Thursday, March 31, 2011

Advice needed!

Lately Samantha has had a little problem. Ok, actually she has had the problem for a long time, but it has gotten a lot worse the last month or so. After she is done playing with a friend, she throws a huge tantrum. Huge. On Tuesday we had some friends over for a couple hours and after they left she threw a huge fit and I told her if she acted that way again after playing with friends she would have to have a break with friends. Yesterday she went over to our upstairs neighbor's to play and when I went up to get her she ran and hid from me and threw a huge fit. (We had made cookies together earlier so I simply asked her if she wanted to go home and have a cookie! She didn't end up getting it because I ended up having to carry her thrashing self out). When we got home I reminded her how I'd told her that if she acted that way again we wouldn't be able to see friends for awhile, so we couldn't go see friends tomorrow (which is now today.. and I am way bummed, we had a fun invite to go see tangled which we haven't seen yet)
I'm just not sure what to do! I don't know is she fully understands what she is missing out on today. I wonder if she thinks it's just one of our boring days at home? I worry it's a bit complex for her to fully grasp the concept of her punishment, (though I always try to remember a friend of mine who told me that kids really do understand more than we think they do...who knows?!) but I don't really know what to do! Help please?
Oh and also sometimes this fit throwing branches out into other things, for example when it's time to leave the park or come inside after a walk (but not as often as leaving friends)


Alex said...

I would agree that she knows what she is doing is wrong as far as the hiding and such. But the tantrom is just her way of expressing herself and showing her frustration. Dont react to it too much just say things like "I'm glad you had fun and I knwo its sad when its time to leave." Act like her tantrom doesn't even phase you. If you need to haul her off do so with out emotion. Let her cry and scream the whole way home and ignore it. If she is stil throwing a fit by the time you get home tell her she is welcome to cry in her room and come out when she is happy. Thats what we do with our lovely two year old. :) I have learned the more I tell him to stop the more he forces himself to be upset. He understands that if he is going to cry he can in his room. He comes out and says "I'm happy now!" She will learn that throwing a fit doesn't help her get her way and it doesn't affect you. But she needs a way to express herself. We express ourselves in other ways, two year olds just haven't learned the best way yet. Well thats what we do. We still get PLENTY of tantrums, but we just go with it. Hope that helps! Good luck!

Danelle and Alex said...

OK sorry that was me on my husbands account. I hate when that happens!

Nancy said...

I agree with the comment above. The less you notice their tantrum the less likely they'll continue it. I don't know if she realizes she's missing out on activities. I would try something that she wants to have or do and then explain no you can't have/do that because she was misbehaving the day before or whatever. Good luck. 2 year olds are hard but cute.

Cyn said...

I definitely think she is old enough to understand. I agree with what the first poster said too, but I think that you may be right she doesn't realize she is missing something today.

I ignore tantrums for the most part. I calmly tell the boys the appropriate way to express their feelings. For ex, Please use your words, and tell me that you aren't ready to leave yet. If she does, then reward her with a few more minutes. If she does not, I would carry her out. In the beginning maybe even tell her, If you ask nicely we can stay for 5 more minutes. An egg timer then might help her recognize that it is time to go after you extended the time. But only extend once and only if she asks nicely.

Good luck, tantrums are hard. Sometimes I just walk away.

Angela B said...

The other comments are good, but here's what I'd do. I'd pick an activity she likes to do, but doesn't do everyday but isn't too special (like Landen loves to help make cookies or play playdough or go to the park or mop the floor, etc) and then tell her about 10 times before you go on your playdate, "We're going to so-n-so's house and then when you're done, you and I are going to make cookies, won't that be fun? I'm so excited to make cookies with you." Tell her enough that you can ask her, "What are we going to do after so-n-so's house?" and she can answer. Then when you pick her up, she knows what will happen next, and remind her, "Sammie! We get to make cookies now, come get your shoes! I'm so excited." I bet that the 'let down' of going back to boring home is hard. And she probably feels a little attention deprived (thus the tantrum).

The worst thing for us is to have a play-date and have to come home and take a nap.

And then is a tantrum ensues, follow the above comments, but I might add make it her choice to be removed, "Sammie, you can come home with me now like a big girl or I will carry you home like a baby."

Haha! Good Luck!!

Stephanie said...

I love the first comment. It is very Love and Logic-y. Have you read that book. I've only read half, but it is so good. Sadie is for real the QUEEN of tantrum throwing right now and they throw the tantrums to test their boundaries.

I have found that when it is time to go home and she starts fighting it I jsut give her a choice - do you want to walk home or do you want me to carry you? Obviously you'd have different choices for dif situations. Usually she wants to walk because she's super independent. :) If she doesn't respond I carry her home or to the car and then when we get home if I let her know that she can be happy and do such and such or be mad and go to bed. She usually cheers up, but if she is actually tired she generally won't and so I just give her the choice of walking to bed or being carried and then I tuck her in or let her do it (her choice again) and then shut the door. Sometimes she screams for 15 minutes, sometimes she cried for 30 seconds. I think that all you can do is try to be consistent in whatever you choose and follow the Spirit when changes are needed and then she'll know what her boundaries are.

All you can do is teach her good principles. Even at 2 that is all you can do. It's a little easier to enforce the consequences of said principles at that age, but you'll do good. Seriously read Love and Logic if you haven't though. It is good. And a super easy/quick read.

Lauren said...

Hey everyone has had some great advice so I will just keep it short. I read somewhere lately in a parenting mag or something equivalent that keeping play dates and things of that nature to an hour or shorter helps reduce the outbursts. I am going to try that with Ryan maybe it will help you too! good luck