I don’t know about you, but my toddler is a bit like Jekyll and Hyde, one moment she’s a shining angel in the sky and the next she’s a banshee screaming about her lack of raisins. It’s like a never-ending Russian Roulette of possible meltdowns from the mini human. So much so that I feel there are *at least* 10 species of toddler.
1. The “you woke me up” toddler.
This species can be found sat on the sofa with hair akimbo. They lurk around after unsolicited naps in either the car or before the school run and display signs of hostility to the waker for breaking their REM cycle. They are a difficult beast to tame but can usually be won over with the help of sweet treats.
2. The “I’m hungry” toddler.
This toddler is a bottomless pit, you just cannot fill them up. Usually, their preference is not for a bowl of veggies, and if you’ve spent longer than 10 minutes cooking it there is no way they’ll eat it. Their choices usually involve chocolate or lollipops and the “beige food diet” practised by many young’uns, if not followed by the grown-up, protests will be made. If you provide said foods of preference, one portion will not be enough, so enjoy “I’m hungry” ad infinitum.
3. The “plays with toys quietly” toddler.
This is a rarely seen toddler. When found it is extremely flighty; any distraction, loud noises or movement could disrupt the balance and break the spell, possibly leading to a morph into…
4. The “throws everything” toddler.
This toddler is the commonest breed of the “playing species“. Most often found throwing heavy and breakable items at the dog, cat, baby or *insert person or animal*. Pleas of “please don’t do that” are not understood due to the language barrier of “only food and naughty commands” processed.
5. The “wants the iPad toddler”.
This common species is found in every environment. Cries of “Peppaaaa” are frequently heard from this breed with loud dissatisfaction heard if an agreement is not received. They’re found commonly in restaurants, waiting rooms and on long car journeys and their call gets louder with each shout. See also throws everything toddler.
6. The “I only want Daddy” toddler.
This toddler is usually seen with mummy. The mother of this breed (part of the species Favouritism Infantism) frequently displays signs of harassment and exhaustion following repeated rejection from the little’un. This species waits until the mother is at a vulnerable moment and defenceless before taking hold of the mother’s fragile sense of self and shattering all self-belief of ability as a parent.
7. The “I only want Mummy” toddler.
This is also a common breed of the Favouritism Infantism, usually found with daddy – who is looking haggard and overworked with the added bonus of a broken soul to help motivate the toddler to keep going with insults. Usually placated with food or the iPad and enjoys rough play which Mummy would never approve of (see Flying Toddler, Filling Nappy)
8. The “I NEED this” toddler.
Usually found in its favourite haunt, The Entertainer or Smyth’s Toy Superstore in the most expensive aisle. They usually need something big and plastic and their commonest favourites are noisy toys. Their radar is well honed and their heightened sense of smell can sniff out your credit card at 50 yards.
9. The “you’ve ruined my life” toddler.
Also usually found in Smyth’s and The Entertainer and can be heard for miles around by their loud cries. Sometimes they get physical with the ability to drop to the floor like a sack of spuds and bash and kick the concrete with their super-human strength. Parent’s are frequently seen trying to bundle said child up and out without causing “a scene” – something the toddler has a keen ability to create in their wake.
10. The “asleep in bed” toddler.
This species is rarely seen – if found approach with caution as the sound of a pin dropping is enough to wake the beast and cause the transition into the “you woke me up” toddler. If found out of its normal sleeping habitat aka “the bedroom” pray to the Gods above, and attempt the move to said sleeping-hole. Handy tip – if the parent can float rather than walk within 10 metres of the sleeping toddler, all the better. See also learning to hover – a parent’s guide.
Have you seen any of these species? Or have you come across any of the other breeds? Let me know in the comments below. This is being forwarded to David Attenborough next week for his next epic series The Poo Planet.
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