Oh, mama, I hear you.
I have been feeling like a parenting failure lately - my 3 yo DD is such a handful. Fussy, unco-operative, contrary, rude; spitting, hitting, throwing things, hurting her older sisters, pulling the dog's tail, every naughty thing.... as well as refusing to use the potty or sleep in her own bed.
My IL's dote on my other two girls, but have very little to do with her - and no wonder, given the way she acts at their house! Honestly, I don't know how she will do at preschool, which starts in a week. I can picture her being the girl no one will play with.
And yet I know she is bright, funny, sweet, observant, caring and compassionate. I just don't know where that side of her is right now.
Three was a hard age with my older two as well - worse than two for sure, but this DD is sooo much harder than they ever were. Ay ay ay.
meemee, I teared up about your DD saying "mama, you understand me, daddy doesn't" - you are her safe place to release. Wow.
I keep thinking about an article I read once comparing motherhood to those who work on cathedrals, spending every day of their working life building something they will never see.....