Before I had children I had already heard the term ‘terrible twos’. I understood that somewhere around the age of two my sweet baby would transform into a snarling beast. I pictured the cliche scene, my child writhing on the floor in a public place, me embarrassed as onlookers threw tomatoes.
I was surprised that I found this problem to be less of a big deal than I had been lead to believe. As instructed (in my ‘how to look like you know how to parent’ book ) I ignored or distracted and my son soon learned that tantrums were a little pointless really, and stopped throwing them. In fact I have even written a post here to tell you how I did it.
So imagine my devastation when each of my sons turned three and I discovered I had been hoodwinked. Two was not the most difficult preschool age. Three was sent by Beelzebub himself to torture me just when I had relaxed into my parenting role.
I see it like this. Two year old child “I want this, what do you mean I can’t have it, perhaps if I scream? No ? Oh ok then”. Three year old child “I want this, what do you mean I can’t have it, perhaps if I scream ? No ? Ok then what else can I try, perhaps if I talk my way round it ? No ? Perhaps if I beg ? No perhaps if I cling onto your leg/pull your hair/hit my brother ? ”
The reason I touch upon this topic today is my youngest son Robo Boy. He was three in November. I love Robo Boy dearly, he is my little blonde clown. He is cuddly and loyal and absolutely hilarious at times. He is also driving me insane !!!! After a full day of arguing with him over every little thing I feel as though I want to crack open my scull, pull out my brain and give it a massage.
My eldest son Super Kid is going through a good patch (five seems like a good year so far). He listens, usually does what I say and is fairly understanding. However I remember when he was three, I thought we needed to see a specialist because surely no child should be so awkward. We saw a specialist and it turns out that yes he was just ‘being three’.
Much as I don’t want to wish my children’s lives away (in fact I am clinging on to my babies for dear life) I will not miss wanting to scream “oh my goodness please just be quiet” at whoever is three at that time.