Keep Calm & Carry On: Why Silence Is My Best Weapon Against Tantrums
Thankfully, my four-year-old is quickly outgrowing the parenting nightmare that are temper tantrums. The more articulate she becomes at communicating her feelings and opinions, the less I have to deal with all that screaming hysteria. It is honestly a really great feeling to know that I’ll soon have those emotional fits behind me.
But even though she’s growing up quickly, a four-year-old is still a child. Children of every age can have a difficult time coping with emotions, especially negative ones. Sometimes, that frustration and anger can lead to a meltdown. No matter how well-behaved a child is, there’s always the possibility that they’ll fall victim to a meltdown.
It may have taken me a couple of years, but I’ve finally found the best way to deal with my child’s temper tantrums, should they rear their intensely ugly head. I’m not saying that this approach would work for anyone else. We all know that each little one is different and they all require their own technique when it comes to calming down and regaining control. That being said, my daughter and I had a little showdown that proved to me just how important it was to keep my composure when she started spiraling into tantrum territory.
It was bedtime. Of course it was bedtime. My daughter decided that she wanted to take lemonade to drink with her. We don’t let her have anything but a small cup of water on her bedside table, but she was just convinced that she needed lemonade. “Sorry love,” I told her when I didn’t realize what a big deal this would become, “Lemonade has sugar. That could make your stomach feel jittery if you have it before bed. Not to mention that sugar at bedtime hurts your teeth.” I walked into the kitchen and got her glass of water like I always do.
Not realizing the dangerous situation before me, I handed my daughter her cup of water. She looked down at it and I could see her little brows scrunch up. I was suddenly realizing the trouble I was in for when she threw the cup back at me and yelled, “I said I wanted lemonade! I told you what I wanted! I don’t want water!”