Drew Barrymore Describing Her 5-Year-Old’s Meltdown in Disney World Is All of Us


There’s nothing we love more than when a celeb who keeps it real — and Drew Barrymore has always done us proud in that department. The actress, who’s mom to Olive (almost 5) and Frankie (almost 3), swung by Late Night with Seth Meyers Thursday, and opened up about one of the many joys of parenting young kids: Dealing with their (mortifying) public tantrums. And in Barrymore’s case, the latest one came at a particularly inconvenient time, when her daughter had a full-blown meltdown at Disney World.

We all know the story — we plan something amazing for your kids, like a trip to Disney, or the beach, or a birthday party with Elsa and Anna. We spend a huge pile of money (maybe sell a kidney or take out a second mortgage). In return, we expect happiness and joy and appreciation for all that we’ve done. And, as Drew describes, they DO love it … Until they don’t. Because, as Barrymore shares with frank honesty, “it all ends at some point in mayhem.”

Ain’t that the truth.

Barrymore starts off by sharing a photo of her girls wearing princess dresses and happily soaking in the magic. All is well. But then, like Drew, we all “push hard” and “go, go, go” and “skip naps” when doing something as crazy as taking our toddlers to Disney World. And her second and third photo show what happens as a result — two images of her daughter in full meltdown mode with Drew standing nearby, arms the air, waving the white flag of defeat we all know too well.

“That is a legitimate picture of my daughter just losing it on the floor,” Barrymore explains. “In this case, she wanted to chase a duck,” the actress continues, before going on to say that in retrospect, she wonders if she should have just let her go on and keep chasing it, after the meltdown she endured.

But that’s not all: Barrymore also shares an almost identical photo of her daughter having another meltdown — this time, at Disneyland.

The other super-fun element of parenting toddlers Drew addresses is the unpredictability of the meltdown. She recommends parents have at least “10 tools in your arsenal,” because the tantrums “come at the most interesting times.”

So true. Countless times I’ve thought, “Oh this is going to be a hot mess” when taking my kids to a big, tiring, loud event. And they are completely fine. Other times, we hit up CVS for toothpaste like it’s NBD, and the next thing I know, I’m carrying out a child kicking and screaming because I wouldn’t let him doodle on the cards in the greeting card aisle.

Last time we took our kids to Disney World, we tried to anticipate meltdowns. One day we waited in line for an hour before we realized our kid was too short to go on the ride. Cue the tantrum in … Oh, wait. He was completely calm and unfazed. But when the Dippin Dots stand was out of cookies and cream flavor? The you-know-what immediately hit the fan.

The moral of the story here is parenting is not for wimps. But thankfully, like many parents, Barymore is able to find humor in it all. She addresses the many responses to meltdowns parents have: the “tender loving approach” or the “I’m serious approach,” but Seth Meyers says his favorite is her “photo opp” approach.

Honestly, we so agree. Thank you to Drew for being an awesome mom who tells it like it is.

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