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5 Tips for handling Toddler Tantrums - Terrible 2's

Written by KATIE SAUNDERS

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Posted on September 20 2023

5 tips on helping toddler tantrums

While there’s not one right way to deal with your little one's temper tantrums there are a few tactics you can try and calm them down again. Tantrums stem from one thing and that is your little one not getting their own way. While we sometimes call this the terrible 2’s the fact is tantrums can start before this and go on long afterwards.

So what can you do to handle temper tantrums in a calm way?


1 - Remember you are in control

This is a very key thing to remember. You are in control of this situation, not your child. Try not to panic because that’s when you’ll get angry too and shouting at your child won’t help here. Take a deep breath and try to resist the temptation to reason or argue with them. They are already too upset to listen to you properly.


2 - Don’t worry about what other people think or say

Try not to focus on the other people around you. Most of them will have been where you are and feel sympathetic. If they aren’t, who cares? You don’t know them and they don’t know you. 


3 - Make eye contact 

Get down to your little one’s level to speak to them so that you can make eye contact and see them properly. Talk calmly and see if you can find out what’s worrying them is the first step.


4 - Hug it out

This may feel like the last thing you want to do when your little one is throwing a tantrum, but it really can help them calm down. This should be a big, firm hug, not a soft cuddly one. You don’t need to say anything whilst you do it and you may initially be met with some squirming to get away, but ultimately hugs make kids feel secure and let them know you care about them, even if you don't agree with their behaviour.


5 - Keep it consistent

Studies show that parents who react calmly and consistently to their toddler's outbursts help their child understand where the boundaries are, which can help the child feel more protected and in control. This can also prevent tantrums in the first place.

I know it’s easier said than done but try not to give in to whatever it is your little one is having a tantrum over as this only teaches them that having a tantrum works in the battle to getting their own way. Of course you sometimes have to pick your battles and there may be certain situations. Another good idea is to let them have another win. They can’t have ice cream but if they stand up and behave until you leave the shop then you can walk past the playpark on the way home.

May your day be without a battle!

Katie x

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