Thursday, July 20, 2017

Tantrums: seen through the eyes of a mom

Every child will tell you that throwing tantrums are necessary - that they're the only ways to showcase their frustrations, air their grievances, make their points, fight "the man" (their parents), and that tantrums correct the undesirable outcome that had been given. Now your child might not say it so eloquently - they might not even know the exact reason they are throwing a tantrum at the time, but in time it will come out and you'll suddenly understand why your child (whether they're a toddler or a 5+ yr old) is acting like a crazed lunatic.

Parents, on the other hand, usually have no clue WHY their child is suddenly throwing themselves around on the floor while screaming like they are being skinned alive. We usually find out after the fact, sometimes it's just because they don't have all the words yet and so we have to piece things together, but sometimes they just get so worked up they can't talk without releasing.

This morning my son decided to throw a 30 min tantrum - it started at 6:47 am, which is MUCH to early for a tantrum to be thrown, let alone a 30 minute tantrum!
My impersonation of throwing a tantrum
It started because he had his class picture that he was waving around in his sister's face. (I mean seriously, if you had a class picture you would totally be doing that as well!) His class picture came in a cardboard "frame" of sorts that had 2 small pieces that popped out to make a stand (you see where I'm going right?!). He decided to hold onto those little thin strips of cardboard and wave the picture around. I did warn him they would tear if that was the only part he held, so I'll let you guess what happened. If you guessed that the thin strips tore you'd be correct! He was very upset and I told him I would fix it after everyone got breakfast, but then he demanded I fix it
 "RIGHT NOW!!" and fixing it at a later time was NOT acceptable.
Yeah, that was my look when he gave his demand... Because everyone knows when you demand something from me that's pretty much the one way to guarantee I won't do something. But if you demand something during a tantrum it's like a nail in the coffin, that whatever you're demanding will never get done. (Yes I'm a tad stubborn/hardheaded and it is something I'm working on - not being so stubborn/hardheaded...) But today 5 minutes into the tantrum he DEMANDED - I was in the middle of getting breakfast together and lunch made (I'll let you guess as to how that went)...
Yeah, I just let him continue with his tantrumming, because he wasn't listening and he didn't want to hear my answer - I did try to talk, but was screamed over, so I did what ANY good parent would do - I banned him from the kitchen. He didn't want to talk, he didn't want to listen - no problem, but we didn't want to listen to screaming.
The tantrum, screaming, and demands had now been going on for 10 min - he had moved into the livingoom - I have to say I was impressed with his dedication to making his point.
15 min in and the Munchkin was busy eating sauces and playing, lunch was packed, I enjoyed a bowl of cereal, and breakfast was sitting out for the Monkey...
20 min and I was wondering why I hadn't made coffee, because this morning I could've actually sat and enjoyed a cup before school drop-off! I usually wait till I come home because before school is kinda crazy and I don't really drink the coffee for the caffeine, it's more for the taste.
25 min and I was done. I mean it's one thing when your toddler or other aged child who doesn't have the words and who is unable to express themselves throws a tantrum over nothing, it's another thing when it's a child who CAN express themselves, but chooses not to. Thankfully it was only another 5 minutes before he calmed down and walked back in the kitchen - like nothing happened!! Oh and in case you're wondering, yes, his class picture was fixed during that tantrum, but he never once mentioned it once he walked into the kitchen! That wasn't the only tantrum today, but it is the only one you have to hear about... today.
Don't worry, I did get my coffee after I dropped him off at school... It tasted great!

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