|Image: Sean Dreilinger on Flickr|
When my daughter was younger, everytime I would comment about how easy she was and how she really didn't cause me trouble, people would answer: "wait until she's two."
I was confident my daughter wouldn't become terrible when she turned two. I had read article after article about opposition, tantrums and 'terrible two's', and knew that - with the right guidance - this too will pass smoothly.
My daughter turned two a couple of months ago. She had the phase of opposition when she was one, so that one got out of the way rather smoothly. It helps that we tried to minimize saying no to her, and that we did value her no's and not just dismiss them.
But now she's two, I really don't get what all the fuss is about.
I have to be honest, I think it only gets better with time. She's very cuddly and can express herself better, as she starts speaking entire sentences. She can now play on her own for long stretches of time. She understands when I have to do something important. Yes, she is slowly becoming independant, but that doesn't cause any issues.
She does have the occasional scream and cry. But most of the time that is a reaction to our parental inadequacy. A result of us - as parents - handling something in a way that is inappropriate for her age. Indeed, she will let us know loudly that we are wrong, that we should change our approach.But she was never easier or more fun.
I do not think that she spends more time crying or fussing then when she was a baby. Nor do oI think that she's more difficult to handle. I think that most parents just handle two-year olds the wrong way. I think where parents expect 'terrible' and such, they will indeed find it.
These cries and tantrums and oppossitions are just their way of expressing that they're growing up, their way to reject coercion, their way of telling you that they don't like the situation. We shouldn't try to change them or expect them to behave in a way that goes against their developmental stage. We should accept their growing independance and deal with it accordingly.
So as far as terrible two's go, I don't buy into it. Let's call them terrific two's and seek the fun and the enjoyment instead of seeing the occasional cry and calling it a 'terrible phase'.