Saturday, April 5, 2008

My quirky, OCD, terrible-twos toddler...

Porter has become such a pill lately. He's definitely hit the terrible twos, and has developed quite the attitude towards some things. The last few weeks have been very trying on my patience, as part of me knows that his attitude is just feeding off MY attitude/shortness of temper with him lately (which makes me step back and gasp as I remember thinking this same thing about a friend and her child.... "Gosh, she's back talking to you because YOU treat her and speak to her that exact same way!") and part of me knows it just his age and he's hitting that "pushing your button" stage.
  • He loves "big cheese" (aka string cheese). He asks for it at least 3 times a day. We try to limit him to one a day, and often that ticks him off royally.
  • He's been protesting naptime, telling us firmly and rudely "I not LIKE IT!"
  • He has this mean voice he'll say things like "No, that MINE! Rarrrhhh!" with a growl. Ewww.
  • He's bossy to the dogs (which is SOO feeding off us)... he'll tell them "Girls! Knock it off!" (which sounds like "Durls, notit off!")
  • He likes to tell us "NO!" but its kind of funny as he's so obedient he tells us that as he's doing what he's been told to do. (We tell him to lay down at naptime. "NO!" he says, as he promptly lays down)
  • He often will his himself in the head/face when he's really mad/wants something his way (I hope this is normal... its so weird!?)
  • He's began throwing little tantrums at home about things- if he can't go outside when he wants to, or can't have Big Cheese, or can't watch the show he wants to watch- he plops himself down and kicks his legs. So far, no throw-himself-down-tantrums in the stores. Yet.
I've been trying hard to watch how I respond to him, as I don't want him reacting rudely to things because that's how he's been spoken to by me. Which I know at this point is part of his attitude. I'm so short on temper lately that I snap at him and not in a pretty way. I hate how I react to him so many times, and I'm trying hard to have more patience with him.

However, I'm trying to keep a good balance with being calm and patient while still being firm when correcting him. I know as long as we're consistent in following through with what we've told him to do that we're doing the right thing, but sometimes enough is enough and I am not about to be taken for a "pushover-overly sweet parent" when my kid is giving me attitude. Some things I don't feel need to be responded to in a sweet, quiet tone and deserve a stern, to-the-point voice. Like when he's dawdling about doing something, or ignoring me or not doing something he's been told to do two or three times. I'm just trying to find a good balance in reacting to his tempers and attitudes. I'm nice, calm, quiet and use my manners with him the first few times he's asked to do something but there comes a point where I feel that I need to drop the manners and sweetness, get to the point and TELL him firmly to do whatever he's been asked. I am trying to make sure I'm not holding my expectations of him too high, as I know he's only two, but its hard to give him extra slack when I know what he's capable of doing.

He also has become very particular about certain things, which often triggers his attitude and and a meltdown. Its funny, really, but its becoming a bit annoying all his little quirky preferences.
  • He does not like tags of any sort on his clothes. He even asked me to cut off the teeny tiny "Gap" logo tag that was on the OUTSIDE of his polo shirt the other day. Uhm... no.
  • He get picky about his shirt sleeves... he often prefers them pushed up above his elbows
  • He likes one certain hat to wear (when its cold).
  • He has decided he hates the footed sleeper pajamas. He got two new pairs for Christmas in 2T or 24 mos and while they're brand new, he won't wear them to bed. He also hates sleeping with his socks on.
  • Tonight he looked out the sliding glass door and saw I had left my scissors out on the deck. He was so worried about it, he wouldn't quit saying "OH no! Mommy! *gasp* Mommy! Your blue scissors out onna deck out back! Your blue scissors outside! Mommy!" No amount of reassuring him that "Yes, I see that, I'll get them in a little bit." helped. He did this for almost 20 minutes until I finally went to get the darn scissors.
  • He gets particular about what blanket he sleeps with. Usually its Blue Blankey for sure (its a ratty old thing) but he also likes White Blankey and *sometimes* Airplane Blankey (the one I slaved over to make for him). Some nights he has to be covered up with them in a specific order.
  • He likes his door open when he sleeps. He usually has a fan in his room and we usually close the door about halfway and he says "Want my door open by my fan!" Its better than he used to be... he used to want to sleep with the light on.
  • His nails... OMG his nails. He is just like me and can't stand it if his nails rip or snag. He will come to me, finger out, and say "Owie finger. Clip it, mommy."
Ahh... life with a two year old. Always keeping you on your toes. :)


  1. I can SO relate to all of those things you are describing. One minute they are so dang cute, next minute they are such a... um how do I say it nicely?... BRAT!! Carson has gotten really particular lately also, and about the weirdest things. He has to strip down to nothing and im talking butt naked and be wrapped in his "b" (aka blanket). DRIVES ME CRAZY. He even did it the other day when the director from his daycare came over. How embarrassing!!! Gotta love life with a 2 year old! You are in good company! I'll pray for ya, LOL!!!

  2. OMG! I am in tears laughing over this post. You are my new therapist to remind me that my child is (and I am) normal.

    My son has the EXACT same attitude about tags! He even freaks out looking for the tag is shirts that are tag-less. the corner of the blanket that has the tag on it, isn't right by his face when he goes to bed...LOOK OUT!

    Ditto on the socks.

    Ditto on the nap.

  3. I am so feeling you right now. Annika has began her terrible twos as of about a month ago. I was feeling that she was just a terrible child, then I did some reading and all of this behavior apparently is normal. It sucks, it really does, but it's better to know that since they will get over it, hopefully.

    It's so bizarre how they can be so particular about the stupidest things. The naptime and bedtime are suddenly a struggle for us, and she's always been a good sleeper. Don't worry, we are all going through it. It's like it's moms against toddlers, and believe me, I WILL WIN!

  4. OH, and as far as your tone and reaction, I think it's hard not to get frustrated, but like you said, it just shows them it's ok to react like that. I find myself doing it too much lately. I just feel like Annika should know better and that's what makes me so mad. I am definitely working very hard to keep my cool, yet be stern with her. Aaaargh, fun stuff!