sunscreen (or, how I torture my kid)

We all torture our kids with various things. 

For some, it is hand washing. For others, tooth brushing. It can be putting on shoes, drinking water, taking a bath or getting strapped into a carseat.

Over the last year for example, I've been torturing my son with this neato product:


Oh yes, I've tried different brands, let him pick them out, called it different names ("happy sunny lotion!") and all that good parenting stuff. 

Each one inflicts just as much pain and suffering as the next.

It goes like this…

I nonchalantly mention that sunscreen is happening in the near future. 

Torture has begun.

I soften the blow by letting him know good news.

He doesn't like the news, which is confusing. He loves the beach.

I ask him to explain.

Oh, it is just good old torture avoidance. He really does want to go to the beach. Probably.

So then I try a bunch of crap…  

This is where I attempt different parenting tricks. I already know the tricks so you don't need to tell them to me. Like offering to "do it together" or "how about you do it yourself"  or "I'll wait until you are ready" and stuff. Or making a game out of it "let's see how quickly we can do it, we'll count!" and blah, blah, blah.  

No really, I've tried all the methods and read all the books.

I have tried everything short of using any kind of force, because that just ain't my thing. 

But he is a smart little bugger.

He knows that no matter how it is presented I am essentially just saying this again:

And he doesn't like that. 

Torture resumes.

He screams so loud I expect the neighbors to call the police. They haven't yet. 

He screams a bit more.

Then suddenly, he stops screaming, stands up and agrees to put the sunscreen on. 


Not without more whimpering and whining though. Even a tear or two.

Finally, after all of three seconds we're done.


His arms and face have a thin layer of torture cream on them. 

But he has completely forgotten about it. 

And he runs to the door, ready to go, like nothing happened. 

Because really, nothing did happen.

I sure wish he'd remember this.

What do your little ones hate to do the most? 


My ever-popular disclaimer: this isn't a real-time post. He is cool with sunscreen now. But this was pure torture age 3-4ish.  

This entry was posted in crappy pictures, parenting, through the ages. Bookmark the permalink.

220 Responses to sunscreen (or, how I torture my kid)

  1. Laura says:

    hah! Ahhhh trying to understand the logic of kids…

    Torture in my house, some days, is hair brushing. Sigh. OH, even worse- hair washing!! Don’t know why- we’ve done both every day since babyhood.

  2. maggie says:

    haha… so funny. Bathtime is torture time for my 7 year old…. he hates it.

  3. Sheryl says:

    HOMEWORK. Yeah, that’s the torture device awaiting you in your not too distant future. My 7-year-old cried like a baby FOR NO REASON because she had to answer 1 question tonight. One question. From a reading assignment. About a girl & her dog. And she loves dogs. Go figure…

  4. Jamie says:

    We also have hair issues…my son has short hair, so one would think the maintenance of his coif would be no trouble at all, but he screams like a banshee getting his hair washed, dried, or styled at home. When he goes for haircuts, he is an angel though. WTF?

  5. Anna says:

    OH my gosh! This is the same as washing hair in our household! My 3 year old daughter just won’t have it.

  6. hands down.. putting their shoes on. Apparently they are torture chambers.

  7. hahahaha!! Yes I know that feeling too well. It used to be sunscreen for a little while but now it’s always rinsing the hair after washing. Heaven forbid the water touch their eyes or ears! They’ve been doing the ‘scream until the neighbours call the cops’ thing too…. :/ Brushing teeth is also apparently cause for screaming, unless I let them do it themselves, which doesn’t work. They’re 4 and 2.5 so can’t do it properly yet….meh….dentures would probably be easier to clean anyway.

  8. April says:

    Your blog is awesome, I think I’ve sent the link to everyone I know.

    I’m a first time parent of an 8 month old who just got his first cold. Who knew a nasal aspirator was a medieval torture device? Oh, and I’ve tried 3 different ones – the “awesome” one from the hospital (obviously not in our house), a little noses one and the automatic one. No dice. Man, I’ll be happy when he can blow.

  9. Katie says:

    My daughter is just 6 months old, but for the last 6 months, our choice torture device has been the car seat.

    Yes, since she was a little 4lb baby, she would throw a screaming fit when we put her in the car seat.


  10. Corrie K says:

    Our current torture times are diaper changes and nail clippings.

    Esp.when my 3 1/2 yr old was 20ish months old. Holy cow, changing her diaper was a nightmare!! She screamed BLOODY murder the ENTIRE time. Not even kidding. I had to change her in the bathroom at a public library one time, and you should have SEEN the looks people gave me when we came out. Just changing her diaper, folks, not beating the crap out of her.

    WHY do they not understand that in all the time it takes for them to pitch fits, we could have been long finished whatever it was we were doing?!?!?!

    • Karen says:

      Oh dear sweet Lord, if children would just understand that the screaming-crying-hitting- biting (self)-squirming-fit pitching only prolongs the dreaded event! (nasal aspirator, bath, having pants pulled up after peeing, etc etc.)

  11. Annie says:

    For the four year old it’s cutting fingernails…acts as if I’m about to amputate without anesthesia. For the 2 1/2 year old it’s diaper changing…I guess he likes sitting in poop all day long.

  12. LisaK says:

    This is exactly how my husband responds to all lotion and sunscreen. He can be so dry his skin might crack and bleed and still the tantrum followed by the application of microscopic amounts under duress. He insisted he doesn’t need sunscreenm because he doesn’t burn. Sigh. What can you do?

  13. JoAnna says:

    Putting on a shirt. I’m guessing maybe he feels trapped inside the shirt? Oh and wiping food off his face, he screams as if I’m rubbing sandpaper on his face or something…

  14. Mommazach says:

    Getting shots is torture for my son. I cant say that I blame him. Last time we were at the Drs office, they stripped him down to his underwear before his shot. he is 7 and weighs 40 lbs, but he turned into a crazed spider monkey as soon as the nurse brought in the syringe. Things got very ugly, and he told the nurse that he thought ” The people who make medicine just was to hurt kids with those needles because they could put the medicine in a pill but they dont”. He is freakishly strong and had to be pinned down for his own safety while they administered the shot. He stopped crying the minute the needle went into his little leg. Then he said ” Oh , I guess that wasnt so bad” . I cried when it was all over, and he hugged me and gave me the sticker the nurse gave him. The he said ” stop crying Mom, this was no big deal”

  15. Amanda says:

    torture time is getting my toddler dressed. people wondered why for pretty much the whole summer i let him run around in just a diaper (at least he wears cloth, they are cute!) but now it’s fall in northern illinois and he is forced to wear clothes. he screams and runs away every time, and now he is getting stronger and smarter every day and i might just hibernate for winter. i don’t know how the heck i’m going to get a winter coat/hat/gloves on this kid! oh, but he loves putting shoes and socks on. he will just wear a diaper and shoes and socks.

  16. Deanna says:

    Ours used to be handwashing (your story covers the process poerfectly)… but when we went to Auntie’s house, she used to make them wash like every 15 minutes (Germophobic). So, now that the kids are a bit older, and they still remember the hand torture, they do things like grabbing her hand and then telling her that they just picked up dog poop, or licking the doorknob to really freak her out! ๐Ÿ™‚ Glad they terrorize someone else!

  17. Allison says:

    Sunscreen is our torture device here too, this post is so funny! Going on three years now, she is nearly six! For her it is because it is wet and cold I guess, at least that is what she says. Can’t wait until she grows out of this one because it will happen eventually, right? Now she does it herself but not without high pitched whining.

  18. Annie says:

    car seat for the baby, face wiping for the middle guy, and hair rinsing for my daughter. what fun! hilarious post.

  19. Kerry says:

    Love your blog! I tried the “let him do it himself” trick too with my 2-yr-old. I was so proud of myself until I looked up from his legs and saw him putting it in his mouth and rubbing it in his eyes! Oops.

  20. Carly says:

    Pulling the plug out of the bath always gets my little man. He seriously believes that he is going to get sucked down the plughole along with the water. This is from a VERY smart almost 3 year old. I have no idea where he got this idea. I have to get him out of the bath the instant he pulls out the plug. A few times I have held his hand while the water does its thing. He screams and screams like mad. Ahhh… Oh well, that’s life as a parent…

  21. Robin says:

    Both my boys HATE getting their noses wiped and their faces washed. I’m sure that if it were up to them, they’d be covered in dry snot and caked-on yogurt until bath time. For some reason I can wipe their faces all I want if they are in the bath. Kids are weird.

  22. Meghan says:

    This is what I go through. But with my husband. haha. The only way I get him or the kid to cooperate is with the spray stuff. Babies.

  23. Moynihal says:

    This is why it is called “SUNSCREAM!” in our house.

  24. Pamela Susan says:

    lately, eating!! lol

    even though your little one is cool with sunscreen now, maybe for those who are still having issues with it could apply it with a paintbrush and “paint” the kiddo, or have them do it themselves. ๐Ÿ™‚

  25. Catherine says:

    Ah, that brings back memories. ๐Ÿ™‚ When my 7 yr old was about 8 months, he was terrible about getting his diaper changed. Would fight like the dickens. It wasn’t too much of an issue with me at home, thankfully, but once he had to start daycare, it was. The first day at daycare, he screamed so loudly that teachers came running from every classroom in the building, sure that someone was cutting his arm off or something. I warned them, they just didn’t believe me.

    Now, it’s homework. God forbid you ask him to write ANYTHING. It turns into an hour-plus whine and cry-fest, even over a single sentence.

  26. Denise says:

    Brushing hair and washing hair are the dreaded torture instruments here.

  27. Moynihal says:

    Try the Nosefrida. They still hate it, but it actually works so it goes faster.

  28. Amber Dusick says:

    Okay, you win. I never did think of painting! That probably would have worked too. Tucking that away in case little bro hates it just as much later on.

  29. Jessica says:

    Ugh! Hair brushing for my son is like I am murdering him. Every time. Every day. I have told him to either brush it or we cut it all off. Apparently, he likes his long hair more than he minds the brushing. But EVERY. FREAKING. TIME!

  30. Cheryl says:

    That would be hair washing for my 3 yo and chores for my 11 yo! same methods have been tried, none make the torture any less severe!

  31. Amber Dusick says:

    Oh yeah, I remember the face wiping screams. I just gave up eventually.

  32. CJ says:

    Same here! My son is 3 and for the longest time he has been terrified of the plug. He will pull the plug out but then move like a rocket to get out of the tub. He even has a squishy crab who he says is mean, and crab ALWAYS gets left in the bath wen the plug gets pulled, lol

  33. Brandy P says:

    My son got a sinus infection when he was about 15 months old. He would wake up with it all in his hair, smeared all over his pillow and both nostrils would be practically sealed with lime green snot…the joys of parenting ๐Ÿ˜‰ He was so pitiful.

  34. JenGuest says:

    This is the story of my life at the moment.

  35. CJ says:

    For my ds it is going wee in the toilet. Almost always creates a tantrum. He ates weeing himself to, so go figure

  36. Veronica says:

    Holding my hand is torture.I always get the “No!” yank hand away and darts into traffic!!

  37. Becky O. says:

    Brushing teeth…ugh. I can’t tell you the number of different types of toothbrushes and toothpastes we have purchased in order to make teeth brushing fun and less “torturous”.

  38. Vickie says:

    Hair cutting used to be the extreme torture, thankfully it is over, my son would scream blue murder, quite literally, i was also convinced i would have Police and Dept of Children services on my doorstep, so much so i would delay the murderous hair cut as long as possible ๐Ÿ™

  39. Stephanie says:

    Mine was terrified of the changing table. I guess he was afraid he’d fall off. Once I figured it out I stood him up when I could (i.e. not supremely poopy).

  40. Rosanne C says:

    Hand and face wiping–the seven year old sings “Mommy with the evil wipes” to the tune of “Farmer in the Dell” every time I go near the three year old with a wipe!

  41. Silverdragon says:

    Yes, I hear you Laura – it’s hair washing in our house too, though sometimes, if Miss 5 is in the right frame of mind and is singing a little song, she doesn’t even notice. Then she says in a surprised tone “that wasn’t so bad, was it?” Arghhh! What I’ve been saying for MONTHS!

  42. Katie says:

    Maggie add a glow stick or two in the bath water and turn off the lights ๐Ÿ™‚

  43. Silverdragon says:

    OMG Lisa, you too huh? My hubby HATES to put on sunscreen, but he is incredibly fair, so he has to, or burn to a crisp (or never go outside). He doesn’t like lotion either, but has very dry skin and eczema, so no choice. And we wonder about our kids??

  44. Sally Oakley says:

    I developed a parenting ‘theory’ early on: You should only have as many kids as you are physically and emotionally capable of protecting from harmful UV rays.

    Then, I had three kids. Oops. But I love them to bits, and torture them with sunscreen accordingly.

    Amber, thank you for another brilliant post. LOVE YOUR BLOG!

  45. Vero says:

    For us the torture is saline solution (lots of allergies that once sent us to the ER with acute sinus infection, so I must use saline at the first sign of congestion). You could think I’m chopping him in small pieces with a butter knife by the sounds of it!

    For sunscreen I opt for the spray on one. We live in TX so sunscreen is a must when playing outside, no matter the time of the year. I just chase him around with the spraying can. I’m sure I look hilarious. Oh well!

  46. Rin says:

    The screaming over face wiping has subsided for the moment since we now sing the clean up song. No idea why it works, but she loves it.

  47. Erin says:

    We had that issue, none of those worked. So, saved my life. Look for Baby Comfy Nose, best $15 I have ever spent!

  48. Mishka B says:

    yes, hair washing is indeed torture.

  49. Silverdragon says:

    This is actually a very common fear for children – it may be irrational, but it’s very real. You might be better pulling the plug yourself – after he’s out of the bath. If the plughole makes a sucking noise, that’s even worse.

  50. Ruth says:

    My 13 month old hates the changing table. I cannot change her diaper without her trying to sit up. It’s impossible to put a diaper on a sitting baby. I’ve resorted to letting her play with whatever I can grab while holding her…a bottle of fully secured teething tablets, a baby rectal thermometer (still in the package and therefore unused). Yes, I should plan ahead and have toys. One day, with all that extra time this working mother of two has ๐Ÿ™‚

  51. Cindy says:

    my favorite part of this post is when you talk about all the different parenting methods . . . blah, blah, blah.

  52. Silverdragon says:

    Vero – thanks for the laugh! I’m visualising you running after your child spraying him. Here is Aus it’s a bit the same – can’t get away from that burning sun!

  53. Silverdragon says:

    Amber – thanks, once again, for your hilarious blog – I’m sure you are single-handedly keeping thousands of parents semi-sane! No pressure or anything, but you’re doing an awesome job – keep it up!! ๐Ÿ™‚

  54. Susan says:

    Hairwashing!!!! My 3 year old is “allergic” to having water poured onto his head, and god forbid if he has to have a shower….. He will scream, kick and scratch to avoid having his hair washed. Except, when we were on holidays and the cabin only had a shower, he was miraculously cured of his allergy and LOVED the shower. We have returned home and the allergy has returned….

  55. MamaCass says:

    For my three year old daughter it’s hair brushing, and eczema cream. For my one year old son it’s diaper changes. You’d swear I was cutting off his leg.

  56. Stacey says:

    Oh, we have the same problem with both of my sons. So sad that they don’t like their birthday to come around because they know that the “well visit check-up” will be shortly after, often including vaccinations and flu shot. They work themselves into a tizzy every time. Within minutes after it’s all over, they turn the tears off like a faucet. And I am drained for the week.

  57. Kristin says:

    I would have given up, bought the spray kind and sneak attacked with it. Does that make me a bad parent?

  58. Jenn says:

    I did this to my own mom when I was 5 & had to get shots fo kindergarten. I remember it vividly! As an expectant mother reading this post, I’m getting rather terrified of what’s in store for me from my son.

  59. Leslie says:

    This is exactly why Mr. Rodgers used to sing “You can never go down, never go down, never go down the drain.” It’s not just your kid.

  60. Emily says:

    Hee. My kids have had cream rubbed on them because of the dry mountain air from about a week onward. They LOVE the massage of mommy putting cream on them, whether it’s sunscreen, or something pleasant. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Hmm. Any time they are expected to share me.

  61. Melody says:

    My little girl hates being wiped in anyway. Face wiping with cloth or sunscreen. Bottom wiping for poo nappy… The screams and tears or torture! Especially when she clenches her cheeks and thighs together, making it nearly impossible to get all the poo. Then the rashes come and a whole new wiping is required- rash cream ๐Ÿ™ *sigh* On the positive, I have switched to wash clothes and it is keeping things cleaner and she screams less ๐Ÿ˜‰

  62. Melody says:

    I like it!

  63. Erica says:

    Love. Awesome. We have torture pajamas at our house. Also torture shoes, torture clothes, torture breakfast, torture lunch, torture hair clips… It doesn’t end over here. We are very midevil. I feel like that is spelled wrong. Anyway… Thanks for voicing it so perfectly.

  64. Samantha says:

    Aha! I have a plausible ploy for sunscweam reapplication time! UV beads. The diabolical plan is to get Small to thread a bracelet.. they are white and change into whatever colour after UV exposure then return to white after. So when the beads are all pretty he gets to pop more cream on and I swop his bracelet for a fresh one. Wish me luck. This is still in the theory phase….

  65. elin says:

    my 10 month old hates it when I put her in her highchair to eat. I’m like, this is where you get food, what is wrong with that! It’s not like I leave her in there for a long time or anything. She just throws a fit. Who knows.

  66. Nicole says:

    Hmmm… So many “tortures” to choose from with my 2 year old daughter. First and foremost is the clothes changing. When its time to put on our PJs it’s me chasing her around the house until I FINALLY catch her then with the kicks to the face.. UGH but she wont get up til she has pants on (so funny) The morning comes and we have to do it all over again… So if you ever come to my house and wonder why shes still in her PJs… now you know!

  67. Shara says:

    For our oldest it is tweezing splinters out (she is 6 almost 7 and she will try to get it out herself first now), clipping finger nails (now it is fun), oh, and brushing hair (she has THICK, CURLY hair, it is torture for both of us)! We had an episode that she was soooooo upset about having a splinter taken out that she screamed so much she threw up. Clipping finger nails was a huge deal too, I think we got to hyperventilating about clipping her nails. So far with our youngest is seems eating an actual meal is torture unless it is chicken nuggets, french fries or peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.

  68. Sara says:

    My son refused to take his inhaler. I tried everything…bribing with chocolate chips, positive reinforcement, games, everything. It ended in a full blown tantrum with even more coughing – what the inhaler was supposed to stop in the first place! After fighting with the boy child for days, my husband tried and had the boy child pretend to be a tornado and guess what? He took his inhaler without an issue. Grrr…..

  69. Andrea says:

    I don’t have kids, but I distinctly remember hair washing as being torture day when I was a kid. I had LONG hair (down to my waist) as a little kid, which I couldn’t take care of myself, so obviously mom had to help me wash and comb it.

    The screams emanating from our house were clearly audible to our neighbors. One day, an older gentleman remarked to me mom, “WHAT were you doing to that poor child in there yesterday?” to which my mom replied exasperatedly, “Mel, I was washing her hair.” He laughed and said, “I figured it was something like that.”

    Why she didn’t just chop it all off, I will never know. My kids will have short hair until they can take care of it themselves!

  70. C&KsMama says:

    Band Aids.
    Even when my 2 yr old is gushing blood from her knees she screams louder when the band aid is near. When its on her, she thinks she’s paralyzed and wont move for about a half hour (an eternity for a toddler) I’m using this to my advantage and carry a pack of Band Aids in my purse for when we’re out and she acts up. It works great! (and its hilarious to be scared of a band aid so I get some entertainment out of it :))

  71. Nikki Owens says:

    ugh, yes!! my husband is a giant baby and refuses to use sunscreen or lotion of any kind. i’m pretty sure we’ll get a skin cancer diagnosis for him in the next five years. sigh.

    he does, however, suck it up to put sunscreen on our daughters. and every time he does it, he says, “this is how you know daddy loves you,” as he cringes and squirts the first blob onto his fingers.

  72. Jacque says:

    My daughter acts like she is being tortured when she has to do homework, EVERY DAY. And she acts like I am raking nails over her scalp when I brush her hair. She’s almost 8 years old, by the way. It never gets better, the torture just changes. SIGH.

    My 4 year old son thinks cleaning up his toys is torture…. until I tell him to pick up “x” number of toys in “x” amount of time…. then it becomes a game to him. He also thinks eating soup is torture, he acts like I have placed a bowl of worms and roaches in front of him every time I make soup, it doesn’t matter what kind of soup it is….. oh well!

  73. Christina says:

    For my 3 year old, it is toothbrushing and wiping his face. OMG, what torture. I am so nervous to take him to the dentist next week…
    My 4 month old is happy to do everything still…except of course sleep. But that is par for the course, lol.

  74. maggie says:

    Great idea ๐Ÿ™‚

  75. maggie says:

    Hair washing for my 7 year old son, owww owww stop it your hurting my head….. AS I am lathering the shampoo on his hair…. wow….. kids… haha

  76. Natalie says:

    For my 1 year old it’s cutting her nails. I routinely get clawed because she has daggers on her fingers, and that’s when I decide I have to do it again. It is definitely some form of torture device. I have taken to bribery and TV.

  77. Nic says:

    omg! snorting and sniggering at my desk again – I’m sure my colleagues can’t imaging that accounting could be this funny!! I am indebted for life to my friend for introducing me to this blog – the only parenting blog worth reading.

    We have had torture items over the years:
    1. shoes on – aged 2 cont. till 3yrs
    2. putting on a jacket
    3. taking off jacket (seriously, 12 months after )
    4. going to shops
    5. leaving shops (about 6 months later)
    6. My current favourite is to torture them with food. So funny makes dinnertime such a pleasant experience for everyone. I just RUN home to get the torture ready for them. Highlight of my day a;lkhequfgt – ooops slipped in all that sarcasm.

    thanks for being so f-kn honest. Helps me get on with life.

  78. Nic says:

    Hair is a real one – my daughter now 9, seriously cries like I have slapped her silly with a rolling pin (I’m guessing cause i’ve never actually DONE that)

    Apparently a very real thing, to do with sensory issues and a sensitive scalp – does she have really thick hair by any chance?

  79. Nic says:

    oh and re. sunscreen – I just mention enormous scar on grandpa’s stomach where they removed a kidney and 2/3 of his liver due to melanoma (seriously) and they seem to be just fine. I guess they will see a therapist when they are older…

  80. Monika says:

    My kids are 5 and still do not understand the concept of blowing their noses. We have had many a tutorial on this in our house, and they still run screaming for the hills when they see a keenex coming their way.

  81. sara says:

    The way my son protests sunscreen, you’d think I was trying to smear acid on his face. But apparently, he lets his preschool teachers do it with no fuss. So on school days, I don’t even bother and let the teachers do it. When I actually have to do it, I wait until we get to the fun place (zoo, park, etc.), and then pull the sunscreen out. Of course he protests, then I say “You can either let me put sunscreen on or we can go home.” And I close the door and head back to the driver’s seat. I’m sure some day I’ll have to make good on that threat, but so far, it’s never taken him more than a few seconds to decide he’d rather put on sunscreen and go to the zoo than go home ๐Ÿ™‚

  82. Monika says:

    Corrie, I had the same problem with my twins. One time an elderly store clerk actually knocked on the bathroom door to ask if “everything was okay” in there… THAT was an awesome day.

  83. Alison says:

    Oh my! “Insert useless parenting method here” effing hilarious! As a mum and daycare owner/teacher I found that priceless! Thanks for sharing:)

  84. lexa brinton says:

    i cant get them to take their shoes off, littlest tries to wear them to bed. screams like im ripping his feet off when i try to remove them.

  85. Karen says:

    Tell me all you want about the evils of spray sunscreen, but I’m still faster and the spray has a decent range.

  86. Kim Cady says:

    We had this same issue. As soon as she was big enough to face forward, the screaming stopped. We think that maybe the backwards facing seat made her carsick.

  87. phi says:

    have you tried letting him type out his assignments? this is what my mom did for me ( wayyyy back before everyone had a computer luckily my dad is a nerd) and typing made homework go significantly faster

  88. chelsea says:

    For the past few days with my 22 month old son it has been naptime. Half hour, hour, two hours… no matter how long he is in his (completely dark) room, he will just cry. Bear in mind he’s been taking 3 hr naps for the past year or so. I’m ready for this phase to be over… mommy needs naptime!

  89. prinji says:

    Mine is only 4 months old and so far (fingers crossed) she’s pretty happy. However, I have vivid memories of my little brother’s chapstick avoidance. Every winter he’d get super chapped lips, to the point that they were cracked and bleeding, and he REFUSED chapstick. My mom tried all of the useless parenting methods too. She’d put it on while he was sleeping, and most of the time he would wake up and wipe it off on his pillow.

  90. Brit says:

    This is the first time I’ve seen your blog, and I seriously had to cover my mouth to keep from waking my kids after reading this. Thank you for the laugh!

  91. Liz says:

    Face wiping is also a traumatic event in our household. So what I do is… Take her over to the faucet and hold her over the sink. We wash hands under the running water and “splash” water up on her face. She LOVES it. Go figure. I certainly would prefer a moist cloth to the face – but she likes the splash fest.

  92. Cheryl says:

    I have 6 kids, and we go to the pool almost daily in the summer. I will forever bless the person who invented aerosol sunscreen.

  93. Rebecca says:

    My daughter hates hair cuts she is 7 now and when we go to the hair dresser she cries and screams the whole time. It hurts it hurts. The first time I took her to a new hair stylist when we moved I warned her but she was still not prepared. Needless to say we do not switch stylists at all don’t want to traumatize them all. All the other clients in the shop look at them with weird looks and I’m just standing there going don’t worry folks this is normals.

  94. Rebecca says:

    My son is 4 and acts this way when he gets a band aid. If one goes on his leg he can’t walk. If it’s on his arm he can’t use that arm any more. Not sure what would happen if one was on his face. I think this is too funny. My daughter wanted a band aid for everything. She loved them

  95. Amy says:

    13 month old hates being shut out of the kitchen or put in the cot (screams and bangs her head on things, knocks on the wall)she’s been settling herself since we stopped bfing months ago but all or a sudden seems to hate being trapped and wants to co sleep again but hubby won’t be convinced after months of a,mostly, child free bed. 4 year old hates tidying up. He happily does it it kindy though (go figure) but seems to think it’s my vocation to pick up after him at home. I’ve tried games, rewards, songs, praise but still he moans, cries and moves like a snail *sigh*

  96. Nerissa says:

    I love the sunscreen shaking in your post, like you get secret enjoyment from torturing him…Maybe you could have called it “torture cream”?
    My 2.5 yo won’t let me cut her toe nails. Fingers are fine. Actually, I can’t get anywhere near her feet. She kicks and screams and so I just let it be. Sliver? Let’s put a bandaid on it quick…Bent back long toe nail? Well, I’ll manage to clip just that one, but it’s a fight!
    My 5 mon old is ok now but for about the first 3 months he would just scream when we put him in his carseat. And we live 10 min from town. SO glad that is over! He still won’t sleep in the seat though when it’s not in the (moving) car. Thank goodness for my baby carrier!

  97. Gab says:

    Yes! Love!
    FYI, we had a miraculous turnaround switching to stick-type sunscreen (Neut. baby makes one that looks like a small pink deodorant.) They can help drive it around on arms and legs but what they really like about it is: “It looks like daddy’s deodorant!”
    But by the time they have BO, I’m sure that will be the torture du jour…

  98. Megan says:

    My torture as a kid was having to wear socks. I hated the corners of them so much I went through and cut them all off one day when mum wasnt looking. She didnt make me wear socks again after that ๐Ÿ™‚

  99. Pamela says:

    5 year old son: BAND AIDS! It’s bad. (His sisters LOVE them)

    2 year old daughter: Holding my hand.

    7 year old daughter: Most anything….but poor baby has OCD ๐Ÿ™
    So coming close to trash, bugs, or brother can be torture sometimes.

    Newborn: definately the nose sucker!

  100. Bec says:

    6yo here *hates* to wear long pants (as opposed to short pants – apparently you can run ‘way faster’ in shorts but not long pants. Even when it is freezing cold I have a terrible battle getting him in pants!! Even caught him sneaking shorts into his school bag to change at school. I picture myself being interviewed on TV ‘Really officer I tried to dress him warmly but he just wouldn’t participate’. LOL.

  101. sarah283724 says:

    I just read every one of these comments and it was the most fun and entertainment I’ve had in awhile !!!Chase and spray with the sunscreen ha!!!!Love the bandaid threats lol I’m picturing you holding it up and staring her down and she’s still as a statue hahahaha………..all of the above !!!!My 5 1/2 yr old son hates chores,homework,washing up at bathtime,washing hands,putting on undies,cleaning up anything,SUNSCREEN time,cutting nails,walking anywhere,sitting in a cart seat in stores and 8 month old absolutely hates having her diaper changed and having her clothes changed…..hates being strapped in her carseat and when she was a newborn she would just scream and scream like she was in pain….choking !!!!! We didn’t go out much lol.She hates anything she is confined in especially the carrier,highchair and playpen………..and anytime she is not being given attention or held for any longer than about 2 minutes she screams as if in pain …torture !!!!!!!!! I’ll have her nap in the carseat and then just go and park somewhere pretty and read until she wakes up cause it’s such a hassle getting her to nap. I have to lay down with her and nurse her and she takes so long that I almost always fall asleep….then I gotta SNEAK away and hope nothing creaks or crinkles or I don’t bump anything or the door doesn’t crack when I open it oy ya yoy. I can put her in the carrier but it’s so hot and bulky and she pinches and pushes for a bit before she gives in and falls asleep……I love this blog you all are so funny with your stories,it really makes me feel normal when I read about so much of what I experience and I love the humor it usually ends in …..sigh,oh well !

  102. Sarah says:

    My 2 year old thinks having her nose wiped is torture (makes cold pretty painful), but that’s it really, lucky us!

    On the sunscreen thing, have you tried zinc? My niece hates sunscreen too, but loves wearing zinc – in skin colour… takes forever to do her body but minus the screaming =D

  103. Janice says:

    My twins used to both scream when getting their faces wiped. At one stage I realized that they did much better if I told them beforehand, “look at all that oatmeal on your face! let’s wipe it off!” My mom also used to make the wet washcloth talk like a puppet before wiping with it. Now that the are a bit older 2 1/2 they don’t fuss about it.
    Now it’s just the boogie sucking with the nose frida that my son screams bloody murder over. Learn to blow you nose buddy and it all goes away!

  104. Nicole says:

    Oh I completely forgot about the band-aids!! Haha, my daughter will be all on board to get a spongebob bandage but as soon as she sees it she immediately has a spaz attack! But shes ok to put them on mommy… and rip them off (ouch) Kids are hilarious!

  105. Mimi says:

    Our oldest is almost 7. We were putting lotion on his back and found a huge blackhead. I went and got a tissue and told him to lay down on his tummy. He started screaming, “I want to survive!” It was out before he finished “survive”. He’s so dramatic!

  106. Willow says:

    I hate sunscream. It’s like sliming yourself up with special filth which then attracts every kind of dust and dirt. My little guy are much more tollerant of it though, and my man doesn’t need to wear it. Jousy brown bloke.

  107. Kika says:

    my 3yo HATES nail clipping, even when I’m clipping my own! I clip his nails when he’s sleeping, in the dark with a little flashlight. I have to be so careful that he won’t wake up, it’s like clipping a sleeping tiger’s claws… shhhhhh…

  108. Kika says:

    the playground at our daycare isn’t covered, so my 3yo needs sunscreen on his face every day. either that or wear a hat, which is NOT happenning. so I dab a little “accidentally”, and when he screams I offer to take it off and he agrees= sunscreen on!

  109. Bri says:

    Cutting toenails and getting splinters out. Although brushing my daughter’s waist length hair is pretty bad as well.

  110. Sarah says:

    It’s toothbrushing here. Although I guess maybe if he’s teething it might actually be torture?

  111. Claire L says:

    right now, it’s changing my child’s nappy! If he isn’t half sleepy he protests SO MUCH!

    As for the sunscreen, I just buy the ones that come in a spray bottle. That way I can spray it at him even while he is running away ๐Ÿ™‚

  112. Ruth says:

    Nose wiping… My 4 year old recently screamed at me “I wanted that snot!’ What for I don’t want to know!

  113. laura says:

    with the sunscreen, we use one of those sticks for the faces and that seems to be less annoying to the kids. with our daughter we call the sunscreen stick “makeup” and for some reason this makes it ok.

  114. Corinne says:

    For us it’s toothbrushing

  115. Rhonda says:

    Oh this brings back memories from when I was little. I HATED toothpaste. Even the bubble gum flavored ones. And my mom never cut my hair until I started kindergarten. Brushing really was an ordeal.

    Now with my son, rinsing shampoo was bad. I tried the special cup for keeping it out of his eyes. We tried holding a washcloth on his eyes. No luck. Then one night, grandma babysat and gave him a bath. The next time I gave him one, he put the washcloth on his eyes and told me to go ahead. I don’t get it! I TRIED THAT!

  116. Rhonda says:

    Oh yes, I remember being terrified of splinter removal. What eventually did it for me was when Mom said if we didn’t get it out, my thumb would turn green and fall off. My older sister enforced the idea by saying it happened to her once, but they got it out in time before it fell off!

  117. Leah says:

    Oh, yes, diaper changes are awful here. My little guy just turned two, and has suddenly decided that he hates it. Especially in the morning when he’s wet through it and his jammies are soaked. He grabs the top of the jammies so I can’t get at the zipper and when I try to move his hand, he tries to bite me. He screams and fights and cries, and I don’t get it. How comfy can it be to be soaking wet? What the heck?

    He’s finally settled down about me clipping his fingernails, but toes are a whole other world. They get to the point where they’re curling around the top of his toe and look super painful and he still freaks out if I even look at them.

  118. Brenda says:

    I still feel this way about applying sunscreen to myself! Now I get to torture my kids.

  119. Dena says:

    Just get the spray kind and make the first activity when you get to the beach chasing him around and shooting it on him! LOL just kidding. It would be funny though! I’m just glad that I don’t have too many problems yet. (Keyword: yet.) Currently, he is nearly 18 months old and will only accept vegetables in the form of gerber. LOVES LOVES LOVES peas in gerber form. Try giving him a normal pea and it’s like I just performed the unspeakable. It is like this with every vegetable. I’ll probably send him to college with a giant box of gerber veggies!

  120. Leah says:

    Oh, yes, the hair torture! My son HATES that. He was fine with me trimming it myself up until a few months ago, when he started freaking out when he saw the scissors. So we take him to a salon and I hold him in my lap and try to keep him still while he screams and screams. It’s awful.

  121. kristen says:

    My son hates vegetables. That is anything not brown in color or has sugar in it. Daughter 1 and 2 are yay! Son screams at the horror! “It make me throw up.” No useless parenting advice effective at this point.

  122. Roberta Eldridge says:

    Awesome idea! My grandchildren LOVE, LOVE, LOVE bath time, but that would make a for a wonderful treat!

  123. Ginny says:

    UGH. We went through a “torture period” with sunscreen for a little while with my older son. I came close a couple of times to just scrapping the trip to the beach because of it. But yeah, once it was on it was absolutely forgotten. Now the younger son, his torture is diaper-changing. Makes him soooo mad. Hope that phase is over soon! ๐Ÿ™‚

  124. alpineflower says:

    My 1yo hates – HATES – changing of any kind. Diapers, clothes, you name it, she’ll scream bloody murder. It’s been difficult this summer with all the windows open in our townhouse, with all the neighbors listening in. But no one’s called the cops yet! I try to change her in the basement (where their bedroom is) so the sound doesn’t carry quite so well.

  125. kate says:

    LOL this cracked me up! my son has been through all of these – hand washing, hand sanitizer, baths, sunscreen, paper bracelet things you wear to go to say the pumpkin patch to get your free pumpkin. *MELTDOWN*
    we say he is “particular”
    luckily he has outgrown most of it (he’s 5!) now the meltdown is over dinner. he would love stuffed shells, he loves pizza, but NOOOO it’s worthy of falling on the grown and CRYING because it has RED SAUCE! however, pesto is all good. and you know, a few slices (yes slices) of Parmesan cheese.
    i bet he grows up to be a food critic.

  126. Christa says:

    face wiping, diaper changing, sunscreen, hair washing/rinsing, nail clipping… I think we must be hitting our terrible two stage at 19.5 months. our conversation about diaper changing goes like this.

    “Let me change your pants.” takes off old diaper, she rolls over with a huff and won’t roll back over. Wait a minute.
    “Are you ready to put your pants on now?”
    “Are you just gonna lay there forever then?”
    “Then let’s put your pants on.”
    I roll her over to put the diaper back on. She immediately rolls back over with a huff. Again. lol

  127. Francesca says:

    We got some of those flashing-LED bath ducks and that was awesome. But someone left them in a little puddle of water and they kept flashing all night long and now the batteries are kaput, so I’m looking for more.

  128. Francesca says:

    Those nasal saline sprays are another good torture device. Although I gotta say I’ve got some sympathy on that one. You’re already feeling like crap and Mom holds you down and squirts stuff up your nose that makes your mouth taste all salty.

  129. Morgan says:

    I used to take splinters out in the night-time, using a flashlight and needle…they slept right through it, thankfully! Worth a try if you have a kid who is a good sleeper. Helpful to have a spouse hold the flashlight so you can work fast! ๐Ÿ™‚

  130. Francesca says:

    Same was true for my older daughter. (She didn’t fight being put IN the seat– just screamed bloody murder for up to 30 minutes while we drove.)

    Daughter #2 had no issue, and is still riding rear-facing at close to 2 years old.

  131. Francesca says:

    My husband wears sunscreen, but can’t stand bug-spray. (I think he has a problem with all aerosols, actually, and it might be a real medical issue related to eczema /athsma, although for years I thought he was just a wuss.)

  132. Laura says:

    This might have been mentioned already, but have you tried the spray sunscreen? Maybe he’ll think that one’s fun?

  133. Adrian says:

    BAHAHAHA!!! So funny!! With our 2 year old…she’ll be crying bloody murder/call-the-cops style and in one split second it changes to “Look daddy… my minnie – YAY!”

  134. Virginia says:

    I used to tell my three year old that if she wouldn’t let me brush her hair we would have to cut it off. She took matters into her own hands, cutting to the scalp in several places. For years afterwards she would insist on having her hair cut ‘like Uncle Andy’s’ (he was in the military)

  135. DJ says:

    Nose blowing accompanied by face washing if the boogers are particularly sticky. Every time!!!

  136. Va says:

    Yep, hair washing. My six year old Kai yells so much that last week his two year old brother who NEVER had a problem with hair washing yelled “OW OW OW!!!!” when I washed his. I said “What are you yelling for?” He said “Like Kai! OW!!!” Laughed out loud.

  137. Nicole says:

    Yeah, toothbrushing is our torture activity. It takes at least 15 minutes of convincing every day that they need to brush their teeth… and for longer than 15 seconds. My 5yo has already had one cavity filled and because it was so easy (dentist used a laser, so no Novocain), he doesn’t respond well to the threats of cavities and fillings. My 2yo already has a couple cavities, too. ARGH!!!! We literally have to hold him down some days and pry his little mouth open. It’s terrible.

  138. Nina says:

    OK, people tell me I have an easy child, and now I actually believe them. My toddler loves to brush her teeth (as long as I let her do it), loves lotion of any kind (as long as I let her apply it), is down with the car seat (as long as I let her snap the buckle), and actually likes having her hair washed now (as long as I do it very, very quickly).

    She does sometimes throw a fit when I try to (1) wipe her butt, and (2) clip and file her nails. That’s because those are two things I won’t let her do herself.

  139. Kristen says:

    Geez! After reading these horror stories i’m thrilled neither of mine have never had any of these issues. From birth to 9 yrs old not once have I had to fight to brush, bathe, brush teeth, feed, or change the diapers on mine.Ya’lls comments make my kids sound like angels. lol Thank YOU!

  140. JCCyC says:

    When I was 6 or so, Mom gave me a calcium supplement in syrup form called Calcigenol which I hated. Then one time she said, “we’re not giving you Calcigenol anymore, here, have some COCONUT SYRUP.” I liked it.

    As you can imagine, it was Calcigenol with the label removed from the bottle. They admitted it about a year after they stopped giving it to me.

    Maybe you could have used a similar tactic. “Hey, here’s some perfume for you to smell better!” (Forgive me if that was already included in the “blah blah” category.”

  141. Cherrill says:

    Francesca, I saw some of those at Bath Body Works, if that helps.

  142. This sounds like what goes on inside my head during sunscreen time. I love the beach and the pool, but I loathe sunscreen. One side of my brain pitches a fit while the other side says it’s not a big deal.

  143. Lisa Bohn says:

    Once again you have slayed me with laughter. For so many of us, it’s just truth after truth after truth when you post…so funny.

    For my 18 month old right now, it’s anything involving changing–diaper, out of clothes into pjs, out of pjs into clothes, out of clothes into bath, etc. He screams and kicks and fights and I just wish they understood logic! You know, as in if you hate it so much then quit fighting and it will be over so much quicker.

    Better yet, I wish they could explain why the heck they get so annoyed about stuff like this…

  144. K says:

    My husband dabs the sunscreen on in dots and says “Go away dots” in really funny voices as he rubs the dots away. They find it super fascinating (especially if he takes the time to alternate those funny colored sunscreens with the regular white stuff). They try to recite lines from Put Me in the Zoo. It’s hilarious. Maybe before next summer read the book, stock up on various colors and see if it works!

  145. Deela says:

    I have two daughters one is 9 going on 16 and her torture is spelling. It’s not like I’m asking her to write them in blood but that how she reacts everytime. The younger one is 6 going on 3 (playing the baby card as much as possible) and her torture is reading, she just want me to read everything to her.

  146. Erin C. says:

    I might have the oddest one by far. My seven year old hates it when I drive on the Interstate. Seriously!?! Throws a whining fit as I hit the on ramp and complains loudly for the five to ten minutes we are on it until our exit. EVERY SINGLE TIME. Sigh.

  147. ems says:

    My mom chopped mine all off – and I resented her for it for until I was 20 and chopped it all off myself. much easier!

  148. Jamie says:

    I’ve seen those at pool and hot tub places ๐Ÿ™‚

  149. Jamie says:

    I second the Nosefreida. It works amazingly well, and although it is still torture and cause to scream like a banshee, it is super quick!

  150. Sandra says:

    Dinner time. Apparently, I serve rat poison for dinner every night.

  151. Lj says:

    Tooth brushing ! And getting in the stroller …

  152. Lindajz says:

    I absolutely love your art and your blog Amber ๐Ÿ™‚ I have done daycare for years and couldn’t see what the fuss was about with sunscreen… I have used many tricks and usually they worked quite well… Well,
    accept for one two year old girl… (you could have called the police from “your” house!) I was “humbled” after discovering that “she would rub her fists over the freshly applied sunscreen and then cover her eyes with those hands… now “infected with sun scream” Ahhhh.. with each rub she would scream more!!! What I didn’t know was how “sensitive some eyes can be to this stuff”! I learned when “sweat” pouring from my brow found its way into my “eyes” and oh did “I feel her pain”! The “awful mommy” feelings, haunted me for a long time… Thankfully I discovered a carefully held cloth prevented future “sun scream” moments!

  153. Kim says:

    Homework. Every. Single. Day… for the last 8 years. And another one for the last 5 years. It’s more like they are torturing me though.

  154. jen says:

    My child is 13 – sunscreen is STILL Torture lotion, or Torture Spray…*sigh*

  155. carley says:

    I know that one, my daughter is four now, but has always hated the car seat. Last week we were stuck in traffic, and she actually got herself out of carseat while I was on bridge. I pulled over and spent 15 min bargaining with her to get back in. fun times!!

  156. Allison says:

    Oh yes…the sunscreen torture. My kids have outgrown that by now (age 3 and 5; luckily my 1 year is still in that sweet, adorable, “I’ll do anything you say” stage). The latest for my oldest is shoes. He hates all shoes other than his Crocs, which have been expressly forbidden at his school (he is in K). I’m convinced the teachers hate us parents…I mean, who forbids Crocs??? Suffice to say, it is a battle… I’ve tried Keens, Keen knock offs, old school Vans, even regular old sneakers. Nope, all other shoes “hurt” his feet.

    Damn you Crocs manufacturers!!!

  157. HAIR CUTS! And we have actually had multiple neighbors comment on the blood-curdling screams coming from my 4 yr old son when the hair clippers come out. “Oh, we thought he broke an arm, or got stung by a venomous snake, or was DYING!” Nice.

  158. Angela says:

    Diaper changing my 9 month old for the past couple of months has made me consider Cirque du Soleil and hostage negotiation training! It’s god awful and no matter what distraction I give her it only lasts a second and is thrown at me while she grins impishly. The best was when we were recently on a trip and having to change her in the airplane bathroom – I’m sure the whole plane heard her screaming and thrashing about and my negotiating with her! With her she hates to be pinned down and NEVER stops moving!

  159. eValerie says:

    My 12 year old has sensory integration issues, so he STILL feels tortured by any type of sunscreen. What we’ve found that helps are (1) using the “stick” kind of sunscreen, usually meant just for faces, especially if he can apply it himself, and (2) sunscreen clothing (“rash guards”) have been our savior. There are companies on the net that sell long-sleeved sunscreen clothing, and some also have swim-tights that cover from waist to ankle. I love sunscreen clothing. You don’t need to reapply, or worry if you’re putting it on thick enough. You buy it once and it lasts for a couple of years. No weird chemicals. And it makes it easy to spot my kid in a lake full of swimmers, since he’s the only one with bright red sleeves.

  160. Jody says:

    Nail cutting. My 2 and a half year old screams like we’re setting him on fire! It takes both of us to hold him down.

    And this is the same kid who over the course of JUST THIS YEAR ALONE has endured a broken leg, rabies shots, and two surgical staples to close up the back of his head. Not to mention other diagnostic medical procedures when he was an infant that he doesn’t even remember…can you say catheter?!

    But, nails…that’s where he draws the line…

  161. Dianne says:

    This was true of my granddaughter. We tried all. Then, I thought maybe it’s like a motion problem, the moving things she sees passing. We created a small tent like cover over her with a small, lightweight blanket and it worked! We were finally able to ride w/ her and no tears.

  162. Amber says:

    It is hairbrushing here. I threatened cutting, and when the tantrum continued I actually did cut off her hair. She has a crazy hair cut but now knows I am serious and we are working on growing it out. Hopefully that was a one time thing.

  163. Carol Gardens says:

    You made me laugh and choke at the same time! Sunscream is the funniest term I’ve heard.

  164. Carol Gardens says:

    One day, I found a foam-rubber type hat brim made for kids to wear while having their hair washed ..keeps water off the face and out of the ears…..which all my kids loved better even than getting to hold washcloths over both not ask me why this was so great, I never thought water in the ears was so horrible…but they sure did!

  165. Carol Gardens says:

    okay, you reminded me of the day I got tired of this refusal…someplace to go, no time for patience, I pointed a finger at my toddler, sitting on the toilet, and in my serious voice, I said,” Don’t you dare do one drop!” Then I sat outside the door, Saying, “I MEAN it…not ONE DROP…I am listening….” followed by”NOOOO” ‘STOP THAT RIGHT, NOW’…and this little one is laughing and of course doing the opposite.I act all huffy and dramatic. We kept up this game for many months..and used it for all sorts of things…sometimes toddlers just like to be in control, I guess, because it even worked when I said, “I am coming to see your room, and it better NOT be cleaned up!!”

  166. Carol Gardens says:

    Your spelling of midevil is better…I will use it from now on!

  167. Carol Gardens says:

    I love that your older sister verified the info….that is so sweet.

  168. Carol Gardens says:

    Your 4-year old sounds like he is brilliant…in the language department..I hope you write that one down…these things that are so funny,now, somehow get forgotten during the teen years, and I can’t explain why…

  169. Carol Gardens says:

    I wish I could hear all the funny voices he does…that is pure genius!

  170. Sair says:

    LOL – it’s Medieval… I alway had trouble with that. We mainly have tourture wipes. Even the softest is going to scrape his skin off, apparently…

  171. says:

    Love your blog Amber; it really makes me laugh and is definately helping to keep this mother sane! Your ‘crappy’ (NOT)pictures are just hilarious!

    My wee man (17 months old) just had his first haircut a few weeks ago. We thought we’d get it done at the same time as his father. He sat on his fathers lap looking really scared and upset at what ‘torture’ the hairdresser was inflicting on his Daddy even though Daddy was acting like it was great fun. Then when it came his turn he shrieked and screamed blue murder. So embarressing. When we first arrived at the salon we had so many comments of just how ‘cute’ he was running around, giggling and smiling and everyone. Once the shrieking had started, not only did all the ‘cute’ comments mysteriously dry up but no-one would make eye oontact anymore! Can’t wait for next time ;)!!

  172. Kristen says:

    Although brushing teeth gets the biggest reaction on a daily basis, “TEETH?” (like they’ve never heard the word before and I’m asking them to do something really bizarre like chop off a finger or something) – Trimming nails has to take the cake over all, especially if toenails are involved – you’ve never seen more tortured dramatic children than mine when that happens.

  173. Donna says:

    OMG That’s so funny

  174. Donna says:

    LOL. It’s our torture device as well. Living in FL, it’s necessary to wear every day. My daughter’s 3 and I (stupidly) thought to tell her we could put it on together. She proceeded to get the sunscreen in her eye. Now she REALLY hates sunscreen.

  175. Elizabeth V. says:

    I wish that torture in our house was brushing teeth, because at least if she was screaming, I could be brushing…but DD is one so she instead clamps her mouth shut and turns her head away when she decides that she is finished (15 seconds would be awesome, but I usually get closer to 6 lol)…Hair washing is no problem, I could dump buckets of water over her head and she wouldn’t mind…but diaper changes? Pure torture! Complete with screaming, rolling over, and trying to escape the entire time, which by the way triples if you won’t hold still!!

  176. Laurelei says:

    I was going to say have them lay back in the water to rinse their hair, but if they don’t like it on their ears that might not work. Rinsing used to be a serious battle at our house, too, then someone told me to have mine lay back, and it was like a lightbulb going off. They were always laying in the water (I used to like that, too, the way noises sounded when my ears were submerged), I have no idea why that never crossed my mind. Duh. Oh well, I think pregnancy melted my brain…

  177. Shannon says:

    Oh, you use torture sunscreen, too? I get mine in bulk at BJ’s, haha. In preparation for our usual struggle before going out to the park yesterday morning, I tried to slather sunscreen on my son in our entry hall, which is tile and seemed like a less messy solution. What I ended up with was a toddler-sized grease print in the middle of the floor where he flopped himself down in full protest. Thank you for this! It helps so much to know other parents are going through the same phase right now!

  178. shelly says:

    practicing the multiplication tables!!

  179. Joylynn says:

    Right there with you on that one

  180. Robyn says:

    Oh, my gosh! I absolutely HATED homework. School is school and home is home and they shouldn’t cross over. I’m a firm believer in this. As adults, we shouldn’t bring work home, but they love to load kids up with hours and hours of homework. One time, my mom and I fought so hard about it that she took her apron and tied me to the chair in an attempt to make me do my homework. I actually ripped her apron up to get out of the chair. Even worse was the fact that the teachers made homework count more than tests for our grades. I managed to do just enough homework to keep from failing; classes that had no homework, I usually had between 95 and over 100% grades (gotta love bonus questions on the tests). I was good, I knew my stuff, passed my tests with flying colors, but I would have failing grades because I would NOT do my homework.

  181. Robyn says:

    Look into Skin-So-Soft bug spray. It’s non-aerosol, smells nice, and feels nice on the skin.

  182. Robyn says:

    The only time I vividly remember getting a shot when I was a child, we were at the Naval hospital on base. My mom put a stuffed animal onto my chest (it was a tiger of some sort, but I think it was a Tigger specifically, though I’m not certain), crossed my arms over it and pinned me down for me to get the shot in my leg. To this day, I can’t walk down the halls of that hospital without remembering walking down them holding my Mom’s hand after that visit to meet up with my Dad who had my sister elsewhere.

  183. Robyn says:

    Something that I’ve read works really well, is having your child drink 1-2 cups per day of warm chamomile tea during allergy season. 3-4 cups per day for adults.

  184. Tracy says:

    Ah…yes, what gives with the 2.5 year old set and hating to be changed? It’s such a fight every. single. day. It takes 20 seconds (most of the time) but he’d rather fight for 10 or more minutes over it. Hard to get into the head of a toddler. (Oh and btw, ever since this guy could stand, he’s never allowed me to change him lying down EVER again. It’s standing or sitting for us. :/

  185. Amanda says:

    I told my four year old that the throw-away monster would get his toys! Voila! cleanest room in the house suddenly.

  186. SarahD says:

    Every one of my boys have had their moments HATING a)teeth brushing b)getting their ears wet while washing hair and c)hair brushing. Yet we do it ALL the time. It is also torture to be quiet and to read. My oldest does think writing anything out is pure TORTURE! He avoids it at all cost.
    And regarding sunscreen…I will occasionally put it on their ears and noses, but we typically stick with a sunshirt and hat. Much easier!

  187. jes says:

    14 month old DD… I hear you. I give her whatever she wants on the changing table. Nail clippers, hand sanitizer, huge bottle of lotion, etc. I’ve tried toys but they don’t work. Good luck.

  188. Um…ear drops. He acts like they’re death drops. Seriously. He screams like his brain is melting.

  189. jules says:

    getting the nappy changed and having nose suctioned for boogies. screams bloody murder!

  190. jules says:

    whaaat?!?…god bless you. i guess you guys don’t take long road trips lol.

  191. Michelle says:

    In our house the torture is bandaids! Not taking them off but putting them on. The mere presence of a bandaid creates sobs, alligator tears, screaming. My daughter woud rather bleed then have a bandaid on…crazy!

  192. Vriesea says:

    I forgot about this ploy – filing away for future reference…

  193. toni adams says:

    My daughter only screamed when you stopped…. was ok when the car was moving… so youd pull up about 20metres out from the red light and then bounce forward as slowly as possible to try to keep moving until the light went green (bet it absolutely peed off anyone behind me). My sister was with me once and said “what are you doing?” and I said “watch this” stopped and the screaming started and she said “ohhhhh”. stopped as soon as she was facing forward. ๐Ÿ™‚

  194. oh, be careful with that one~ I had long, dark, curly, thick hair for years, and for years I swore my mother was brushing my ears in to my ponytail on purpose. When I hit 11 years old, puberty, and 6th grade all at the same time, she decided that it was too much for either of us to take care of.. and cut it all off.

    And for the next two years, the kids called me Prince. because I, the only Latina in a very white school, with short hair and a puberty stash.. looked just like Prince.

    So.. think before you cut. Just asking, on behalf of all the girls out there… ๐Ÿ˜‰

  195. Alecia says:

    Too funny. This post made me laugh out loud… and cringe. I’m allergic to sunscreen and it literally feels like my face is on fire whenever I apply it. It’s horrible. So yeah, I’m assuming your son isn’t allergic to it at all and was just imposing his 3-4 year-old will. ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m currently in the middle of similar battles with my 3rd kid.

  196. Kelly K says:

    Yep its the change table here too. But tis so intermittent that you never really know what the reaction will be like this time. Sometimes its a 1 min job and we’re all fine and dandy. Other times its a screaming, hitting, scratching, biting fiesta that involves me pinning her down to avoid the poo flying everywhere.

  197. DL says:

    Same here. Baby HATED car rides until she was old enough to face forward. Now she’s good to go. ๐Ÿ™‚

  198. Tanya says:

    For my now 8 year old, hair brushing. She didn’t have enough hair to even brush until she was three so before the hair brushing it was head washing that she hated. She has thick, curly hair and she sheds at least two tears every time I brush it through. And I’ve also tried all the detanglers, persuasion, distractions and every trick I know. At least now she half-heartedly brushes it herself so I only have to torture her 2-3 times a week.

  199. Linda says:

    Surprisingly applying sunscrean is one of the things my 22 month old daughter loves. The flip side to this is that she wants cream on all the time. My expensive face creams lotions and potions – nothing is safe. She managed to empty a full tub of body butter in the time it took me to make a cup off coffee once. It was everywhere – all over clothes, shoes,walls, floor and her hair. This in turn led to her biggest torture – hair washing!

    Seriously it’s like trying to bath a cat I end up covered in scratches by the end of it – tried every trick in the book. Foam cap / lying back in the water / the shower / washing doll hair first no luck. so currently we just stick to the 2 man military operation we have developed and let her scream it out.

    Another torture device in our house is the vacuum cleaner – both her and the dog are go hide in the cupboard and cry together when it starts up.

    Oh on the sunscreen thing – my friends little boy(3) hated cream too but eventually got over it when she convinced him it was magic vanishing cream – she had to pretend he was invisible for about 5 mins afterwords but it worked a treat. Don’t know if that might help someone but worth a try.

  200. Misty says:

    You must be nicer than I am! Ours is teethbrushing. I am fine with using different techniques to get her to agree to it, but if it’s been 3 days with no proper teeth brushing, I use the tackle-hold method. Involves much screaming, but, lo and behold, the crying stops seconds later!!

  201. Danielle says:

    It’s tooth brushing with our daughter. She screams like we are pulling her teeth out. It’s ridiculous…..

  202. Ivy says:

    I used to just add a few drops of food dye in their bath water. Blues and greens are obviously the most appealing to mom, but they liked yellow and red.

  203. Serena Mohun says:

    Do both of yourselves a favor and cut it.

  204. Serena Mohun says:

    I’ve never understood moms who cut all the girls hair off in these circumstances. Several inches usually suffices to make matters much better w/out freaking the child out.

  205. Lyn says:

    Ok – have you tried putting glitter in it? It works for girls – they rub it all over themselves willingly.
    My good friend compared my hair washing technique to waterboarding.

  206. Sarah says:

    LOL, for my older son it changes from day to day. For my younger son TOOTHBRUSHING. Oh man, and sadly I do use force, and here is why. ODS didn’t like toothbrushing when he was little (got over it at about 2.5) and because I did the “advice things” like letting him brush his own teeth or just doing a quick swipe he had 5 cavities at his dental checkup at 3…not cool. So YDS gets swaddled in his towel after bathtime and held down to get his teeth brushed. It is really hard for me because otherwise I am a non physical parent. I don’t spank or anything so it makes me feel especailly crappy that I have to hold my son down kicking and screaming to brush his teeth. Oddly, some (rare) days he’ll just let me do it.

  207. Des says:

    I am laughing so hard when I read “a thin layer of torture cream” oh my god I am ROLLING

  208. Maxine says:

    my 21 month old hates having her teeth brushed, every day, twice a day i have to get her in a head lock and brush those 7 teeth of hers in a quick and efficient way while she screams (convenient) and hope that our neighbours don’t call social services on us… My 4 year old used to hate having her hair brushed, but i just used to get her in a knee lock (starting to notice a pattern here) and now she just stands there and lets me get on with it…

  209. says:

    In our house it is simply called “son scream.”

    BTW, someone else may have made this pithy observation somewhere in the comments, but what parent has time to read all those just to avoid an Internet faux pas. Well, not me anyway.

  210. Toni says:

    I had a light bulb moment recently when someone told me to let him cover his face with a washcloth. Saved my life!!!!! He is not a lay down in the bath kind of guy and this has made life so much easier.

  211. mary-anne says:

    I really like how the text is written.
    Much can be learned from this
    I started a blog about a similar topic and any additional information are welcome.

  212. Tiffany says:

    My 4 year old hates brushing his hair and washing it. What does he hate more? Cutting it :/

  213. H says:

    Use, Neutrogena spray on! This stuff works great and is easy to apply. Highly recommend!

  214. Julie says:

    My kids have never had any strong aversions to my torturing of them with baths, sunscreen, and diaper changes, but there is one personal care routine that is tourture for ME! I cannot STAND clipping their nails, especially their toenails. As babies it was because I was terrified I’d cut them. That still worries me, but now it’s mostly just because they’re disgusting (I have 2 boys). I make their dad do it. There have been times nail maintenance has gone unchecked for weeks and my kids grow dirt-filled claws before I finally give in and groom them. I feel like I need a shower and a tranquilizer afterwards.

  215. Geraldo says:

    The sunscreen story is hilarious, because so true. Right now our 16 month old is somewhat ok with sunscreen if she can sit in the rocking chair, gets a little bit of sunscreen on her finger to rub it all over everything, but putting on pants… wow, that is the new taboo…

  216. julie says:

    I don’t think my 30 y/o boyfriend had grown out of this phase. He hates putting sunscreen on. Usually he looks just like the last NOOOOO pic of your child before he trows himself on the ground. I end up having to put it on his ears for him. A hundred fishing trips returning home like fried bacon does not teach him…