We all remember that moment (vividly) when our kid had their first tantrum in a public place. You run the gamut of emotions as you try to resolve the issue (and maintain your sanity). What we sometimes forget is that your child is also running through a lot of emotions without the ability to properly articulate the problem.
We’ve rounded up some tips from our dads on dealing with those inevitable meltdowns:
- Distract. Distract. Distract. Sometimes your little one just needs a bit of a distraction as a way to calm them down and move on.
- Be empathetic. Taking a few deep breaths and reminding yourself that your child isn’t reacting this way on purpose. They have a lot of emotions without the tools (yet) to regulate them. Try a hug.
- Give them space. Just like adults, kids need their space. Allowing them to go to their room or a different area of the house to calm down can be beneficial to everyone. Once they’re calm you can move on to the next tip.
- Remember they’re people. Try to explain the ‘why’ behind the ‘what’. For example, “your body needs sleep to become stronger and that’s why we have you take naps and go to bed at night.” It can also lead to inquisitive kids wanting to better understand things later in life.
- Get on their level. Make yourself their size and name their feeling. “I’m sorry you’re feeling frustrated by x,y,z but here are the reasons we can’t do that.” Research has shown that kids respond better when you’re talking to them eye to eye, not looking down on them.
It’s important to understand that all parents go through this—you’re not alone. But with a great community, you’re able to lean on each other for the support needed to get through all of the parenting challenges.
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