You can say I’m a veteran mom in toddler meltdowns. With my two expressive daughters I think I’ve seen it all: the crying, the screaming, the dramatic floor spasms. The funny thing is that I don’t get angry anymore. Their meltdowns don’t affect me as they used to. And a lot of times I simply feel like laughing: it looks more like a joke to me, than a serious thing now.
But still, even as a veteran in toddler meltdowns, I do find them irritating. So the big question is, how to handle them and how to teach children about dealing with their emotions?
So here are some of the tactics that I use to handle toddler meltdowns:
1. Stay calm and speak with a calm voice.
As long as you’re calm, there’s at least one person who’s acting reasonable.
2. Don’t try to reason, ask many questions or explain too much. They don’t listen.
If your child is throwing an epic meltdown, explaining him why its unreasonable, and asking detailed questions won’t help, just might make him feel more confused.
3. Time in and time out.
From my experience, the best way to calm a toddler in a middle of a meltdown is by giving him time in: cuddling, saying that I understand that she’s upset, that it’s ok to feel angry, and that it will pass. A cuddle, a kiss and a consequent calm reaction, can really do wonders.
However, as they get older, and their vocabulary gets sufficient to express their feelings even during a meltdown, sometimes time out will work too!
4. Don’t give in.
If the meltdown started over the wrong color of a cup, don’t give in. Ask them to express their wishes next time and promise that you’ll listen, but don’t change things only to make them feel better. You don’t want a spoiled little bully, right?
5.Talk it over after the meltdown.
Once your sweet baby is back, and the tears have dried, talk it over and remind them that they need to use their words when they are angry.
6. Be prepared for the early signs of meltdown.
Remember that a tired, hungry toddler is very prone to meltdowns. Keep them fueled by healthy snacks, and don’t complicate your life with sweets: giving sugary snacks will give your sweet baby a boost of energy, only to crush in a meltdown a little while after!
I know that raising a toddler isn’t easy, but the meltdowns are just a phase of a child learning to deal with the difficult world surrounding it!
I’m Joanna, the writer, photographer and content creator behind the Lazy Mom’s Blog. I have a master’s degree in psychology, so I’m passionate by all that’s human nature, behavior and culture. I love sharing my parenting tips, homemaking advice, recipes and crafts.