Whoah, that last post was kind of a bummer. It sounds like I’m just sitting around constantly thinking about this Terrible Thing that could have happened to my baby, when in fact we have moved into the black humor stage, as evidenced by JB cheerily announcing to me this morning that he had checked the monitor and that Dylan was just sleeping with his toy cord, but gosh it sure was quiet in there.

Oh, I know. I could never even tell you half of the awful things JB and I joke about, because it’s really . . . well, we’re clearly going to straight to hell in an Astroglided handbasket.

Anyway, I’m posting again to move the creepy entry down the page a little and to ask you something that is driving me CRAZY lately: those of you with experience dealing with that mysterious creature that is the three-year-old, is it normal for a kid to refuse to say what’s wrong with them? Like when they’re whining and half-crying about something but they will NOT tell you what it is, even if you practically give yourself a hernia trying to sweetly and supportively cajole it out of them? And later it turns out they stubbed their toe or some shit? Because Riley has been doing this a lot lately, and it sort of makes me lose my damn mind — I spend X amount of time trying to get him to talk and trying to comfort him, then I try to distract him, and then if it goes on too long and I’m really having one of those oh-so-admirable Mommy Dearest moments, I bark at him to just STOP it already. Which, ugh. Smooth move, Ex-Lax.

It’s super frustrating, but it also just makes me feel bad, because I want to help. I’m not the most capable human being on earth but by god I can kiss a boo-boo and I can whip up a PB&J for a hungry belly, you know? But it’s like we’re the interrogators and he’s the stubborn prisoner refusing to give up his comrades’ location.

Are you familiar with this behavior? What course of action would you recommend when we’re dealing with it?


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15 years ago

I love your blog! It makes me smile daily!! Wish this was around when my guys were little. I remember taking one of my guys to the Dr. because he could not behave to save his soul and would not tell me if anything was wrong. I knew something was up. The nurse thought I was a little off wanting him checked out with no symptoms except a runny nose. Turns out he had a double ear infection! No wonder he was being a twerp!! By the way- he is now 16 and still does this and so does the husband. I think it is a guy thing :)

15 years ago

Yep, my newly turned 3 year old daughter does this too. I know she can tell me what’s wrong, and really think its more of a control thing for her… a way to drag out the attention, like someone’s already said.

Have had more mommy-dearest moments in the last few weeks than I care to admit. It’s a good thing she’s so cute, and my wine fridge is stocked!

15 years ago

My son did this too. He’s 16 now and totally normal. I used to ask him what was wrong…hug him and tell him to go in his room until he felt better. The incidents were short lived because he wanted out of his room and would say “I better. I better.”

15 years ago

Sorry no advice, but I just wanted to say Thank You! Thank you for helping me realize I am not the only mommy out there that loses her ever-lovin’ shit with the kiddo sometimes. Right after my head spins off sideways because he is pissed at his trains for the 12 millionth time today, I ALWAYS feel like DHS is going to bust down the door and take him away from me. UGH! It’s so comforting to know that there are others out there that sometimes go a little mommy insane.

15 years ago

oh sweet jesus and pass the gravy… we have been having a terrible time with noah lately & we thought we were just being bad parents! we had an hour long melt down over pancakes this morning and it was solved when i gave him a 99.9% brown banana i was saving for banana bread. so i think there is something to be said for the poster that made the comment about food. Gah. at least i know it’s normal, well at least as normal as a 3 year old boy is. i occasionally feel like going ape shit crazy in another room when he does that.