Understanding and dealing with tantrums can be one of the hardest parenting jobs.
Children have tantrums mainly because they can’t express themselves and get frustrated, they will cry, scream, kick and shout and even bite. It usually happens when they are 2-3 years old (terrible two’s) but can happen at any age this can be embarrassing for you as a parent.
Tantrums happen for all sorts of reasons – tired or hungry, wanting something they can’t have, or another child took a toy from them.
Staying calm is key.
It’s really important that you stay calm when your child is having a tantrum. This can be very hard to do but if you become stressed too your child will pick up on it. Keeping calm and in control shows your toddler that you are not overwhelmed by his or her emotions and while he or she feels out of control, you are in control.
During the tantrum he or she may not be able to hear you but sometimes by speaking slowly and quietly, you can help calm the situation. Try to avoid worrying about what other people will think if you’re out in public – if you stay calm even if your child is screaming the place down they will more likely carry on by as you are dealing with the situation. Many of them will have had children themselves and know what you are going through.
Distract your child
Helping your child calm down by distracting them with something else, such as reading a book, or something else to look at where they are like a bus going past. If you do something like giving them treats in the hope of calming them down, this may be quick fix but in can end up with your child thinking that a tantrum will be rewarded. Have a drink or snack with you in case a child is genuinely hungry or thirsty. If you want to try distracting him or her before the full blown tantrum, you may want to have or toy or something handy.
Give them a hug
A child having a tantrum may want your attention and giving the child a hug might help. This will not work if the child has already too far gone in the tantrum. This can make the situation worse. A hug may not stop a tantrum, but holding a child firmly and gently while talking to him or her in a clear voice may help the child understand that you are not giving in to the tantrum.
If you can’t stay calm
Sometimes it can be really hard to stay calm when your toddler is having a tantrum and if you really feel like you can’t and if your child is in a safe place, just move away for a moment until you feel calmer. Try counting to five very slowly or recite a saying or prayer. What ever works.
God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.
Post dedicated to my daughter “Robyn” because she has given me such great insight into temper tantrum’s, and is still educating me at 5 years old.