Last night, after the Mini’s swimming lessons, we came home, where the Meester had a bath all ready to go. Since it was already past their bedtime, we tried to be quick about it, but the Mini loves the bath and would stay in there for years, if you let him. He started to melt down when LG tried to take a toy, and so I told him that it was probably time to get out. Tears welled up in his eyes: “No, it’s not time to get out.” As he started to get more upset, I told him that indeed, it was past bedtime and it was time to get out. I opened the drain, which upset him more. As I reached to grab him, he reached over to close the drain. So I picked him up and got him wrapped up in his towel, all while trying to get LG to sit back down.
And that’s when he lost.his.fucking.shit.
The tantrum that ensued was such a spectacular show, that it rivaled Fourth of July fireworks. We had throwing on the floor, screaming at the top of his lungs, kicking, flailing, and heaving sobs. I had to quickly carry him out of the bathroom so as not to collapse in a fit of laughter, while the Meester hid his head behind a towel and laughed his ass off. It got so out of hand and he was so worked up over a fucking bath, that I had to let him know that it was unacceptable by taking away story time before bed, something that is so sacred to him. Of course, this sent him over the edge even more, and there was more kicking, screaming and flailing. The two of us just looked at each other like, “What.the.fuck?” I mean, seriously? We had no idea that our son, the most agreeable baby in the world, was capable of such a grand display like this. Making good on my word, I plopped him into bed, screaming and carrying on and walked out of the room. After ten minutes of him howling for daddy, (who was tending to LG), I went in, picked him up, hugged him and rocked him in my arms. I explained to him in simple terms, why he was sent to bed. He tried to swindle a story. I layed next to him for a little while, instead.
One of the things that people don’t generally tell you is that three is much worse than two. I’ve been hearing this over the last year, but in general, I was never warned of this. I feel that it’s my civic duty to inform the people out there, that three year olds are just bullshit. And mine still has a month to go before he actually turns three. Maybe it’s particularly hard for me because of having such an easy going kid for so long.
I debated on whether or not I should go in there and try to calm him down, or if I should just stand my ground and make him see that he was being punished. In the end, I couldn’t not go in there and let him know that no matter what happens, we still love him. I don’t think there’s a right or wrong answer here. For me, I just can’t let my kids think that I would just let them cry after going through something that was obviously really hard for them to deal with.
But now I have to know, what would you have done?