How do you deal with your child throwing a "scary" tantrum? Advice please.

Leanne - posted on 03/30/2011 ( 7 moms have responded )

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My son is 2 years old and after his nap today he started to scream, kick and roll around on the floor. Nothing I said or did made it better, only made him scream and cry harder.

So I left him alone in his room for about five minutes to go wake his father up from his nap (he works nights) and when I went back he was the same.
I tried to pick him up and he just screamed harder.. He needed to be changed and I had hoped getting a wet diaper off of him would help his mood.. So I held him and took him in the hall to be changed as he just screamed, I tried my best to calm him.. and even getting the diaper off (which was so hard!) he continued on and was rolling around screaming.. I couldn't get a new diaper on him and didn't feel comfortable pinning him or whatnot to do so.

I just sat with him on the floor trying to say nice things to him to get him to stop.. Nothing was working and every time I tried to touch him he would scream harder.. Got to the point where I went into my room and shut the door near in tears.

Right after I shut my door he stopped.. Which made no sense to me because I left him alone for a few minutes before and he didn't stop then..

After that my boyfriend dealt with him. He put his diaper on him and put him in time-out for "hurting mommy's feelings" (his words). But he was fine by then, just babbling in his broken language (he knows some words, not sentences or a lot of words).

My boyfriend thinks it has something to do with giving him sugar and is part of the ADHD. We believe our son has ADHD because he is showing signs that my boyfriend did when he was this age (he has ADHD), but we have not gone to the doctor with it because we wont be giving him medication for it anyways..

He didn't have a lot of sugar that day, just a small piece of cake for a treat/snack.

I don't want to leave my son alone to "cry it out" in this situation because I feel something inside of him is wrong to him. Something in his mind MUST of happened to make him feel bad enough to throw a tantrum like that and I wanted to comfort him.. However, my boyfriend insists that if it happens again I will just have to leave him in a time out and there is no use me getting hurt over it..

What do you do to help your child when they are like this? Are they even like this??
Does your child have ADHD and do things like this?? Any bit of info would be fantastic.

7 Comments

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Bree - posted on 04/14/2011

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The one thing I would say is that he doesn't deserve a time out for a tantrum that doesn't have an origin in bad behavior.

Jenn - posted on 04/09/2011

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First of all, Definitely do NOT splash water in their face,m the will make things ten times worse..How would you feel if you were upset and overwhelmed and someone splashed you in the face?? Children have meltdowns for many reasons but the jist of it is they are overwhelmed (or another strong emotion, angry, stressed, tired, etc) and they cannot find the words or correct way to express themselves..You should just give him space and let him get it out, unless he is a danger to himself or others. After, it is done acknowledge his feelings such as "IT made you angry when your sister took your toy didn't it? Why don't we think of something else you can do next tiem your angry? By giving your child the words and alternatives to a meltdown you are helping to teach them the proper way to handle their emotions...After is all said and done give a big hugs and kiss and ensure them that you still love them, just not the behavior.. Many toddlers go through these stages because they are still learning how to handle their emotions..

Cat - posted on 04/09/2011

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My little boy is now almost three and still has his moments, i think its just a case of finding what works for them to stop the bahavior, for my son walking away and distracting him works, I'll say 'Im going to play outside, do some colouring, bake etc, I dont talk about the tantrum especially when he was 2 they dont really understand, from memory they're just too young and its just their way of getting attention, eventually it passes and something else will become an issue for you/ them. I hope you find something that works for you. I find if my sons had chocolate hes short tempered, chocolate does the same to me too :) good luck with everything.

[deleted account]

I'll try and find a reference for this on the web but I've heard - don't try and pick them up. Sit quietly where they can see you but a couple feet away and wait it out - but stop them if they do anything that harms themself.



I've also heard splash water in their face to surprise them - but that skeeves me out a little.



Also you should still seek a doctor's advice, even if you are not planning on medicating, because they may provide you with a diagnosis which will give you a better idea of how to deal with these tantrums, without medication.

Sarah - posted on 04/01/2011

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my son is 3 and has been diagnosed with adhd and it is very hard to deal with his tantrums u will learn how to deal with him in u own way but it takes time and deadication we have to give our son a choice so when he is being bad u say either u go thinking time or u be a good boy up to you somwhats it going to be and 8/10 he will choose to do the good thing nut he tried to be clever and said thinking time so i did he did not like it started to get into a right tantrum but mad e him stay there the 3 min because it 1 min per year of child so mines 3 so he get 3 mins time out but also we have to get down to his level so wen he bad we have to knel down to his height and if he not listening we have to hold his arm tight and say in a firm voice you do not do that it was bad and u made mummy sad then he does not like it so u will learn what triggers ur son off and what works for ur son also star charts have worked before to it takes alot of time and hard work and yes its very hard at times but u learn to deal with it u have to repeat yourself over and over again till he gets it as he will forget i know what u going through and it is hard there is support out there so anything you want to ask just go ahead xxxx

Sarah - posted on 04/01/2011

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my son is 3 and has been diagnosed with adhd and it is very hard to deal with his tantrums u will learn how to deal with him in u own way but it takes time and deadication we have to give our son a choice so when he is being bad u say either u go thinking time or u be a good boy up to you somwhats it going to be and 8/10 he will choose to do the good thing nut he tried to be clever and said thinking time so i did he did not like it started to get into a right tantrum but mad e him stay there the 3 min because it 1 min per year of child so mines 3 so he get 3 mins time out but also we have to get down to his level so wen he bad we have to knel down to his height and if he not listening we have to hold his arm tight and say in a firm voice you do not do that it was bad and u made mummy sad then he does not like it so u will learn what triggers ur son off and what works for ur son also star charts have worked before to it takes alot of time and hard work and yes its very hard at times but u learn to deal with it u have to repeat yourself over and over again till he gets it as he will forget i know what u going through and it is hard there is support out there so anything you want to ask just go ahead xxxx

Kristi - posted on 03/30/2011

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My son doesn't usually throw tantrums quite that intense, but I think that is because right from the first tantrum, I didn't give him attention for bad behavior. I always reward good behavior, every chance I get. My current issue is whining, but I just tell my son kindly, yet firmly, that I can not understand his whiny voice and that he needs to speak to me like a big boy. This works every time... I may have to remind him most days, but once I do, there is limited whining. I think you just have to be consistent. I honestly believe that you must not give them attention for that type of behavior. Do not try to console him because that will just fuel his tantrum. He needs to be left alone to calm down until he is ready to behave. The most important thing is to not let it upset you and do not take it personally. Toddlers just get frustrated easily at times. Good luck!

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