Dealing With Tantrums...
Most of the time my little girl is a pleasure to be around- we have a lot of fun together and she amuses me every day. She is affectionate, kind and polite. However just recently we have hit the terrible two's (albeit two months early.)
Very occasionally my little girl unleashes her inner diva.
Tantrums. Don't get me wrong- I can handle them. Just about. They don't happen often enough yet for me to think about packing my bags and running off, but I do wish I knew the best way of disciplining a 22 month old.
Take the other day for example. We were in soft play with two friends having a whale of a time. Then Mads decided that she wanted to take her juice into the play area which they are not allowed to do. I said no, thinking this would be fine, but oh no- cue a tantrum of an epic scale. She laid on the floor, crying her eyes out screaming 'juice mama juice mama' over and over. At first I ignored her after saying she couldn't, thinking the silent treatment would work. But alas no, she continued to lie on the floor wailing. I then decided I would be the grown up, and picked her up and tried a distraction technique, suggesting we went and played in the ball pool. Thinking for a second this had worked, we walked over, but then she remembered her juice. 'Juice Mama Juice Mama' was her response, crying and shouting once more.
I then decided to go myself into the ball pool, hoping it would make her come with me. It did, but not before she ran over to my bag, managed to unzip and got her juice back out again. Jesus christ, this child can be stubborn! I have no idea where she gets it from. Hmm.
So in the end I decided to raise my voice, just a little and put on my scary Mummy tone. 'Mads do you want to go home?' 'No mama.' 'Well then you can't have your juice in the play area. Go and play otherwise we will go home. If you want your juice sit on Mummy's lap and have some like a good girl.' That worked well, she just looked me square in the eye and said no.
Eventually she forgot about it and the tantrum was over. It was a particularly bad one, firstly because I was embarrassed as we were in a public space, and secondly she was over tired and a bit under the weather that day. But still she is a stubborn little thing and I really have no idea how is best to deal with tantrums. I haven't done this before!
I don't think the naughty step would work just yet because she is too little to sit there, she would just try and get up. One, Two, Three, I doubt would work because she is too young to understand. I sometimes try to ignore them, especially when we are at home, but it is hard because I also want her to know she has done wrong or is being naughty. I don't believe in shouting at her, but I do try and change my tone and say that she is not being well behaved- but again it doesn't do much.
Seriously what is the best way to discipline a 22 month old? What do you do with your children? And how do you deal with public tantrums?
If anyone has any tips I would love to hear them as I really want to bring her up to be a polite, well behaved little girl, most of the time she is but just occasionally she turns into a proper diva. I know it is a phase they all go through, girls more so than boys it seems to me comparing Mads to her boy friends- but then I don't know if that is just because she is a lot more developed in terms of interaction and speech at this moment in time, but regardless I really don't know the best way to deal with them.
98% of the time she is a joy to be with, it's just the rare 2% that I need to sort out! But still I am proud of my feisty little thing- after all having a ten minute stand off over putting on a slipper is really something to be admired.
Looks innocent enough but we were in the middle of a strop here. Over putting on our shoes.