Despite our best efforts, this bubbly smiling kid:
Isn't always smiling. They have a very popular nickname for her age group, "the terrible twos."
I personally don't think they are terrible. Yes, they are taxing and inconvenient for me at times but I wouldn't say she's ever been terrible.
But it's not about me. It's about her. Her growth in understanding and interpreting situations. Her world of communication is broadening rapidly and it can be a roller coaster for a youngster to try and keep up while keeping emotions in check.
I should put it out there that we are peaceful parenting enthusiasts and although this is not about peaceful parenting, I believe that it does come into play.
I know that some people look at me like I'm strange when my daughter gets frustrated at the crayon that won't fit in her pocket leading her to toss it in frustration and start to cry. I get the odd looks because my reaction isn't to swat her bottom or her hand for throwing a crayon and I certainly won't speak to her harshly because she's crying. Crying is permitted in this house. I'll tell her that we shouldn't throw things but I don't bark at her. I know she's frustrated, and it's a completely valid emotion! She is allowed to feel frustrated, confused, etc. and being a toddler she doesn't yet have the tools to process these emotions and it comes out in what is often referred to as a tantrum. My job is to nurture her growing personality and teach her the tools to process these very new, very big feelings, and I personally don't feel that reacting with anger or with strict militant authority is the way for me to do it. I'll hug her while she's upset, tell her I understand she's upset and it's okay to feel that way. Usually she'll get out a good little crying session, sometimes while snuggled on my shoulder and other times she prefers to work out her tears on her own. Once she's calm (the amount of time that takes varies) I'll ask her to please pick up, in this scenario the crayon, and she'll pick it up and 50% of the time she'll issue an apology without any coaxing.
Now, before you think we're push overs, time outs exist in our household. Aggression or bully behavior are not permitted in this house. Period. When these occasions do happen we speak in a firm lower tone of voice and thus far it's an instant attention grabber.
In our house how we deal with this age is where parenting meets mothering(nurturing). We prefer to nurture rather than "train".