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to ask how many tantrums a day your kids throw?

(80 Posts)
hairbrushbedhair Sat 24-Oct-15 23:10:43

DS is 3.1

I could be a really shit parent. (I hope not, I'm trying very hard!)

Or it could be so totally normal?

He has thrown at least 6 wobblys that resulted in glares from passers by today.

DH is hyper sensetive and can't stand any form of attention drawn and is now suggesting we simply stop taking him out in public confused but I do get that he is at the end of his patience. I've come home in tears myself before now with the tantrums.

He has no diagnosis. I do have concerns about his development behaviourally and have another thread in sn children but iv done m-chat and he comes out low risk, so whatever's happening I don't think we can say it's likely to be explained by an ASD

On top of these 6+ incidents there have been several at home.

Are some kids just like this? Should I just tell DH we just need to suck it up?

It's not like we give in to the tantrums. I have tried giving in to stop a tantrum but he tantrums the other way anyhow eg today he didn't want to go in a shop - starts loudly crying that he doesn't want to and trying to push me away from the shop, so I said ok fine we'll wait outside then (for DH) in the hope he'd calm down but then he's screaming he wants to go in the shop... (It wasn't a shopping trip, he wasn't tired, it was a 2 min dash to get an essential)

DH keeps pointing out we don't see other kids his age behaving like it very often in the street...

Boredofthinkingofnewnames Sat 24-Oct-15 23:22:01

I have twins. 1 tantrums once in a blue moon, the other one at least twice a day.

TheHouseOnTheLane Sat 24-Oct-15 23:23:41

Are his tantrums over different things every time? Or are they often the same things?

hairbrushbedhair Sat 24-Oct-15 23:54:26

Different things but the one repeated tantrum is over a routine change or things being done in order different to what he was expecting. I guess today perhaps the quick dash into the chemist took him by surprise

Mmmmcake123 Sun 25-Oct-15 00:07:54

Not sure if my post will be of any help as it goes along the line of they're all different.
My dd very rarely had a tantrum.
My ds has a diagnosis of asd but tends to huff n puff a bit, never actually had a proper tantrum. Fwiw he doesn't mind breaks in routine whatsoever. If he gets frustrated it is usually down to just not wanting to do whatever is going onn and not being able to express it verbally

hairbrushbedhair Sun 25-Oct-15 00:12:07

Could this simply be normal for a NT kid?

Or do I need to accept I might be shit at parenting? (Iv already put myself on a parenting course)

AgentZigzag Sun 25-Oct-15 00:12:48

DD1's down to one every other day now she's nearly 15 grin

Your DS is only tiny and just starting to get to grips with how the world works and where he figures in that. Not only that but how to communicate how he feels/what he wants and needs.

Of course there are things you can try to keep them to a minimum but whether they actually work is another thing.

Try and be calm/patient and don't really react to it, carry on doing whatever it is you were doing then when he's calmed down try and tell him how he could have put it into words (I know it's only going to go so far with a 3 YO but you may as well have a go?)

If all else fails keep reminding yourself that it'll pass and he'll be at uni before you know it wink

hairbrushbedhair Sun 25-Oct-15 00:14:58


He's just SO loud. It's one of those where everyone turns and looks

And the odd person chips in a helpful comment about "not in my day" or "needs a good slap" angry

AgentZigzag Sun 25-Oct-15 00:18:44

No, you are not shit at parenting! (and if you are then we all are)

DD1's worst one was throwing herself on the floor wailing at the top of her voice when we were checking some books out at the (ultra quiet that day for so many people being in) library and couldn't make a quick exit shock

Even though I knew I shouldn't give a shit about what anyone else thought and they were probably sympathetic to my plight, I could feel my cheeks burning with the shame grin

hairbrushbedhair Sun 25-Oct-15 00:20:46

That feels like my norm blush

AgentZigzag Sun 25-Oct-15 00:21:49

Mmm, maybe shame's the wrong word because neither of us had done anything wrong, anxiety at everyone looking at us would be better I think.

AgentZigzag Sun 25-Oct-15 00:24:27

'That feels like my norm'

Save it up for when you can get your revenge return the favour by embarrassing him when he's a teenager just by existing grin

hairbrushbedhair Sun 25-Oct-15 00:25:43

Lol if I can make it that far. This has to end soon?!

It started at 1... 2 years in now

hairbrushbedhair Sun 25-Oct-15 00:36:34

Ok I'm probably committing drip feeding now but my OP seemed like an essay to begin with

I realise that DS was holding his wee in this afternoon. He didn't go from 9ish till 6.30, he was hopping and couldn't sit still. A few of the tantrums were over me trying to make him go.
We even got into a toilet with trousers down but still he didn't wee. We've been to GP - no infection. He just has the bladder of an Ox!

Is it possible that he isn't connecting the frustration of wanting to wee with the relief that actually going would provide?

Not sure how that would tie into tantrumming about routine changes though?

SummerNights1986 Sun 25-Oct-15 00:37:14

I know that the advice is generally to ignore tantrums but that never worked for ds2. A tantrum was a daily occurrence from age 3-5 and if all you did was ignore it then it would literally go on for hours.

He is now 5 (approaching 6) and still prone to tantrums more than most of this age and personally the only thing I find works is zero tolerance. If he starts then I briefly ignore (for maybe 2 minutes) whilst keeping on talking normally - I ignore the tantrum but not him iyswim? So keep talking normally to him as if he's not stomping and crying and screeching.

Sometimes this works and he'll snap out of it after a minute of clearly thinking it's not worth the effort. Sometimes he'll keep going. So I tell him in a quiet and controlled voice whilst using my death stare that I do not like his behaviour, will not stand for it and he has 1 minute to pack it in or [sanction]. Leave the park, lose a toy for an hour, take his dinner away, but there'll be nothing else. Whatever seems most appropriate/relevant at the time.

We've had a few times where he's kept going and I always, always follow through on the sanctions. If that happens then the tantrum immediately escalates into super-high hysterical mode. So I take a minute then repeat the steps above. Ignore for 2 minutes whilst talking/acting normally, then give him a warning of a further punishment if it continues. I've never had to follow through on the second warning because he knows that whatever I have said I will do, without fail.

It seems to work and his tantrums are much fewer than they used to be and far, far shorter. He is completely NT and, taking out the tantrums, has a very sunny disposition. An entire tantrum now lasts 5 minutes or less wheras it used to last hours, or 30 minutes for a 'mild' one.

The thing I find winds up a tantrumming kid the most is trying to be nice to them or sweet talk them out of it. It's like they have a sixth sense that you're desperately trying to avoid them going bat shit crazy and the little buggers use it to their advantage.

AgentZigzag Sun 25-Oct-15 00:39:24

It will end, or at least decrease as he gets older and finds other ways to communicate.

Would it help if you wrote down when he's doing it, what triggered it and how you dealt with it to see if any pattern comes out?

You'd be able to see when there are less then.

It is difficult to deal with such a loud situation, especially in public where the norm is to be the 'grey man' and keep your emotions under control. Like I said though, he's only a little mite and your DH is going to have to stop piling the pressure on you for something that's out of your control and completely normal.

I can't believe he thought the answer would be to not take him out in public! shock I realise that's an answer from a man under stress but there's no need to take it out on you or your DS.

hairbrushbedhair Sun 25-Oct-15 00:52:32

I think I will keep a diary. I may as well. I'm constantly searching for patterns to figure out what's happening anyway.

I do follow through but it makes it worse - he can carry on for hours. Giving in makes little difference, he just tantrums the other way - he wants to go home if iv threatened it, or he wants me not to take him somewhere

memyselfandaye Sun 25-Oct-15 00:53:39

Mine throws a strop, crosses his arms, stamps his little 4yr old feet and tells me he's had enough of me once an hour!

I just laugh it off and tell him if he's going to behave like a little spoilt disney princess then i'll send him to school dressed like one grin

hairbrushbedhair Sun 25-Oct-15 00:55:54

Wouldn't work for DS. He doesn't yet know that he actually can't be a princess. He spends a fair amount of time asking to be one grin I reguarly collect him from nursery finding him dressed in a princess outfit

SummerNights1986 Sun 25-Oct-15 00:59:35

They're not reasonable at the best of times so especially not reasonable during a tantrum.

I think the main thing to remember is that a tantrum comes from a youngish child finding their emotions overtaking them and needing an outlet or to try and wrest some control.

They'll rarely actually, truly want what they're tantrumming about IME. They don't hugely want to go X or eat X or do X. They just don't like being told no and need to be contrary, which is why giving in never works and can end in the reverse tantrum.

If they're going to scream about something, better for them to scream about the same thing IMO so that you can stick to your position on it.

What sort of sanctions do you impose op? Are they harsh enough?

SummerNights1986 Sun 25-Oct-15 01:00:30

Harsh enough when considering the fact he's 3 too though!

AgentZigzag Sun 25-Oct-15 01:03:42

What kind of harsh sanctions are you thinking of for a 3 YO Summer?

AgentZigzag Sun 25-Oct-15 01:06:42

grin x posts.

I think it's why disinterest is suggested as an option because I'm not sure how far a 3 YO could understand the ins/outs of a sanction.

hairbrushbedhair Sun 25-Oct-15 01:07:10

Usually stuff like

Leaving places and going home
Not going to activities later that day
Not getting a treat

Or at home sometimes time out is used and being sent for a nap or to play in his room or no tv

SummerNights1986 Sun 25-Oct-15 01:07:52

When I say 'harsh enough' I don't mean in the literal sense of 'harsh'.

I suppose I mean not wishy washy 'Now stop this darling, or you'll hold my hand for the next two minutes' in a tinkly voice, which may be some peoples idea of a 'sanction' and unlikely to work on any three year old IMO. It needs to be a sanction of taking away or stopping something that means something to them, as horrible as that sounds on face value. Because if they're not bothered about the consequence then it will be meaningless to them.

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