While every stage in a child's life comes with its own special mix of joys and sheer horrors, it's the teen years that have the biggest imbalance. You may think that having a teenager is easier than having a toddler, but here's why it's not.
1. A 3-year-old can't outsmart you, but a teen can. You used to be able to say "Because I said so," but now that your kids are on their way to becoming adults, they really don't agree with your logic that requires them to be home by midnight.
2. Toddlers have meltdowns, but teens have meltdowns. Have you ever been around a 14-year-old when they're informed that the Wi-Fi at home will be down for two or three days? You need an underground safe house just to keep the other members of the family free from harm.
3. Toddlers still like hugs. Get too close to your high school freshman and they may call child services. Because they have child services saved in their iPhone to threaten you.
4. Toddlers don't steal money. Teens, on the other hand, have slippery fingers that pry open unmanned wallets at home to take cash and credit cards. I mean, I've never heard of a toddler spending $54,000 at a club on Dad's Amex.
5. Toddlers may not know how to use the bathroom, but at least they don't hog it. Teens have a tendency to move into the marble and porcelain room, never to be heard from again.
6. The highlight of a toddler's day is when you come home. The highlight of a teen's day is when you leave.
7. A toddler's dinner conversation skills are lacking, but really, they're better than a teen's, whose one-word answers are infantile at best.
8. Helping your toddler to count to 10 is fun and cute. Helping your teen with functions and derivatives is horrifying and impossible.