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Tantrumming 6 year old

(3 Posts)
Emski76 Wed 19-Mar-14 13:08:01

Hi all. I am hoping for some help/guidance on how to deal with my 6 year old ds who has been having terrible tantrums at least once a day for the last few weeks. Sometimes I can see a reason for his anger or frustration but at others I have no idea what has started him off. I struggle with my anger at times and have discussed this with him and said maybe we can help each other.
I've read one book with him on how to deal with his anger, and have just started reading another. Some adult books/people advise ignoring him, others say to tell him I understand his anger but that the way he is handling it is not acceptable.
My mum ignored my tantrums and I grew up to self harm and have issues with my anger, an issue that I am working on. I know that if he has never had a healthy role model for anger then he will not know how to behave when he feels angry. But I am lost as to what to do. This morning he had me in tears as it really seems he hates me sometimes. I feel like such a failure.
I also have a 3 year old ds, and he is witnessing his brothers behaviour.
Thanks in advance for your help

LastingLight Wed 19-Mar-14 17:15:02

This is what my daughter's psychologist suggested: When the child is in a good mood, talk about acceptable ways in which one could handle anger and make a list. E.g. hit a pillow / blow up balloons / read a joke book / make angry marks with crayon on paper. Then put together the stuff you need in an "anger box". When the child throws a tantrum, tell him "you have 5 minutes to throw your tantrum, then we are going to do something out of the anger box". My daughter was a bit older than your ds is and I must admit I quickly changed that to "You have 5 minutes to throw this tantrum and if you choose to continue the consequence will be x". She absolutely hated being give a time limit and it often worked.

It's a good thing to tell him that you understand he is angry but the way he is handling it is unacceptable. Then ignore. What your mom probably didn't do was to calmly discuss what happened with you once things have calmed down. When the tantrum is over you need to talk about what happened, why it happened, how it could have been handled and how the situation could be avoided in future. It doesn't always work, and you have to wait a looooong time after my dd has a tantrum before you can have this conversation, but it's worth a shot.

Emski76 Wed 19-Mar-14 20:59:58

Thank you so much for your reassuring advice. I will def do what you've suggested

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