kids

40 Memes That Perfectly Capture The Struggle That Is Life With A Toddler

by CafeMom

Many parents are thrilled to get through the newborn phase and finally enter the wonderful world of the toddler. Not only is there suddenly a light at the end of the diaper tunnel at this stage, but there are also longer stretches of sleep at night and a little person who can finally start to articulate his or her wants and needs. But parents of toddlers know that this time also brings with it new challenges that leave them not knowing whether to laugh or cry.

As parents navigate through the terrible twos and threenager years, they also see their little ones blossoming into independent, opinionated tiny humans. Yes, they may struggle to wipe their butts, refuse to eat their food, and wake up to creepily stare at their parents in the middle of the night, but it’s all more than worth it as parents see them growing and changing. The toddler years are the years that will completely test parents’ patience and willpower.

But despite the emotional roller coaster ride of toddlerhood, they are also the days, weeks, and months that moms and dads will never forget. Check out these 40 hysterical parenting memes that perfectly capture life with a toddler that every parent can relate to.

And let us know of any memes we should add to this list!

This article originally appeared on Cafe Mom.

Sharing Snacks With Toddlers

Sharing Snacks With Toddlers

For whatever reason, the kiddos refuse to eat anything that’s made for them. But the second a mom tries to sneak a snack, they act like it’s their property.

Getting Toddlers To Sleep In Their Own Beds

Getting Toddlers To Sleep In Their Own Beds

As wonderful as snuggles are, waking up to little footsteps coming into bed — and then taking up all of the room — can get old pretty fast.

Handling Public Toddler Meltdowns

Handling Public Toddler Meltdowns

Toddlers literally have no shame and the greatest proof of this how they act after a public meltdown. They can go crazy and get stares from everyone around but not care in the slightest.

Toddler Independence

Toddler Independence

Not being a helicopter mom and giving toddlers some freedom to do things on their own can be pretty difficult. Especially when parents take a step back and feel like they’re helplessly watching when their toddler is about to get hurt or make a mess!

Dealing With Clingy Toddlers

Dealing With Clingy Toddlers

There’s no greater feeling than the love a kiddo has for his or her parent, but sometimes children can love a little hard. Given that they have no concept of personal space, sometimes they can feel like an extra body part.

When Toddlers Interrupt Bathroom Time

When Toddlers Interrupt Bathroom Time

One of the things that parents give up when they have kids is any sense of privacy. Boundaries and alone time means nothing to toddlers so having an audience while taking a shower can become part of the norm.

Cleaning Up A Toddler's Mess

Cleaning Up A Toddler's Mess

Well, if parents had nice things before their little ones entered the walking stage, they most likely don’t anymore. It’s amazing the amount of damage toddler tornados can do and how quickly they can get it done!

When Toddlers Lovingly Trash Their Books

When Toddlers Lovingly Trash Their Books

Fostering a love of reading from an early age is a wonderful thing, but when sticky, clumsy fingers get ahold of the pages in that colorful picture book collection, things can get pretty damn messy.

Talking To Expectant Parents About What Life Is Like

Talking To Expectant Parents About What Life Is Like

When parents make it past the baby stage and are entering the terrible twos or threenager stage, they quickly learn that life is still a sh*tshow, just a different type.

Watching Toddlers Mess Up The Kitchen During Snack Time

Watching Toddlers Mess Up The Kitchen During Snack Time

Nothing and nobody is safe from crumbs once toddlers get their hands on crackers. The worst part of toddler snacks is that somehow it feels like they always manage to start making messes as soon as parents finish cleaning up.

Dealing With Toddlers At Bedtime

Dealing With Toddlers At Bedtime

Toddlers never have as many emergencies as they do when it’s time for bed. Only then does it feel like negotiating with tiny, demanding CEOs for extra books, cups of water, and trips to the bathroom before finally getting them down for the night.

Trying To Potty Train A Toddler

Trying To Potty Train A Toddler

One of the most difficult things to do is to get potty-training toddlers to admit that they have to go to the bathroom — before they have an accident.

Throwing A Birthday Party For Toddlers -- At Home

Throwing A Birthday Party For Toddlers -- At Home

Hosting a toddler playdate can leave parents feeling both physically and emotionally drained. That’s why hosting a birthday party for them — at home — is basically a parent’s equivalent of running a marathon.

Trying To Use The Bathroom When A Toddler Wants Something

Trying To Use The Bathroom When A Toddler Wants Something

When toddlers want something, they want it now. Which can leave parents out of luck when trying to sneak in a pee break if their little ones decide they’re hungry and Mom isn’t readily there to get them a snack.

When Toddlers Want A Snack

When Toddlers Want A Snack

Let’s face it, no matter who parents are, where they happen to be, or what they are doing, if they have a toddler they are pretty much just that tiny human’s snack b*tch.

Trying To Get A Toddler To Listen

Trying To Get A Toddler To Listen

One thing that little ones aren’t good at is listening and following instructions. Tom Hanks has better luck getting Wilson to listen than a mom has with her toddler on most days.

Making Siblings Get Along

Making Siblings Get Along

Combine toddlers who are still learning how to share and their territorial siblings, and a parent is bound to get a lot of screaming and fighting.

When A Toddler Wants Something

When A Toddler Wants Something

Why is it that no matter how busy mom is, she’s always still the go-to when a toddler wants something? Dad could be sitting right there but Mom can’t even get a bathroom break in peace.

When A Toddler Is Driving The Pets Nuts

When A Toddler Is Driving The Pets Nuts

Toddlers and their pets can be the best of friends. But sometimes small children’s endless energy has even their beloved dogs or cats needing them to take it down a notch.

When Parents Finally Have Free Time

When Parents Finally Have Free Time

It can feel impossible to get anything done when a toddler is awake and running around. But thanks to how draining it can be chasing them around all day, parents are ready to crash the minute they go to bed.

Trying To Follow A Toddler's Story

Trying To Follow A Toddler's Story

Toddlers have a talent for going on and on when they are telling a story. And thanks to their creative imaginations mixed with their short attention spans, parents need some luck keeping up with what they’re saying.

Trying To Get Toddlers To Go To Sleep

Trying To Get Toddlers To Go To Sleep

Forget going to the gym — putting toddlers to bed can require some serious cardio and is the only workout that moms need. From chasing them and scooping them back to bed for the hundredth time to trying not to have a meltdown if they come out of their rooms yet again, bedtime is seriously trying.

When A Toddler's Birthday Party Is Over

When A Toddler's Birthday Party Is Over

Once parents have a little one, their weekends slowly begin filling up with kid birthday parties that require time, energy, money, and a positive attitude around sugar-filled toddlers that many parents just don’t have.

Watching Toddlers "Clean" A Mess

Watching Toddlers "Clean" A Mess

Toddlers need to learn how to clean up and it’s always wonderful when they offer to help. But parents know that their assistance will just turn into more work for them, and that can be painful.

Getting Soaked When Toddlers Take A Bath

Getting Soaked When Toddlers Take A Bath

When toddlers take a bath, more water ends up outside of the tub than inside the tub. Parents might as well wear raincoats for protection from the splashes!

When Parents Take Their Eyes Off A Toddler

When Parents Take Their Eyes Off A Toddler

The golden rule of having a toddler is that all parents want is some quiet but as soon as they get it, they know that their little one is seriously up to no good.

How Parents Look When They Have Toddlers

How Parents Look When They Have Toddlers

Much like becoming president ages a person immensely, so does having a toddler. From the sleepless nights and cold chicken nugget dinners to the constant worrying, those bags under the eyes and gray hairs can sprout pretty much overnight.

When Strangers Start Judging

When Strangers Start Judging

Telling parents at the grocery store that they have their “hands full” is pretty much code for damn that wild child is out of control.

When Toddlers Threaten To Give The Cold Shoulder

When Toddlers Threaten To Give The Cold Shoulder

The thing toddlers don’t realize is that when they say they’ll never speak to Mom or Dad again out of anger, it leaves parents wondering one thing: Is that a promise or a threat?!

Realizing That Toddlers Are Better Than Birth Control

Realizing That Toddlers Are Better Than Birth Control

Despite how enticing that new baby smell is, all parents need is a toddler meltdown to remind them that those innocent newborns turn into 3-year-old monsters — fast.

When Parents Ruin A Toddler's Life

When Parents Ruin A Toddler's Life

Only a toddler’s parent knows exactly how he or she likes certain things and when those minor details are overlooked, it’s cause for a serious meltdown.

Cleaning Up A Toddler's Craft Project

Cleaning Up A Toddler's Craft Project

Sure, crafting with toddlers is a fun activity, but when glitter is involved it becomes a lifelong commitment — because that stuff is never getting cleaned up.

Waking Up Early On Weekends

Waking Up Early On Weekends

Who needs an alarm clock when parents have a toddler? These tiny humans don’t care that it’s the crack of dawn and act like they own the place instead of letting mom or dad get an extra hour of sleep.

When Toddlers Creep At Night

When Toddlers Creep At Night

Parents have officially joined the creepy toddler club when they wake up to their little one silently staring at them.

Teaching Toddlers To Be "Gentle"

Teaching Toddlers To Be "Gentle"

When toddlers become big brothers or sisters, one of the first things parents try to teach them is how to be “gentle.” Unfortunately, that isn’t a skill they’re born with.

Sharing A Bed With A Toddler

Sharing A Bed With A Toddler

It’s amazing how something so little can take up so much room. Let’s face it, toddlers can be serious bed hogs and parents are there just to warm their spots and get kicked in the process.

Taking A Family Photo With A Toddler

Taking A Family Photo With A Toddler

Getting a frame-worthy family photo is like mission impossible between trying to get everyone to sit still, smile, be looking in the right direction, and have their eyes open. And when toddlers are in the mix, it’s pretty much guaranteed that it won’t happen on the same shot.

Dealing With An Overtired Toddler

Dealing With An Overtired Toddler

It doesn’t matter how precious a toddler normally is, he or she completely transforms after missing nap time.

Taking A Toddler To A Restaurant

Taking A Toddler To A Restaurant

When parents go out to eat with their toddlers, they’re pretty much working on borrowed time to see how far into the meal they can get (like just placing the order) before having to do damage control.

Waiting For Toddlers To Wear Themselves Out

Waiting For Toddlers To Wear Themselves Out

Although it’s helpful to think that toddlers will come down from their sugar high or tucker themselves out and eventually lose steam, experienced parents know that’s just a lie we tell ourselves to get through.