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Taming the Tantrum

5 moms give the best ways to get through your toddler’s tantrums as quickly as possible.
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Fits happen. There’s no surefire way to eliminate them completely—but there are ways to get through them as quickly as possible. Smart moms share!

Let your child cool off. "Once, my daughter had a tantrum and actually started to take a swing at me. I put her in a time-out in the bathroom because there’s no fun stuff in there, and kept asking her if she was done as she yelled and screamed. When she finally said ‘Yes’ and came out, I praised her for calming herself down. Now all I need to do is threaten her with a bathroom time-out and she usually calms right down."
—Jennifer Kozek, mom of two, Oxford, Connecticut

Keep your cool. "Kids can make some bad choices as they learn how to handle anger and distress. So when one of my kids throws a fit in public, I get them away from other people, speak soothingly, and remind myself that this is all part of the learning process." —Jane Rosenberg, mom of two, Spokane, Washington

Take a walk. "My daughter once plopped down on the supermarket floor and started screaming. I just looked at her and walked off down the aisle, keeping her in my sights the whole time. She picked herself up, walked to where I was, and fell down crying again. I walked away again about 20 steps, and it worked. Eventually, she tired herself out and started to behave."
—Jennifer Ortiz, mom of two, Dallas, Texas

Get close. "My son has special needs and can go from zero to 1,000 very quickly when he’s distressed. Once he was so upset because I wouldn’t give him a Popsicle that he tried to climb the fridge. I’ve learned that bear-hugging him from behind can help calm him down. I also don’t buy Popsicles!"
—Marissa Sladek, mom of four, Hillsborough, New Jersey

Sing it away. "My son’s worst tantrums always seem to happen in the doctor’s office. It’s not that he’s hurting—he’s mad that people keep messing with him. I usually calm him back down by singing his favorite songs, like ‘Old MacDonald’. He quickly forgets that he was mad and claps along."
–Katy Monnot, mom of one, Covington, Louisiana

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  • Rated 0 out of 5 by 4reviewers.
    Rated 0 out of 5 by The cartoon Danial tigers neighborhood teaches children a lot of manners. You can find it on pbskids.org. I had a rough time with my 2yr old daughter blighting her 1yr old son. I was told bite them back, I can't bite my own child so finally I made her bite her self. And she never bit again. March 15, 2013
    Rated 0 out of 5 by Keeping your cool and letting your child cool off are biggies. Once your child realizes they are not going to get what they what they will move on and be happy. Just have to keep sane through those few minutes of screeching until they realize they aren't going to get it. January 27, 2013
    Rated 0 out of 5 by It's so true, every child has it's own way they calm down. My sister's 3 year old will only stop crying, screaming, ect. if you sing '' Twinkle Twinkle little star''. She sang that song to her since she was a little baby. It calms her down right a way and she knows its a chill time. Will sit close her eyes and listen. :) November 15, 2012
    Rated 0 out of 5 by I like letting them chill. i wont give mine good or bad attention when he's fitting and it has cut way down already. I think i will try the singing if it happens in the car and he cant go fit it out. March 26, 2012
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