How do you deal with your toddler's temper tantrums?

United States
September 8, 2009 10:26am CST
I have a 2 1/2 year old girl, who is very good, usually. She throws terrible fits when she does not get her way, or has to do something she does not want to do (like go to bed). I have tried everything, to no avail. To make things worse, my boyfriend (who is not her biological father, but is amazing and loves her like his own) and I disagree on how to handle her a lot of the time. He tends to lean toward spankings and intimidation, where I reserve spanking for a last resort. Any suggestions? What works for your children? How can I come to terms with my boyfriend, before he loses his mind, and we lose him?
2 people like this
7 responses
• United States
8 Sep 09
The best thing to do during tantrums is to ignore them. After awhile, kids pick up on how you react to them and they realize that they are getting what they want if mom and dad give in to get them to shut up. Sometimes they just throw tantrums to get attention. The best thing to do is really to ignore them. Make sure they're in a safe place so they can't get hurt if they are flailing on the ground and just let them cry. However, you must keep reinforcing the behavior you want them to do such as going to bed or whatever is it. If they're crying or not, keep pushing them to do it through the tears and the screaming. I know it's hard, I know it's annoying and I know all you want is peace and quiet but the tantrums will break if the kids realize you're not going to give in. It just takes patience.
• United States
9 Sep 09
This may sound strange but it works with my 3 year old child. I really just start laughing at him. When he starts to throw a fit, I simply put a huge smile on my face and start laughing at him. Funny laughs too. Then I distract him into doing what I want. It is amazing what you can get your children to do when you make them think it is their idea. Get back to basics, go to your child's level and remember they are still young, and learning from our strengths and weaknesses! The laughing help me stay calm as well. I tend to have a bit of a hot temper and I know if I start getting mad it will escalate to the point of no return. When I laugh, it keeps me much calmer. I can deal with a toddler when I am calm, when I am not calm, my child is not calm! Best of luck to you!
• United States
9 Sep 09
I can say if you spoil your child without doing anything to them, they will run over you. You must do everything you can to not let them run over them and take charge in your children. If spanking the child is the last resort, well that's what you may have to do. When they group up, they will have more respect for you if you do that. I was spanked when I was a child and I grew up to respect my mother. Think about it. You are responsible for how you handle your child and to make sure they don't run over you. It would be your fault if you never were to take charge when they are tots to when they get older how they respect you. If you never disciplined them, they will grow up disrespecting you and you will have a hard time dealing with them. It would be your fault if that happens. We all as parents MUST TAKE CHARGE OF OUR CHILD.
@lokisdad (4283)
• United States
28 Dec 15
Being a step parent isn't easy. Spankings are not for everyone I won't lie we spank but not all the time its when nothing else has worked. Tots know how to manipulate and test boundaries if you two can't agree especially in the child/rens presence. If you are allowing him to be the father figure then let him be dad when its time to discipline too or you undermine his authority. Our oldest is not my biological child although I have raised him as my own since he was in pampers. We've never lied to him about it. We have agreed 1st we try talking time outs etc when and only when none of it works then they get spanked. Spankings only on the bottom using just a hand not hard enough to cause a bruise or injure them. No more than 3 open hand spanks. Its a personal choice and very hard and you must be able to trust. If you let them they will run your home and run over you. Good luck
@shuetyeng (148)
• Malaysia
9 Sep 09
My girl is almost 2 years old now. She will behaved very cranky and throw tantrum too when she is teething. Other than that, she is just like any other kids that showing temper when things do not worked on her way. I used to be a hot temper mommy and I will raised my voice to her. And after some time, I noticed that it does not helped much in our relationship and my girl also started to lost confident. Now when she throws a fit, I will talked to her softly. After she has calmed down, I will explained to her about her behaviour. And let her know that her behavior was not acceptable. Don't worry about the toddler's temper tantrums, it is a normal growing phase.
@submerryn (1304)
• Malaysia
9 Sep 09
hi there kelleynichole, My son is 2 years one month. He throws tantrum occasionally. I dont spank him though. I believe in what goes around comes around. What I usually do is I'd calm myself down before I approach him. I dont raise my voice nor I spank him. I'd just keep quiet and when he is done, he'll come to me to tell me what he wants. I use the ignore method. Initially it does make him shout louder, but after sometime, he realise that by shouting, he gets nothing. So now, when he shouts, I keep quiet. He'll keep quiet and we'll hug. :)
@honsha (8)
• India
9 Sep 09
my son is 2 year old and somethimes i cry when he not listens to me.but thats the way it is.kids toddlers throw tantrums very ofen and i feel we have to handle it carefully.i usually distract him and tell him to do different kind of thing that is of his interest.sometimes it works and sometimes i have to bribe him to understand my point.one thing u must understand that the patience is very important for the mother in this case. when toddler behaves like this then no one comes forward to handle it from family and will say a thing or two to u for not handling the matter peacefully.patience and love is the only solution for this.
• United States
9 Sep 09
I left my comment in the wrong spot. It is posted under the second responses comment. I hope it helps. Remember, keep smiling and the world will smile back at you.
@dorannmwin (36695)
• United States
8 Sep 09
My son is almost three years old and he went through a stage of doing the same thing as your daughter is doing now. To break him of it, I first started with using a stern voice and talking to him when he was throwing a tantrum. That didn't work. I finally almost lost it with him and decided to try other things. The thing that I finally did that made him quit throwing tantrums was to give him a time out during one. I'd put him on the couch and make him sit there, not able to look at the tv or anything for at least 3 minutes or until the tantrum stopped. Now, for the most part he doesn't throw temper tantrums.