Tantrums are like coffee, you will have at least one a day.

Keaton (who is 18 months old today) has mastered the art of back arching, dropping to the floor and screaming. I think it has especially peaked in the last month . From a very young age (like a couple of weeks old), he would cry so hard  he would stop breathing and start turning blue. It was the scariest thing ever the first time it did it. My sister used to do the same thing when she was small, and my mom used to take her straight to a tap and put cold water on her face and she would snap out of it.

I had to start doing the same thing, apparently it’s not harmful to them, and they won’t die, but it’s still scary. So from a young age, I knew that he would have a short temper.
And oh boy, let anyone try and make him do something he does not want to, take something away from him, or try and stop him from doing something he wants to do, the face goes blue, the kicking and arching starts, and you kind of have to try and take him seriously. 

The latest addition to his tantrum is the screaming and fist clenching. You can really tell he is frustrated, and I feel so bad that he get to that point, but it only happens because he does or tries to do something that he is not allowed it.
My dad sent me an article about toddlers and tantrums and it definitely is a good read.

It basically says that kids like to be in control and that they can feel overwhelmed when they lose that control by not being able to put their feelings and frustrations into words. Which will leave them no choice but to act out, as they feel that all their previous efforts to get your attention have been unsuccessful.

The tips from this article on how to handle tantrums can be found here.
Luckily we have not experienced any tantrums other than at home – I don’t think I am prepared for when they start to happen when we go out. At the moment we have him pretty well figured out, and know what buttons not to push in order to keep him happy.

There are so many different methods of dealing with tantrums, and its really hard to decide on the best method for your child. Smacking is not allowed in New Zealand, and I am fine with that, I personally don't think smacking teaches your children anything apart from its okay to smack others. Parents spend so much time trying to teach their children how to behave and act, and then think its okay to smack them when they don't behave, talk about mixes signals. I don't disagree with smacking under the right circumstances, but don't find it a fit for our family.

I also don't think time out is effective at this age, as they have no idea what is going on. At the moment, we just try to ignore him and when he is calmer, we explain that he cant do that when he does not get his own way, and also that there are somethings he just cannot do (like standing on the table). I guess time will tell as to whether this is an effective method.

On a more positive note - he has showed signs that he is ready for potty training, this is a new an exciting time for him and us, and am excited to start this process of him becoming more independent.


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