Who We Are | Friends & Supporters | You're Not Alone | We Recommend | My Child | Store

Search the Invest In Kids website.

Ages and Stages

What to expect and how you can help, as your child grows and develops.

Answers for Parents

Reliable information on a wide range of topics.


Thank You Scotia Capital for supporting this website.

Home > My Child > Answers For Parents

My Child
About 2 Years of Age: Parenting

When children reach age two, it can be great fun and very exciting for parents some of the time, and thoroughly frustrating at others. Your child may show tremendous spontaneity, trying new things all on his own, being really cute as he pushes to be independent - but this age can also be challenging, with tantrums and sudden, unexpected shifts in emotions.

About this time, "NO!" is your child's favourite answer. She needs help, but doesn't want it. She feels small, but wants to be big. She can be clinging and afraid you'll abandon her, and in the next moment she may want nothing to do with you.

Except for adolescence, this may be the most challenging time for parents. You may feel frustrated, and perhaps rejected, and it's a real struggle to find the right balance in handling a child who seems to want to be independent, but still really needs you.

Routines may help in getting through the day, but try not to stick to them so closely that you and your child get into battles. Be as flexible as you can reasonably be. Let your child feed himself, even with his hands. Give limited choices, such as "the red shirt or the green shirt?" And if your child is in a very negative stage, it's not a good time to try toilet training - wait until he's older, even if it means you have two children in diapers.

Remember, each child is unique. Not all children develop at the same rate in each area, such as movement, communication and relating to others, so this information is meant only as a general guide. If you have concerns about your child's development, you should consult your child's doctor.

Rate this Page

Related Content

Related Resources


We built this site for you. How are we doing?

tell us

Join Us
Helpful tips and parenting news delivered right to your inbox.

sign me up

Mini Poll
I feel pressure from my in-laws to change how I parent.

I agree
I disagree
I am somewhere in between

Help Us Help Kids
Help Us Help Kids
Donate Online
Get Set for Life

Your Child's First Five Years