My “I-Will-Never’s”: Toddler Edition.

I wrote a post like this, long ago, about things I always said I’d never do once I had a baby that got shot to hell once my baby was actually born.  I think it’s about time for round two: the toddler edition.

“When my kid is a toddler, I’ll never…”

1.  Let her use a pacifier.  Little kids walking around with binkies in their mouths were always a pet peeve of mine.  Well, let me tell you (as I’ve told you before), Caroline is so attached to hers that prying that thing out of her mouth is a lot easier said than done.  We’re pretty much down to naps and nighttime, but I haven’t dared to take the final push just yet.  It has taken me this long to even get to that point because the fact is, I don’t have time to deal with my entire house going up in an apocalyptic mushroom cloud every morning over a stupid piece of plastic and rubber.  I’m late for work, here’s your pacifier.

2. Feed her junk food.  I try not to do this often, but there are several reasons I caved on this one.  First of all, some days she’ll refuse to eat anything at all and if I can get a couple of Goldfish in her so she doesn’t starve and/or stay up all night, then that’s what I’m gonna do. Second, I just don’t have time to whip up wholesome food every single time she eats.  Third, once in awhile I want to eat junk food, and she sees me doing it and makes a beeline for the bag of whatever salty, fatty deliciousness I’m shoving into my own face.  And people, I’ve got enough on my plate as it is.  Let me have my junk food, I beg of you.

3. Let her watch TV.  I was opposed to this because of all the studies that tell you that if you let your kids watch TV they’ll end up with ADHD or Ebola or it’ll make all their teeth fall out or whatever.  But listen, that wonderful machine lets me prepare dinner and clean the house and occasionally get an extra twenty glorious minutes of sleep.  There’s no way I’m ever gonna pass that up.  Everything in moderation, right?

4. Allow her to talk back to me in public.  Haha.  Hahahaha.  Isn’t it hilarious that I ever thought I’d be able to control stuff like that?

5. Carry her everywhere she goes.  Okay, she is getting to be way too big to be carried anywhere, at least for me, since she’s nearly a third of my weight at this point.  And I shouldn’t let her force me to.  But the fact is, sometimes I really need to get somewhere, like work, and she just. will. not. go where I need her to.  So I have to pick her up.  And then she wants to be carried the next time around.  And repeat.  It’s a vicious cycle and I haven’t figured out how to break it.  In the meantime, the kid’s getting carried into daycare every time I’m late.  Which is… every day.

6. Refuse to read books over and over.  Because reading is good for them.  Right?  It feeds their brains.  And sets up good habits for lifelong learning.  Except by the time I’ve read If You Give a Pig a Pancake seventy-five times, there is nothing on this earth that could possibly resuscitate my brain from its childrens-book-coma and make me become a normal person who can function normally in adult society.  The other day, after a particularly long weekend of The Cat in the Hat Comes Back, a patient asked for whitening and I came thisclose to asking them if they’d tried something called VOOM.  I wish I were kidding.

Now, it’s up to you: leave your toddler I-will-never’s in the comments, so I don’t feel so bad!

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  1. by laci

    On November 29, 2011 at 7:24 pm

    LOL I have most of the ones you do and I have caved on 1) no tv (she does watch about 30 minutes a day, sometimes more if im having one of those days (LOL), 2) junk food (not much but she does love those goldfish and they’re whole grain so…, 3) carry her..yeah well, she is slow! and 4) refuse to read books repeatedly..well i know the hungry little catepillar and dr seuss’ the sneetches by heart. gotta love those toddlers!

  2. by laci

    On November 29, 2011 at 7:32 pm

    well i have failed at many of the ones you stated. i let her watch tv for about 30 minutes a day..sometimes more if it’s “one of those days”, i carry her sometimes, well, because she is slow! she gets junk food way more than i set out to give her, but the goldfish are whole grain, which makes me feel better LOL. i read the same books so many times i know them by heart (current faves are dr seuss’ the sneetches and the hungry little catepillar.

  3. by Megan

    On November 29, 2011 at 7:55 pm

    haha, I know Hector the Helicopter so well, I let my 2 year old son hold the book and turn the pages while I recite every word abd toss toys in the toy box

  4. by Jen

    On November 29, 2011 at 8:06 pm

    I love this!

    I’ve got a lot of the same ones as you.

    Pacifier- yup…he’s got one. He only uses it to sleep and I see no reason whatsoever to take it away from him!

    Need to be held/carried/sleep in my bed- he “neeeeeeeeds” me and who am I to say no. I agree- getting out of the house in the morning warrants the carrying. And if you tell them you are going to be late for work, well that makes them move.even.more.slowly!

    TV- My kid is smart. So damn smart. He may even be smarter than me. Put that in your pipe and smoke it researchers.

    I’m sure my mother in law would have more to add to this list- although it would be titled things Jen shouldn’t do, but my response is that it works for me and my son damnit and so leave me the hell alone. Thank you kindly!

    Keep doing what works for you and Caro, Julia! I e-think you are doing a great job!

  5. by JLSmith

    On November 29, 2011 at 9:42 pm

    hahaha! thank you for this – i sometimes feel like the only mother who has given into all of these. my 2 yr old son doesnt have a binky but… he sucks his first two fingers, since 5 months old.

    i also said i wouldnt take a blanket (or any other kind of security thing) everywhere, and, yeah, i’ll be damned if that blanket isnt with us at every moment of every day.

  6. by Kacy

    On November 30, 2011 at 9:42 pm

    I always said I would never be a short order cook because they would always eat what the grown ups eat. Ummm yeah right. With a 5 mo old and a 3 1/2 yr old (who weighs 29lbs mind you) some nights it isnt worth the battle of at least taking a “no thank you” bite. If he refuses to eat salmon, heck yeah I will make you grilled cheese and soup, because at least you are eating… And not whining. Oh how I love my boys!

    Thanks for this post, it assures us all that we are normal!!

  7. by Hannah

    On December 1, 2011 at 3:41 pm

    Junk food!

    I was there when my best friend’s 14 month old got her first taste of ice cream. Her father-in-law let her have some and my best friend was pissed! Her father-in-law broke one of the rules of “I will nevers!” :P

    Now I see her daughter eat junk food now and then, and my best friend brought up that incident and we laughed.

  8. by Stephen

    On December 2, 2011 at 8:19 am

    I wrote a post about the TV watching thing recently myself. There’s plenty of good television out there, you just need to be careful in selecting the right show. Watching ‘Sesame street’ is like inviting a close friend of the family to watch your child so you can prepare dinner. Setting a child down in front of ‘The Walking Dead’ is like inviting the neighborhood creep into your home.

    My ‘I will never’ was letting them dictate what’s for dinner. My oldest son is a picky eater, my middle child eats anything and my little girl falls somewhere in between the boys. It really handcuffs what I can make because the law says I have to feed them. I can’t make liverwurst with a side of brussel sprouts else 2 of my 3 children will starve. No, we eat like we’re all in college: pizza, sandwiches, tacos etc.

  9. by Leslie

    On December 2, 2011 at 9:27 am

    Love this article. It’s refreshing to see that I am not the only mom who is ok with flaws!

  10. by Jessi

    On December 2, 2011 at 9:51 am

    Well I have caved on all but 2, my son never took a binkie but he and hid thumb are well connected, and he doesn’t watch tv because we don’t have one so it’s hard to cave lol he does however get to play with the iPhone so pretty much the same idea.

  11. by Megan

    On December 2, 2011 at 12:09 pm

    Ok I can so totally relate! My kids eat oreos when I need to cook dinner. They watch Dora when I need some me time… Love it. Also my 18 month is still on both paci and bottle… Doesn’t look like she’ll be giving them up either.
    Here are a few of my posts about the same “i will never”
    Looks like there are a lot of us in this circle.

  12. by Tonia

    On December 2, 2011 at 4:40 pm

    I think my biggest “I will never” was letting her sleep with me. Daddy is in the Navy and when he is gone she moves right in.

  13. by Nora

    On December 2, 2011 at 4:48 pm

    “Put my kid on a leash” … you know those little stuffed animal backpack harnesses with a leash. Well once my daughter started walking and we flew to visit family across the country, I couldn’t imagine not using one. She screams to be put down, does not want to hold hands, and wont sit in her stroller. So, there we were in the airport, with my daughter on a leash. I can only imagine what people where thinking, because I use to think the same things. But now I would rather have her attached to me than slip through a crowd, toddlers are faster than they look!

  14. by Maggie

    On December 2, 2011 at 7:56 pm

    Sleep in my bed…I swore I was never going to let my baby sleep in the bed with me. He is now three and comes into my bed at about 3am every night. I told my husband that the next time around we are going to need a king bed. He responded that the next time around we will sleep train our baby. Yeah, we’ll see…

  15. by Dawn

    On December 21, 2011 at 2:22 pm

    I agree with nora LOL

  16. by Carie

    On December 21, 2011 at 2:54 pm

    I will never….read the same book. Hmmm I know “Guess How Much I Love You” by heart along with several others. She “reads” them with me so it’s actually kinda fun (some nights). I also said things like I’d never let my kid throw a tanturm in a store. Show me a parent who can follow the books advice on that one. It isn’t always as easy as turning your back to them or leaving immediately.