Threenager: Do you have one?

Before having children, I would laugh at the parents who had made up their own language to describe certain things about children. Threenager was one of them.

Who would describe a lovely little 3 year old as being as emotionally challenging as a teenager? Not me, nooooo.


They are surely just cute little people that want to play and draw all day?

Fast forward 3 years after popping out baby number 1 and welcome, m’lady, a threenager is born and well and truly holding reign in her kingdom of hostage parents.

If you are unaware of the term “Threenager” here is my definition.



The term used to describe a 3 year old who is emotionally simering just below boiling point at all times. Can be found with hand on hip, extra sass and has specific requirements for food preparation. They have a fondness for the word ‘no’ and are allergic to bedtime.

You may be fully aware of the threenager existing, but just to be sure that you have in fact correctly identified the correct species here are some key identifying factors which you may want to check


1. Hands are placed on hips often, with a head tilt and hip swag to rival Beyonce.

2. Food no longer can be eaten off the floor, it has to be on a specific plate with specific rules. Crusts are not welcome.

3. Bedtime is now a workout. This can be in the form of chasing after the threenager once they have de-robed still soaked from their ‘calming’ bath or as a game of get in and out of bed 3 thousand times (to name a few).

4. They do not accept kisses as the all encompassing show of love that they are. Kisses are now equal to snot: they need to be wiped off the face and onto the pants as soon as they are felt on the face.

5. “No” and “NOW NOW NOW” are the default responses.

If you have identified with the majority of the key identifiers above, congratulations you have a threenager!

Now, be sure that you are fully aware of all of the psychological requirements needed when looking after this species.

It is not for the faint hearted.

You need patience, more patience, the ability to be able to swear in your head/under your breath, and most importantly you need to find other parents who have one of these species to enable you to share (rant) your new and beautiful findings of the threenager as it grows larger and sassier.

Without the later you may find yourself in the toilet with your phone, a bottle of gin and a packet of pom bears as your threenager sings let it go in your absence.

Just know, just like every other stage, that this will pass.

Then, as they grow into actual teenagers, we will look back with rose tinted glasses.

However, right now: I wish you all the luck in the world and I feel your pain. See you in a few years with my rosey glasses.

Much love,

Mother Freckle xx

3 Comments Add yours

  1. thommcox says:

    WAAAHHHH!!! This is so me right now. I feel inspired by this to write my own account of my threenager… #prayforme

    1. Arrgh Tom! It’s tough, but just stick with it. As long as he feels loved and safe then he will settle back into a bedtime soon xx

  2. Zarah Mcleod says:

    Threenage kicks sucks big time! I’ve heard though that next is the effin fours!!! Send help 😂😂😂

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