How Life With 4-Year-Old is Just Like Being in The Mob. I Would Imagine.


September 10, 2013 by Katia

As you probably definitely maybe know I’m Jewish. But I’m going to need a confessional booth for this one. Forgive me father, I have sinned. I’ve never watched The Sopranos *lowers voice and gaze, shoulders drop* or The Godfather or *whispers* Jersey Shore. I did, however, watch both Analyze This and Analyze That, so I think it’s fair to say I have a pretty accurate understanding of how the mob operates.

When it comes to 4-year-olds, I think I have a fairly good grasp on how they operate as well. Remember when your baby was a newborn and was constantly feeding and whenever you told your husband, whose fault you knew this whole situation was but you weren’t exactly a 100% on how, that no, NO freaking way is he hungry again when he just finished eating a half an hour ago after being nursed for an hour and a half, and your husband smiled at you graciously and forgivingly (he probably also knew it was his fault) and said the magic words “growth spurt”? Well, babies are constantly growth-spurting. Trust me. Whenever you talk to a newborn’s parents they’ll tell you their baby is going through a growth spurt. After they’re done growth spurting the next thing they’ll want to do is practice different ways of yelling and throwing stuff at you and we give these different ways different names. First we call it ‘colic’ then ‘terrible twos’ then ‘he-didn’t-really-have-terrible-terrible-twos-so-he’s-like-compensating-for-that-now’. After, during and before the stages I’ve just mentioned, there’s the ever applicable ‘he’s just adjusting to The Changes’ and then there’s ‘four’. And sometimes, if you’re me, you’re stumped and then you turn to friends. ‘Was your yelling kid replaced with a louder and more often yelling kid?’ I was discussing this with a friend the other day and she introduced me to the term Effing Fours. I’ve never felt so understood. My life was making perfect sense again. There was a tremendous sense of relief that came with that. Oh, so it’s a thing you say, those fucking fooooours! Oh, I get it nooooow!


Handsome Benny

Handsome Benny

Our once cozy home has been transformed into a seedy mob hangout where sentences like “if you say no to my ques-ten I will throw this lego in your face” are being both said and backed up.



Here are a few other attributes of my life with Handsome Benny and Curly.

Threat issuance on both sides and bribery offers on one.

The surprising emergence of a Boss. 4 Year Old has been very preoccupied recently with the concept of “who’s in charge”. For a while he mistakenly thought that dad was boss but when met with the actual boss’s fury he realized the severity of his mistake. Not being a spring chicken when it comes to manipulation he immediately corrected himself: You’re boss, Daddy’s boss, I’m boss, 1 Year Old’s boss. We’re all bosses here! Heyyy!

The Boss

The Boss

The boss catches herself making a flustered but passionate speech about her deserving some R-E-S-P-E-C-T (and finds out that not spitting into her eye is what it means to her).

Kicking, throwing things and coming up with creative forward thinking retaliation tactics are all part of our current reality.

I’m hanging in there but the Effing Fours are not for the Faint hearted (see what I did there?).

Are you Fighting the F*&#ng Fours too, Friend?

37 thoughts on “How Life With 4-Year-Old is Just Like Being in The Mob. I Would Imagine.

  1. Thankfully I’m through the Fucking Fours (yes, I always called them that!) but I will be forever scarred by the experience. My first kid wasn’t that bad, actually, but my second may have been the Godfather incarnate. He was ruthless and willing to take lives in order to exert his influence.

  2. Oh, Katia! This piece terrifies me. I’m not sure that I’m going to make it through the Terrible Twos. He’s all about negativism (“No eat!” “No shirt!” “No sing, Mommy!”) and constant demands (“I want this!”). Hourly (or more) tantrums are the norm. My next door neighbors have three (crazy!) little boys, and I nearly burst into tears when they said that three and four were far harder and worse than two. Someone give me strength.

    • Katia says:

      Don’t panic! I’ve only selected that bad parts to talk about, because they’re funnier blah blah, but I promise to send you a comforting FB message about all the good parts and there are SO many. XO

  3. Jean says:

    Noooooooooooo. I’m almost at the end of three. I thought I was in the clear til adolescence. Sad day, Katia.

  4. I am NOT looking forward to this! YIKES!

  5. Just wait til you get to the Sucky Sixes! That’s where my son is now.

  6. Stephanie Sprenger says:

    I am laughing out loud but still very much feeling your pain. You should re-read this post and realize, “See? The F-ing Fours aren’t so bad! They’re practically poetic when I write about them!” (By “I” I mean “you.” Clearly.) You have a way of making even horribly, mundanely, annoyingly frustrating parenting moments something magical and funny. And- I’m sorry. Been there. I will now keep my mouth shut about 6&7 year olds. I hate to be a killjoy. xo

    • Katia says:

      Aw, thank you so much, I really treasure this comment. I love you and appreciate you for not being a killjoy. Don’t know if I could take that right now.

  7. HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA. You are simply brilliant, my dear. I’m only sad that I’m not even yet at 2… and now I know how much further I have to go.

  8. Sarah says:

    LOLOLOLOL I love reading your posts! Well, my daughter is almost seven and her favorite line is “You are NOT the boss of me!” so the obsession with the boss seems to linger…. And she’s definitely working on the bribery, “Let me do this and I’ll give you ten dollars.” Not that she even has ten dollars. I think you’re onto something….

  9. Dana says:

    Wait til the effing fourteens, to be following by the effing fifteens. You’ll get a break in between though, so you’ll have time to recover.

  10. I love the term Effing Fours. I love you. HA to all of this. Tucker, who is four but (um not really four???) recently said to me – after I said “NO I AM THE BOSS” “I AM THE BOSS.” I was like um no. you are not the boss. He laughed in my face. And then? Patted me on the head and said sorry mommy. Or something close enough to it to be disturbing. LOVE THIS.

  11. Sarah Almond says:

    Four was trying with both of my children. My son hit five and it was a little better. My daughter hit age five and it was almost magical! Hang in there!

  12. Hands down…all of them.
    It was the threes. Kid got an attitude that made me have to learn that you can’t pick them up by the ankles and throw them out of a moving car.
    I can’t wait until the teen years.

  13. Yvonne says:

    Effing fours were a long time ago in our house but I do clearly remember there was a change. I remember discussing this with other mothers at the time – our four-year-olds seemed to considerably less willing to do as asked, and were just somehow more separate from us. One mother put this down to her daughter spending more time with other kids at nursery. She felt she had to constantly reconnect (okay, what she actually said was more like: “I’d just got her knocked into shape during the summer and then nursery started again and now I’m having to start all over again.”)

    The only other age that I noticed a definite change was at 14. My daughter who had been extremely cuddly up till then suddenly began to see such things as gross, or juvenile or some similar teenage word. (Though I still get a few.) So, once your through the 4s, you’ll have a few years of awesomeness before the next bout of awfulness!

  14. nataliedeyoung says:

    Okay, this is hilarious. Darn right you’re the boss! See that he never forgets it!
    And the way you describe child development stages? Very, VERY accurate. Sometimes the irascible stages aren’t grown out of terribly easily…

  15. Jen says:

    Oh Katia, Katia, I hope you don’t think this is it? Because you’ve got so many more of these years to come. Yesterday he threw a giant inflatable pony at me. Every question is met with him saying “on one condition.” Or “what will you give me if I do ……” Or “I’m going to break this (fill in the blank) if you don’t…..”
    I’m assured that he will grow up someday, I don’t believe a word of it. It’s just going to be a different version of the same master momipulation. (see what I did there 🙂 )
    ALSO I want you to know I was laughing out loud when I read this. You couldn’t have described this more perfectly.

    • Katia says:

      Oh, I know Fucking Fours will be followed all too quickly by Fucking Fourteen and Fifteen, sucky sixteen and seventeen and it goes on and on. I loved your comment and you should trademark momipulation!

  16. […] post was a Finish The Sentence Friday post on the topic: The best memory I will have of this […]

  17. Mercy says:

    Yes, I’ve got one in the midst of the fours. She has been a terror since she was 2, but has only gotten worse. What ever happened to my darling baby? Her baby nickname was “princess”. Now it is “trouble”.

  18. Robbie says:

    I miss the days when my kids thought I was the boss….

  19. Lynn says:

    Yes! Thank you for this. Misery loves company, right? My four and a half year old has gone totally nuts. The other night, when we requested he sit down and finish his dinner, he PEED ON THE DINING ROOM FLOOR. On purpose! WTF?

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