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Almighty tantrums - please help me!

(3 Posts)
snickersnack Thu 12-Nov-09 19:16:09

ds (2.5) has started to throw the most monstrous tantrums, one after the other, all day long. They always relate to something he wants but for some reason can't have - tv, milk, a sandwich - usually because he wants them at entirely inappropriate times. A sandwich at 10pm when he wakes up, or (as is the case right now) milk after he's had his teeth cleaned and is in bed.

I just don't know how to deal with it - distraction isn't really an option when he's in bed and meant to be going to sleep (he's been ill and is shattered). At the moment he's lying in bed shrieking for milk. Which I've already said no to a million times - I've tried the "I know you want milk but you can't have it because you've cleaned your teeth" line, I've tried explaining he's keeping his sister awake, and I've tried just saying no. But he's just lying there wailing loudly that he wants milk. Over and over and over again.

Do I just leave him to calm himself down and go to sleep? Every time I go in to settle him the screams get worse. This is just the latest in an endless stream of similar tantrums - he's spent more time screaming today for something than he has not screaming.

kcartyparty Thu 12-Nov-09 23:37:56

Try to switch off. They all go through this. He is trying to establish who is boss, and how set on boundaries you really are.


He will stop it when he see's it no longer bothers you.

No attention when he has a tantrum.

Lots of attention when he doesn't. Tell him he is such a lovely boy when he is not screaming at you. But only say this when he is not screaming.

snickersnack Fri 13-Nov-09 08:59:33

Thanks. That's pretty much what I did. I didn't give in - just kept popping back in to reassure him, but essentially he screamed himself to sleep. The problem with bedtime tantrums is that distraction is tricky - how do you distract them when they're meant to be going to sleep?

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