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How do you deal with tantrums from older children?

(21 Posts)
Pinkchampagne Fri 22-Aug-08 18:05:25

My DS1 is nearly 9, and just had a huge wailing, kicking tantrum because I turned a programme on for his brother while DS1 was in the other room finishing his tea.

DS1 has his programmes on most of the time, and I allowed his younger brother to watch Nick Jnr for a while, but DS1 walked straight in the room & turned over. I explained that had said his brother could atch his programme & at 6pm, he could have his channel on again, but he went off on one, screaming "I was watching it first!"
He then went to attack his brother, so I restrained him by holding his arms. He was screaming & kicking. I tried to explain calmly, but he was just screaming over me, so I lifted him & took him into his room for time out. I had to hold his door shut (don't know if this was wrong), as he wouldn't stay in the room. He was banging & throwing things & screaming out things like "big fat idiot! I wish I didn't have you for a mummy!" etc

He is so big & strong now & I find these outbursts hard to cope with. I am probaly getting it all very wrong. I am not with their dad anymore, so cope alone with my boys, and I can find it a struggle.

Does anyone else have older children who can still tantrum like this, and if so, how do you deal with it?

Pinkchampagne Fri 22-Aug-08 18:09:35

Reading that back, it looks like I handled the whole situation badly

Chandra Fri 22-Aug-08 18:10:54

If I remember correctly Custardo (or was it COlditz?) is the person you are looking for.

ThatBigGermanPrison Fri 22-Aug-08 18:12:59

I have a strapping five year old, and to be honest I deal with it like you did. I don't know if it's right or not though.

I know it's going to get to a point where I cannot physically restrain him any longer, but I am a big woman and I am hoping he will gain some self control before that point comes.

Do be careful he doesn't hurt you - nine year olds are big and if one loses control he could really do some damage.

pagwatch Fri 22-Aug-08 18:17:07

what was his punishment for his behaviour?

You do have to find a way to control him that does not include touching him. He will be bigger than you before long.
why does he have no control over his behaviour.
Does he loose control or does he do this kind of thing because he knows he can?

CaptainFabioHiltsTheCoolerCat Fri 22-Aug-08 18:18:29

I think you handled it well.

The thing you already know is that as he's getting bigger and stronger, lifting him out of a situation isn't something you will physically be able to do for much longer.

THis is one you have to talk talk talk about - why he was so cross, how to handle his anger, what the consequences of his actions have been etc.

You're probably doing that already though. He might need a neutral 3rd party to speak to about his dad though, who I suspect does v little to help matters. (have read some of your other posts)

Pinkchampagne Fri 22-Aug-08 18:20:01

I have a 5 year old too, TBGP!

He has calmed down now. I have made him pick up a cardboard box he had torn all over his bedroom floor, and tried to explain things calmly to him. He isn't quite grasping it though, and he thinks they must have a programme on that they both like & thats that!

I did feel pretty breathless after carrying a struggling 9 year old up the stairs!

Pinkchampagne Fri 22-Aug-08 18:25:44

His dad would never experience this kind of behaviour from him.

His punishment is that now he isn't getting his choice of programme on for the rest of the evening, whereas if he had not reacted in the way he had, he would have only had 30 mins to wait. He is also not allowed time on the pc before bed, which he loves. Not sure what else to punish him with tbh.

He isn't like other boys of his age. He is being assessed for SN. His tantrums can be very immature, not unlike that of a 2 year old, but of course he is much stronger & they're harder to deal with.

Earlybird Fri 22-Aug-08 18:28:12

Sounds very difficult.

Did you give ds1 advance notice that you were changing 'his' show, or did he walk back into the room to find it already done? I find dd does much better when I give her 'advance notice' of what will be happening - she reacts badly if I simply do something.

Obviously you shouldn't have to 'manhandle' ds1 into his room for a timeout. Think you need to have a chat with ds1, and tell him upfront what sanctions he will face if he behaves that way in future.

Pinkchampagne Fri 22-Aug-08 18:43:31

I know, I know I shouldn't have had to physically move him like that. we have had similar outbursts before, and when he goes off on one badly I feel I should remove him & give him time out, but he is getting too big & it's getting more & more difficult.

He has calmed down now & I have had a talk with him. My mistake was turning over without giving him avance notice. I wasn't aware he was actually watching the programme - the channel was on, but he had been in the other room having tea. If I had known he was in the middle of a programme, no way would I just turn it over. I guess I made things worse for myself here.

Earlybird Fri 22-Aug-08 18:53:30

Don't get down on yourself.

I find with children you need to be aware of what you are doing/thinking ahead, rather than simply doing. If you think ahead (advance notice, etc), things seem to work out much better.

For instance: dd knows telly goes off when I call her for supper, and I give her advance notice that supper is 'almost ready' or 'ready in 5 minutes'. Works much better than if I simply call out 'time for supper' with no advance warning - especially as it entails stopping whatever she is doing.

Confession: on rough days, I have on occasion 'timed' supper for the end of a favourite telly show so we don't have moaning an unhappiness. blush

WideWebWitch Fri 22-Aug-08 18:57:35

Oh goodness, sympathy, ds is nearly 11 and can still throw THE most ALMIGHTY strop, it's hideous. I think you were right to take him to his room and hold the door but it is tough. We sometimes find saying "that's fine, your choice but if you carry on then xyx is going to be taken away" works. It let's him do what I want without losing face.

coppertop Fri 22-Aug-08 20:58:29

Ds1 is 8 and can still get like this. If he's hurting himself or someone else (as your ds1 was) then he gets sent for some time out. It's not a time-out like the usual 'one minute for each year of their age' but just to remove him from the situation so that he has a chance to calm down.

I use a little hallway downstairs as it's easy to get to. If it's a bad meltdown then I also hold the door shut just like you did.

If it makes you feel any better, over the summer holidays ds1 has actually said thankyou for this after he has calmed down. Being so out of control actually frightens him and he tells me that he needs someone to help him when he calms down.

It sounds to me as though you're doing well. Don't be so hard on yourself.

coppertop Fri 22-Aug-08 20:59:19

"needs someone to help him to calm down" I mean.

Pinkchampagne Fri 22-Aug-08 21:14:38

My DS didn't actually take that long to calm down in the end, and I did have a talk to him then. I later got an apology.

It took all my strength to hold that door when he was wild though! At one point I felt he was going to break it down!!

He has been very good for the rest of the evening.

Pinkchampagne Fri 22-Aug-08 21:27:46

Thank you all for your posts - they have made me feel a little better about how I handled it. It is hard in these situations, and I often feel I get it all wrong!

pinkbubble Fri 22-Aug-08 21:48:27

Hi PC, Hope all is quiet in the house now! Children hey!

Its very hard to manage these situations, esp when you are on your own. You know its important for DS1 to know he is not in charge of TV etc. However hard for him, remain strong. He is a lovely boy, and he plays you up because he feels secure with you.

Pinkchampagne Fri 22-Aug-08 22:08:41

Hello you! What are you doing online while on your hols?! Are you having a nice time?

All is quiet here now, with both boys fast asleep. I have just moved DS2 into his own bunk as they were both curled up in the same bed!

pinkbubble Fri 22-Aug-08 22:25:12

Ah bless, no lasting damage or repercussions!

We are all ok, I think!

DD3 stubbed her toe badly at a water park and it has gone manky and smelly, probably will loose her big toe nail - she is not happy!

I have been bitten about 20 times, 2 of them have gone manky!

Friends have now gone home, girls really enjoyed seeing them, have to say eldest 2 were fantastic!

Other than that everything is ok! (well except the usual moaner!!!!!wink)(the why spend money expert!wink)

ehamilto Thu 28-Aug-08 22:41:20


Pinkchampagne, I totally sympathise - my ds is 8 and still occasionally has similar tantrums. Last time was when we were out shopping for school shoes because we wouldn't buy him the ones with the toy in the heel. He pushed his little sister into a shoe display as we were leaving the shop (as quickly as possible). It's terrible when they do it when you're out somewhere! We made him go to his room too after giving him the silent treatment in the car - with him screaming all the way home in the back.

He also has general anger management issues - will fly off the handle very quickly about all sorts of things. Lots of squabbling with his little sister, etc. I am at a loss as to how to deal with the constant bickering. If anyone has any tips about that I'd be really grateful!

cazmugs Sun 13-Dec-15 18:46:20

Feeling like the utter worst mother in the world. My 9 yr old daughter had a massive massive tantrum, completely uncontrollable and I lost it. Totally. Screamed at her, she Screamed back and so it went on. I think I really scared her and she's tired etc etc. I don't know what I should do.

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