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Are you wondering about ways to handle your toddler tantrums? Welcome to the club! Here are some parenting tips on how to handle toddler tantrums.
Children are like this – when you give them something that they want, they will ask for two; you give them two they will ask for three. They keep demanding and pushing the boundaries all the time. While all of us grew up the same way, handling toddler tantrums has become the main focus point in parenting.
This is because kids are exposed to too many options and there are many tempting elements that are easily accessible to them. Right from electronic gadgets to fancy toys, accessories, junk foods etc – the list is endless and all these make the parenting task all the more difficult.
While each child is unique, so is every parent and managing every day toddler tantrums could be altogether a different subject in each home. However we tend to overlook simple solutions or get tired of numerous tantrums owing to other important tasks of daily routine.
Here are some parenting tips to handle toddler tantrums, as they are called – terrible twos, threes, fours, fives; may be I should stop here until my child turns six!
It sometimes happens that you have a fight with your toddler on some toy or a gadget or something else. The next thing that you should do as soon as the storm settles down is, to hide it somewhere. Kids mostly live in the present and explore things right around them, so there is a good chance that they might forget about the same unless it becomes a daily affair.
I quickly close the kitchen cupboard as soon as I take my jaggery out. Well, the cupboard also has other stuff like the so called energy drink powders for kids. I tried keeping my child away from them all this while but when he got to taste it once, it is difficult now to avoid completely. I make it only as a weekly indulgence now and try to get him drink finger millet porridge otherwise. He has kind of accepted the same and I do not want to spark his sleeping wishes now!
Do not commit to anything in a hurry unless you are very sure you want to keep the word. Simultaneously, saying ‘no’ to something they demand could trigger a blown out tantrum. I just keep saying ‘let’s see’ to many of my child’s silly demands.
I have lost count of the occasions when ‘let’s see’ saved me, really! It is rooted well into my kid’s mind and even if I am a bit late in responding to his wish, he adds ‘let’s see!’, before I could say it. You can practice being diplomatic at home and who knows it might help you one day in your career as well!
Sometimes they need to understand it, especially when it is related to safety or hygiene or something that happens frequently and requires an action to be taken. When you are in this situation just say no and stick to it no matter what. This sounds strict but it will do good in the long run.
With time, kids understand that when you say no, it means business! Saying no is not related to getting angry or moody, but it is just about being strict about something. So when you say no, be kind and give him a tight hug, but tell him a no will stay as a no!
Kids do not like restrictions and are very smart, and understand business terms well. When you have to decide something for them and you know that it is against their unreasonable wishes, try giving them an option. It leads them to decide something for their own self and leaves no one to blame or trouble later on.
For example, my son was asking for two sugar candies instead of one, so I tell him to either take one today and one tomorrow or take two today and no candies till next Sunday. Either ways, he gets what he wants and I get what I want – seems to be a good deal for both of us!
There will be certain tantrums when no reason helps! When my child is tired or sleepy, sometimes he picks up silly things from past to start a row again. The other day he was upset because he doesn’t like it when it was not possible to go to the front of the queue at Disneyland, Paris, on our recent Europe trip.
I wonder if this ia a valid enough reason to cry at night, that too after we are back in India! Obviously no reasoning worked with him and the only solution was to try and get him to sleep. He was fussy, more because he was sleepy and actually not so much because people had not given way!
There are other times when they are just not ready to listen to anything at all. The howling is so much that no matter what you say, it can only be heard inside your mind. In that case try and ignore the tantrum for a while till they settle down. Do try to be around them though and let them feel that you are here to listen.
If the child is ok to let you near her, hold her till she calms down and is ready for a discussion. Most issues are better settled when both the parent and the child are calm and stable, irrespective of having disagreements.
A daily rhythm is what keeps children feel safe and secure as they know what is coming. Any distractions or a change in rhythm can make things difficult for a parent. I used to dread this thought of having him exposed to lot of new things and changes in his rhythm on our long holiday. How to handle a child on a long holiday is what many parents get concerned.
My only suggestion is not to push the kid beyond limits and stay happy with whatever you could do. We had to cancel one of our treks after hiking half the path because my son was fussy to continue the same. After much cajoling, we decided to turn back, took a nap on the mountain and went home.
For sure we missed spending time at a beautiful lake on top, but if we had gone ahead we would have missed sleeping on the mountain grass. So the idea is to be ok with whatever you can do with the child and stay happy – everything is an experience in itself and you cannot do it all anyway.
Well, all these simple suggestions will help you to keep some of the tantrums at bay or atleast make peace temporarily. With kids, it is a new story everyday and it drives parents to be more creative to handle it differently. However you need not always deal with the tantrums. Neither you nor me are still throwing tantrums, isn’t it? They only last as long as they are kids and sometimes just laughing it off will make the situation lighter and a lot better.
For example, yesterday afternoon my son started howling about getting wet because he had opened the shower by mistake! Poor thing, he is too cute to start a discipline session with sometimes! Cherish those moments while they are still young – happy parenting!
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