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How to Respond When Your Child Has Tantrums

Parenting and Child Care

When you have children or toddlers, tantrums are a part of life. Every vivacious child goes through several stages of emotional development, which unfortunately include displays of uncontrollable anger and full blown tantrums as children test their boundaries and explore their independence.

Defined as a childish display of anger or a sudden burst of ill temper, tantrums can be disruptive and frustrating for parents to handle. If boundaries are set early, parents can avoid the inevitable insecurities and control issues that may develop and linger in life. As early as infancy, you can begin to teach your child self-control and the consequences of making both good and bad choices. By doing so, you will be helping your child understand the boundaries you have established when they are tempted to display displeasure in an aggressive way.

Dealing With the Onset of a Tantrum

It is easy to tame a tantrum by giving in to that first little whim, but if you are able to overlook that first fallout, you will have won half the battle. Here are a few steps to cope with a child who is throwing a tantrum:

  • Check for dangerous items and secure delicate items without bringing attention to his tantrum.
  • Allow your child to express that burst of negative energy within reason. Again, avoid bringing attention to the tantrum.
  • Respond to any sign that your child is coming out of the ‘fallout.’ Once the child understands that throwing a tantrum gets hardly any attention, they will be willing to resort to more positive ways to gain your attention. However, it may take a few diligent lessons before he decides to reject the tantrums as a method of getting what he wants.
  • Teach your child that it is absolutely okay for them to disagree with others in a way that does not expressive negative energy, harm others or damage property.

Of course, if you are in a public place, you cannot allow your child to burst out of control and damage everything around him. After a few diligent lessons, your child will quickly understand that the same rules apply in public that are used at home.

Beyond the Initial Stage

While you are in the tantrum training stage of child-rearing, it is imperative that you pay attention to as many positive behaviors as possible when your child is confronted with disapproval. If your child is never told that they have made a good decision and that you are pleased, they will never know what you expect from them. Positive reinforcement is by-far the best child rearing tool available and can help your child develop appropriate ways of expressing emotions instead of resorting to tantrums..

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