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NEED SUPERNANNY - 2 year old having uncontrollable tantrums - any advice??

(18 Posts)
pinky27 Sun 19-May-13 17:28:56

Hi, My 2 year old daughter is having awful tantrums, screaming fits and she hits and kicks me and her Dad. We have tried a range of techniques ( naughty step, ignoring her, praising good behaviour, using a star chart, rewarding good behaviour, being firm) but none of them work - Don't know what else to do - any suggestions?? The worst part is that I am a nursery teacher and can manage to control 104 nursery children but have absolutely NO control over my own child sad - what am I doing wrong??

nannynick Sun 19-May-13 17:36:59

Does she strip off all her clothes as well? They are just joys around this age, they seem to find having a verbal tantrum is not enough, they have to go a stage further and do something else, like kicking/hitting/stripping off.

Things I find that help:

1. "It's ok for you to be cross but the answer is No"... then walk away and leave them to it. Amazing how they come and find you, usually.

2. Distraction, find them something they want to do. "Lets play trains...", "where is dolls hairbrush?".

3. Cuddle them (note: remove any shoes first, it hurts to be kicked with shoes on)

All children are different as you will know from working with children. Avoid things like star charts, reward jars - have worked with children for 20 years and I've not found them to work. It may work in group setting but 1:1 at home I don't find it works... seems like you tried it and found the same.

Pick battles carefully, does it really matter if they won't wear a coat, have a clean face. Some things are non-negotiable of course.

Tee2072 Sun 19-May-13 17:38:30

She's two. Let her tantrum. Make sure she's safe and walk away.

You say you're ignoring, but I would bet you're checking on her periodically and trying to talk to her. Don't.

Wait until she comes to you.

It's not easy.

cyberfairy Sun 19-May-13 17:41:14

Not much help but empathise and also worked in childcare for a decade! I find I get really frustrated and cross especially when the tantrum about coat going on etc means I might be late for work (which I utterly hate) so coat is on very early-'can you put on your coat all by yourself?' and I try to think of my kid being one at work where no matter how you feel you have to be cool, calm and controlled.

I put up a thread about something similar in Behaviour and Development a few months ago and got very helpful and sympathetic responses. The advice about getting them to think they are doing it themselves was really useful as was giving them a choice but be careful as my boy when asked what way he wanted to walk, got hysterical as could not cope with choosing and kept shrieking 'THAT WAY', no matter what way we went.

I have also tried many of your above techniques but my toddler has only recently turned two so some don't yet apply. I have talked to him about his behaviour has made me feel and when he misbehaves, I say ' how do you think mummy is feeling? ' He says 'sad' or 'cross' and either cuddles me or carries on being an utter sod.

AnythingNotEverything Sun 19-May-13 17:42:30

I'm with tee. Fishes hitting/kicking you while tantrumming, you're stood too close! Make sure she's safe and walk away.

Catching a tantrum before it starts with distraction works well too.

AnythingNotEverything Sun 19-May-13 17:43:32

"If she's" rather than "fishes", obviously!

nextphase Sun 19-May-13 17:44:04

Sounds like you've tried a lot of techniques. Is there any consistency in your response to her?

I too don't bother with the liveable with. You want to wear hat and gloves but no coat?? Ok, its not going to kill you. Wellies on the only sunny day we've had so far? Knock yourself out kid.

But for us, washing hands before eating, and violence against anyone is out.

I'd also agree with the above, first option is distraction with something fun, otherwise if she's safe, leave her be. And yes, I am one of those mothers who has watched over their (1 year old) stropping in the middle of Comet. Most people just smiled - so we've all been there!

awwwwmannnn Sun 19-May-13 19:41:49

my DD (2.6) has had some crackers - we had a tidy one this afternoon, it was over nothing and she was full on screaming and going for it!! she was in the hallway, so i left her there and said "mummy is going to sit on the sofa, we'll have cuddles when your finished". after 5 minutes she went quiet, so i peeked around the corner, she seen me, and started of again. so i repeated the same sentence and sat back (and didn't move or peak this time) and within a few minutes she came in for a cuddle!!

i've also tried everything and really have found ignoring it is the best way (for us). she knows now that she will have no reaction from us when tantruming and they really are few and far between now xx

MamaBear17 Sun 19-May-13 21:06:25

My dd 21 months and is just entering the 'terrible twos' - this is helpful - thank you!

One thing that I have found that works (most of the time) is to dictate to a teddy bear everything that I want dd to do. For example, she started to refuse to lie still to have her nappy changed, resulting in a massive struggle and almost always ending with poo everywhere. However, if I say 'shall we show Pooh Bear how we change your nappy?' and then dictate everything I do to the bear ('Look Pooh, see how nicely DD lays down to have her nappy changed, first we take the old one off, look how we do it Pooh') she lies perfectly still and even chats along to the teddy bear telling it what a good girl she is and demanding that it 'watch carefully'. I find the more I engage her the better she is.

pinky27 Sun 19-May-13 21:21:47

Thanks very much for all your responses. Lots of great ideas..thank you. It also really helps to know that I'm not alone in this..her grandparents keep telling me that she is very naughty and I was worried that her behaviour was abnormal. Thanks again.

Seb101 Sun 19-May-13 21:24:28

Mamabear17 I find this technique works really well with my 17 month old too! I'd def recommend it. Stuff like; ' now teddy, it's time to put your shoes on ( look and talk to teddy, pretend to put shoes on) then 'well done teddy, what a good boy (give teddy a kiss) lol. It's so funny, but always makes my little one more cooperative!
Also I've been a nanny for 15 years, and have always had control over the kids, and they've always been reasonable well behaved. My little one is by far the most challenging child I've looked after! I think kids are capable of being their most horrendous with their parents. Everyone else says she's as good as gold! But for me, she pushes the boundaries. I don't think your doing anything wrong, just think that's one of the delights of being a parent lol wink

MamaBear17 Sun 19-May-13 21:32:22

My parents and inlaws are the opposite. I say dd is being naughty and they respond by telling me that she isn't naughty, just 'very clever'. If you ask my mum she will tell you that my dd is some sort of angelic genius who just happens to know her own mind aged 21 months! Not very helpful when she is having a meltdown in the middle of Tescos!

smellsofsick Sun 19-May-13 22:20:40

2.4 dd. same thing and I stick her in her cot till she's calmed down. If she does start going I almost always try and sit down with her and cuddle her rather than pick her up on whatever she's doing that's annoying me and leading to a tantrum. I appreciate that doesn't work when it's over nothing but nipping in the bud where possible does seem to lessen it somewhat

Alternatively, lock yourself in the bathroom with a G&T (which I would never do, of course)

Kiwiinkits Mon 20-May-13 03:18:12

YY ignoring it and waiting for them to come to you after it. Sometimes I say, "I can see you're frustrated. I'll just go into the kitchen and you can come and get me when you feel better."
Also pays to know their triggers. In our case:
* Hunger or thirst
* Not enough attention or positive interaction
* too much TV in a row or i-pad (anything more than 30 mins and she gets a bit feral afterward)
* Words or concepts she doesn't know.
* Sudden changes of plan. It helps to have a consistent routine, to explain everything you're doing or about to do, and to give them lots of warning about what's happening that day.

mcgilly Mon 20-May-13 04:43:44

Golly she's not abnormal she sounds extremely normal and right on track. But it's not fun.
Fatigue (her and you) make it worse. Bad unhelpful advice makes it worse. Pick your battles and lower your expectations. Two is two, and not far from being a baby. My bet is her behaviour and intelligence will im

mcgilly Mon 20-May-13 04:44:12

Sorry - she will impress everyone in a couple of years!

mcgilly Mon 20-May-13 04:45:51

Oh yes I did find a lot of TV fried my 2 yos nerves. It did help cutting it back a little bit.

atw1tsend Wed 05-Feb-14 23:27:11

Hi, sorry late to the game but also seeking advice. The tantrums start with my 2 year old after i reprimand her for doing something wrong. She has always been what I classify stubbornly independent (but at the same time very clingy/attached to me). She constantly fights with her sister (5.5 yo) and picking fights, aggressive at times if she doesn't get her own way, hitting, pushing etc. She doesn't listen to anything we tell her as she obviously knows better and when we disagree with her, she spits at us, shouts at us ("No" or "Go away" or "I don't like you") and often gets aggressive.

Recently taken to trying the naughty "step" which is her room but we can't get her to sit down, let alone stay there. She then starts her tantrums screaming, kicking, stripping clothes off etc. If I hold her, she struggles against me and flails out kicking etc. This can last for up to 5-10 minutes until she exhausts herself enough to calm down. When she gets to this point (before the tantrum and during the tantrum), she doesn't even hear us talking to her, almost like she zones out into her tantrum.

Both my husband and I are running out of ideas and patience.
Any thoughts or suggestions would be helpful.

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