Be Afraid…Be Very Afraid

When I got pregnant with Caitlin more than four years ago I signed up for Baby Center’s weekly pregnancy e-mail updates. I looked forward to seeing each newsletter in my Inbox and to reading about the little person growing inside my gravity defying belly. I was thirsty for knowledge about her development. I wanted facts. I wanted reassurance. I craved information as much as I craved Taco Bell at 10 p.m. The pregnancy newsletters were soon replaced with infant and toddler updates and then preschooler updates. Now I receive weekly e-mail newsletters for Amelia. I’ll admit I rarely read them, not that I know what I’m doing or anything, but even my baby book library is dusty. The latest Baby Center e-mail, however, piqued my interest when I read the cautionary subject line:

A stranger among you? Behavior at 13 months

It seems a little early, but I suppose the Baby Center powers that be just want to slowly prep you for the Terrible Twos. Fortunately we haven’t yet witnessed the wrath of Amelia, although she shows her feisty side if Caitlin takes a toy from her. But so far Amelia seems more “docile” than Caitlin, to use the exact word their daycare director used.

Caitlin definitely went through the textbook Terrible Twos. We survived them relatively unscathed and I was even pregnant during the emotional joyride of hair-trigger meltdowns and public displays of mama/toddler smackdowns which usually involved some degree of hunger, exhaustion, or waiting in long lines. If the Baby Center folks really want to prepare unsuspecting parents for the “Terrible Twos,” they could send out e-mails with subject lines like these:

Stock Up On Hard Liquor: Behavior at 24 months
The Case For Exorcism: Behavior at 25 months
The Pros and Cons of Invisible Fences for Toddlers: Behavior at 26 months
Migraine Inducing Tantrums: Behavior at 27 months
The Child Restraint Leash, Cruel or Crucial?: Behavior at 28 months
Rethinking the Large Family, It’s Not Too Late: Behavior at 29 months
Mommy Needs a Time-Out: Behavior at 30 months
Psycho: Behavior at 31 months

And that’s just the first eight months.


  1. Renee says:

    We’re getting way too close to the terrible twos at my house. I’m stocking up on the hard liquor already.

  2. Amber N says:

    I have been reading your blog for awhile, but have not had a chance to comment, but I had to say, this made me laugh aloud. 🙂

    And this makes me want to be a mom, oh so much!

  3. Mari says:

    Oh, I’d totally subscribe to your newsletter! It could be for child development what The Onion or The Daily Show are to current events.

  4. Emily says:

    If only I could stock up on hard liquor right now…

    Honestly, Jack’s a good kid. He’s just very….willful. It’s “My way or the highway” with him, and unfortunately his vocab is quite limited so sometimes we just don’t know what he wants.

    Of course, sometimes we do know what he wants (like yet another Tom & Jerry cartoon) and we ignore it…

  5. Trisha says:

    Just When You Thought You Were Done: The public tantrums at 4

    Have They Been Replaced by Aliens?: The Behavior Your Children Save For When Your In-Laws Are In Town

    Sorry – couldn’t help myself.

  6. malia says:

    LOL! Oh, I needed that laugh, thanks! My son is 18 months and the twos are already here in full force. Oh and two was easier than three with our daughter. Three was when it all kicked in for her!

  7. mrsmogul says:

    Thanks for preparing me on the two’s newsletters. I get the Ivillage infant newsletters…I;m glad others subscribe to this as well…it’s nice and the OPRAH newsletter LOL

  8. J's Mommy says:

    When are the terrible two’s supposed to end? Because my little girl is about to turn 3 and there’s no end in sight.

  9. Courtney says:

    Oh, I can relate. In fact, here is another one:

    Is It Ever Too Early for Boarding School?: Behavior at 21 months

    Most days my daughter is my pride and joy — but some days I wonder if I am some kind of sick masochist for wanting another one!

  10. nancy says:

    That is awesome. I would absolutely read parenting e-mails if they were entertaining (and real) like this post!

  11. mommyontheverge says:

    GREAT! Those are so funny. Please start your own newsletters with these stories. We really need some humor in all these ‘MOMMY TO DO’ articles we constantly are bombarded with!

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