The Terrible Twos or simply the Triple T’s. The nightmare has arrived. Yes, two-year-olds can be a terror in the household, stripping off their cute and angelic facade to reveal a devilish, fist-clenching, toy-throwing and tantrum-erupting side that we swore had never existed before. What happened to our endearing little one-year-old? The answer is simple: Our one-year-olds are now no more. The Terrible Two have finally arrived and boy are they going to make their mark.
But fear not. While many parents bemoan their horrible fate by the hands of the little ones, they can rejoice in the fact that two-year-olds are actually peaceful compared to teenagers. Blink blink. Say what?
Parents to two-year-olds will squint their eyes and go, 'Are you sure?' The answer is yes. Parents should rejoice while they can before the little two-year-olds morph into an adolescent version of themselves with an attitude to boot.
They are merely the calm before the impending storm.
And here are 20 stories shared by mums to prove that at two, we should rest our laurels and thank our lucky stars our kids still have at least a decade more before they wreak further havoc.
20 The Worries Aren't Quite The Same
When Mary's son was two, all she had to worry about was whether he was well fed and if he had enough sleep. Sure, there were days when her son would cry a storm and wreak havoc around the house, but nothing prepared her for his teenage years. These days, Mary finds herself checking her son's bag for reassurance he's using protection and constantly hinting to her son to be a responsible young man.
To this day she is not sure whether her son has done anything yet but she sure as heck is not ready to be a grandmother at only 45.
So there have been constant hints dropped to her son to 'stay pure' and to 'play it safe' if he has a girlfriend.
19 Toddlers Can't Sneak Out At Night
Once, Yuri discovered that her teenage son was sneaking out in the middle of the night and driving her Toyota around town without a license. She waited all night for him to come back and had him grounded for the next 3 months.
Carol had a similar experience with her daughter climbing out the bedroom window to meet up with her squad of friends. Needless to say, the daughter no longer enjoys Wi-Fi at home.
Joan's daughter was even more adventurous. She snuck out at night to meet up with her college boyfriend for some 'snuggles'. Ah, the horror and drama that parents of teenagers have to put up with!
18 Allowances Are Not Necessary
While her twins may be devils in disguise, Leanne thanks her lucky stars that her rambunctious twin two-year-olds have yet to reach puberty and start asking for money. She sees how much of a headache it is for her neighbor who has to bargain with her teenage daughter on the weekly allowances.
There will be days when she can hear the mother screaming, 'How on earth did you manage to spend so much in just 2 days?!' Either a string of censored curses would then follow or 'Mum! But my best friend gets so much more than I do! It's not fair!' complete with Oscar-worthy crying.
17 No Worries About Peer Pressure
At two, Noelle's daughter gets to wear what she wants and does what she likes (within limit, of course).
Noelle enjoys seeing her daughter munch on her favorite snacks without worrying about body images or simply letting mummy tie her hair in any kind of fashion without caring what other people would say.
It could be pigtails today and bunny ears tomorrow. Who cares? At two, kids don't have to worry about bullying or peer pressure and that is very much a relief for Noelle and probably every other mother out there.
16 No Worries About Failing Grades
At two, toddlers might be dancing and singing to the ever-annoying but catchy Baby Shark song and browsing through simple books like The Three Little Pigs. But at sixteen, teenagers would be dancing and reading to a different tune. As a single mum of one hormone raging teenager, Bailey worried constantly about her daughter's ever-fluctuating grades.
It seemed no matter how many books she bought for her daughter and how much her daughter seemingly studied, there would always be an 'F' in her report card somewhere.
On good days, it might be from her PE subject (that was still acceptable, Bailey was never much of an athletic person herself) but to get Fs for Math and Science? Well, perhaps her daughter just wasn't cut out to be the next Steve Jobs.
15 No Worries About Teenage Rebellion
Ying Luo was tasked with raising her granddaughter after her own daughter passed away in an accident a decade ago. She fondly remembers how well-behaved and obedient her granddaughter was at two, often following her around the farm as she tended to the chickens and planted vegetables for sale.
Back then, she was practically a goddess in her granddaughter's eyes. These days, however, her advice falls on deaf ears. With her friends' influence from school, her granddaughter often questions grandma's house rules and stays out till late at night before coming home with the stench of smoke, much to the grandmother's heartache.
14 No Secrets Kept
Two-year-olds can't keep secrets. It's just not in their nature. Ask them where they hid the Halloween treats and they'll innocently lead you to the 'secret stash place'.
But the same cannot be said for teenagers, which Sally found out the hard way.
As a stay-at-home mum who cleaned up the house when both hubbs and child were at work and school respectively, the last thing she expected was to find a stash of magazines hidden under her son's mattress. It didn't help that there were a few condoms and lubricants too. Needless to say, she gave her son an earful after he came home from school.
13 Toddlers Are Cheaper to Feed
Little Danielle has broccoli and macaroni for lunch. Then she has roasted chicken with leftover broccoli for dinner. No complaints there so long as the food is good. For breakfast the next day it will be peanut butter and jelly sandwich with milk.
Easy as a pie!
Little Danielle has whatever mummy gives her (with a lot of bribes and playing of course). But compared to teens who want Starbucks, Burger King and maybe some fine dining, little Danielle is a lot cheaper to feed.
12 You Get To Control Their Wardrobe
Melissa loved playing dress-up with her two-year-old son. She would style his hair differently according to tips and pictures from Pinterest and order a bundle of stylish but affordable kid's clothing online for her son. Whatever she put on him, he would wear with no hesitation.
After all, mummy knows best right? But it was a different story for her 14-year-old boy. The older brother simply refused to wear what she bought him, preferring to wear hand-me-downs from the dad and dyeing his hair greenish brown. 'This is fashion, mom', he would claim, much to Melissa's horror.
11 Easier to Trick A Toddler
Peekaboos and hide and seeks used to drive little Samantha wild. These simple games could literally keep her spirits up the whole day. But that certainly wasn't the case now that she's a teen.
These days a complete sentence in reply to her parent's effort in striking a conversation is considered a good day for her parents. And no, one-syllable words such as 'yes' and 'no' do not count as a sentence. No longer does she brighten up at the teasing of a candy bar or giggle with glee at the sight of a finger puppet. The tricking days are now a thing of the past in Sam's family.
10 Two-Year-Olds Sleep Earlier
Jane used to complain how hard it was to put her two-year-old son to bed. Bedtime seemed entailed endless storytelling, song-singing, bribery, and the occasional threats.
But even with all the challenges, her little one would still be off to dreamland before 9 at night.
Nine o'clock used to feel like an eternity away for Jane. But boy oh boy was she in for a treat. Fast-forward to more than a decade later, Jane finds herself staying up past midnight just to check if her now teenage son has finally gone to bed or not. Nine o'clock now eludes her and no longer holds any meaning, especially not when at nine, her son is still up gaming or finishing up his homework for school.
9 Two-Year-Olds Are Easier To Bring Around
'Let's head to the beach!', the kids shake their heads, 'No mummy....no no'.
A twinkle appears in the mother's eyes as she says 'I'll buy you ice cream,' and then off the kid goes with mum to the beach.
This is how Abby tricks her two-year-old. A simple bribe or brainwashing is all it takes to get her child to follow her willingly. Strap then onto the baby carrier and off they could jet set to a neighboring country or state.
A different fate lies for Ellen though as she has to literally drag her 14 and 17-year-old along for a long-delayed family's trip to the Grand Canyon. The kids had to be practically threatened to go -- no allowances for the next year and three whole months of grounding with no wifi and no mobile data finally did the trick.
8 Toddler Tantrums Are Easier To Control
Katrina's life was full of toddler meltdowns -- be it in the supermarket, the playground or at home, life was never a dull moment.
However, despite all the tears and wailing, her toddler's tantrum never lasted for more than 15 to 20 minutes. And after wiping off the tears and snots, all would be forgotten and her toddler would play happily until the next tantrum erupted.
As volatile as her child's temperament may be, Katrina was still grateful that she was still spared from a teenager's tantrums. She could recall how she herself made her parent's life a living nightmare by having tantrums and rebellious fits. Because of that, she is extra filial to her parents nowadays (you know, to make amends for all the headaches and heartaches she caused her parents during her teenage years).
7 Toddlers Are Easier To Teach
'Nathan, wash your hands before dinner,' to which he might simply respond, 'Okay mummy.' Or 'Nathan, these are the letters A, B and C.'
Such is the ease in teaching a two-year-old that Emily misses those times so much. These days, she cringes at the thought of trying to teach or correct her son manners and life lessons. Most times, her advice falls either on deaf ears or is met with eye rolls. Other times, her once sweet two-year-old and now a Mr. Teenage Know It All will correct her teaching by reciting some quotes from philosophers in response, much to her annoyance.
6 Two-Year-Olds Look Up To Mummy and Daddy
When Simon was but a mere two-year-old toddler, his parents meant the world to him. Heck, he even insisted he would marry his mother when he grew up and cried a river when she tried to tell him that it was impossible. All that changed when he turned into a teen.
He felt all grown-up and suddenly, mom and dad didn't seem so high and mighty anymore. In fact, he felt that there were many things that they did that he didn't quite approve off and because of that, the rebellion and arguments came. And boy did WWIII stay in the house for a long time.
5 No Empty Nest Feelings
Teenagers are bound to graduate from high school and move on in life, and often times they would leave their nest, their safe haven, their home for adventures unknown. Parents would be left with the empty nest syndrome, having gotten so used to their children's presence in their lives for the past two decades.
Kate would look at her neighbors whose kids had moved out and thank her lucky stars that her little girl was only two years old. There would still be at least 16 more years to go before her little one grew up and because of that, she cherished every moment she had with her beloved little girl.
4 No Worries About Calls From The Disciplinary Teacher
Jessica didn't have to worry about her phone ringing when she was at work. If the babysitter called, it would probably be because of some issues like baby having diarrhea or the need to buy more diapers. While baby vomiting or fever may be worrying,
Jessica was secretly glad she didn't receive the kind of phone calls some of her colleagues did.
The dreaded calls from the disciplinary teacher from high school. Often times, she could tell whenever her colleagues' kids had caused trouble in school. Her colleagues' faces would literally turn sour and they would have to immediately apply for emergency leaves to pick up their kids from school. Ahhh... The troublesome twos were still a lot more peaceful than the troublesome teenage years.
3 "The Birds & The Bees" Are Just Birds And Bees
What are two-year-olds interested in? Food, milk, toys, songs, cartoons, and sleep. Are they curious about the birds and the bees? Nope, they are definitely not in the league of hormone raging teens yet.
And because of that, Natalie is always at ease whenever her two-year-old has play dates with other kids her age. Sure there might be smooches and hugs going around but these are innocent acts by toddlers. Natalie confided that she worries about the day when her little girl will turn into a teen. Will there be teenage pregnancy or pressure to 'do it' by her peers? She can only pray and teach her child to grow up respecting her own body.
2 More Snuggles With Two-Year-Olds
Children love snuggles. This is evident in almost every household where the little ones will basically jump onto their parent's laps or throw their arms around them for hugs and kisses. The same cannot be said for their teenage counterparts though.
Where once Kate found herself constantly being hugged, tugged and kissed by her little ones, she now has to ask to be pecked on the cheeks.
Otherwise, there would never even be a hug at all. She explained that this was not because of any lack of love but that the teens now feel awkward being as affectionate towards their parents.
1 No Embarrassment When Expressing Affection
Back to Kate. She tried hugging her kids before dropping them off for a football match, only to be met with 'Ewww mom' and 'Mom, please. My friends are watching '.
Oh, how she longed for the days when her kids were still mere toddlers who wouldn't let go of her neck and legs when she dropped them off at daycare. Those days, it was she who had to fight to untwine their tiny fingers around her neck.
Karma sure can come around and bite you in the back.
References: Interviews with moms.