Dealing with tantrums on days out(7 Posts)
I have a 22 month old DS and a 3 week old. DS is generally quite a good boy really, but since the baby's arrival DS has understandably acted up more than usual. This, combined with my tiredness and consequential lowered patience levels is making it difficult to deal with tantrums.
In particular, I'm finding it very stressful when we go out without my DH (so all week!), as, something (usually leaving time) will trigger a huge tantrum. The worst I ever experienced was the first time I had ever taken them out on my own. It was absolutely awful and I was a stressed, panicking mess by the time we got back to the car!!
I've tried doing the whole 'we're leaving in x minutes' but he's too little to really comprehend.
Has anyone any top tips please?
To add to the difficulty, I usually have the baby in a sling so I can't pick him up as he can kick and bite (and is blinking heavy!)
We haven't really reached this stage yet, so feel free to ignore my advice, but what I've found with DS is to identify the root cause of the tantrum (usually hunger/tiredness) and solve that if possible but also acknowledge his feelings.
So for example I'd get down to his level, look him in the eyes, hold his hands if I needed to and say something like 'It's hard when you're having fun but it's time to leave. Do you want to climb into your car seat yourself or shall I help you?' There's more about the techniques on Janet Lansbury's Respectful Parenting site. Some of it is a bit hippified, but I have used some of her techniques quite successfully.
Have you tried telling him something nice he will be doing when he leaves - having his favourite lunch/going to see someone /
That tantrum (and what I anticipate will be my biggest issue!) was because he wanted to go back to the play park which was beside where we were having lunch.
I try and get out every morning, get lunch (bring a picnic) and get home just before his nap, so he's probably tired but also doesn't want to stop playing.
I have always tried to do the trying to make it sound more exciting like 'we're going to the car' etc, but it's not working now.
Is bribery a path once trodden you can't return??
It's the blind panic that overcomes me.
Thank you for your tips. I'm very keen on gentle parenting but I find it hard to do all of the talking at the moment when I really just need him to play ball!!
I was in your position 9 years ago. I found giving clear steps really helped. I tried to be clear about the next three things we would be doing.
For example, 'toilet, shoes, then go to the park.'
Or 'go home, wash our hands, then have a snack.'
With my little boy it helped a lot. There would be no negotiation on the stages but I would help him feel in charge by asking, 'would you like these shoes, or your boots?' 'Squirty soap or slippy soap!'
It does get easier I promise
Ooh I forgot to say that I'd keep repeating the stages in a jolly rhythm, then I'd pretend to forget a bit and ask DS to help me remember. Then when he'd get it right I'd make a big fuss of him and say come on then. Worked like a charm. Doing what I needed him to do was like a game
Ok that sounds good! I do that at home, I must try it out of the house too! I think it my own stress that elevates the situation and you've actually made me see that, as at home it's mostly ok!!
I like the idea of getting him involved too! Thank you! Christ it's hard work!
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