Q&A: Handling toddler tantrum

Question:

I’m a first-time parent, and my son is just getting to the “toddler tantrum” stage. I’m a bit overwhelmed – how do I handle these episodes?

Answer: That may depend on the reason for the tantrum. Is your child hungry or tired? If so, offering a snack or a nap may be all it takes to nip a tantrum in the bud.

However, if your child is frustrated over not getting his way, the best thing to do is ignore the outburst. The last thing you want to do is give in or drop everything in an effort to appease your little one. This will teach him that negative behaviour pays off.

Once your child does calm down, explain that screaming won’t work and that you need him to use words.

If the tantrum continues, however, you may need to use a time out. Place your toddler somewhere without toys or entertainment, and wait for him to quiet down before allowing him to rejoin the family.

It can also be helpful to identify those triggers that set your child off. If, for instance, your toddler tends to throw a fit when it’s time to leave a fun setting, prepare him in advance. A five-minute warning can go a long way toward heading off a tantrum. Finally, remember that toddler temper tantrums are perfectly normal. And, if they’re handled correctly, your child will soon learn healthier ways to express emotion.

For more ideas about raising young children, explore our Resources.

© 2018 Focus on the Family.  All rights reserved.  Used by permission.

Share

Share on facebook
Share on whatsapp
Share on email

MORE

MARRIAGE

Nourishing Your Spouse

Love isn’t just a feeling; it is action and behaviour. It’s important that you regularly nourish your relationship with your loved one in ways that speak love to him/her.

Read More >

Real Life Solutions

The first step to connecting well sexually is to do so verbally. Discuss 7 essential questions that will help you and your spouse satisfy your differing needs for intimacy in your marriage.

Read More >

PARENTING

10 Steps for Better Sleep For Your Family

Good sleep is essential to maintaining physical, emotional, spiritual and social health. However, many people are seriously sleep deprived. Dr. Meg Meeker discusses the benefits of getting good sleep and some of the potential problems parents and kids may experience if they don’t get enough rest at night.

Read More >

FAMILY Q&A