Listen, the title may call them 3-year-olds, but I used a far better word to describe my daughter when she was three: Threenager. The behavior of a normal 3-year-old is, to put it bluntly, shockingly similar to that of a teenager. I love my kid to pieces, but she spent every moment of her third year testing my patience and my sanity. And having lived with my teenage stepdaughter during all of this, I can attest to the accuracy of this description.
I feel like this is the age kids really start to develop a sense of themselves, so they are all about testing boundaries. This was also the age my daughter got really good at manipulating and negotiating with my husband and I. If one of us said no to television? She’d go ask the other. If we said she had to finish what was on her plate in order to have a treat? She’d ask how many bites, and try to negotiate down. "Fun" doesn’t begin to accurately describe it.
But there were so many other moments that were joyful too. I’ve never seen a kid love as hard as she did at that age; Sometimes the easiest way to turn around a bad day was just going in the backyard to run around with her. Truly, I can learn from her as much as she can learn from me. So as challenging as this age can be, here are a load of completely real things that 3-year-olds tend to teach their parents (assuming they can all survive the year together):