This week I thought I would touch on tantrums. Lots of people ask me if Lily went through the terrible twos or if she tantrums etc. I think the first place we need to start is by understanding why kids have tantrums , melt downs or misbehave.
I find that if my child is having communications diffuclties and im not understanding or responding to what she needs she gets frustated. Completely understandable because if someone is not listening or understanding what i want as an adult i find myself getting frustrated and upset. so Just like us , kids feel the same way and tend to express their frustration in tantrums, crying fits, or in anger etc. Young kids do not know how to channel their feelings and sometimes those feelings get expressed in the wrong way.
Here are some tips on how to deal with tantrums:
First thing – Stay Calm
Do not let other peoples stares and judgmental looks affect the way you handle the situation with your child. Try to keep a calm compostured instead of getting angry or frustrated with your child. This is not going to help anyone if both of you are upset. Kids mimic our emotions and especially in situations that are unfamiliar to them.
Second – Use a calm voice
Try to lower your voice and change the tone to a calm comforting tone.when i start talking in a soft low voice lily stops and tries to listen to what i have to say. Using a calm soft spoken voice can reassure your child and make them calm down before things escalated.
Third – Communicate with your kids
One thing I have found very helpful in stopping tantrums from happening is to prepare my child. Kids are just like adults – we like to know what is going to happen and what is expected of us. Before going out whether is shopping, to a friends house, or even out to dinner I always go through the what we are going to do and who is going to be there to help Lily prepare herself for the situation. I find communicating with her helps her be prepare for unfamiliar situations. Usually if she starts to get uneasy I can repeat the things we previously discussed with her and she usually calms down. Communication is key in helping your kids dealing with situations that are different to them. Kids are very much into routines and sometimes when we do things that are not familiar can cause them to feel frustrated and all out of sorts.
Fourth – Do not give in
This is a rule that can be easier said then done. Sometimes when your child is not calming down, people are staring at you, you are feeling overwhelm its easy to just buy them that toy or candy they want. We should not give in to them. Letting the child know that you are the one in charge and you are the one that makes the rules is very important. Yes in the moment its easier just to get them what they want so they can calm down than trying to calm a them down when they are upset. If we give in ,we end up teaching our kids that throwing a tantrum is the way for them to get their way. Over time it will escalate into something more and you wouldn’t have any control of your child.
Fiveth- Remove your child from the source
Sometimes its just easier if your child is not calming down to pack up and go. Remove your child from the source of temptation and from the situation that is causing distress to them. Ive left in the middle of grocery shopping before because lily would not stop acting out. This taught her that i would not stand for behaviour like that and she has not had a tantrum in public since than.
sixth – Be prepare
When you think about the times your child has acted out you can pin them down to these two moments a majority of the time. When they are hungry or when they are tired. Ive learned to never leave my house without a bag of snack. If my child gets hungry in the middle of grocery shopping i can open one of those up and keep her calm until we can get home. I try not to stay out past lilys bedtime because if i do i know she will be tired and irritated. One way to solve tantrums and meltdowns is to make sure your child is rested and fed.
These are my tips on preventing and handling tantrums. Every child will have a least one tantrum in their toddlerhood and being prepared and aware is the best way to handle those situations. I hope this can help any of you out there with toddlers. Sometimes we have to realize that kids are just like us and exhibit the same feels we do when we are hungry (Hangry) or when we are misunderstood.
Hope to see you in the next post – stay tune for some more things to come! Happy weekend to all of you.