?Taming a Temper Tantrum
You know the situation. You are having a nice enjoyable outing at a store and all of a
sudden your child has a melt down. Screaming and kicking, crying and running.
Everyone looks at you and you are embarrassed. But does it have to be this way?
The answer is no!
Although many kids do go through periods where temper tantrums are a regular
occurrence, as a parent there are things that you can do to properly handle them.
General Tantrum Tips
Even though tantrums can be handled differently depending on when and where the
tantrum begins, there are some key things to keep in mind regardless of the location of
the tantrum. First, is to not react! Now this may be very difficult, as a tantrum will
often cause a great deal of embarrassment on the part of the parent, but it is important
not to allow the child to dictate your reaction. Acknowledging the emotions of your
child is okay, but do not dwell on them. Let them know that you will be happy to talk
with them when they have stopped acting the way that they are acting. It is okay to
react in a matter of fact way, but do not set the standard of rewarding the child when
they react with a tantrum. Stay calm and do not reward the tantrum by giving the child
the attention that they want.
When in public and able to get away
If a tantrum happens in public, it is important to try and get to a place of privacy.
Often times this will require physically picking up and moving the child. Some
suggestions of a private place include the bathroom or outside. Maybe even the car!
The one benefit of taking the child to your car is that you can use the seat belt or a car
seat to establish some sort of physical control over the child. Once you have removed
yourself for the public place, you can wait out the tantrum without reacting to it. After
the tantrum runs itself out, the child can be talked to about the way they were
behaving. Hopefully, by responding in this way, you will be able to go back to your
When in public and unable to get away
It often seems that a child will decide to throw a tantrum when there is no place to go.
You know this situation, from both ends, most likely. Often this happens on long
flights when the child is tired and frustrated about not being able to move around. In a
situation where there is no place to go, the only beneficial solution is to just wait it out.
This will not make you the most popular adult in the area, especially with those that
do not have kids, but you must ignore the nasty looks and "helpful" comments. When
trying to handle a tantrum when you have no place to go, just let the child wear
When in private or at home
Although this might seem like the easiest place to take care of a tantrum, a parent can
often fall into complacency when at home, rewarding the child without even realizing
it in order to preserve the peace. When a child throws a tantrum at home, it is
important to isolate them and not give in. Put them in their room and shut the door.
Do not go back in and engage the child until the tantrum is over. Then go back in and
talk to the child about their behavior. Make sure you do this soon so that the memories
of the tantrum are fresh.
James Kerr is a free lance writer who is committed to provide readers with accurate
information on health related topics such as weight loss,general nutrition and men's