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How Do You Handle your Child’s Tantrums?

by Frederick Akinola
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Tantrums are common in children. They will get into a fit of screaming and kicking, even hurting themselves when they lose it. Why does this happen?


Small children have limited experience in handling their emotions. That factor alone can lead to an occasional tantrum. Tantrums are one of the ways that young children express and manage feelings, and try to understand or change what’s going on around them.
A child experiences a change in his life at about two years old. Before now, the parents did whatever was needed to make things better. And that was proper because a baby is fully dependent upon his parents. At about age two, however, a child begins to realize that his parents are catering to him less and less. In fact, instead of their serving his needs, they expect him to comply with their wishes. This always leads to tantrums.

Stay Calm

Be understanding. Your child is not a miniature adult. Having little experience in dealing with his emotions, he may overreact when he is upset. Try to see the situation through his eyes. When your child is having a tantrum, losing her temper will not help. To the extent possible, ignore the tantrum and react matter-of-factly. Stay quietly with your child until they calm down. Touch or hold them if they want you to, or give them more physical space if they need it. Don’t try to reason with your child.

Hold your Ground

If you give in to whatever it is your child is demanding, he will likely throw another tantrum the next time he wants something. Calmly show your child that you mean what you say. This will help your child learn that tantrums don’t help them get what they want.

Be Patient

Do not expect tantrums to disappear overnight, especially if you have given your child reason to believe that his behaviour will sway you. If you react properly and consistently, however, the tantrums will likely diminish.

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