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Please help....(7 Posts)
I’ve been so down lately about DS who is 19 months old. I know many will say this is normal behaviour but his tantrums are so bad that I can’t leave the house. Every little thing in his life is a battle he gets so frustrated by everything. For example he tries to push his scooter into the road so I try and get down to his level and explain but he just screams and wants to do it everything. If he wants a snack right before dinner and I try and explain that he’ll be eating soon he has a tantrum. Yesterday I counted - he woke and 7am and by 8am he’d had 4 tantrums and when I say tantrums I mean epic throwing himself across the floor screaming and kicking. He does it in public all the time. I’m worried it’s not normal - I see my friends with children my sons age and if they say there might be a grumble but no hysteria like I get. I’ve tried giving him control where I can and giving him options etc to make him feel like he has some control and I’ve tried crouching to his level and explaining things but nothing works. I’ve tried distractions but he’s so strong willed - but I feel now that every little thing is a huge battle and ends up in so much upset. I’ve messaged my health visitor as i don’t feel this is normal. As an aside he struggles with food with texture - still won’t really eat bread or meat etc - he’s 19 months and just chews food but then spits it out. Anyone got a similar child who can help? I’m really really desperate as I can’t handle the battles anymore....
Ohhhh I really feel for you. Have you tried anything visual like a red sad face to show him when he is behaving in an undesirable way? Or having a tantrum. And I am sure you are doing but give loads and loads of praise when behaving in the way you want and literally ignoring the tantrums.
Does ignoring work? I’ve always tried to sit with him and then give him a cuddle afterwards as I read somewhere that’s the best thing to do - but I feel he’s just getting worse. We’ve had 3 tantrums already this morning....
Depends on your parenting style but if he's getting all that attention for undesirable behaviour it's reinforcing it and he will continue to do it. You are rewarding him with a cuddle for doing something you don't want and he's doing it again and again.
You could do something mid way, you could try getting a sand timer and when he starts throwing himself and tell him he has 2/3/4 minutes, however long you feel to calm down and then you will talk to him but sit across the room. Then I'd personally completely move on and distract him by doing something else.
Ideally you need to build up your child's emotional resilience but during a tantrum is obviously not the right time to do this and this just comes with maturity.
Make sure he's safe and can't hurt himself and walk away and busy yourself with something. Find something where you can see him, and he can see you-and that you (apparently) are totally absorbed in something else.
When he comes over to you, then either pretend it never happened, or, if it's something important (like he wanted to play with the bread knife) explain to him that it's dangerous and he could hurt himself.
I knew someone whose dc had epic tantrums which could go on for ages, and she had back problems so she couldn't pick him up when tantrumming. She used to have a book in her bag when out, and if he started would just sit down next to him and apparently read. It could look very funny if you didn't know them!
With one of mine, saying something breezy like "it's a pity, because we were going to <insert something they like doing> and now we won't have time. Isn't that silly?" worked well, but when they were a year or so older.
Some children tantrum more than others. That's luck. None of mine did epic tantrums, which was entirely down to luck.
How is his understanding and communication with you? by 18M toddlers tend to be good communicators using a multitude of gestures to get their needs met and to share interests - a lot of frustration at this age comes from lack of effective communication and understanding.
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