It used to be just a number.  The sum of 1 + 2.

No longer.  Now it is a curse word.  A dreadful syllable; the sound of which can induce a shudder.  Threeeeeeee.

The ” Terrible two’s “.  Ha! Who came up with that one?  Two? Terrible?  When exactly?

Oh, you mean when they cry about something other than hunger or sleepiness?  Is that the ” terrible” we’re talking about here?  Oh right, when they stop liking mushed avocado and won’t eat it anymore?   That’s just not right.

First time parents love to announce the onset of terribleness.  Oh my goodness, we are entering the two’s,  they’ll say to everyone,  with a look of exasperation on the face, but a twinkle in the eye.  Because really, isn’t she so cute when she cries about a broken toy?

Hey First Timer, has she kicked you on purpose yet?  Hard?  No, of course she hasn’t, not yet, because she isn’t ….


Here’s my theory:  If we all knew how god-awful three was, none of us would have children.  Yeah.  It’s that bad.  If I had known that my son would grab my hair in both fists while simultaneously screeching in my face..I might have paused for thought.   So they throw us all off with the whole ” Terrible Two’s”  business.  Give it a cute name, two year olds are cute, how bad could it be… I get it now.  Very crafty.

My other theory is that no one could come up with a decent catch phrase using the word ‘three’.

The Therrible Threes?  Three is not the Bees Knees?  Free me from Three?

Regardless,  three is here in my home.

And it is trying to kill me.


Here it is on it’s third birthday.  Isn’t it sweet?  Look at it’s little tie and those big, brown…..Ah Ha!  See?!  It got you too.  Oh, it’s so cunning.   I thought I still had the same darling child I’d had just the day before.  When it was two.


Three has freaked me right out.  It’s made cry and yell and generally act in ways I honestly never thought I would act in front of my child.

Peeing on the floor to spite me?  Throwing anything I try to take away from it.  Running away from me towards four lanes of traffic?  Yelling, tantruming, kicking, etc, etc, etc….?

It spent an entire weekend this summer, acting so horribly, draining us so completely of our patience, we were legitimately frightened.  ” Is he…..a bad person?,  was the nervous question we shot each other constantly in agonized glances.

Yes, I’m using the pronoun ” It ” to refer to my son.  I have to.  That can’t be my little boy.  It just can’t be.  It’s the Three in him.

The Three made him do it.




Heather Bogolyubova

About Heather Bogolyubova

Heather Bogolyubova has an un-pronouncable last name. A Maine native, she's returned to the Pine Tree state after several years in New York. Now, she's a newlywed, has a new baby, a new job, and lots of fancy shoes she can never wear in the snow. The job: Stay-at- home mother and wife. Its hard. She's going to tell you all.