new crazy tantrums

Courtney - posted on 02/06/2010 ( 11 moms have responded )

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My September baby started temper tantrums a few months ago...I don't engage her and just let her throw her tamtrum unless she is going to hurt herself-then I move her to the middle of the room and let her do her thing. It was working really well-she was learning to control her temper-life is good...until yesterday she started a new crazy tantrum like I've never seen her through before-complete with biting and hitting when I wouldn't pick her up. Has anyone else had this problem?? Should I just stay consistant or change tactics?? I WON'T smack her-but I would like a way to help her calm down...HELP!

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Kate - posted on 02/17/2010

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Sounds like you are doing a pretty good job so far. I believe that children need to feel loved no matter how they are expressing themselves. One of the best parenting quotes I have read is "it is when children act least deserving of our love that they need it the most". I think that children experience many frustrations in their lives - such as separation anxiety, developmental frustrations etc etc. It is normal and healthy for them to get it all out by crying - laughter also has its place. It's about releasing any stress and tension etc. When she starts to cry and tantrum, you do need to keep her safe and make sure that she isn't going to hurt herself or anyone else.....but instead of ignoring, punishing or distracting her just offer your empathy and love. Make eye contact when she needs it and let her know that you are there and 'listening'. This is a much different way of treating the situation......if any of this appeals to you, I would be happy to give you some links where you can read more about this approach. I try to support my son when he is crying....it has been challenging. But after he is happy and relaxed, there is no more whining. Just a happy little boy! I wish you all the best.

Manon Alexe - posted on 02/17/2010

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Mine has started her fits as well. Most of the time i ignore it and she stops quite quickly. My problem is with getting her dressed. Its a mission and a half! She doesn't want to wear a nappy for starters and than the clothes gets even worse. She wants to do it herself without any help and she's a bit to small still. I've stopped putting on shoes as she really hates wearing them and kicks me when i try to put them on. (Its summer where we live now.) How do i deal with the dressing tantrums? Any advise will be super!

Jeni - posted on 02/16/2010

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If you are still nursing, I find that a little milk break helps mine regain her center.

Amanda - posted on 02/16/2010

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My September baby does the exact same thing. I just let her have her freak out & then when she is done she will come over & cuddle. I have talked to other people that are having the same behaviour. My advice is just let her vent & she will feel better. As time goes on she is starting to have them less.

Deyell - posted on 02/13/2010

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yep my 16 month old has them ... throws himself around and screams and yells, we just ignor it and once he sees that he has no ones attention he stops. My twins had the same stage and so did my three year old, you cannot reason with a 16 month old, they dont get the concept . Just make sure they are safe and let them go.

Ashley - posted on 02/12/2010

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I agree with Rachel. My almost 17 month old son has just started the tantrums. I didn't go through this with my oldest son, who is 8, until he was much older, so I wasn't sure what steps to take. I ignore. At this age, there is no way I will spank. But I sit down on the floor with him or get on his level and firmly tell him 'mommy won't pick you up or play with you until you stop'. It went from several minutes, to a few seconds. Now it's about down to just a look, and he'll stop. Sometimes he'll fall down and throw himself around, sometimes he'll pinch and scratch at us or his toys or whatever he's closest to. I walk out of the room, he doesn't usually follow, and let him do his thing. When I did go through this with my oldest, looking back, I think I 'fed' his need to be the center of attention. So this time around, I just don't pay attention to it, and he gets over it really quickly. I think you're doing it right, Courtney.

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She used to thrash around and bang her head on things very violently though - I couldn't have even put her in her cot safely, she really did need to be restrained on occasion.

Rachael - posted on 02/07/2010

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Sorry Sinead but I completely disagree. When my older two went thru this stage I used seperation from our family activity (timeouts) as the consequence. I never wanted to make my children feel as tho their emotions were wrong or not appreciated but also felt the need for them to understand that there is a right way and a wrong way to handle anger, frustration, etc. So a timeout would allow them to feel their feelings, without making the rest of us miserable, and when i would go in I would reinforce that throwing fits would always lead to them sitting by themselves. My husband's sis would always use the holding method but it seemed so...anti-consequential. Often times temper tantrums are done to get their way or to get your attention. So, while your holding them for hours at times, whispering and consoling them, well I don't see a negative consequence to a negative decision. Also want to add that a friend of mine once told me when I was preggs with our first that the rebellion my child would display starting around 2 is going to be almost exactly the same as the rebellion they will go thru as teenagers. So use this time while they are still young enough to teach them that they can control (almost ;-) everything in their lives just by the choices they make. Also that our problems can often times be resolved with comprimise, such as on a chilly morning, I asked my 7 year old to put her jacket on. She of course didn't want to wear it. This could have ended with a major meltdown right b4 school, but instead of forcing her to put it on, I asked if she would bring it with her and if she started to feel cold, would she put it on? So now, the control is given back to her and most likely, I'll have gotten what I wanted. Win-win!!

Jill - posted on 02/07/2010

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Hey yup mine has started up tantrums too. I called my mom right away, my mom said bite it in the butt quickly and soon. she is a teacher and raised twins, my sister and i and we were not a piece of cake! anyways, when she gets like that i put her in her room and not to give her an audience. I check on her and stay at the door. she doesn't fully settle down but knows it's not okay and i am serious. Or i put her in her crib. then i go in and pick her up when she gets the point and say mommy loves you and try to explain it's not okay, etc. I try to soothe her with books and lay with her. if she keeps up put her back in room or crib. stay consistent. Hope this helps a little.

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My September baby hasn't done this yet, but my older girl who is approaching 9 years now went through a bit of a mad phase from 2 -4 years where she would bit, scratch, everything. I used to envelope her in my arms, restraining her as best I could while keeping her mouth away from me and sit at the foot of the stairs, cut off from the living room and anywhere else there were interesting things. I would just gently rock and talk in a soothing way about any nonsense I could think of until she chilled. It would sometimes take up to half an hour though. The main thing is to stop them hurting themselves, like you said. I tried to make the situation as boring and calming as I could though. I really don't know if that tactic worked or if she just grew out of it. It would only happen once every few weeks.

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