Sara, contributor of many hacks, needs our help!
Well… we've finally reached the tantrum throwing stage. It started off small (and relatively cute) but we've now progressed to the full arched back/screaming type of tantrums…. We've been exploring ways to "manage" (live through without scarring for life?) tantrums, and of course I thought maybe my fellow parenthackers would have some suggestions.
So far we've had little bits of success with "ignore" and a decent amount with "distract" — but any other ideas (or ways to ignore and distract) would be appreciated.
Let me begin by patting your shoulder sympathetically. Tantrums can be so unsettling in their force. I found I had the best luck early on when I sympathized with my kid's distress instead of calling him out too harshly on his behavior. I remained firm about my decisions (I tried to never let a tantrum change my mind about a decision I had made), but attempted to be kind in the face of uncontrollable frustration. The trick was to not pay so much attention that he kept acting up just to keep me talking.
As he got older, my expectations for his behavior increased. A tantrum at two is one thing, but at four, required different handling.
What say you?