to think this is normal, dh doesn't (about toddler tantrums)

(72 Posts)
Koothrapanties Mon 21-Jul-14 11:04:47

Just wanted a quick poll.

Our neighbours dd (18m) throws big big tantrums every day. They can last anywhere from five minutes to hours. When it is hours, it will die down, then kick off again. She will scream and scream.

He is worried that the dd isn't being looked after properly and that is why she gets so upset. The mum doesn't do things as we do, but she's on her own and I think is trying her best.

I think it is quite normal for toddlers to have tantrums every day, but he doesn't agree. Who is being u?

Just to say, i help her here and there when needed, so I am offering support, but she does seem to be having a tough time with her toddler at the minute. Obviously she is too young to say if there is any SN, but she hasn't said she has concerns.

Should I be more concerned or is it normal?

Koothrapanties Mon 21-Jul-14 11:05:36

Sorry 'he' in the post is my dh, it's not very clear.

millymollymoomoo Mon 21-Jul-14 11:09:29

hmm, well yes I agree that tantrums are par for the course and daily occurrences would not be unusual. However, ones that last hours, then stop and then start again? that does seem a little odd. Not suggesting anything untoward is going on but it definitely sounds like she needs some support. Does she have HV help or local Surestart or anything?

When you say mum doesn't do thing as you do, what do you mean?

paddleduck Mon 21-Jul-14 11:09:52

Hours is not normal no. Continually off and on all day, on the occasional days where the child struggling with whatever yes.. but inconsolable, unable to be soothed or rest properly.. no.

That's not to say she is not being looked after properly, it does sound like mum needs extra support though. Some children are particularly high needs, even if no special needs. It sounds like this little child is finding life difficult right now and mum is funding it hard too..understandably. Can she get any support through her HV?

Koothrapanties Mon 21-Jul-14 11:17:01

She doesn't see the hv.

I don't want to be rude but I will try and explain what I mean.

She doesn't feed her dd proper meals, mainly snacks and if it is a meal then it's an adult ready meal. That sounds really juddgemental, but it's not what we do.

She doesn't really play with her dd, she just gets her to play in her room. Again I don't want to sound judgemental, it's just not what we do.

She doesnt go out much, which I don't think helps.

She just isn't quite as loving towards her dd as dh and I. We are constantly smothering dd in kisses and cuddles, whereas neighbour isn't really like that. Not everyone is though.

It's just little things like that.

Koothrapanties Mon 21-Jul-14 11:20:22

I'm trying really hard not to sound like I'm judging because thats not how I feel, but dh has commented on these things quite a lot. I do say to him everyone does things differently and the choices we make will not be the same as everyone.

numptieseverywhere Mon 21-Jul-14 11:28:20

A tantrum is usually over and done with quite quixkly. They don't last for hours.

Oldraver Mon 21-Jul-14 11:34:06

Sounds like she wants a bit more attention

ikeaismylocal Mon 21-Jul-14 11:37:14

My ds is 19 months and he does tantrum but they are usually very quick, just a minute or two, I tend to distract him and he's quite easily tricked at the moment.

We were on the train last week and a family got on the train with a hysterical little girl, she looked about 2.5, she was having the most extreme tantrum I have ever seen, constant screaming and crying and throwing herself around in the pushchair, the mum tried to take her out and sit with her and cuddle her but she just screamed and hit out even more. The dad was talking another train passenger and apparently the tantrum had started because the little girl's bana had broken and then things had e escalated.

I think different children tantrum to differing levels, maybe it's down to the child's inate personality and also their developmental stage, I anticipate ds's tantrums getting worse as he gets older.

Laquitar Mon 21-Jul-14 11:44:08

I think (i just think, i am not expert) that a neglected child wouldn't have tantrums, instead she would be more very quite and withdrawn?

Is your dh home all day?

Koothrapanties Mon 21-Jul-14 11:49:56

So should I be concerned then? Dd isn't quite at the toddler tantrum stage and I have been preparing myself for the worst really. I just assumed that toddlers have huge tantrums!

kinkyfuckery Mon 21-Jul-14 11:50:32

Have you young children yourselves? Could you invite neighbour and child over to play and see how things are?

Koothrapanties Mon 21-Jul-14 11:51:04

Dh has been home all day for about three months as he has been recovering from serious illness.

Koothrapanties Mon 21-Jul-14 11:52:44

Kinky I do exactly that. The dd can be very nasty tto my dd though so I am reluctant to keep doing it. My dd has been absolutely distraught and left with nasty scratches.

Koothrapanties Mon 21-Jul-14 11:53:44

Nasty is the wrong word, she is just a baby. I dint know what the right word is though.

arethereanyleftatall Mon 21-Jul-14 11:54:18

As you want a poll, I'll offer my experiences; neither of my 2 have ever had a tantrum, or anything approaching it. They're 3 & 5. Very well loved and very happy children if that makes any diff.

HayDayQueen Mon 21-Jul-14 11:58:20

My DSs went through horrible tantrum stages from 18 months. They might not have gone for hours every day (although it felt like it at times...) but they did have frequent (several times a day) long lasting tantrums.

DS2 once threw such a tantrum while we were visiting my friend, his godmother, walking in and out of the kitchen, screaming at us, storming out, storming in, throwing himself down on the ground, worked himself up so much that he only stopped when he fell asleep mid-scream on the floor. Had to check he was still breathing!!!!!

Koothrapanties Mon 21-Jul-14 12:02:39

You see hayday that is what I have been preparing myself for. As i have never had a toddler, I have gone on people's stories, and usually they tell you the worst ones!

kateecass Mon 21-Jul-14 12:04:45

My DD used to have massive tantrums a lot and for long periods of time from 18 months till she started school. My DS probably had about 4 in his 8 years.

I think some kids are just like this. We found the best way to deal with them wS just to ignore her and that if we tried to calm her it just made go on for ever. She was really hard work and I would have been a mess if it was just me having to deal with it! As she got older she told us she couldn't stop! Always more prone when she was tired, hungry, thirsty or hot. So maybe how your neighbour is feeding her could be an issue.. But I'd have to say it's perfectly normal for toddlers and especially girls from what I've seen.

Goldmandra Mon 21-Jul-14 12:12:05

I don't think there would be any concern in the child protection sense because a child tantrums that long and that often but I think the mum is probably having a very hard time.

This could be a parent with Autism (hence not going out or socialising, not being openly affectionate) caring for a child with Autism (excessive meltdowns, physical aggression). However, there's little you could do other than offer an ear or a bit of support now and then unless you can build a deeper relationship with her.

It could be a depressed mum and a child who isn't getting enough interaction so is resorting to attention seeking behaviour. Again, there's not much you can do other than offer a bit of support.

It could also very easily be a single mum with a high needs child who is going through a stage of making a massive fuss about every little thing she doesn't like. Some support is about all you can give there too.

18 months isn't too young to start an assessment for SN if the parent has significant concerns and the problems are beyond what is normally seen in children of that age.

You don't seem to have any concerns about this little girl's safety and you haven't said that she isn't clean or well fed so I think you are best to keep offering support when it seems appropriate.

I once mentioned to my HV that a parent across the road from me seemed to be struggling and may be depressed. I, quite rightly, have no idea what they did with that information but my hope is that someone found an excuse to pop in and make sure she had the support she needed. Maybe you could do the same.

LittleBearPad Mon 21-Jul-14 12:16:09

Dd is 2 and definitely has tantrums. But they usually pass in ten minutes absolute maximum and usually less. Distraction is usually sufficient to stop them. Going in for hours seems unusual.

Gen35 Mon 21-Jul-14 12:20:35

Hmm dd would throw tantrums that would go on for up to an hour at that age - she doesn't have sn, but if she decided she didn't want to walk, she'd sit on the ground and scream until picked up. We usually gave in before she did as she had a lot more stamina. There were definitely bad days where we'd get several when tired. Is dh keeping a diary and timings? Toddlers screaming sounds so bad it can just feel like it's all day.

Koothrapanties Mon 21-Jul-14 12:21:25

Gold, she is clean, lovely clothes, lovely home. The only one out of your list would be the food, but she isn't being starved, just not getting the best diet. I don't for a second think this little girl is in any danger, no.

I honestly thought it was quite normal for a child to tantrum like that. I do not think she is a neglectful mother, and I think she loves her dd. She is just making different choices to us and is going through a tough bit.

If I had to make a choice out of your list I would say she is a bit depressed.

dashoflime Mon 21-Jul-14 12:23:10

"She doesn't feed her dd proper meals, mainly snacks and if it is a meal then it's an adult ready meal. That sounds really juddgemental, but it's not what we do."

My Ds is just turned 2 and doesn't really eat proper meals. He quite often gets through the day on bits of bread, the occasional yoghurt and finger food on the go.
I think, if you want to get them into the discipline of eating meals at the table then that's all well and good as part of their socialisation. Not sure its necessary nutrition-wise though.

Koothrapanties Mon 21-Jul-14 12:24:24

He isn't keeping a diary no. Yesterday was quite bad, it started in the afternoon and went on and off for about three hours. She woild scream for ten minutes then stop for twenty or so then on off on off.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now