Mommy Mindset: Terrible Twos… Horrible Threes?

When my daughter turned three, I expected the tantrums and other awesome attribute of twos to go away, but guess what? She was still going strong, and she was stronger and smarter. With a kicking 2 year-old in one arm and a baby carrier with another I was just about to lose it… Fast forward 6 month… By the time my daughter turned 3.5, she became a child I wanted to enjoy, cuddle, and kiss kiss kiss. 

Leila: My son turned 4 on April 27th. He has been much easier to deal with for about 2 weeks prior to turning 4! His behavior went from being untolerable to tolerable!

Valerie: My 7 yr old is awesome, but she has always been a pretty awesome kid. My 4 yr old is always getting in trouble, but she is very strong willed. In my case I think it has a lot to do with personality and in that case I have a long road ahead of me for my youngest.

Cyndy: My daughter turned 4 on March 17 and gradually I am seeing improvement and it has been fabulous. I still see spurts of the behavior we were seeing, but we really “drew our line in the sand” about 4 weeks ago. It may sound harsh, but we noticed she was taking for granted the things that we have – toys, movies, Wii, DS, etc. – so I took away ALL of her DVDs for about a week. Then I have been giving them back, or not, based on behavior. It has been very effective!

Emily: I am so glad to hear this will get better! The Boy turns three in July and lately has been acting like “someone else’s kid’s” There are days when I want to move out!

Ghada: Hmmm…well, I was one of the ones that found 2 and 3 to be easy. Now at 4 he is so knowledgeable and able to argue a point – it can be tough sometimes butting heads with a 4 year old. But on the other hand, he gets our humor and he can help out in ways that he has always wanted to but not get frustrated – like cleaning up, picking out fruits at the shop…

Mary: I’m with Ghada, my son was a wonderful toddler but having the vocabulary to express his anger with me did not always go well either, like the first time he told me that he hated me. Sure, it hurt, but heck it made me think I was on the right track. Baby girl, who is the definition of a terrible two year old, might not make it to see if the three’s are better – just kidding. I may not live through her screaming fits but I guess that is why they made ear plugs. :)

Ghada: So have any of you heard the theory that these terrible tantrums are due to a hormonal surge…AND, this same type of hormonal surge happens in their teens. So apparently the toddler tantrums are just a preview to what they’ll be like as emo teens *shudders*

Lena: WOW, Ghada, that’s a scary thought.

Mary: Nooooooooooooo!!!!!!!

Gena: My 3 year old’s behavior is like a rollercoaster. He can be an angel for days and then a demon for days. I’m glad it’s not all the time naughty kid, but those bad days are B-A-D. I think I’ve come to grips that every age has it’s bad sides.

Let me get this straight:
I am going from this

to WORSE when he is 3


even WORSE when he is a teen???

This valuable input has been brought to you by Leila of Life as Leels, Valerie of Valerie’s Reviews, Cyndy of Mama Does It All, Emily, Nap Time is My Time, Ghada of Mama goes BAM, Mary of iNeed a Playdate, Lena, Way2Goodlife, and Gena of Life With Captain Fussybuckets


  1. I can totally see the same tantrums from being younger into teens- granted, I don’t have kids but I have a sister 8 years younger then me and have been here through her growing up– and teen years are rough LOL
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  2. I found that language skills helped a lot with all ages below 5 and also sleep, lots of sleep. The less sleep they had, the mote awful they were. The more routine they had, the better they were.

  3. All I can say is good luck! Thank goodness dogs don’t have terrible two’s or horrible three’s. They do have “teenage” issues where they become willful and headstrong. Indiana never quite outgrew that and still thinks it is her way or the highway.
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  4. My 1st, my son, was soooo easy going through the twos. I started to think that was just a myth. But, then came 3s… LOL
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  5. Cyndy L says:

    Like I said above, our little one has been settling in a bit….well maybe not… I was typing this she looked right at me and told me she could do what she wanted to do after I had just said no….proving once again that the mood swings of a 3 year old cannot be predicted.

  6. I know both of my toddlers are strong willed. I have been using a program called “positive parenting” and it has helped A LOT, but I am still nervous about how they will be as they get older.
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