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If You Thought the Terrible Twos Were Bad, Just Wait Until Three…

Photograph by Twenty20

When my oldest turned 2, I braced myself. The terrible twos were about to begin. And I was shaking in my cute little mom boots. Could I survive?!

Fellow moms had warned me, and I had recently read a book on positive discipline for toddlers in preparation and all the examples had echoed my worst nightmares. Things were gonna get dirty. This year was going to be war, and I was hopeful that I would have victory over the terrible twos.

But for my two kids who have passed ages 2 and 3 so far, I’ve determined that two is relatively easy! So much easier than I ever expected. In the weeks leading up to each of their third birthdays, I held my breath. Surely we’d get at least a short stretch of the terrible twos. But no, noooooooooo, they were waiting until the clock struck midnight on their third birthday. They were waiting to surprise attack me with The Terrible Threes.

Oh yes, the terrible threes are real. So real.

RELATED: 6 Signs You're Living With a Threenager

Don’t be too afraid, though. I’ve survived them twice now and can mostly laugh about it. Mostly. I only have flashbacks every now and then. So, if the twos are breezing by for you, prepare yourself for the threes to potentially turn your life upside down!

Laugh and cringe along with these rad moms as they share their awful and funny terrible three moments:

“At three, my daughter was figuring out how to argue and fight back but she didn’t have a clue how to exactly do that. One day she was telling me she couldn't watch the movie, 'Madagascar' because ‘It's too funny! I don't like it!’” -Kelly M.

“My 3-year-old pretty much thinks that ‘Stop now!’ means ‘Run faster while laughing in order to make your mom completely lose her sh*t,' and 3-year-olds can run fast!” -Diane H.

“My son had an epic meltdown because I wouldn't let him eat gummy bears for breakfast. He kept insisting, ‘But I'll only eat the green ones... green is like vegetables!!!’” - Katie R.

“I turned my back for just a few minutes to load the dishwasher, and the next thing I knew my daughter was showing me her ‘tiger stripes’. There were purple marker lines up and down all her arms and legs!” - Rose E.

“Three seems to be when they're old enough to be creative enough to get into some real trouble. Such as, mopping the kitchen floor with a whole bottle of coconut oil.” -Traci V.

He was legit mad and thought he was turning into the Hulk. In the middle of the dentist office.

“My daughter was just starting to realize she could throw some serious fits when I was nine weeks pregnant with my son and exhausted. We had had a tough day visiting family in another state and finally climbed into bed together. She was still so frustrated with life, and we were saying goodnight in the dark. She leaned over and was trying to kiss me goodnight and said in a huff, ‘Can’t find your mouf!’ I’ve never seen a little person so exasperated!” - Mallory P.

“My daughter likes to pick out her own clothes, especially shoes! She has a fascination with shoes. The other day I was trying to get her to pick a certain pair of shoes to wear that would match her outfit and she tells me, ‘I'm going to pick by myself! Don't tell me what to do!’ I didn't know if I should laugh or put her in her place. But she did end up picking the shoes she wanted (that didn't match at all), so I guess she won.” -Kristel A.

RELATED: 10 Reasons My Threenager Can't Wear That Outfit

“I put my son to bed at 7 p.m. Shortly after, he was up to change jammies and put on socks I don't know how many times. When I thought he was settled, I walked down the hall to find him in his bathroom washing his face and arms, covered in my makeup and eyeliner and rubbing essential oils on his tummy! Let’s just say the Lord has an extra dose of protection on this kiddo.” -Erika T.

“When my second was 3, he had his first dental cleaning and completely flipped during the whole thing. When he was finally done, he was behind me as I watched my oldest sit nice and still while getting her teeth cleaned. I see some of the dental assistants laughing and turn around to see him ripping his shirt off while yelling 'HULK SMASH!' He was legit mad and thought he was turning into the Hulk. In the middle of the dentist office.” -Kristen O.

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