This is How Your ‘Terrible Twos’ Toddler Really Feels (Grab the Tissues)

Toddlers get a pretty bad rap for being a tad cheeky, emotional, defiant and demanding. Sure, they are all of these things.

But have you ever stopped to think about why your two-year-old is acting so ‘terrible’?

I never really did. Truth be told, I just assumed the “terrible twos” were a part of life, a phase that she would grow out of. I never really considered the WHY behind the terrible twos and my toddler’s epic tantrums.

Until I read this. Posted on Mom Babble, these simple words hit me straight in the feels.

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I am two. I am not terrible

“Today I woke up and wanted to get dressed by myself but was told, “No, we don’t have time, let me do it.” This made me sad.

I wanted to feed myself for breakfast but was told,“No, you’re too messy, let me do it for you.” This made me feel frustrated.

I wanted to walk to the car and get in on my own but was told, “No, we need to get going. We don’t have time. Let me do it.” This made me cry.

I wanted to get out of the car on my own but was told, “No, we don’t have time, let me do it.” This made me want to run away.

Later I wanted to play with blocks but was told, “No, not like that, like this…”

I decided I didn’t want to play with blocks anymore. I wanted to play with a doll that someone else had, so I took it. Then I was told “No, don’t do that! You have to share.”

I’m not sure what I did, but it made me sad. So I cried.

I wanted a hug but was told, “No, you’re fine, go play”.

I’m being told it’s time to pick up. I know this because someone keeps saying, “Go pick up your toys.” I am not sure what to do, I am waiting for someone to show me.

“What are you doing? Why are you just standing there? Pick up your toys, now!”

Where do I start? Where do these things go? I am hearing a lot of words but I do not understand what is being asked of me.  So I lie down on the floor and cry.

When it was time to eat I wanted to get my own food but was told, “No, you’re too little. Let me do it.” This made me feel small. I didn’t want to eat anymore.

I can’t get down from the table because no one will let me…because I’m too small and I can’t. They keep saying I have to take a bite. This makes me cry more. I’m hungry and frustrated and sad.

I’m tired and I need someone to hold me. I do not feel safe or in control. This makes me scared. I cry even more.

I am two.

No one will let me dress myself, no one will let me move my own body where it needs to go, no one will let me attend to my own needs.

However, I am expected to know how to “share”, “listen”, or “wait a minute”. I am expected to know what to say and how to act or handle my emotions. I am expected to sit still or know that if I throw something it might break….But, I do NOT know these things.

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I am not allowed to practice my skills of walking, pushing, pulling, zipping, buttoning, pouring, serving, climbing, running, throwing or doing things that I know I can do. Things that interest me and make me curious, these are the things I am NOT allowed to do.

I am two. I am not terrible. But I am frustrated. I am nervous, stressed out, overwhelmed, and confused. And I need a hug.” – Author unknown

The terrible twos, through your toddler’s eyes

While your two-year-old may take you to the brink of insanity some days, take a step back and look at things from your toddler’s perspective. Consider the WHY behind this terrible twos phase.

Yes, toddlers can be naughty. And frustrating. Terrible even.

But they are no much more than this. Toddlers are emotional firecrackers, often confused by this crazy world. They are little sponges of knowledge, soaking up as much knowledge as they can. They are balls of energy, spreading this excitement to everyone around them.

But, most importantly toddlers are little bundles of sweetness, eager to share their every adventure with their best friend – you. Keep these things in mind the next time your two-year-old starts to crack it. Give her what she needs – tolerance, understanding. And hugs.

Trying to figure out what your newborn wants? See the world through your baby’s eyes and have a look at how your newborn really feels. 

Avatar of Jenna Galley

Born and raised in Canada, Jenna now lives in Far North Queensland with her tribe. When the mum-of-three is not writing, you can find her floating in the pool, watching princess movies, frolicking on the beach, bouncing her baby to sleep or nagging her older kids to put on their pants.

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