Prepare yourself now for the terrible twos, because it’ll get harder if you don’t get it under control. Just think this is a precursor to the teen years… LOL! While some parents are fortunate, and they never encounter the terrible twos, they may come head to head at the terrible threes. Whatever the case may be, there are workable ways to survive what seems like a sudden onslaught of… Yikes!
10 Tips to Help Moms Survive the Terrible Twos
1. Never…. EVER give into the tantrums. Your toddler needs to know who is boss. Once you let your child win the upper hand, they will continue to manipulate you. Toddlers are smart and they know how to get you wrapped around their little finger.
2. Don’t engage in bad behavior. For example, pulling a chair away from someone who is about to sit down isn’t a nice thing to do, but it can be a funny scenario. It may be hilarious to see someone land on their butt, but it’s also a dangerous situation where that person can hurt themselves. As a parent and adult, we have to control our emotions. If you laugh, then your toddler may think it’s okay and it’s funny. Correct this behavior immediately in a calm and firm tone. It’s important your child know it’s wrong and to say they are sorry.
3. Don’t yell and remain calm. This requires a lot of patience. It’s hard to not yell back and get angry. Yelling will only exacerbate the temper tantrum, and it will make it more difficult for you to calm your child down. Plus, it is just not good for either of you!
4. Be consistent in your discipline. Consistency is the MOST important aspect of any form of proper discipline. You have to be consistent when it comes to discipline because you can’t confuse your child. It will take longer for your child to learn what is acceptable and what is not. Make sure your spouse and other caregivers know this as well and know how to remedy the tantrum.
Avoid threatening your toddler if you’re not planning to follow through. If you’re going to say you’re going to do it, then do it or don’t say it at all. Again, it confuses your child.
5. Set boundaries. It’s not a free for all, but you have to be realistic too. For example, if you take your child to the library for story time and they can’t sit still, but they aren’t being disruptive or annoying to others then speak to them softly and try to calm them down or remove them from the story time and do something else at the library.
6. Identify their triggers. Missing nap time, hunger, boredom etc. attributes to tantrums. Children require a routine or a schedule. Set one up and work around their schedules.
7. Compromise with your toddler. Now, there is a very fine line with this. I am a firm believer in parents PARENTING–not allowing their children to make all the decisions. However, it is good to give them choices and teach them to make decisions. For instance, they may not be able to wear a t-shirt on a cold day, but you can give them a choice of what sweater they can wear.
8. Communication is the key to healthy relationships and understanding. For many toddlers it’s hard to communicate in words how they feel so they act out which is understandable and expected at that age. They know more than you think. They know what is sad, mad, happy, funny, tired and etc. They don’t always know how to explain it, but with the right questions and prompting from you, they’ll learn how to express themselves.
9. Praise. Positive reinforcements are more rewarding and much more beneficial for your toddler. Two is a great age and it’s a lot of fun. Your child is learning so much by trying to be independent and experiencing new things. Tell them how well they are doing and how proud you are of their accomplishments. This should be used throughout their lives. Praise and affirmation are vital and must be delivered regularly by parents.
10. Acknowledge their temper tantrums and their feelings. Ignoring them for a long period could send the message that you don’t care. Take a few minutes to calm yourself, gather your patience and then approach your toddler. Listen to them and validate their feelings. Feelings in and of them selves are not wrong. However, we must teach them how to control their emotions.
I hope these tips help you survive this time in your toddler’s life. Treasure these moments–eve the stressful ones! They disappear far too quickly… and soon they are all grown up!
Copyright © Lara Velez, Moms of Faith, All Rights Reserved