So it’s a bright sunny day, just perfect for a luncheon and some shopping. Mommy wants to buy that pretty dress and so you enter a mall. But only to your surprise, you are being dragged to the toy store just because your daughter does not have the ‘pikachu’ soft toy. And she wants it. Now. You offer to buy her that so that you don’t get embarrassed in front of the whole audience and to avoid a tantrum in the middle of the plush mall- she gets the ‘pikachu’ soft toy. Breathing a sigh of relief, you look for that dress, but oh no! Baby wants something else. And she wants it. Now.
Does this seem familiar? Temper tantrums are part of childhood and they are to be handled with great sensitivity. Raging temper is a result of lot many issues- like in toddlers’ irritation, hunger, trying to read, lack of sleep, not getting what they want to eat or drink. So in order to get what they want, they throw a ‘fit’ or a tantrum. As they grow old, kids are aware about their desires and needs and hence they play accordingly.
If we agree to everything our child says or asks, it just makes them spoilt and we parents should stop these outbursts. Here’s how:
Ignore. Period. I know that’s our little angel we are talking about. And look at those big tears falling from her shiny eyes. But try ignoring her when the tantrum is at the peak. Technically, your child is out of his/her mind and reasoning will help to calm her down. Wait for the child to calm down before you have the talk.
Space it out. Children are people too. They have all sorts of emotions going through their heads. They are afraid, depressed and frustrated too and the only way that they can express is through a tantrum. So give them the space. Let them vent out and pour out their feelings. Only when they calm down and regain control over their actions- then approach them.
Distract. The magic thing that has helped me is the distracting my son while he is on the floor wailing his eyes out for that extra 10 minutes of television. I just calmly say- “I can’t open this box, can you use your strong muscles to open this please” And this immediately diverted his mind from the television in trying to open that box.
I am sure; most of us (mothers) have this urge to spank our kids as soon as we see them throwing an unnecessary fit, especially in public. But breathe. Calm down and relax. The spanking won’t do you any good. On the other hand, it will raise a lot many eyebrows around you and you don’t want that.
Choose to have your own meltdowns in private instead in front of your kids. And remember- it’s a phase! You both (you and your child) will phase it out.
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