If you’re a parent of a toddler, you’ve almost certainly experienced a full-blown tantrum. There’s no denying that tantrums can be stressful and overwhelming for parents. It’s important to remember that tantrums are a normal part of toddler development and communication and they will likely age out of tantrums over time. Here are some tips to help you communicate with your toddler during a tantrum and reconnect once it’s over.
When your toddler is having a tantrum, it’s essential to stay calm. Tantrums are often fueled by frustration, and the more you react, the more intense your toddler’s tantrum may become. Take deep breaths, repeat a calming phrase, such as “I can handle this,” and focus on keeping yourself calm.
Toddlers lack the language skills to communicate their emotions effectively, which can lead to tantrums. Reassure your child that you understand they are frustrated, upset, or angry. This validation can help your child feel heard and supported, which can help calm them down.
Empathize with your child
Even if you disagree with the reason for your child’s tantrum, show your child that you care. Let your child know that you understand how they feel, and you’re there to help them through it. Saying things like, “I know you’re upset because you wanted to play with the toy,” can help your child feel heard and understood.
Offer positive distractions
When your child is having a meltdown, offering a positive distraction can often be enough to calm them down. Offer a favorite snack, a book, or a calming activity that your child enjoys, like coloring or drawing.
Reconnect after the tantrum
Once the tantrum has passed, it’s important to reconnect with your child. Give your child a hug and offer reassurance that they are loved and valued. Take some time to play with your child, talk about their feelings, and remind them about positive coping strategies they can use the next time they have a big emotion.
Communicating with your toddler during a tantrum can be challenging, but it’s possible to stay calm and help your child through it. Remember to validate your child’s feelings, empathize with them, offer positive distractions, and reconnect after the tantrum. With practice and patience, you can help your child develop language and coping skills that will help them successfully navigate big emotions.