Terrible Twos

Everyone knows the phrase “terrible twos.” As with much of parenting, though, it didn’t become clear what it meant until I was in the midst of it.

Two is when kids start to push back. Previously biddable kids suddenly take to “No!” like it’s the only word in the world. I find it’s the concrete examples, though, that really show the terribleness:

It’s time to change Guppy’s diaper. I pull one from the stack. He says no, he doesn’t want the green dog. I show him purple cat, magenta dog, blue dog with pencil and blue dog with wrenches ; we’re out of blue dog painting, since he’s been demanding those. Irony is that he can’t even see the diaper design once it’s on. He throws a fit, and is big and fast enough to run away, twist away, kick at me and take the green dog diaper off. I’ve zigged, he’s zagged, finally I have to zog. What if we put on the diaper after a book? Suddenly, he’s reasonable again. “I yuv you, mom,” he says, hugging me.

Guppy wants yogurt for breakfast. I take out the yogurt, a bowl and a spoon, and start to put the yogurt in the bowl. Guppy screams; he wanted to do it. I offer it to him. He refuses and continues to tantrum. It’s already begun; I’ve ruined it. I rinse out the bowl. He cries that the bowl is wet. I dry it. He spoons up the yogurt, then cries because the spoon is dirty. I rinse it off. He cries because it’s wet. I dry it off, and he finally begins to eat, about ten minutes after this all started.

Terrible? Insane is more like it. And as everyone knows, three is worse. Can’t wait.

2 Responses to “Terrible Twos”

  1. Nopenname Says:

    I see you already are aware three is worse. Every mom I have ever met who has lived with a three year old or is currently in possession of one is always; “terrible twos? More like terrible threes!” I got off pretty easy with both of mine and two. But they lost any shred of humanity and sanity when they hit three. We’re celebrating my second’s birthday today and she’s already become a whiny and constantly crying psychotic little tyrant. I can’t wait until the morning of her fourth birthday when she magically goes back to being awesome and normal.

  2. Jack Vinson Says:

    H_ has been really going at it (2.5 y.o.). At least once a day, there is a situation like this, where he starts going and nothing seems to calm him down. Depending on our mood we get frustrated or look at him and laugh. Redirection works, but that’s not always possible. It will end eventually. Right?