TANTRUMS & YOU

posted in: Behaviour, Blogs | 0

“WOW!! It’s Beautiful!! I Want this. I just want this Mamma “exclaimed Zara

“No dear, leave it”, I replied calmly.

“Please Mamma”, urged the 2 year old again.

Maintaining the same politeness I answered, “Dear it’s not that good, just look at it, you have a better one at home. So keep it back and let’s move, we are getting late”.

What came next was unexpected, as it was my first confront to a temper tantrum. I found her screaming and continuously banging the floor. My face turned pale. I didn’t expect this from Zara.

I tried convincing her but all in vain. Then I heard the crowd murmuring. They were agitated with what was going around. I could read their expressions as “how reckless mother she is”? Why is she not taking any action? Instead being harsh on Zara I took her and left the store. The best resort to end a tantrum in public place.

I was at home but mind was still at the store. The incident did upset me. Zara’s behavior did not worry me but the awful looks did. I wanted to ask, what was bothering them? My child throwing tantrums cannot make me a bad parent. I very well know my duties. You cannot question my parenting. I’m not raising a tyrant. I know she was having a meltdown, and every child in this age does. We should simply know how to handle it.  Every parent must have been in this situation before and could very well relate to this.

It’s irritating to see your child screaming, kicking or lying on the floor and we end up losing ourselves. End result is, the child gets scolding or even worse thrashing from the parents. I believe spanking/scolding is not an answer for tantrums. The scars of spanking are within the soul. And it leads to nurturing of a furious child. We must accept that tantrums are a part of childhood.

Every tantrum commences with one single reason – not getting what they want. Tantrums begin with anger but the main cause is sadness. Tantrum is deeply rooted with emotions. How do we feel when we don’t get anything we want? The coping skills are not developed in the young kids leading to fits. Unable to express one’s feelings or to communicate their desire result in frustration and thus – The Meltdown. This usually happens in children between the age group 1 and 2, when they cannot convey their need. We must keep a check on how often we say NO to our toddlers. As the age group of 3 and 4 make them more independent. They are very clear on what they want. If you don’t fulfill their needs they throw a fit.

Have tried to pen down few ways to avoid the above scenario. Check them below:-

1. Avert tantrums inducing situations  – Always pay attention to which situation triggers the button. Don’t wait for volcano to erupt, but act beforehand. Veil the stuff which you don’t want them to possess before they could have a glance of it. If you know hunger makes him cranky prepare the snack beforehand. Most often kids react out of transitions which they cannot handle. So, before they burst out make an announcement in advance that playtime is going to over or once the dinner is over they have to sleep. Doing this, gives them time to adjust.

2. 
Diversion  – Distraction is an antidote which cannot be surpassed. It can help ward off a major meltdown if you catch up on time. Children are easy to distract since they have a short attention span.

3. 
Don’t lose Control – Always remember you have the control. It doesn’t matter how long a tantrum continues, never fulfill an unreasonable demand. We often fall for it to end the public episode. Do NOT DO THIS. Permitting it would give them an impression that screaming is the way to get what wants and the ground is ready for such future behavior.

4. Be soft – 
Don’t raise your voice with the screaming child, it won’t do any good. As he/she wants to engage with you so will surely match your volume.

5. Let it go – As long as screaming child is not hurting himself or others it’s okay, just ignore.” Sometimes kids just need to get their anger out. So let them!” Says Linda Pearson, author of “The discipline miracle”.  But the moment you realize that situation is not in control you must take the charge. Make it very clear, they can’t get violent.

6. Talk later – 
Once the outburst is over, talk to your child. Ask what made him/ her do this. Very tactfully and politely make it clear that further such behavior won’t be acceptable.

7. Give a big hug – 
Don’t leave your child alone when he/she is fighting with overwhelming emotions. They might feel abandoned. Instead give them a big hug and make him/her believe you are always there.

8. Time outs – 
With some kids time-outs work very well. It also teaches them to take charge of their emotions. Make sure you have an eye on them.

As I say all kids are different, through various trial and error you will probably come to know what works best for your child.


Remember “Tantrums are not bad behavior. Tantrums are an expression of emotions that became too much for the child to bear. No punishment is required. What your child needs is compassion and safe loving arms to unload in”. Rebecca Eanes.

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