Parenting Tips to Deal with Temper Tantrums
Updated: Jul 21
If you’re the parent of a toddler, you know the dread of a quivering lip that comes with a deep inhale as your little one prepares to launch into an epic tantrum. Tantrums can be overwhelming and exhausting, especially if you don’t have a strategy that works for you!
When it comes to getting ideas, who best to ask other than parents of infants and toddlers? Many members of Parents First have experienced toddler temper tantrums and found behavior strategies that really work. We’ve put together their top three tips to help you face your toddler’s tantrum like a pro!
1. Communication is key!
Parents say they find tantrums are usually coming from a place of frustration. Your little one is learning new words every day and becoming more independent. Keep that line of communication open so that you can build on their vocabulary and reduce the frustration that leads to tantrums.
One Parents First member explains:
Temper tantrums are nothing more than a young child trying to communicate with very little vocabulary to express what they want to say. Continue to be patient and work with them using their words to communicate. I communicate with mine on what we are going to do rather than the surprises. Like we need to change your diaper - hand them their diaper and say walk with me. Involve them, communicate with them. This teaches them rather than creating drama. Identify objects, put yourself in their shoes and how would you want to be treated and talked to with limited knowledge and vocabulary.
2. Don’t pay too much attention to the tantrum.
If your child refuses to communicate with you, make sure your little one is in a safe environment, and try to ignore the tantrum. Toddlers are learning to control and regulate their emotions. Be available for comfort and try to stay calm so that you will be there when your little one is ready. And remember! How we react will eventually teach them the skills to control themselves or use words to communicate their feelings.
As a Parents First member says:
Most of the time asking if he wanted a hug helped. I stopped making a big deal of it and saved pieces of my sanity 😂 If he didn’t want a hug, I let him do his thing, get over it, and then continue on with whatever we were doing. It’ll be over soon. Stay strong!
3. Empathy and Redirection
Sometimes our toddlers are just way up in the feels and need our guidance. Let your toddler know that it’s ok to feel what they’re feeling, try to help them name it, and redirect with a calming activity.
A member of Parents First shares her success:
They are learning to handle their emotions. They are disappointed and/or upset and are expressing themselves purely how they feel emotionally. I hold my son or get down low with him and calmly tell him it's ok to be upset and it will pass in a moment, then I distract him by playing a song on the Alexa or get out a toy he hasn't seen in a minute. Working great so far - he's 20 months and I'm starting to see he knows what to expect when he's upset. Sometimes he even walks me to the Alexa and points!
Finding the right strategy to help deal with your toddler’s temper tantrums may come with trial and error. You may feel like there is no end in sight. Our community understands how difficult parenting can be and how there is no one-size-fits-all solution to challenging behavior or any parenting strategy. We may not have all the answers, but we’re always there to support each other on this wonderful parenting journey! Join the group here and be part of the amazing Parents First family!