Welcome to the Terrible-Twos, They Said

Oh the joy you’ll hear in the voices of other, more experienced parents when they tell you “welcome to the Terrible-Twos”.

I don’t know why they relish in announcing a newer parent’s departure from the toddling days of new words and first steps and entry into pinching, climbing, four-word sentences, and of course, “mine”.


My daughter has just turned 21 months (or “almost two” for everyone who doesn’t enjoy an equation for small talk).



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“What Do You Want?”

All of a sudden, she has decided that she wants things and will be furious until she gets them. While her words aren’t the clearest, I find myself asking her “A monkey? Do you want a monkey? Are you saying monkey?”


I don’t think she has a monkey toy, but I’ll follow her around the apartment until we either find that monkey, or something to distract her with.


To add to the emotional roller coaster akin to living with a drunk roommate, (and I don’t mean the funny, happy drunk, I mean the volatile drunk who’s generally happy but is prone to outbursts and making bad decisions and has just broken your phone), we’re working on baby’s food routine.


That’s right, she’s not only cranky because she’s growing, but she’s hungry too.



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Oh sure, she looks cute in her tiger costume, but watch out!


The New Food Routine

We’ve stopped snacks and are giving her 6 small meals throughout the day.

She’s gradually learning that the healthy and varied food on her plate is what she’s getting. It’s ok for her to not eat it, but she won’t be getting crackers or cookies later instead.

So far, so good. She’s eating most of what is served, but still won’t touch red meat, chicken or fish so her protein comes from egg, lentils, nuts, and milk.


We’ve also stopped taking about the food on her plate to avoid making new things a big, scary deal.


It’s slow-going but she’s still a happy and lovely baby. She’s a little person now and she really laughs when something is funny or if Daddy is being silly. There’s nothing better than when she turns to me or my wife and says “I lov-boo”.


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If you have any advice for me and the other parents going through this stage of child-wrangling, please please share it in the comments below.


To finish the earlier story, she wanted her ABC book which features a monkey. I’ll sleep a little better tonight with that case closed.





  1. Paternity Fraternity

    September 16, 2017 at 3:21 pm

    Our terrible-twos started rearing it’s head at about one and a half. By two and a half it was indeed full blown terrible. There were days when we had to be careful of our every move – opening the wrong cupboard could mean an epic meltdown because he spotted something he wanted. At one point he would fight us on nearly everything we did – I felt a little bit like a prisoner, ha. It was very tough because we also had a newborn – which probably amplified his terrible twos.

    I remember thinking to myself, “how many more months until he hits 3? then we’ll be in the clear!” He did slowly ease off of it, started having more and more good days. We’d think we were in the clear and then revert back for a week, But eventually he became much easier going.

    Best advice:

    1. These behaviour phases can seem like an eternity – and they may start to get you down because they seem like your new reality. They aren’t. They will pass.

    2. Don’t listen to parents with older kids (other than me of course!) they will always tell you the next year is more difficult. “Terrible twos? ha! wait until you deal with the threenager year, or the fournado.” I’ve heard this non-sense all the way up to kids who are 7. Yes there will always be different challenges – but with my toddler now 3.5 I can confidently say he is way easier to wrangle than he was a year ago.

    1. jamesrcsmith

      September 18, 2017 at 2:11 pm

      Phew! Thanks so much for sharing. It’s always great to hear from people who’ve survived to tell the tale.

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