Toddlers with tantrums are not fun. Especially when these tantrums happen in front of a lot of people, like at a party or the supermarket. The best thing to do is to stay calm no matter what. If you get upset it will only feed the child’s anger and make it worse. Think to yourself, “this can’t go on forever and it will pass in a minute.” All parents know this because it happens to all of us. Some children, are just more vivid and lively in their tantrums than other kids.
Let them talk
When you have just learned something, it takes practice to master it. So be patient and let them talk even though it takes time. Make sure you understand what they are trying to tell you and acknowledge it before you act or move past the tantrum. Children are people that need to be heard and understood, just like adults, and they are more calm and centered inside when they feel like you’re listening.
Let them adjust
If you are doing something new, tell them about it a little ahead of time so they can set their mind to it and adjust. Just give them a 5 minute heads up.
Use positive words
I know you have heard this before, but I will repeat it because it works. Save the word “no” for when you need it! For instance, if there is danger involved or if it’s a safety issue. If your child wants juice and you would like them to have water, say “once you drink this water you may have juice, or let’s save the juice so you have it for the weekend.” The word “no” is like a trigger word for a child, so when they hear it, they may get frustrated instantly, so if you can say “no” without actually saying the word, you’ll find that may work out a lot better for you.
Support your words with actions
Children this age communicate more with body language and actions than words, which is why you should do that too. If you do this, it makes it so much easier for them to understand your message. For instance, if you are telling them not to touch their grandmother’s plate, then tell them with words and move the plate a few inches away from them. Not out of their reach since that means you don’t trust them, but make a motion that shows what you mean.
Support their feelings with your words
If your children does throw a tantrum, let them know that you understand they are frustrated and tell them it is okay to be upset. Continue in a calm voice to tell them you are going to continue what you are doing, and you will let them have some time to gather themselves. NEVER give in to what caused the tantrum in the first place. If you did not allow them to have sandals on in the snow and they got upset, you should always stand your ground and don’t give in. If you do it once, remember that it may come back twice as bad next time. Your child must know that they cannot change your mind no matter how hard they try.