By: Krystle Crossman
Temper tantrums are a part of life and every child goes through them. But instead of getting stressed out and yelling at them when they are throwing a tantrum here are some tips to help you and your child through it without either getting more upset:
1. Let them know that their behavior is not acceptable and then teach them about what acceptable behavior is when they are frustrated about something.
2. You know that they are mad or sad about something so don’t dimiss their feelings. Acknowledge that they are having a problem and that you know what they are feeling. Ask them why they are feeling this way. It will help them to calm down and talk rationally about their problem.
3. Keep yourself in check. Yelling at them is just going to make matters worse so take a breath, do some counting in your head if you have to, and after you have calmed down talk to them.
4. Follow through with any consequences and punishments that are a result of the tantrum. If you do not follow through they will eventually learn that they won’t have to suffer the consequences and will never stop with the tantrums.
5. Give them an alternative. If they are doing something that you don’t want them to do such as throwing a ball around in the house, offer up the alternative of going outside with them and throwing it or finding something else to occupy their time with. Alternatives will help them to realize that they can still do what it is that they want to do but in a more acceptable way.
6. Give them fair punishment. If they are arguing about taking a bath, take away the bath toys instead of yelling at them and taking away something else outside of the bathtub. Make sure that the consequences are relevant to the situation.
7. Don’t take the tantrum personally. They are not doing it to irritate you and they are not doing it because they hate you. They are doing it because they have feelings that they need to express and they can’t quite figure out how to do so in an appropriate way.
8. Show them the right way to express their feelings whether it be through talking it over, doing something creative, or taking some quiet time to think about the emotions that they are feeling.
9. Try not to use “time outs” as this could make them feel like you are rejecting their feelings and pushing them away instead of acknowledging that they are upset.
10. Try to get down to the root cause of the tantrum and help them to find a way to handle it better the next time it happens.