Beware the dreaded ‘three-teens’…

Has anyone seen a three-and-a-half-and-a-bit year old?

Hubby and I seem to have mislaid mini-me you see. Our once always smiling, constantly cute toddler has been replaced by someone else – at least for 50 per cent of the time.

This indignant intruder exhibits behaviour we thought we wouldn’t be dealing with until well into the teenage years and it’s quite disconcerting.

There’s the continual, and I do mean constant, whining, liberal use of the word ‘no!’ often accompanied by comedy foot stamping, frequent screaming when faced with parental decline of ridiculous requests for never-ending snacks and screenings of Frozen at 8pm (Please, spare me!!) and plenty of hands-on-hip scowling with curled bottom lip for full ‘displeased’ effect.

Yes the Neat Freak household would currently be prime fodder for a visit from Supernanny. Although thinking about it she’d probably leave after a hastily slurped cuppa.

It is without doubt joyous to enter your offspring’s bedroom in the morning issuing good mornings and enquiries as to whether they slept well (even though their presence in your bed from 4 to 6am means you know they didn’t) to be greeted by a chorus of charming grunts. And demands as to when breakfast will be served.

Then there’s the heart-warming scenario of going to pick them up from nursery when you’re really looking forward to seeing them and hearing about their day and they run and hide in the corner, before telling you: ‘No Mummy, I want to stay and play.’

Add in an ‘early adolescent’ addiction to the iPad and various other appliances made by a certain famous brand and hubby and I are often to be found scratching our heads as to just how ahead of the behaviour game mini-me actually is.

Mini-me was without doubt a dream baby – slept well, always in a good mood, could be relied upon to sleep through coffee dates, meals out and also baby classes of any and all types.

‘You’ll pay for this later,’ we were often told, but despite occasional hideous tantrums, bizarrely without fail whenever we had to buy her new shoes, mini-me was also on the whole a fairly chilled out toddler.

But then we hit the ‘three-teens’…

Now people tell hubby and I that the current frustrating trend is because she’s so bright, and that feisty, independent and driven at three rising four will equal intelligent, articulate and driven in the secondary school years. (Presuming we haven’t been driven round the bend by then of course!)

Fortunately we don’t seem to be the only family dealing with the three-teens. In fact running around in a circle while issuing ear-piercing shrieks at the same time seems quite a popular hobby amongst mini-me’s little circle.

Also begging parents to order food when out and about and then either refusing to eat it, playing with it or using it as missiles.

Don’t get me wrong the old mini-me frequently resurfaces for periods of time before retreating back into the wheedling and whinging, so hubby and I are hopeful, if not confident, that the three-teens will soon be a thing of the past.

After all doesn’t the fourth birthday issue the arrival of the ‘constantly sunny’ phase?!!

Time to cross those fingers…

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