Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Terrible Two and A Halfs

I've heard many people say that kids the age of three are worse then the age of two. Although they do call it the terrible twos. I think what we are going through with Lucas is currently the start of a long phase of the terrible threes. You can see him wanting to exert his independence and test limits and boundaries. He has been doing things in the last couple of days that he shouldn't be doing. Now its not that we have ever told him not to do that thing, so it's not like he knows it from being in trouble previously, but I assumed he'd have better judgment.

Here are some examples:

Putting his fingers in his milk and flicking them at the dinner table.
Spilling his milk on purpose
Trying to get in his brothers baby tub with all his clothes on

Like I said stuff he has never tried before but I thought he would know better then to try it. Darryl and I have to keep reminding ourselves that he is only two and for have only living for almost 3 short years we have to be cautious of our expectations, but at the same time continuing to reinforce good behavior. I know this is just a beginining of what may be to come of a phase, but I'm hoping it won't be horrendous, as he is usually a good kid and a good listener.

For those experienced parents, was 3 worse then 2?

Till Tomorrow



Lori said...


I think age 2 and age 3 each have their pros and cons. At 2 they're asserting their independence which can make them VERY uncooperative but they're often too young to reason with or to have any concept of consequences. At 3, their vocabulary has grown exponentially so it's easier to explain things to them but with their growing knowledge comes the need and ability to explore their environment, try out the ideas that pop into their minds and use behaviour and emotion to manipulate situations to their advantage. None of this is intentional on the child's part, they're simply using the tools they've gained in new and often challenging ways.

Here are a few things that worked for us:
-use his skills to build confidence in positive ways. Turn him into your helper (ie: he can help in the kitchen, with the groceries, pass toys to the baby, feed the dog, etc)
-Use praise as your secret weapon. If he gets more attention by being good than by acting out he'll naturally gravitate towards wanting to please you. One catch though...praise effort, not results. (ie: when he colours, try praising his colour choices versus staying in the lines) Little ones can get so frustrated when they're trying to master new skills.
-find a way to make transitions easier. For example, even though he can't tell time, if he can recognize the numbers from 1 to 12, you can say "when the big hand points to 9, we're going to go have our lunch".
-lastly, don't worry. You're doing a great job already...just stick with it.

Our Home Schooler and Jen said...

believe it or not
I LOVE this age
its a busy age
but they are learning so much

be consistent
be firm but loving

youll all survive it
and before you know it hell be a teenager and then youll miss these days

Allie said...

Yep. I have certainly found that Kaelen tested the limits much more at 3 than at 2. At two, he was still so sweet, dependent and listened so well. For the past year, and especially of late, he at the age of 3 is like a sponge around other kids. You can just see him soak up and absorb the antics of others. We are now dealing with sass talk, mild aggression and selective hearing.

But, I do have to admit while it is frustrating some days, there are other days that I have to turn my head in order for him not to see the smile on my face and the mutter under my breath of "You little bugger" .....

I think though that Kaelen is going to seem like a model child in comparison of what Masyn is showing future signs of ... .(insert big wink here).

Good luck Jenn and remember, on the tough days, try to find the humour in it for you can always relay the antics back to Lucas when he is older and can be embarassed or entertained by the stories.

beth - total mom haircut said...

It's so hard. They just have so much to test on us and for themselves. And they so want to be independent and yet it scares them so much. I try to always put myself in his (sam's) position and just try and understand where he's coming from. At least I TRY to do that, but I'm certainly not always patient.

I think it started around 2 1/2 for us as well...