Rookie parents, would you find it absolutely comical if someone told you that having a toddler who doesn’t listen is actually a blessing in disguise? This dad offers a deeper explanation to this somewhat mystifying statement.
But before we get into that, we want you to know that we hear you and we feel you. After all, toddler parents aren’t the only ones doing the training.
The little ones unknowingly put their parents through Patience Bootcamp, too.
You see, toddler years are described by some as the most challenging. (Veteran parents beg to disagree. Hello, teenage years? Yes, we’d like a word.)
But toddlers? They don’t mean to be difficult.
They exhibit challenging and somewhat frustrating behavior because they still haven’t got the hang of processing emotions just yet. That, and the determination to be more independent and basically do anything and everything all at once. It’s a circus but it has to be the best one there is.
“Toddlers are realizing that they are separate individuals from their parents and caregivers. This means that they are driven to assert themselves, to communicate their likes and dislikes, and to act independently. Toddlers are also developing the language skills that help them express their ideas, wants, and needs. At the same time, toddlers do not understand logic and still have a hard time with waiting and self-control. In a nutshell: Two-year-olds want what they want when they want it. This is why you may be hearing things like “no” and “me do it” and “no diaper change!” more than ever before.”
(Source: Zero to Three)
That said, here’s an interesting take on why a bit of stubbornness and defiance will actually be good for toddlers in the long run.
“The ones who don’t listen, they’ll learn from their mistakes. They’ll connect the dots of intelligence-comes-from-learning in due time.”
Raising a toddler is draining as it is rewarding.
Call us toddler parents crazy but at the end of the day, no matter how exhausted and stressed out we are, we will undoubtedly do it all again in a heartbeat. Because we know that someday, we’ll miss these moments terribly. That’s why parents the world over fight to get through each day – so that they’ll have incredible human beings to send out there and hopefully make the world a better place.
So don’t misinterpret this parent’s realization as simply “letting kids get away with murder” or not running a tight enough ship.
His take, simply put, is this. When a kid doesn’t listen right off the bat (because I’m sure all of them do, right? Pfft.), mistakes and accidents are bound to stem from that stubbornness.
And when these mistakes do happen, kids learn. They will learn from their mistakes – not instantly, but eventually.
“Every parenting request/demand/reprimand that was repeatedly ignored, all adds up to one sensational masterpiece of living called (you guessed it) experience.”
And no, you won’t be a reckless parent and ease up on the supervision and the reminders; you’ll still continue scolding and reminding but with it, you’ll also realize that you can’t always prevent these accidents from happening.
“Free-spirited, largely uninhibited children are probably the ones who make this world a much better place. They’re the ones who grow up to the beat of their own drum, create art or technology or something worthwhile and lasting. They create happiness in others because they’ve learned it all along by walking their own walk, tripping up on their own missteps.”
So face the adventures and challenges of toddler parenting head on, and watch your little one soar.
Parenting Isn't Easy
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