It seems that my two-year-olds have decided to live by the lyrics from the old Laverne & Shirley theme song. Give them any chance, they’ll take it. Give them any rule, they’ll break it. Thankfully it’s not (yet) all day everyday, but there are moments when I’d swear I was in the presence of wild monkeys and not the two little darlings who amused themselves so nicely just a month or so ago. The climbing and jumping on furniture, the playing with light switches, toilet seats and trash bin lids, the tantruming insistence that every task be done “all by myself”, and the laugh in my face response to any reprimands are all enough to drive me out of my mind.
And they totally feed off one another. It used to be that if one was being a bit naughty, the other one was a perfect angel. But those days are gone. Why would anyone want to quietly read books when instead you could join your sister/brother in overturning a book bin and then use it to stand on to reach the light switch and flick the lights off and on a thousand times?
I’m attempting to seek help within the pages of 1-2-3 Magic and How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids will Talk, but so far, acquiring the books is as far as I’ve gotten. I realize that impulse control will not be setting in anytime soon, so I just need some more tips regarding what a parent can do when toddler misbehavior is on the rise. I’ve already removed certain items not suitable for toddler hands, talked about (and modeled) appropriate uses for the furniture, used natural consequences when possible, and done my best to redirect my kids to more appropriate activities. Perhaps we’re just into the new reality of life with two two-year-olds have have to ride through this phase until the next one comes.