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Friday, July 2, 2010

Submitted By You Saturday: Disciplining Your Toddler

As mentioned last week I will be using Saturdays to ask YOU questions to get to know each other better, share our experiences and offer opinions and advice. Being a mom is the hardest job in the world and I hope that my new Saturday feature will not only help to develop a sense of community on my blog, but also inspire and support other moms and women out there.

It's no surprise that raising a toddler can be demanding. Toddlers are constantly learning and doing, reaching new developmental milestones quickly and wanting to be more independent. But often time a lack of verbal skills and understanding of consequences can lead to temper tantrums that are frustrating and emotionally draining for both the caregiver and the child. 

My son has recently started throwing major temper tantrums and pushing boundaries for just about everything. Although I've read the parenting books and have been trained as an early childhood provider, dealing with temper tantrums and toddlers in general is different when they are YOUR children and it is twenty-four hours a day seven days a week.

My question to you today is about disciplining your toddler:
What strategies work best for you when disciplining your toddler and when trying to "tame" temper tantrums? 


I'm always curious to know how other people deal with this "stage" and am on the look out for some new and creative ideas that work. I can't wait to hear what you guys think! To participate today please leave a comment under this post with your two cents worth-advice, your own experiences or tips.

If you have a question about parenting, educating, mothering (or just about anything else) and would like me to feature it in an upcoming Submitted By You Saturday post please contact me HERE.

Have a great weekend everyone!
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7 comments:

  1. "dealing with temper tantrums and toddlers in general is different when they are YOUR children and it is twenty-four hours a day seven days a week."

    You're SOOO right! You get tired and run down, and you're juggling a million other things, and you resort to things you wouldn't normally do.

    I don't have much help. When he was younger, we'd ignore him for a minute, and he would stop. Now, at almost 2, we don't have a ton of temper tantrums, more just yelling at us, hitting, and not cooperating. We do time-outs then. And distract him with the TV, which is horrible, because I swore he wouldn't watch TV until he was at least 2, but we just try to limit it and use it when we really need him to cooperate. He has never been easily distracted by other toys, and is very stubborn (always has been) and this is the only thing that seems to work!

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  2. My son is 25 months, and we deal with tantrums when we have to change his diaper, or when he wants us to play with him (only child-so we are his "play buddies")

    When he starts throwing a tantrum, we have started saying, "1...2...3....calm as can be. I'm taking care of me". And try and have him count with us...lately, that has really redirected a full blown tantrum. It's supposed to be a breathing exercise to try and calm them down. We got it from a book called, "Calm Down Time". :)

    If he continues to wail himself on the floor and it escalates, then we (we don't say anything) take him to his room, put him in his crib with the lights on, and the door slightly closed for only 2 minutes or less. We then go in, have him make eye contact with us and remind him of why he is in timeout. This has worked for us, but not ALL of the time, b/c every time is different. Getting on their level, and being stern, not yelling...works for us.

    This stage is hard! We find with consistency he kind of gets it. :)

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  3. I'm going through the same thing right now with my 11 month old. She started walking at 10 1/2 months and gets into EVERYTHING. She LOVES the kitchen garbage can. As soon as I see her starting to head over to it, I tell her no and she usually stops for a few seconds and looks at me and then the garbage can. She'll take off for it and she usually reaches it by the time I get to her. I tell her no and pick her up to move her away from it, but she is not easily distracted. She WANTS that garbage! The next time she does it and I tell her no and move her away is usually when the tantrum occurs. I then pick her up and put her in her room and let her cool down. I don't close the door, but I do leave. She'll usually walk back to me and want me to love on her then and I'm more than happy to do that.

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  4. Thanks so much for your input ladies. It's nice to know that other moms out there are going through exactly the same thing!

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  5. Terra, my daughter does exactly the same thing. She has also been walking since 10 1/2 months and is very stubborn.

    I also have a 21/2 year old. He is the one who is really testing boundaries. I find that if I try to be consistent and persistent they eventually learn. For instance, both my children are climbers and often when I catch them in the act, saying no isn't enough. Instead of repeating myself, I will go and physically (but gently) take them to another room, or pop them on my hip and continue with what I or we were doing. I try and adopt the same approach to most things. If an event escalates into a tantrum, I don't react to it unless there is danger of them hurting themselves. My son has learned quickly that having a tantrum gets him nowhere. There is no attention - positive or negative. One other tactic we have used is to tell him that he has two minutes to cry etc and when I get back we will continue what we were doing.Giving them a time limitation on the tantrum is really good when I'm not at home. When the time is up I say that the clock says it's time to stop crying now and that it's time for playing, reading a book, etc.

    Sometimes it feels like we have to adopt so many tactics / approaches in dealing with tantrums to stop them and to retain those boundaries.

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  6. Our challenge at our house is to only say "NO" when we really mean it. And when we say "no" - it counts. I have seen many parents say "no" to something, only to realize it's just easier to give in to the no big deal thing it was to start with. So the no was meaningless. So we choose our noes carefully and when we say no, it stands. No caving. The NO is usually followed up with some kind of attempt at distraction. Works probably half the time.

    We use as much positive reinforcement as possible. Everytime she does something we ask, she gets praise. After she's been told a NO, if she obeys, she gets LOTS of praise. IF she pushes her boundaries, the no gets sterner. She is pretty sensitive to that and knows we mean business.

    Honestly, I think I have a kid with an easier temperament. Some kids just provide more challenges than others. Please let this daughter of mine continue to be sweet through the teenage years!

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  7. Lots of good ideas here. Thanks so much for sharing. I will be trying out some of these strategies!

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