Talk to me about the Two

December 9, 2008 at 1:54 pm | Posted in M'ijo | 19 Comments

I keep reading all these websites where people say, oh two, two was nothing. It’s three that really bites.

If that is the case, I am SO screwed. Two year old P’ito is alternating between aren’t you adorable and boy-I-understand-why-people-smack-their-kids. Last night he:

– refused to sit down in his booster seat to eat dinner
– once confined to said booster seat, poured his milk into his pasta and then threw said mixture all over the kitchen table and on my head
– pulled my hair whilst I was trying to clean up said pasta
– took my glasses off the counter and almost broke them while I was doing the I’m not going to pay attention to you thing in response to the above
– laughed maniacally in my face when I told him in my fiercest voice to STOP. RIGHT. NOW.

In retrospect he was tired and I probably should have just bagged the whole dinner concept and sent him straight to bed. But then he would have woken up at two am starving…

Bring on the assvice. Please.


Mia – it’s not really the booster that’s the problem. When he’s feeling compliant (gawd, I hate that word) enough to sit, he sits happily in the booster. When he’s not… the booster limits the circumference in which food can be thrown and the number of innocent bystanding objects that can be hurled to the ground. And I hear you on the “you can’t always get what you want” tantrums…

Liz & hd – I’m not ready to try in-your-room timeouts. I don’t feel like he’s cognitively able to understand the connection between “you broke mama’s glasses” and “I’m shutting you in your room.” We do do “time-ins” – in which I hold him still on my lap for a minute without talking. I’m not sure they work, but they make me feel like I’m doing something. And pajamanate is an awesome word.

Kerri, Jenny & Major B – do they make luxury padded suites for all of us?

Carrie & e. – PLEASE – I am clinging to the illusion that at least three will inject a modicum more self-control into the picture. Don’t burst my bubble.

Floreska, Susan, Erin: You give me hope.

Michelle – … but what if I already am?


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  1. Phine refuses to sit in the booster seat as well, so we just let her sit in a regular chair. She kneels on it to reach the table, but she will stay put.

    In addition to laughing maniacally she will also say “I’m laughing at you.” Yesterday she had a full-on lying on the floor tantrum, because she wanted to bring some inconvenient toys home with us when we were trying to leave work.

  2. Girl, I feel you. I see the worst behavior in the tired and the hungry moments, but even knowing that I don’t always handle it well. There is a lot of time-outing in my house these days, which is a dark comedy of its own.

  3. On nights like those, dinner-in-bed is a good idea (bring some finger foods in a bowl up to the bedroom and let child nosh while you pajamanate him).

    And time-outs are also good. We used a child-safety knob-cover for MM’s door to keep him in there without actually locking the door.

  4. Hey Art! Just wanted to say hello! I’m in the midst of the two’s and three’s here…… I’ve got nothin’ for you.

  5. So maybe you’ll be joining me in the psych facility Ruby’s antics are going to send me to…

  6. i’ve got nothing for you…but watching my 3.5 year old nephew leads me to believe there is nothing worse then 3! all i can say is be consistent and don’t take the easy way out – SIL and brother have done this and it’s biting them in the ass big time!

  7. Oh sweet two. I have erased it from my memory. It was bad, but I promise three is worse. I believe we did a lot of putting him someplace safe for a couple of minutes so I wouldn’t kill him and he would get the idea that his behavior was unacceptable.

    I found it helpful to read child development books just to get an idea of what was typical and calm me down. Between Parent and Child was one of my faves.

  8. My assvice? Take up drinking with dinner. A glass of wine (or shot of rum in the diet coke) unclenches the jaw…because everything I’ve seen indicates it only gets worse.

  9. @&#^# That was me 🙂

  10. Two can be like that. Fortunately, two can also be super cute and adorable. The trick is to not lose your mind during the terrible two moments and hold out for the terrific ones.

    I’ve had the most success with just changing things up: two is too young for real discipline of any sort, so I used to try to figure out what was triggering things (if tired, can you get him a snack sooner? eat dinner a little earlier? go to bed earlier?) you’ll figure out the details, but I find–still–that adjusting sleep and food solves a lot of problems.

    Not that my girl still doesn’t throw things occasionally. But still.

    Hang in there!

  11. That’s 3…just add in a vocabulary to tell you how much he doesn’t like you at the moment and how much he’s NOT gonna do what you’re asking.

    Then again, 2 & 3 also has some great hugs, kisses and giggles!

    4 has an attitude but so far seems to be a much nicer age.

  12. Meh, I got nothing. The 2 year old is ok, thus far, it’s the 4 year-old that’s kicking my ass. Still. Has been since about, oh, birth.

    Drinking with dinner is a wonderful thing. *hic*

  13. I had always heard that two was terrible because the kids don’t have the vocabulary to communicate. P was a very early talker and we had great communication before two. With P, I thought that “Two? Two is great!” Two was a lot of fun with him. Then we hit three and all hell broke loose. So I was lulled into the idea that two was better than three, and wasn’t scared about it again.

    Along came K, who recently turned two and promptly figured out how to say “NOOOOOOOOOOO” while shaking his head violently, throw full-on foot-stomping and screaming tantrums, and say “MY!!!” for anything that he believes is his. Which is everything, no matter what. I have now been humbled about two.

    I’m terrified that I’ll go stark, raving mad before three hits. I heard “I DON’T love you!” for the first time when P was three.

    On the plus sides, four and five seem pretty great.

  14. 1, 2, 3 Magic is magic for us. We rarely get past “that’s 1, Malka” now a days.

    And I’ve discovered that the cheeky, much like her Eemah, has a shorter fuse at the end of the day. SO I tend to just ignore her until I can get some food in her. Well, ignore her in the sense of her acting out. My cherub returns in the morning.

    And if all else fails? A little Elmo on Demand will distract enough to breathe and re-group. And pour a glass of wine. For yourself. 😉

  15. Oy. My kid just turned 20 months and I already recognize some of this behavior. Sigh.

  16. Re: Time outs – I use(d) them for ME. To keep me from going ape-shit and maybe hitting him. I knew he was in a safe place where he couldn’t hurt himself and I could take the time to regain control over my anger and frustration.

    It sounds like Time-Ins have the same result for you.

  17. Ooh!!! I wanted to mention counting! We count down instead of up (you know, we go 5, 4, 3, 2, 1), because my sister used to count up and she’d reach three, my niece would say, “four!” and my sister would laugh….thereby ruining the effectiveness of the counting.

  18. I got nothing for ya cause I am drowning over here too. Just wanted to say he sure is cute. And I’m hoping to God it’s all just a phase. Phases. Different, one after another, but progressive…. sigh.

  19. Oh, I hear you.
    It’s really started in the past month around here, and we’ve just caught up to trying to figure out how to deal with it, rather than just duck-and-cover.
    I do worry about all those people saying “it’s worse at 3”!! No, please no!

    We just ordered The Happiest Toddler on the Block, Unconditional Parenting, and Gentle Discipline (or whatever the Rebecca Bailey title is) from the library. I’m hoping they’re helpful!

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