Those Terrible Twos

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Terrible TwosTwo. It’s an age of exploration for my son. A time to push boundaries, to learn, and to grow. Truth be told — two can also be terrible.

This morning, the dude ran into our bedroom to wake me up. He’s so cute when he does this every day, calling “Mama, Mama.” He hands me my glasses and then climbs up for a cuddle.

I was groggy and not moving very fast after a restless night, secretly hoping for a few more minutes of sleep. Apparently I didn’t move fast enough for the dude, who then repeatedly scratched my arm, leaving long red welts with his way too sharp nails, to get my attention. Ouch! I voiced my displeasure and my husband came running to find out what the ruckus was about. Next stop –the naughty chair.

The naughty chair is our method of discipline. When the dude misbehaves, we go to the naughty chair to talk about the problem. We explain “scratching is not nice. We don’t scratch. That hurts mama. No more scratch” until he understands. Then we ask him to say sorry. We have a hug and a kiss and move on to another activity.

I find it helps to have a process in place to deal with this kind of aggressive behaviour that may emerge during the terrible twos. It diffuses the situation – it is an emotional time when your child hits you or bites you or scratches you (or someone else). It can feel mean and hurtful, and can be very stressful as a parent.

I’m no expert, but I┬ápersonally believe this aggression is simply an expression of anger. The dude doesn’t know how to say “I’m angry that you won’t get out of bed and play.” So he scratched me to get my attention. It’s bad behaviour that needs to be corrected. It’s also a stage that he’ll grow out of as he learns to better communicate his emotions.

For those moms out there who are going through the terrible twos with your child, you’re not alone.

It can be terrible.┬áBut it’s not forever.

What are your stories about the terrible twos? Please share!

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