Well. Toddlers, hey?

They say that the hardest part of parenting is at the start, when you know absolutely NOTHING and are thrown into the deep end regardless. When you are left to flounder about aimlessly with no idea how to cope with this major change in your world that has arrived LITERALLY without warning. #WellExceptForTheWarningThatThePreviousNineMonthsMayHaveGivenYou

Interestingly enough, “floundering aimlessly” is also how I feel when I go to do my supermarket shopping in a new store where everything is in a weird and different aisle, you know what I mean… #HelpImDrowningWhereAreTheCruskitsAlready.

But, back to the point.

You see, it’s not the start of parenting that is the hardest, no sir. Because babies (if all goes to plan) sleep all the damn time. Thank goodness for that, huh?! HUH?!! Babies rock.

Nope, it is a TODDLER that has been the hardest part of parenthood for me so far. One tiny, joy-filled, sass-filled, poop-filled and super cheeky little toddler. And I never expected that.

I don’t know why.

I mean, I had heard friends talk about their button-pushing toddlers. And I had seen many-a-toddler throwing many-a-tantrum in many-a-store over the years prior to having my own children. But, I guess I had thought that when I had a toddler of my very own, that they would never need “dealing with”. That they would be perfect and kind and thoughtful and quiet and respectful and caring, and … well … not at all like any toddler I had actually ever met or seen or read about in the entire history of toddlers.

Excuse me while I snort laugh heartedly at my naivety.

Because boy oh boy, these tiny toddlers are VERY powerful beings. Scarily powerful in fact, as they have the ability to make or break you (the grownup) every single day. Aren’t we all so lucky to have them?

Now, I have lived with a toddler for … ooooh … let’s say … 2 years since he actually started toddling, and because of that I feel compelled to tell you all about the utterly TERRIBLE things that you should never do to deal with your troublesome toddler. No matter how on edge you feel after an exhausting day of trying to keep them out of your undie drawer or from spitting on their sister.

Yes, I am totally qualified to prepare this list for you, because I have done them all myself, and believe me when I say that they all really were stupid. #WhatWasIThinking.

So here is my list.

The TERRIBLE things that you should NEVER do with Troublesome Toddlers.

So you never do them. You’re welcome. 

1. Never talk about ice cream or even THINK about ice cream if you drive past an ice cream shop. 

And especially do not use the words “Oooh, when it gets hot we should go there”. Because if you do use those words, you will have condemned yourself. You will be asked for ice cream every 30 seconds for the rest of your life, or until someone dies from their brain exploding inside their skull. Hint: It will be you that will die … from all of the screaming the toddler does upon learning that it is snowing outside and therefore they are still not getting any damn ice-cream.

2. Never tell the Toddler that Netflix is broken just because you hate the show “Robocar Poli”. 

Because if you do, the toddler will purposefully add-on another ten years of watching this incredibly creepy show just to shit you. That’s how clever they are. And what’s more, they will all of a sudden have the magical and terrible ability to jam all of the buttons on the TV remote, so you can’t change the channels, or even turn the damn TV off, no matter how much you desperately want to.  *shudders*

3. Never believe that a toddler can’t hear you just because they haven’t responded to any of your questions in over an hour. 

No sir, rookie mistake. Because if you try to use that “deafness” to your advantage and go and open a packet of potato chips in the pantry (so you can stress eat whilst thinking about how to trick the toddler into doing some vacuuming for you), then you will be shockingly disappointed.

Because it has been scientifically proven that toddlers can hear chips being opened across three states and through a hurricane. Ok, so it hasn’t, but yes, they will hear it, and they will come and eat all of the chips directly out of your mouth before going straight back to ignoring you. And that is gross.

Though… they may then be full so you might actually get a break from the aforementioned ice-cream requests for half an hour or so. Hmmm. Winning.

4. Never ever ever ever think that today will be the day that you can just duck into the shops quickly with the toddler.

Oh my gosh this one is so laughable and I don’t know why I even thought that this would be a possible thing. Because it’s not a possible thing. Especially if you only have five minutes to get in and out of the shops. The toddler will be able to sense this time restraint, wrenching themselves free of your grip the second you get in there to go and wedge themselves in behind the promotional stand filled with Snakes Alive and Cadbury Chocolate. It just won’t happen. Nope.

Maybe instead, allow yourself a full half a day to get in and get out with a 2L bottle of milk. That’s a bit more realistic, isn’t it?

5. Never promise a toddler ANYTHING for them to be quiet for five minutes. Nothing. Nope. 

Especially if you have absolutely no intention of actually buying it for them. Because they seriously do not have it in their tiny bodies to be quiet for ONE minute let alone a whole freaking five of them. That is absolutely not going to happen ever.

Nope. Aaaaaaaaaall they will hear coming out of your mouth is the promise of that thing you mentioned to shut them up. a.k.a The bribe.

Yep, they will hone in on the bribe with their terrifyingly razor-sharp (yet weirdly super occasional) focus, and they will never ever let you forget that you promised it and did not deliver. They will cry about it every time you walk past the shops, and they will probably have to go to therapy about it when they are 20. You are an awful parent. So either buy it. Or don’t offer it.

And finally,

6. Never threaten to leave a toddler at their grandparents house when they are especially wild. 

Because the grandparents have a pool. And minties. And probably ice-cream. Oh, and endless cuddles. So this is in no way a punishment.

Although on second thought, it WOULD mean that you get the afternoon “off”. So maybe do this one. And thank me later after you have had some quiet time, a packet of chips in peace, and a nap.

You’re welcome.

What tips do you have for other parents? What would you never do with a Troublesome Toddler? Leave me a comment below as I would love to hear all about it xxx