Lately Nookie has been exhibiting some worrying behaviour… She’s started becoming rather obsessive about things, to the point where it’s making everyone’s life difficult. Climbing into bed is no longer a simple matter. It involves a set routine of steps for both of us, and if I make a mistake, climb too soon, or she slips, all hell breaks loose and she has a complete and utter meltdown! I don’t mean a little paddy, I mean a full-on screaming fit that takes her ages to come out of! Opening doors, allowing anyone into the house, getting dressed/undressed, passing her the TV remote… all these simple tasks have suddenly become immensely difficult and stressful for the whole family.
Sometimes it’s not an issue and she does it without thinking. But other times, woe betide anyone who doesn’t do what she’s specified (usually if she’s tired or has just woken up)! This evening she had a fifteen minute meltdown after Hedgehog didn’t take her T-shirt off exactly right. No amount of putting it back on for her would soothe the initial offense. She screamed the house down for ten whole minutes.
When I’ve asked others if this is normal three-year-old behaviour I’ve had a range of answers. Some seem to feel this is usual toddler stuff and that she’ll grow out of it. Others think she’s gone way beyond what’s normal and I should take her to see a doctor. I always err on the side of not over-reacting when it comes to behaviour, especially given Nookie’s “high-needs” temperament… but it really is starting to become a bit of a nightmare! Mornings have become hellish! She spent the first hour this morning after getting up going from one meltdown to another until I was screaming at her to stop screaming at me. The emotions in the whole house just up and up and up until everyone is shouting at everyone else. It’s really fucking hard.
People really aren’t kidding when they say three-year-olds are hard work are they? Damn rewarding work, but hard work all the same.