The Ultimate Do and Don’t List for Toddler and Tween Tantrums

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Hurray! After a slightly extended summer break, I’m back on the blog post night shift.

Admittedly, it’s a bit of a struggle now that the dreaded school run is back in full swing. 😬(Who knew that sleep-filled nights could be so addictive?! 😉)

But, if it’s not a struggle it’s not worth it, is it?

Where there is pain, there is gain, apparently!

At least, I hope so!

Having just endured a summer filled with a lot of painful struggling,  I should now be due quite a bit of gain for all my trouble.

Intrigued?

Well, then, do read on and all will be revealed!

So, catch-up time!

My blog-break summer had lots of high points, like this city day trip to a trendy pink-themed café.

This turned out to be an especially nice bonding experience with my soon-to-be-a-teen tween. 💕

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Then, there was our family road trip to Belgium…

And Germany!

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So far,  so good! 😊

Coffee, in varying hues, was drunk in copious amounts.

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Especially while doing lots of this! 😊❤️☕️

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Looks like pure bliss, doesn’t it?

And it could have been if I wasn’t also simultaneously dealing with a very large dose of this…

Or this…

Or, even, this…

Ooh, and who could forget incidents like this?!

And this?! 😐

Not so little niggles that will forever be imprinted in my mind as the omnipresent clouds that stubbornly refused to clear from the summer of 2019.

Oh, yes indeed, folks, our little family got a large dose of toddler and tween tantrums this summer.

Fun?

Far from it!

Frustrating?

Totally!

But what didn’t break me made me stronger!

Instead of destroying my makeup by wallowing in self-pity (like I really, really wanted to!), I picked myself up, dusted myself off and vowed to gain from the whole very sorry experience. 💪

”Apart from a thumping headache, what is ever to be gained from dealing with toddler and tween tantrums on a loop?” you might justifiably ask.

Invaluable knowledge and insight into how best to deal with and defeat them of course! 😊

Thanks to all the toddler and tween drama I have had to endure over the past few weeks, I now feel fully qualified to deal with every type of tantrum those terrible toddlers and tweens might ever again decide to throw at us.

In fact, I am now feeling so confident in my tantum handling abilities that I have devised an ultimate guide to the art of tantrum survival.

It goes as follows:

1. Do compose yourself

First things first, take a deep breath and count very slowly to ten.

Hell might be breaking out all around us, but outer calm, even if forced, will foster an inner sense of peace.

2. Don’t lose your cool

We might have taken a deep breath, counted to ten, been feeling calm, but the situation is escalating, the toddler is screaming at the top of his lungs in a packed shopping mall, he’s lying on the floor, refusing to move, the tears (yours! 😭) are streaming.

Now seems like the ideal time to hit that big red button and go into full-on panic mode, but it’s too early in the game…

Resistance is not (yet) futile!

3. Don’t stress

Picture the scene…

You’re in a public place, the toddler is screaming, the tween is in serious sulk mode, everyone is staring (or, at least, they must be but you can’t bear to look at them to confirm your worst fears).   You can feel the heat rising, your throat tightening, the anxiety is almost overwhelming until…

You tell yourself firmly and repeatedly that you got this, you can handle anything a loud (or quiet in the case of a sulking tween!), tired and hungry child can throw at you in the form of an all-out tantrum. 😬

Those positive affirmations are your way of taking back control of a very much out of control situation.

Result!

4. Don’t feel judged

We’ve all been there! We’re out and about, the kids are acting up, they are showing us up in the very worst possible light.

People are staring, they have to be judging our parenting skills because…

I was once one of those six, way back when my wayward tween was a wayward toddler! (Some things never ever change! 😩)

The tuts, the head shaking, the mortifying shame! 😳

On the flip side, I have also been one of the four out of ten parents who only received gentle words of support, kind knowing glances and a “we’ve-all-been-there sense of solidarity” from strangers and passers-by.

A small minority will always feel the need to judge.

But rest in the smug knowledge that karma could catch up with them one fine day!

In the meantime, hold your head up high and…

5. Do smile

Even if fake,  a smile has the power to diffuse even the most awkward of situations! 😁

Say “cheese”, everyone!

6. Do distract

It’s an emergency, normal rules do not apply!

Bribery with the brightest coloured sweets and toys is an often necessary course of action.

If you feel the weight of those judgy stares once more, refer back to point 4. 😉

7. Have an escape plan

If it’s an all-out emergency and the bribes don’t work (usually true in the case of toddlers who are less rational creatures and, by default, less open to bribes than tweens! 😉), abandon all hopes of negotiation, bend down, risk random punches and scratches to your person as you haul a feral toddler out of that public place as fast as your shaking legs will carry you.

Oh, and never ever look back!

There is only so much shame any reasonable parent can endure! 😳

8. Do remember that… 

If all else fails and the whole heart-stopping, heart-wrenching, toe-curling experience is an unmitigated disaster from its explosive beginning to its inevitable fizzling-out end, always hold on tightly to the promise that this is a (terribly annoying 😐) phase that will eventually pass!

And then it’s onto the next life challenges; young adulthood, exam stress, dating… 😬😰

Oh dear! Maybe toddler and tween tantrums weren’t so terrifying after all! 😐

Until next time, my dear readers,

💋 Mostly Mum

* All gifs are via GIPHY

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2 Comments Add yours

  1. EWalker says:

    Such a fun read!! I had to giggle at C’s niggle dance!! Too cute.

    1. edelcurran says:

      So glad you enjoyed it, E! 💕

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