19 month old throwing temper tantrums

Brittany - posted on 08/29/2010 ( 3 moms have responded )

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My 19 month old girl throws temper tantrums when she doesn't get her way. She throws her self on the ground and then screams and cries. I don't know what to do about it, and how I should punish her so she will get that it is not ok to do that. Plus i'm just wondering if it's because she is an only child. It's embarassing to take her places and have her do that, it makes me look like i'm not doing a good job at being a parent. Please HELP!

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Mary - posted on 08/29/2010

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My daughter started doing that at around 18 months...and I know how mortifying it can be in public! However, it is fairly normal.

I found the most effective way was to pretty much ignore her. I would firmly say "No, I'm sorry, but you cannot have/do ______". When she continued to through a fit, I would either just stand there saying nothing, or even walk away from her. Usually she wore herself out after a few minutes, and pretty mush reverted back to her normal self. I NEVER gave in to whatever it was she wanted when she engaged in that behavior. She's 21 months now, and the tantrums are a rare occurrence.

It's harder when you are out in public, since you don't want to annoy people, and you are also dying of embarrassment, but I eventually got over that. The only exception is going out to eat (at a nicer place, not Chick Fil A). I wouldn't want to ruin someone else's dinner, so either the hubby or I would carry her outside until she calmed down. Luckily, this rarely happens in when we're out....she loves all the attention and stimulation of being out and about, so she's usually pretty pleasant in public.

Again, don't worry about other people...yes, those without children may give you dirty looks, but most of us WITH kids, if we even bother to look at all, are only commiserating, and wishing we could help =)

JuLeah - posted on 08/29/2010

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Let go of how you think you look to others



Parents' don't look like bad parents if their kids pitch a fit (all kids do that) parents usually look like bad parents if they react to their child from the place of 'what do others think?' :)



She is 19 months and has a new outlook on the world. She sees things, wants things, has ideas she wishes to express - and very little language



From the time she was born, she cried and you reacted - you fed her, played with her .... it is a great system really and I am sure she is confused as to why it no longer works all the time



It no longer works because her needs are bigger then feeding or changing can settle, but she doesn't understand that



She needs langauge - not punishment



She needs to be taught (skills, tools, means of expressing herself) she needs to be taught to wait, taught self control ..... punishment does not teach



The goal of discipline, remember, is to teach self-discipline



So, set an example for her - giver her langauge - praise her BIG for waiting, or asking, for using her words - Tell her "Mommy can't hear you when you scream"



Play games with her that require her to wait her turn (remember, a long wait for her might be five seconds:)



Play games with her that require language, require her to take turns, to share. Practce the skills you want her to have when she is upset, while she is not upset.



If she starts to scream in a store, remove her from the store "We can't scream in a store"



Stay calm. She needs to see calm before she can copy it - I cringe/laugh at parents that scream at their babies "Calm DOWN. STOP SCREAMING"



I am sure you don't do that, but you know what I mean.



The lessons you need her to learn are life long lessons, with a few steps forward for every step back - it takes time (years) but she will get there



There is a book "Positive Discipline" that really was a help to me.



Good luck

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Katherine - posted on 08/29/2010

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Unfortuantely it's totally normal :) My 18mo does it too. People understand, technically she's still a baby.

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