I was pretty sure that parenting girls would be easier than parenting boys. I had my son Isaiah first, four years ago. He was all boy, right off the bat. He climbed everything, tried anything, and showed no signs of fear. He started walking at 10 months, was running by 11 months. Months 12-28 were exhausting. My friends with girls seemed to have it easier than me. Their daughters did things like sit and walk and play with their toys quietly. Isaiah thought that sitting and time-out were the same thing. He thought being told to “walk” was a punishment. He was always moving and didn’t start to slow down and listen to me until about 6 months ago, around the time my twins started walking.
Since I have done this parenting thing before, I was pretty sure I’m smarter than a one year old. I know all about child proofing and how to use distraction effectively. Besides, they’re girls, so how hard could this toddler age be?
I can’t tell you how many things I have been wrong about this time around. I thought Ky and Cadee would be late walkers, or at least wait until they were a year old. Wrong. They were both master walkers by their first birthday. I thought Cadee and Ky would be less curious than their brother. Wrong. These girls have gotten into things that never crossed their brothers mind! I thought they would be fearful of falling from high places. Wrong. I once found Cadee INSIDE of my top kitchen cabinet eating cookies. Who would have thought to put a cabinet lock on the ones ABOVE the counter top?
Things I never dealt with before I am now having to deal with now. My childproofing has gone to an all new level. There is a lock on the fridge, after my 13 month old Ky got into the leftovers and painted my floor with chicken stir fry. There is a lock on the oven, because Ky is obsessed with pulling herself up on any horizontal bar, and once she figured out she could open the oven, it became her new obsession. There is a lock on the dryer, because Ky and Cadee both think it’s the best seat in the house. We have no dining room chairs in our house, they stay in the garage and only get brought in for dinner. After the top cabinet incident, having a place to sit just isn’t worth the risk.
I remember laying down, looking at the ultrasound screen, seeing my beautiful twin girls for the first time. I was scared out of my mind, but I comforted myself with the thought “They are girls, they will be easier to handle.” Boy, was I wrong. At 17 months old my twin girls are giving me a run for my money. And so far, there is nothing easy about this climbing toddler stage, even if they ARE girls.
Dollimama is the mother of three, a four year old son and 17 month old twin daughters. She spends her days chasing children and doing laundry, while trying to keep her children out of the dryer. She writes about the chaos of her Life Not Finished whenever she gets the chance.
What about your toddlers? Have they entered the climbing stage?
Have you found a difference between raising boys and girls? Do you think raising girls is easier than raising boys?