How to handle a toddler’s tantrum in public places using gentle and positive parenting according to parenting experts.
Even when they reach epic dimensions, tantrums are a completely natural method of communication and are a normal part of child development for children according to Cleveland Clinic.
Most parents would like it if they didn’t happen in the grocery store check-out line or at the library, where you’re meant to use your inside voice.
Children are extremely sensitive to everything, especially emotions and they don’t have the language skills to communicate their emotions. The term “toddler tantrum” isn’t just a cliche; there’s a scientific explanation why they’re so common.
Toddlers (ages 2–4) do not have the frontal brain ability to govern a child’s behaviour and reactions when a child’s emotions strike and they become disturbed.
Parenting for brain states “To control strong emotions, a kid needs to first develop the thinking part of the brain (prefrontal cortex) and then the connections between the thinking brain and the emotional brain”
Even the american academy of pediatrics states: Never punish your child for temper tantrums. Your child may start to keep feelings inside, which is worse.
Here are 6 ways you can handle public toddler tantrums in the heat of the moment according 6 parenting experts.
See also: 17 Positive Discipline Tools You Need
Why Do Kids Have Tantrums?
According to Kids Health screaming, kicking, punching, and holding one’s breath to the point of fainting are all examples of toddler temper tantrums when your child loses their sense of control. They affect both boys and girls equally and generally occur in younger kids, however a child’s feelings can get triggered at any age.
Emotional outbursts are a natural aspect of a child’s growth. They’re how young toddlers express their dissatisfaction or frustration.
Common tantrum triggers are sleepy, hungry, or uneasy feelings in your children. Your upset child can throw a public tantrum if they are unable to obtain something (such as a toy or a parent) to do what they want. Children develop the ability to deal with displeasure throughout time.
It’s not always about attempting to dominate or manipulate parents when children throw fits and tantrums. When the emotional part of the brain (limbic) becomes over-excited, it takes control from the cognitive half of the brain, resulting in an emotional breakdown (pre-frontal cortex).
Internalizing disorders (e.g., depression, anxiety disorder) or externalising issues (e.g., violent behaviour, oppositional defiant disorder, drug/alcohol misuse) may also be present in the child.
Use the following strategies and expert advice for the best response to child tantrums.
Steps To Handle child’s temper tantrums in public spaces
According to Amy McGrady of Positive Parenting Solutions the first strategy to public meltdowns is to be prepared.
Make a mental checklist of where you’ll be going and what obstacles can emerge that could lead to a tantrum before you leave the house–then plan for them!
When temper outbursts begin, gentle distraction is essential due to short attention spans. Keeping a few little games, colouring books, or toys on hand will keep your child’s mind occupied and prevent a tantrum.
You are the child’s safe place and role model, so remaining calm and using distraction is the most effective way to control the tantrum.
Don’t Ignore the Tantrum
Janet Lansbury advises parents not to ignore the tantrum.
By avoiding, ignoring, changing, or scolding children for their big feelings, we are not helping our child or ourselves as parents. They do not disappear.
It would be wonderful if we could just erase such sentiments. That’s how I feel about myself, and it’s how I feel about my family, especially my children. I don’t want them to ever be uncomfortable, and I don’t want them to ever be injured, but that’s impossible.
It’s impossible to make them vanish, and doing so would only make the situation worse for them. It only adds to the discomfort and activates stress hormones.
Tell Your child What’s Going On
A Fine Parent States that telling your child what is going on can help diffuse your child’s tantrums in public, or even prevent them in the first place and experience fewer tantrums.
Like us, young children want to know what to anticipate. They, unlike humans, require constant reminders — even if they were in the same location the week before.
It may seem dull and repetitious, but not informing children about what’s going on is a sure-fire way to cause tantrums.
Which would you prefer: monotonous repeats or uncomfortable, humiliating tantrums?
Hand in hand parenting talks about the important of being patient when it comes to your toddler to help immunise tantrums.
Your child needs you to set compassionate, reasonable limits for him and to be near to him while he expresses his strong emotions.
This outpouring of emotions and aggressive behaviors, together with your patient and caring attention, is the most efficient approach to hasten your child’s return to his reasonable, loving self.
Dr. Sears talks about staying in control of our own emotions as part of an important piece of the puzzle when it comes to public temper tantrums.
When dealing with temper outbursts, try to keep your voice cool. “I realise you’re unhappy,” remark softly, “but it’s time to settle down.”
Keep your cool because if she senses that her tantrum is affecting you, which it most likely is because you’re worried about what other people think, she’ll scream even louder. Her nervousness is exacerbated by yours.
Ask and Tell
Baby Wise Mom suggests the ask and tell strategy to manage toddler tantrums while you’re out.
Before you go somewhere, go through the process of ask and tell. If your child is prone to fits when he doesn’t get a treat he asks for, you tell him, “We are going in the store and we will not be buying any treats. I do not want you to ask me for any treats. Say Yes Mommy.” Wait for a response. “While we are in the store, are you going to ask for a treat?” Wait for a response. Then you can also explain the consequence that will come if he doesn’t obey. “If you ask me for a treat, then next time you don’t get to come with the store with Mommy.”Babywise Mom
Taming The Tantrum
Tantrums, power struggles, negative attitudes, and backtalk are all bad! However, the two do not have to fit within that group.
Pay special attention to the positive aspects of your life. Make it a habit to catch your youngster doing something positive. Praise and attention should be given to your child for positive behaviour.
I’d want to encourage you to change your perspective on this specific stage in your children’s life and resist the doom-and-gloom predictions that seem to come from every well-meaning relative, friend, or stranger.
Also, don’t be afraid to try out the FREE WEBINAR to discover whether the Parenting Success System is appropriate for you. With these 5 Tips for Taming the Terrible Twos, you’ll discover that the twos aren’t that bad after all.
Suggested Reading For Parents:
Suggested Reading For Kids
Tools to help your toddler understand how to calm down after a tantrum.
All about how to handle a child’s feelings.