What to do about the terrible twos??

Marcia - posted on 08/15/2011 ( 3 moms have responded )




My 22 month old is throwing temper tantrums at the drop of a hat. Sometimes he's just playing on his own and will start screaming and crying. Other times, it's because he isn't getting what he wants. He doesn't listen to me at all. What can I do to stop the screaming?? I don't want to just give in because then he'll think he can get whatever he wants. I'm at a loss.


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September - posted on 08/15/2011




Invest in a couple of good parenting books for the toddler ages and implement the techniques. You may have to try several until you find the ones that work for your child. Some of my favorites have been...Love and Logic, Kids are worth it and Happiest Toddler on the Block. Good luck and best wishes!

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1. Don't take it personally. Normal tantrums are a result of your child's development and temperament, not your parenting. Tantrums are due to frustration (your toddler is trying a complicated engineering feat, and howls when it goes wrong), so don't ignore this need for help. Take this tantrum as an opportunity to connect: By helping your child out of a tight spot, you build authority and trust. Offer a helping hand, a comforting "It's okay," and direct his efforts toward a more manageable part of the task (for example, you slip the sock halfway onto the foot, and then he can pull it on all the way).

2. Verbalize. Children just need to blow off steam. You can help your child by verbalizing for him what he can't say himself: "You are mad that Mommy won't let you have candy."

3. Holding therapy. Other times, when they have lost control, they want someone bigger and wiser to take hold of them lovingly and securely take charge. Try: "You're angry and I'm going to hold you until you get control of yourself because I love you." Soon the tantrum will fizzle and you will feel your flailing child melt into your arms as if thanking you for rescuing him from himself.

4. Time-out the tantrum. If neither ignoring the tantrum nor comforting it seems appropriate, remove the child from the triggering circumstance and call for a time-out. For example, if your child throws a tantrum in the supermarket, calmly pick him up and head for the car.

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