A "duh" moment in dealing with tantrums

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Kayla1981's picture
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A "duh" moment in dealing with tantrums

I'm not declaring victory over tantrums by any means, but I have felt like something clicked recently. I have been reading more AP techniques on dealing with crying and tantrums and I think it is helping. Jordan has been particularly sensitive lately. She might have a fit if I close the pantry door when she wanted to. (True story, it happened today.)

Now, I know this may seem like common sense to some of you but I am willing to admit that I had it in my head that tantrums needed to be ignored. However, I have tried that and it usually resulted in a very long period of crying and Jordan getting so upset. The last couple of times I've just sat near her and, with as few words as possible, tried to label her feelings and identify her frustration. I also offer a hug. Today she was having a fit so I did those things and she realized I was waiting there for her, ready to give her a hug. I didn't give in to what she was having the tantrum about but she got over it much quicker and even repeated "frustrated" back to me. She ran to me and wrapped her arms around me and then she was fine.

It will be interesting to see if this continues to work.

Marite13's picture
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That is awesome, Kayla! Way to go you! Some of us don't have all the answers up front- so I think it's great that you keep looking for ways that you can improve your parenting with Jordan. And of course it's even more awesome that you found something that seems to make a difference.

And I have to say I like that it's such a gentle approach that honors Jordan's feelings without giving into the tantrum. I might just have to try that with her twin, I mean, Beni! Wink

julieanddanny's picture
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Totally makes sense - I think a lot of the frustration comes from them thinking you don't understand why they are upset - or don't care that they are upset... KWIM I usually find a quick explanation of what or why with some understanding words often helps ward off a full bown meltdown.

Kayla1981's picture
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She had another one today and I did the same thing. It took a little while for her to settle down. I had already acknowledged her feelings and she was still mad so I was just sort of waiting for her to be ready to come to me. Jason walked in and asked her if she wanted a hug (go dadddy Lol and she ran to me and hugged me. (She's been a complete mommy's girl lately.) That was the end of it! I really thought that staying near by was giving her attention and would lengthen the time of the tantrum. My instincts were wrong on that one! I'm happy to have learned something. I'm also happy that I am able to stand my ground on the issue without having to completely ignore her feelings.

reeveslady's picture
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Yay! Eve also responds well to hugs. I need to work on helping her label her feelings, though. That's really great stuff.