a great job. when he is proud of himself he shows it by clapping his hands and saying "great". this usually happens after he practised something for a long time, but sometimes he is also proud of himself for simple things
and yes, he refuses the potty and I am not physically strong enough at the moment for the whole procedure of cleaning him and after him if we don't make it on time and he pees or even worse, poos himself. the point is, he could tell me when he needs to go, but he doesn't do it. so the couch now has a nice pee mark... if I ask him to go to potty he says no and that he wants a diaper. we have a potty and a toilet seat for him, he can even choose. unfortunately my husband is not supporting me in the training, and I don't feel well a.t.m. so the potty training has to wait for a while. also my husband tends to be very strict with noa and our son in return whines even more, cause he hopes I would help him. I don't do that, if he has to take a time out and refuses to go to his room, my husband moves him there (if he is at home). so if noa feels uncomfortable he would cry out for me, for whatever reason.
he is sleeping by himself in his room, and my husband is bringing him to bed since he was a baby, he sleeps very good since he is 3 months old. he only sleeps next to me if he is sick and needs more attention. I also don't comfort him if I previously told him what would happen if he continues doing something. so he for example keeps playing with his food. I tell him to stop cause the plate and food will end up on the floor and that is what happens in the next few seconds. should I stop him earlier? remove him from the table and send him to his room? he will cry anyway, so should I do the time out before it even happens? I also don't comfort him if I see he will hurt himself (fall down), cause he doesn't care. I tell him to stop since he will hurt himself and if he goes on he has to deal with it. I would comfort him in case of severe pain, of course, I'm not doing it for simple falling on the floor etc. instead I'm telling him to get up. he always wants me to lift him up or to give him my hand and I am refusing that too. cause he even wants me to hold his hand while he or while we are eating... so I have to wait till he gets up by himself and stops crying. I usually leave the room he is in, cause he can be very loud and my ears are damaged by now. so yes, I started leaving him by himself, I'm still there, but I don't stay next to him, cause I can't stand his crying voice anymore. yesterday I left him with my husband and went for a walk with the dog after he wouldn't stop whining.
I hope this gives a little more information about our current situation.