My children are 9 and 6 and I am still waiting for them to exhibit any signs of self-consciousness. My pre-tween (who is very excited to start calling herself such) is just starting to care about her hair, but because of what other might think. She is still operating from a self-centered position. From the time our kids were born, they considered themselves the center of the universe. It was clear they didn’t think about anyone but themselves (hello cluster feeding) and once they start talking, it’s clear toddlers DGAF. They might be the worst offenders of narcissism, if only because they can vocalize it while simultaneously sounding so damn cute. It's like you don’t even realize you’re being demoralized by these tiny terrors.
I never expected my kids to care about me when they were toddlers. Still, by then I was growing a little tired of everything being about them all the time. Our weekends were built around their nap schedules. I couldn’t open the toilet seat or refrigerator without a fight, thanks to the baby-proof locking mechanisms. Plus, my exhaustion went completely unnoticed by the 2-year-old toddlers who had yet to sleep past sunrise. These kids just didn’t care. Life was for living, parent consideration be damned.
Nothing brought my toddlers’ DGAF attitude about the world into focus more than these phrases, uttered pretty much on a daily basis in that period of their lives: