Monday, November 21, 2011

Three is two with intent.

Last night, I had a 30 minute fight with Olivia, about chips.

And by fight I mean, she was yelling "CHIPS!" and I was trying to calmly explain that she had to "eat regular dinner before she has a treat like chips" and she waited until the exact second I stopped talking to again yell, "CHIPS!"

Everyone knows the whole terrible twos thing, but I don't know why that's so popular because everyone I know detests age 3.  And as we are quickly approaching age 3 I can see why.

I recently read this funny blog post laying out the top ten reasons why age 3 is worse than age 2.  All that keeps repeating in my mind is #1: Three is two with intent.  She knows what she wants, and she knows how to communicate it, and she knows how to protest if not given whatever ridiculous thing she wants.

I believe that, given a more sophisticated vocabulary, Olivia would have replied to my sensible dinner option with a very direct, "fuck that shit, give me chips or give me death."  Lucky for us, she has not yet learned the deep pleasure that comes from dropping an F-Bomb but I'm sure it will come soon and publicly because isn't that really how those things usually go?

She requires two Disney Pwincess Band-Aids per day.
No boo-boos.  Just for generally looking fabulous.
As we approach three, Olivia's diet also approaches three.  Items.  That she will eat.  Without gagging.  Do you think I'm exaggerating?  Well, I am.  You got me.  She will eat like six things but mostly she wants  BIRTHDAY CAKE! CHIPS! GWANOLA BAW!  FRIES (WILL CUT YOU IF YOU OFFER ANYTHING BUT MCDONALDS)! (SPEAKING OF MCDONALDS) HAPPY MEAL!  BACON! 

(Also?  She would suck on the toothpaste container if I would let her.  But spaghetti?  Mom, have you lost your mind?)

Last night, I told her she had to eat one grape.  One.  I figured she would taste it and want more because you guys, these were the sweetest most delicious grapes.  I'm an idiot. 

After a refusal of epic proportions (she called me mean, which, hahahahaha) she took one bite and then turned her head toward me and gagged from the pit of her chip-craving stomach so hard that I grabbed a throw pillow and put it under her face.  Which was the perfect place for her to spit the half-chewed grape.

And then?  After that?  She put her hands up and casually said, "chips?"
She never did get chips.  She got 3 time-outs and a bedtime with no books.  And I freaking HATE IT.  because she really is such a good, sweet girl.  Really.  She's just an asshole sometimes.  More than half the time, she is totally fun and hilarious and just smart, ya know? 
Hm. 
I think I shall ask for a lollipop for dinner for at least the next
forty consecutive days.


Speaking of asshole kids: every one's kid is an asshole sometimes.  Don't make excuses or blame other kids or whatever.  Own it.  If you don't think your kid is an asshole sometimes?  Chances are good that everyone else thinks your kid is the biggest asshole.

Speaking of delusional parents: stop taking credit for things you did nothing to create.  Your kid slept through the night from day one?  You're lucky, not brilliant at fostering good sleep habits.  Your kid eats a variety of foods?  Good for you.  You are lucky, not some brilliant pediatric dietitian. Braggy parents are the ones whose kids are being the assholes while they are ignoring them to brag about how not-assholey they are because of their brilliant parenting skills. 


Chips?  Birthday cake?  Cheetos?
Bacon?
Happy meal?  Fries?
Playground?  Then happy meal?
 Anyway.  The point is that things are getting real argue-y up in here.  And my sweet little Olivia is spending about 25% of her time acting like a disgruntled teen, and 75% of her time being adorable and making me feel awful for all the time outs and no books at bed times.

41 comments:

Sally said...

Any time our kids stop being assholes long enough to do something like eat a vegetable or actually make it to the toilet on time, my husband and I look at each other and say things like "wtf? how on earth did that happen?"
We do this because if we don't take credit for when they do awesome things, they we don't have to take credit for when they are assholes either. That kid? I don't have any influence on what he does, I just supply the hot dogs.

HereWeGoAJen said...

The parents that take credit for things like sleep drive me CRAZY. Also eating. And the ones that just have generally easy kids and think they are AWESOME parents. And the parents who think they have tough kids but would only last about one minute with a truly tough kid.

Also, the eating six things thing? Yes. But also annoying? When she refuses one of those six things. I am like "but wait, it is plain noodles? Those are ON THE LIST!"

Mrs.Joe said...

LOVE THE JACKET!!! And this post. My kid is only 4 months and can totally be an asshole at times too :-)Olivia is adorable.

Courtney said...

I am totalling taking credit for my baby sleeping through the night because I spent 2 weeks of h*ll listening to him cry it out! Yes - I am that controversial parent who lets my baby cry in the night. But him being an easy baby? Nope - born that way. And when people tell me that he's easy, I just smile and say, "yes, we know - and yes - we know how lucky we are!" Parenting had nothing to do with it! But I do know our time is coming... no baby stays easy forever!

Jill and Rich said...

A friend once told me, "I didn't know people rocked their babies to sleep, so we never did that. We just lay her down." You never knew people did that?!? Did you think the giant display of rocking chairs at Babiesrus was just because pregnant women get pretty tired doing all of that shopping??? Also, I don't spend huge amounts of my day rocking my kid to sleep for FUN, I do it because he will not sleep any other way. Gah.

Anne said...

My oldest turned 3 in August. One day will be filled with time outs and being sent to her room, broken up only by the screaming and other behavior that gets her sent there in the first place. The next day she will be the funniest, sweetest, cutest, nicest child on the planet. And repeat.

The Mrs said...

My three year old told me this morning that I was mean for washing her face after breakfast.

Jerk.

Momma Kelli said...

Thank you. Yes, kids are assholes sometimes, no matter how cute they are or how much you love them. Thank you for being one of those moms that will admit it. Because I really just want to tell other parents what an asshole THEY are when their kids are total assholes, but they think said kids are "just acting their age" or "having an emotinal morning" or "are so surprised s/he is acting this way." Really? Because all that may be true. They're just having an asshole moment. Own it. ;)
And yes, it's hard to follow through on threats given when they act that way, but it's love. They need boundaries. Thank goodness they are forgiving creatures.
Three was AWFUL with my son. We weren't friends for like a whole year. Now that my daughter is three, I'm scared. But thankfully she's been more difficult her whole three years, so I'm a little more seasoned in dealing with it. Hang in there. It does get better.

Hillary said...

hahahahah! Love your post today. Speaking of terrible, horrible, no good, very bad kids... mine woke me up at 3 flippin' 50 AM the other night to him CUTTING HIS OWN HAIR. Grrrr!!! I can't wait until he goes to Kindergarten so I can get a break...

B. said...

You're sending chills down my spine. I am very afraid. We're only at 20 moths here,and everything is an argument already.

Vaso said...

Haha... I know what you mean. I totally know what you mean. My daughter turned three in August! 'nough said....

SherilinR said...

the age of three is when my child learned the word angry. she spent large portions of her day telling me, "i am vewy angwy." because i wouldn't let her do cool things like sprinkle parmesan cheese into the carpet. or eat cat food.

stephanie said...

Um, hi. Our Olivia's are twin assholes. Mine enjoys a very similar diet and routinely screams, "I NEED IIIIIIICE CREEEEEAM!" throughout dinnner.

Like, ON THE REGULAR. But then she goes and kisses her six-month-old sister and says, "Don't cry, honey. Weevia's here." and DAMN IT. I can't take the cute.

Amy said...

LOL Love it. Lexi is 2 months younger than Olivia...and she can be just as much of an asshole. This past weekend we had her pictures taken...she didn't want to wear her tights...and proceeded to keep taking them off. Our session must have taken 2 hours because of all the times I had to put the tights back on her.

OH...and mine will eat bread and mac n cheese. With the occasional hot dog thrown in. Things that were on her list a month ago are now forbidden!

Kate said...

The toddler eating thing is so weird. When he was littler my son ate everything but sometime around 18 months old he turned into a child who will happily eat rocks and sand and drink the water in the ocean or the pool while refusing clean water from a cup and ice cream. There are some days he only eats cereal bars but hey, at least they've got fruit and whole grains, right?

Rotten said...

Oh thank you for mentioning braggy parents. Drives me crazy when I have to listen to how brilliant their child is.

In our house in stead of "chips" its "pasta." As in "what do you want for breakfast?- Pasta" "what do you want for a snack? - Pasta" It never ends. Then when I put it on her plate she says "I want yogurt."

areyoukiddingme said...

They only get worse - the arguments get more complex and turn into negotiations.

I am merely lucky that my daughter has been so easy. She sleeps, she eats, she asks before she does. I'm sure she's saving herself for the teenage years. See: arguments/negotiations as mentioned above.

Chris and Annalisa said...

I'm so glad I'm not alone - my child has the exact same eating habits as yours! Her diet consists of toast, chicken nuggets, hot dogs, pizza, fries, and fruit snacks. Literally.

The other night my hubby and I held her upside down and plugged her nose in order to force a bite of something vegetable-y in her mouth, which she promptly gagged on and spit up. Parents of the year award!

MNRN said...

Oh thank god! I thought mine was the only one! And olivia's and kates diet are the same.

Carrie said...

You are so fabulously funny :) And I give you a solid 'Amen' on the bold-faced section.

clearness said...

I take credit for the good things because there are so many horrible things that I need to build myself up for the next day somehow.

kmjba8 said...

Confession: I have one kid who eats nearly everything and never cries when she gets shots. (Now, she is argumentative, stubborn, headstrong, sassy...hey, she's mine and I wouldn't know what to do with a "jellyfish" kid so I'll take mine with a backbone without complaint...but back to the confession....) I would have TOTALLY taken credit for all her positives (and negatives) until my second child was born.

Reality: My second daughter eats almost nothing - and certainly not anything that is remotely unprocessed - save raisins... She cries when you look at her the wrong way and has rarely said anything without a "whiney" tone since she started speaking. The saving grace??? That's fabulous spunky, sassy, yes - argumentative, backbone!

ASP said...

Best post evvvvvvver! ;)

Amy, queen of the world. said...

Ugh. Braggy parents suck more than anything on this planet. There is an entire generation of women who need to be somehow transported back into their childhoods, patted on their backs, and told that it's okay to be a screw up or to own up to your shortcomings. I call these women- Generation: Blog. Or, Blawg, because I'm from Southern Oklahoma.
PS: Four is better. I'm liking 4 so far. But 3 almost did me in. My kid was the poster child for "...And you thought TWO was difficult?! HA!"

evsmarie said...

My 15-month-old bites me. Just me. It used to be when she was teething. Now? Every now and then because she thinks it is freaking hilarious! I don't. I've tried everything. But still - sometimes my vampire strikes. Definite asshole.

But - she is a rock star sleeper. Not since day one, but we are talking a consistent 12 hours every. single. night. Yeah, I wish I knew what "we" did so that "we" can replicate it with baby #2 (on the way). Ha. Pretty sure she realized that we have no idea what the hell we are doing and figured it out for herself. Braggy parents suck.

Jes G said...

thanks for making me laugh.... its so true. i think most kids would suck on a tube of toothpaste if you let them.
xoxoxox

Kim said...

Um did you just describe William or what? We can do an arranged marriage where they eat fries & nuggets and scream their demands. Match made in heaven. Although he is not a lover of bandaids. :) I am scared for three.

CurlyGirly said...

This is the only place I feel okay about thinking my kid is an asshole sometimes. Thank you.

Mina said...

Thank God you are here to speak the truth about delusional parents. My 15mo must be one of the crappiest sleeper in the universe, and when I hear other parents telling me how I am doing everything wrong, because they do it "like this" and it "works everytime", I feel like using a crowbar to losen their teeth.
I hope your threenagerhood is gentler than it could get. And I hope Ainsley gets home soon.

Emily Erin said...

I need to take a picture of my daughter's bathtub. She got time out last night, no books, and EVERY.SINGLE.TOY removed from her room at bedtime (and stored in the bathtub, because, hey, we weren't using it). I'm sorry that you're having to deal with it, but we have ALL been there. Stay strong, and thanks for keeping it real.

Michele said...

My darling sweet freaking aDORable and brilliant (because I am a SOOPER GENIUS ROCKET SCIENTIST PARENT!!!!!) 3-yo daughter is the World's Biggest Asshole and I totally own it. I own it AND pay interest on it. OMG. Three is a bitch sandwich with bitch sauce. Wait until Princess O throws her first hour long shit-fit and hurls things heavier than she is at your head. And then 20 minutes later, does it again. And then 20 minutes later, does it again. And then 20 minutes later ... you get the idea. And did they tell you? 3-year-old stop napping. Oh yes precious. No napping. Imagine what that will do to her mood, and yours. You will be giving her preschool teachers bonuses before the year is out and cursing every day they are closed. Even Louise Bates Ames is on board with this - her advice for the parents of 3-year-olds is to get a sitter and hide until they turn 4. http://www.amazon.com/Your-Three-Year-Old-Louise-Bates-Ames/dp/0440506492/ref=sr_1_sc_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1321974742&sr=8-1-spell

CAM said...

God Lory I love this blog post. I think my kid may have been in cahoots with your kid...seriously. The list of six things to eat? Could have written it myself. You are wise :)

PJ said...

Oh crap! Mine are just one and a half and are already awful at times! And they don't speak much so they are frustrated and we are frustrated...

Last night, I fixed: chicken nuggets, yogurt, pb&j, veggies in butter sauce, a whole can of pears, and those expensive squirty veggie/fruit pouches. And they ate.... the pears. That's it, pretty much. And MUCH whining and they THREW most of the food on the floor. And baby cussed me!

Tonight daddy fed them and was a grouchy mess after about 5 minutes! haha!

But yea, thanks for reminding me that those parents who had kids who sleep and eat well, are just LUCKY!

Rachael said...

I think recognizing that your kids are assholes sometimes is the first step to being awesome.

Lisa said...

You hit the nail on the head. I had a friend that I met in baby group when I had my first. Her daughter was an amazing sleeper. We were all pretty jealous. You could tell she thought she had done everything right as she was always giving advice (kindly) on ways to get our kids how to sleep through the night. Then she had her second. Her second was a horrible sleeper. It gave me a little pleasure, I am not going to lie. But she could not handle these horrible sleep habits so she hired a sleep trainer for her daughter who was the ripe old age of 2 months.

Bekah said...

Holy freaking crap. My 3 year old is also skipping his naps now, which makes him even more of an asshole. I love that kid, and his chubby cheeks alone have secured his survival, but some days I think he might cause my brain to hemorrhage from the frustration he causes in me.

lori said...

i love your blog. love it. three sucks. i barely survived my older one at three. i am not looking forward to this next year with my little one.

threenager...great term...very accurate.

Greta said...

Shew, three IS rough.
4 is so much better, sooo much better!

Wiz said...

I think our kids must be the same age. My son turns three in February and my husband and I were just talking about the tantrum changes. Your paragraph about three is two with intent hits this right on. I cant tell you how many times I have heard "but I want to!" or "but I NEEEEEED TOOOOOOO." Add the whinyness to my sons voice and sometimes I just want to gouge my ears out!

momsicle said...

Ugh! So it IS true. We're in the twos, and I keep thinking, "God, please don't let it get worse. Pleeeeeeez!" Ain't gonna happen, I see. Glad to hear that people still sing the praises of the fours, though. So that means we'll hit four right when the baby turns two. Looks like I'm in for the long haul...

B MoM said...

WHEW! After reading your post and all of the comments....i'm feeling relieved that my 2 year old's ridiculous eating habits are NORMAL! His standard foods are 1)rice 2)sausage 3) fruit snakcs 4) yogurt raisis 5) cookies. Anythiing not on the list, doesn't make it into his mouth. I was getitng severely worried....now I feel fine!