Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Welcome to Tantrumville

I live in a land I like to call Tantrumville. Yes...with a 4 (almost 5) year old girl who is filled with dramatic urges and a 1 (almost 2) year old boy, my life is full of tantrums.

How does one deal with the tantrums? I have had theories, but I am just at a loss.

This morning Baby Boy decided that he was not going to be happy. No matter what. He cried almost all morning. Now I know that he was tired. He had woken at 2 am, no clue why. My hubby got him to calm down and go back to sleep (after I had tried for a while and seemed to only make things worse). But he woke back up at about 5:30. Like I said...I knew he was tired. In my experience, tiredness begets tantrums.

I tried ignorning the tantrum he had at 8 am. I tried to remain calm and try to let him work it out. After about 30 minutes...I decided that tactic wasn't helping him any and it was making me crazy...so I decided to try something else. I put him to bed...another failure. Finally I took pity and just did what I could to appease him. He did finally calm down from that tantrum, but had another 2 before I went to pick up Big Sis from preschool...he fell asleep in the car. He's still asleep, poor little guy. We're all hoping for a better afternoon.

In the mean time...I wonder if any of you fabulous mommies have any ideas for this one...what are your thoughts? Help...please? Pretty please?


An Ordinary Mom said...

I wish I could offer you some helpful and magical advice, but I can't. I can offer my empathy, though. My three year old little guy is one of the KINGS of tantrums and some days all I can do is just barely hold onto my sanity :) !! Somehow we will make it through this stage of their lives!

Hang in there ... and don't forget to give yourself some time away from the kids to cool off. That works for me, even if I leave them screaming in one room and I go to my room and have a good cry myself :) !!

Richelle said...

Hmm... don't know if I have any advice. We are in a tantrum prone phase now, too. One thing I have found that helps when ds is super tired but not ready for bed yet is some sort of quiet activity, like reading. I think the cuddling and calmness settles him down. As far as tantrums in general, if ignoring him doesn't work, diverting his attention to something he enjoys doing, or just a change of scenery (outside is a bonus) sometimes work. Good luck! We'll all get through this!

stephi k said...

I feel your pain on this one. I just wrote a blog about this same problem. At this point in my life I just chill instead of getting frustrated (like I used to). I sometimes just observe my little guy when he's having a tantrum and it reminds me of the days when I can't control my emotions, so I feel sorry for him. Like richelle said, I usually go for the distraction technique too.

Cheryl said...

I'm not blogging, I promise! I just couldn't pass by without these possibilities:

Ear infections (which can come without signs of sickness)
Growth spurt
Not enough time with mommy or daddy during the day, knowing if he wakes up/throws a tantrum, they will have to pay attention.
No sense of control --give him more choices

That is all.

LAHansen said...

Thanks Stephi and Richelle - I think I needed the reminder about distraction...I'll keep trying...Baby Boy is a bit difficult to distract, but that just means I've got to get creative!

Dear "Ordinary" (by they way...you are anything but) - I think I need some time away ... thank you for giving me the go ahead to take a minute to collect myself, cry and then get back to work!

Thanks for your help girls!!!

LAHansen said...

So Cheryl...you were commenting at the same time as I was...Aah...I think we are having some trouble with control...maybe molars too...I'll have to investigate! Thank you! Girl...you rock...here you are getting ready to move and you come over here to give me some help! I'm lovin' you!

My Ice Cream Diary said...

After 4 kids I've learned that any child under 3 really can't be expected not to have a tantrum. Like you said, he was tired. The only way you could have stopped his tantrum would be to go back in time and prevent him from waking up too early (as if). Like Stephi K I now just sit back and watch after my first attempts at placating fail.

*Sigh* wish I had something more for you. It is never easy to see a child in torment (or to have to listen to it either)

Thanks for visiting my blog =)

Amanda said...

We actually haven't had to deal with too many tantrums here--even through the terrible twos! I attribute it to a book called "Love and Logic Magic for Early Childhood." One of the tricks I picked up from that book was to tell my daughter that I can't understand when she "talks like that" (generally screaming and/or whining) and let her know that I'm ready to listen when she's ready to use her words. I walk away and let her come to me when she's decided to calm down. The other thing I do when she's out of control is tell her that she's hurting my ears, so she's welcome to keep screaming, but she needs to do it in her room, (and sometimes I have to carry her in there). It decreases the noise and frustration for me and gives her time to choose to calm down.