Tantrums. Some of them make an all night Cry It Out session with an infant seem like a day at the spa. If no one prepared you for how hard life can be as a brand new parent, then it can really feel like you’re living alone on an island with a crazy person when the true toddler tantrums begin.
Case in point. I believe, if memory serves me right, Rylan’s tantrum above was about the raisins I gave him. The raisins he asked me for as a snack. The ones I bought for him at the store because the day prior, he liked raisins a lot.
Tantrums are here. Daily. Many days, thank god, are mild and others (like this past Sunday) resulted in me calling my mom nearly in tears as we neared the 45 minute mark.
I have no tricks. No words of wisdom. Well, maybe one. Try your hardest to figure out what I.N.S.A.N.E. trigger *may* be a tantrum tipping point. For example, maybe the breakfast you prepared to their exact specifications is offensive and totally wrong. Or, you offered them a warm and relaxing bath after a long day at daycare. How. Dare. You.
Then, figure out if there is any S.A.N.E. way to avoid a tantrum without turning into a complete toddler punching bag/pushover you said you’d never be. Perhaps it’s offering a few choices, letting them pour their own milk, or warning them 1,000,000 times during dinner that bath time is next.
In all seriousness, one of our biggest tantrum tipping points right now is screen time. The iPad has slowly crept into our lives when traveling or in Breckenridge and Rylan simply cannot handle his emotions when it’s time to turn it off. Melt. Down. City.
But, this introduction of technology and easy “crutch” in certain situations is totally our fault. It’s easy. TV is similar, though he is more easily redirected after one or two shows. The iPad not so much.
We have to re-introduce the iPad (aside from airplane flights) when he is mature enough to handle turning it off. I will not fly without it. Sorry Pinterest moms who board planes with 100 homemade crafts for takeoff to landing. Not happening.
In the moment of Ry’s worst tantrums I feel like I am doing everything wrong. Should I hold and comfort him? Ignore the outburst and walk away once I know he is safe? How do I keep my frustration, anger and temper in check and not show Rylan just how much he’s wearing me down?
It would be so much easier to give in. I get why parents give in. At times we give in. I can admit it, and move on.
In the moment you just want to fix it, especially in public. In those moments it’s unbelievably hard to keep the “long term” in perspective…the fact that I don’t want our now 2.5 year old running circles around us as a tiny dictator at 3 and 4.
Tantrums suck (literally, they can suck the life out of everyone involved). Tantrums are why entities like The Honest Toddler make toddler parents feel like we’re not alone on an island with a crazy person. Posts like “Three Quick Dinner Tips for Toddlers” and “A Toddler’s Apology to Santa” make toddler parents laugh and cry…and cry. Thank you Honest Toddler.
How do you deal, aside from wine, with toddler tantrums?