Terrible 2’s

Has anyone of you gone through the feeling of getting frustrated followed by a massive guilt with your little ones, especially when they are/were in their terrible 2s? Well I am going through that right now. My son is a darling most of the times, and I am fortunate to have a child like him except when he wants “my way” and he is so stuck up with it. His “my ways” include

1.   Wear his night suit to his play school.

2.   Wear underpants over his trousers. His reason: ‘Superman does that. I am a Superman.’

3.   He wants a butterfly print on his underpants, shirts, trousers t-shirts etc. That is hard to find, especially for boys.

4.   Insist on having soups with straws.

5.   Give bath to all his toys, including soft toys. I got a big bag of bath toys hoping to quench his thirst of desire to give bath to his toys. However, he said ‘If I don’t give bath to others, they will feel very hurt.’ The negotiation takes forever and almost everyday in the last week we were late for the play school.

6.   The worst: wearing soiled clothes after his shower.

7.  Even worse: Say ‘shut up’ indiscriminately. He heard it once from some one and now he is saying it all the time.

At times, it is amusing but it is annoying as well, especially in the mornings when I am trying to get things in order. Each time I have lost my temper and have raised my voice, he was quiet for a minute and then he gave me a hug and said, “I love you Mama.” My heart broke at that moment and I apologized to him for losing my cool. In reply, he said, “It’s alright.”  That made it worse.

What have you people done?


Last 5 posts by indrani


  1. sarmila

    this age they try to explore everything, learn new things as well as words , i am sure more or less everyone face this with their little kids , by 3 when they go to preschool , they are used to all the good habits.

  2. Khushi

    Indrani, the stories are so cute. I found ‘using shut up indiscriminately’ most funny as you know, its funny how they pick up on the most embarrassing of things to do in front of everyone. And I can understand mornings are a challenge. My son went through a phase like that when he would pretend to be a ‘princess’ right after we returned from Disney and he got kissed by Ariel. This continued for months and random strangers would give him strange looks. Finally his dad had to have a talk with him and that stopped it overnight. I think other than the wearing soiled clothes one, just go with the flow. You are doing right by saying sorry when you lose it. And be easy on yourself when you lose it too, as you are a mom as well, not a martye. He will outgrow these begaviors as Sarmila says. On the plus side, he is already such a good negotiator, with the ‘I love you’s at the right moment.

  3. Indrani

    Thanks a lot Sarmila & Khushi for your suggestions. I just hope he gets over with the terrible 2’s without any onset of terrible 3’s.

  4. Yasmin

    Indrani, I have two 3yr olds in the house, so I’ve been through the terrible 2s multiplied by 2 😉
    Toddlers at this age like to be ‘in control’and want everything done their way. What worked for me was giving them lots of options and making them part of the decision-making process. E.g. When dressing them up I would take out 3 t-shirts of my choice and make them choose the one they would like to wear. This way they felt as if they had control over the situation ;-).
    We moved the Bath time from morning to evening, an hour before dinner so they had plenty of time to splash around in the tub.
    I also enrolled myself in the ‘PAT’programme-(Parents As Teachers) offered by the school district, which is free. A teacher visits our home once a month and talks about all the milestones and gives ideas on behavioural/discipline/potty training etc issues.
    I think, you are doing a wonderful job as a parent so dont feel guilty about being stern to your kid sometimes.

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