Showing my daughter around is more fun every day as she learns to communicate more and get into longer conversations. All the days are not the same tho as all parents know and there are times when coming from childcare I can sense red flag in my little sunshine. She is tired or hungry or just not in the mood ( women you know…) and I know to be careful.
One day I had to pick up groceries and knowing she was close to her limit still decided to go to store with her. She totally loves the carts that look like small cars and enjoys a ride in one. Well that day she just wanted to get in, get out. I tried to be neutral and not to get her upset even when she made things little difficult. After we gathered all necessary things we headed to pay for goods and that’s when testing dad’s limit was pushed hard. I started taking goods out of the cart to lay them on counter when a shout out of the small car got everyone’s attention: “IIIIII waaannnna dooo ittt!!!!!” she screamed. Carefully checking around I could see some heads turning but “whatever” I was thinking, ” kids to this stuff”. I gently tried to calm her and saying : “Yes come, help daddy” but that moment was the tipping point for her and with loud scream that I’m not able to reproduce she threw herself on the floor. There were about 5 people right next to us and about 30 who could see us from little further. I had two things that came to my mind what would have helped me instantly – “want chocolate?” or “want Shaun the sheep?”
Doing this would lead to similar acts more and more often, because for her behaving like this would turn into a tool to get stuff she likes.
So I decided to play it through and not give up. I asked her with a calm and assertive voice to stop the tantrum and help me with goods, without much luck. I then moved us aside little bit which triggered more high pitch tones but we were little in the center of everything. I remember one look from a mom with her kid. It was a smile that translated into: “I understand”. It was little comforting at that point.
My sweety kept the act for about 5 minutes until she agreed to get on my hands to go home. I was thinking of asking her to walk by herself but it seemed too much at that point. When we got home she did the same thing- big scream: “I dooont waant this” and turned her body into jelly falling to ground. This time I just asked her to come and eat with daddy and mommy and stop the act and left her there.
About 10-15 minutes later we had the sweetest little girl. She followed us around by herself not wanting to be carried around like usually. ( yes we have done some spoiling probably) Ate all the food and didn’t do any tantruming that evening.
What to learn from this? Tantruming should not be nurtured and letting kids have their own way too often. It might seem harsh but setting ground rules makes kids actually happier and life easier for parents. I know there are many different methods but using this from Super nanny’s book seems to be effective for us – maybe also for You?
Me and my wife still learn, but this was a good rewarding milestone.
Enjoy Your time with family!