Why Toddlers Are Difficult – 8 Reasons & Practical Advice

As a parent, I’m sure you’ve experienced moments of frustration when dealing with your toddler’s behavior. Whether it be their tantrums, refusal to do as they’re told, or their inability to communicate effectively – toddlers can be difficult. Of course, this is all part of growing up and learning to handle different emotions and situations. However, in this article, we will explore why toddlers are difficult and look at ways to help reduce the difficulty that comes with raising a toddler.

8 Reasons Why Toddlers Are Difficult

Parenting can be a challenging experience at times. Toddlers are notorious for making life difficult for their parents with their tantrums, bouts of stubbornness, and seemingly constant need for attention. But why are toddlers so difficult? Here are 8 reasons why toddlers are often such a handful.

The Desire for Greater Independence

Toddlers are hard to handle – and for very good reason. As they enter the “terrible twos,” children start to become aware of their autonomy, and the desire for greater independence begins. Parents will often first notice this increase in stubbornness as toddlers begin asserting their opinions about what activities they prefer, what clothes they want to wear, or even what kind of food they like. From a developmental perspective, this behavior is perfectly normal – it’s part of how children learn to define themselves as individuals with their wants and needs.

Yet at the same time that toddlers start developing a sense of self-determination, many also lack the communication skills necessary to articulate those desires effectively. This can lead them to express their growing independence through tantrums or other problematic behaviors which can be challenging for parents who simply want the best for their children.

Easily Frustrated

It’s no secret that toddlers can be difficult to manage. From the tantrums to the never-ending energy, it can be hard for parents and caretakers to understand why toddlers are so easily frustrated. It’s important to recognize that toddlers are prone to frustration for a few different reasons.

First and foremost, toddlers have limited language skills and cannot effectively maturely communicate their wants and needs. This lack of communication often leads them to feel powerless, which can trigger fits of frustration, anger, or sadness. Additionally, they may not understand the consequences of their actions quite yet – so if they don’t get what they want right away, this can cause further distress.

More Active & Mobile

As parents of toddlers, we are all aware that the toddler years can be both a blessing and a challenge. On one hand, they grow and develop rapidly as they explore their new environment and expand their knowledge base. On the other hand, they also present unique parenting challenges due to their increased mobility and active nature. Why are toddlers so difficult? To understand this, it is important to consider the changing world in which they live.

Today’s toddlers have access to more technology and freedom than ever before—from cell phones to tablets, kids can stay connected with friends near and far. They are also much more mobile than previous generations due to increases in car seat safety standards and improvements in stroller design. Toddlers can now go further distances without being restricted by physical boundaries or limitations from adults.

Lack of Ability To Control Emotions

Even the calmest and most collected of parents can struggle to deal with the range of emotions that come with having a young child. One of the major challenges for toddlers is their lack of ability to control their emotions. This is why toddlers are difficult, as they don’t understand how to manage their feelings or those around them.

It’s common for toddlers to express themselves through tantrums and outbursts, which can be extremely overwhelming for parents who are struggling to stay in control. Parents must remain patient and understanding when dealing with their toddler’s emotions, as this will help them develop appropriate behaviors over time. Setting boundaries is also important; while it’s understandable that toddlers cannot control themselves at all times, teaching them right from wrong will help set the foundation for more effective communication in future years.

Limited Vocabulary To Express Themselves

Parents may find themselves scratching their heads, wondering why toddlers are so difficult to manage. While a lack of communication skills is often cited as a major source of the problem, there is something else at play: limited vocabulary.

Toddlers have an extremely limited number of words they understand and use to express themselves. As such, they are unable to adequately express their needs or desires and therefore resort to tantrums or other disruptive behaviors. This can lead to parents feeling frustrated or overwhelmed because they do not understand what their child wants or needs.

The key for parents is understanding that toddler behavior stems from a lack of verbal communication skills rather than some malicious intent on the part of the child.

Testing Limits

Sometimes, toddlers’ behavior may be frustrating for parents, but there is a reason why toddlers test our limits. It is important to understand why toddlers behave this way so that we can better manage their challenging behaviors and help them develop into well-adjusted adults.

Toddlers are constantly learning about themselves, others, and the world around them. Through exploration, they gain knowledge and understanding of boundaries which helps them learn how to interact with people and objects safely. As such, testing limits through disobedience or defiance is a normal part of their development process as they try out different behaviors to make sense of the world around them.

New Rules & Expectations

To help you keep your toddler calm and contented, you must establish rules and expectations from an early age. Setting boundaries will give your child structure and help him or her learn the difference between acceptable behavior and unacceptable behavior. Having these expectations in place will not only reduce frustration levels but also help promote self-control in your toddler as they grow up.

How To Handle Temper Tantrums

Why Toddlers Are Difficult

Having a toddler can be an exciting yet challenging time for parents. Toddlers are full of energy, curiosity, and strong emotions that can quickly escalate into temper tantrums. It is important to know how to handle these outbursts in a way that offers comfort and understanding to your child without compromising discipline.


The first step is to talk calmly and kindly with your child when they start exhibiting any signs of a temper tantrum. You must allow your child to express their feelings without shaming or punishing them for having those emotions. Acknowledge the fact that your toddler may feel misunderstood and validate what they are feeling before trying to reason with them.

Additionally, try offering some guidance by explaining why certain behaviors aren’t acceptable in the home or outside world, while also showing compassion and understanding towards your little one.

Stay Calm:

The best way to handle any type of outburst is to stay calm. Take some slow deep breaths, count backward from 10, or distract your toddler with a simple activity like drawing or dancing. Doing something physical like going for a walk can help shift the energy in both your and your toddler’s favor as well as provide an opportunity for connection and conversation afterward.

Be Present

By remaining calm and patient, you will create an environment in which your child feels heard and understood, allowing them to safely express their feelings without judgment or reprimand.

When responding to a temper tantrum, stay close but give them some space to work through it on their terms. Talk about what is happening in simple language that they can understand; explain why certain behaviors are inappropriate or unacceptable without being critical or overly emotional.


It’s necessary for adults should remain calm and understanding of their child’s feelings, so they can learn how to control them responsibly. Through this simple act of modeling, toddlers will begin to understand how better to respond in difficult situations.

Connect and Correct

The best way to handle toddler temper tantrums is by connecting with your child and then correcting the behavior.

First, it is important to take a deep breath and try not to take your child’s outburst personally. Next, approach your child in a calm voice and make sure they know you’re there for them. This will help create an environment of safety so that you can talk through the issue at hand without getting angry or frustrated. When your child starts to calm down, use clear language to explain why the behavior was wrong and provide appropriate consequences if necessary.

Toddler Tantrums: When To Worry

Toddlers typically experience intense emotions due to their lack of ability to express themselves or regulate those emotions. When they become overwhelmed or frustrated they may throw temper tantrums. Most times, these episodes last no longer than 15 minutes and can include screaming, kicking, hitting, or crying. It is also not uncommon for them to pull at their hair or bite themselves as a way of expressing their feelings.

Positive Parenting Tips for Toddlers

As parents of toddlers, it can feel overwhelming to keep up with the energy and ever-changing needs of our little ones. But positive parenting is an important part of helping your toddler grow into a well-adjusted child. Here are some helpful tips on how to practice positive parenting with toddlers:

Look for the Good: It’s easy to get bogged down in the negative behaviors that toddlers often display. Instead, look for what your child does well and focus on those things; when you catch them doing something right, make sure to reinforce it with lots of praise!

Be Kind: Toddlers need consistent love, attention, and boundaries. Be kind in your approach while also setting reasonable expectations; remember that a toddler’s behavior is just part of their development process. Positive parenting is essential for raising healthy and happy toddlers. While it can be a challenge to keep up with their seemingly endless energy, there are a few key tips that parents of toddlers can use to ensure their children have the best start in life.

Self-Care: Self-care is important for any parent but particularly those looking after toddlers. Taking regular breaks throughout the day and scheduling time to relax is essential for keeping stress levels low so parents can give their full attention to their children when needed.

Pre-teach: Parents should try pre-teaching new ideas or concepts before they arise naturally in everyday life as this will help them explain things better and avoid confusion later on. Additionally, starting early with positive discipline techniques such as rewards charts or sticker charts will help toddlers learn good habits as soon as possible.

Start Early: Start as early as possible to teach them basic values and principles such as mutual respect and kindness toward others. As toddlers tend to be very active, regular one-on-one time is important for developing their language skills, social abilities, problem-solving strategies, and sense of self-worth. Showing them little acts of love like giving hugs or reading stories together can also help create an emotional bond between you and your child.

Be Patient: One of the most important aspects of positive parenting is being patient. Toddlers have limited communication and understanding skills, so try to take a deep breath and remain calm when dealing with your toddler’s behavior or tantrums. It’s also important to practice healthy self-care as a parent; fatigue or stress can make it difficult for you to be fully present and attentive when interacting with your child. Check out 20 Toddler Lunch Ideas For Daycare.

Related Questions: Why Toddlers Are Difficult

Why Do Toddlers Hit Themselves?

Toddlers hit themselves for a variety of reasons. It is important to understand that it is usually not intentional and does not necessarily mean the toddler is acting out.

One of the most common reasons toddlers hit themselves is because they are frustrated or overwhelmed. They may be trying to express their emotions, but lack the verbal skills to do so. This can happen when they are unable to communicate their wants and needs, or when they don’t feel heard or understood by those around them.

Another reason toddlers may hit themselves is because of sensory overload. This can happen when there is too much stimulation in their environment, such as loud noises or bright lights. In this case, hitting themselves provides a way for them to cope with the overwhelming sensations.

Why Are Toddlers, Picky Eaters?

Toddlers tend to be picky eaters for a variety of reasons. One of the main causes is that toddlers are naturally curious and like to explore different tastes and textures. This can lead them to reject certain foods that they may find strange or unappetizing.

Additionally, toddlers are developing their preferences and independence, so they might resist trying new things or eating what they don’t want. Finally, young children have small stomachs, so they may not be able to eat as much as adults do. This means that if they don’t like something on their plate, they won’t want to eat it and will move on to something else. All of these factors can contribute to picky eating habits in toddlers.

Final Thoughts

Toddlers are difficult due to their age, need for independence, and developing cognitive abilities. It is important to remember that toddler behavior is normal, and although it can be frustrating for adults at times, it is important to respond in a supportive manner and provide the structure and love needed for healthy development. Every child is an individual with unique needs, so different approaches may be necessary when dealing with challenging situations. With patience and understanding, parents can successfully navigate the difficult stages of toddlerhood. Read Babysitting Twins: How To Determine a Fair Rate of Pay.

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