Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Meltdowns Are Us

Hello from tantrum central. I am not sure what is going on, but whatever it is, it is pissing Becca right off. John got up with her this morning and not ten minutes after I heard them get up I heard her stomping her feet and screaming from the kitchen. She has had a meltdown every day at 11 a.m. for the past three days. I keep thinking she is hungry, but she is NOT hungry. Just pissed off. Now, I am good at some things--like napping, procrastinating, making beds, and wiping butts. But, I am horrible at ignoring a tantrum. You are supposed to ignore them, right? That is easier said than done....it just makes her escalate and start doing that funny breathing thing that happens after massive sobbing. If I leave the room, she follows me, sobbing and clinging on to my leg. She will throw a big fit over the smallest infraction. How DARE I put raisins in her Cheerios? So, help me out here....how do I deal with this?

18 comments:

Lysandra said...

I can't help you. Michael turned 2 and the same week he became Satan's buddy. I can't explain what happen to angel baby. It's not him in there. There must have been a switch that turning 2 hits!

Ann said...

Hi! My name is Ann and I'm a friend of Jamie's and I occasionally read your blog. I can totally sympathize with you and the tantrums. I know we don't live close but I swear there must be something in the water... my two year old has been tantrum central for the last 3 or 4 days as well. I haven't figured out any magic to make them stop but if I do I'll be sure to pass it along. Just wanted to let you know you aren't the only one!

Tracy said...

I actually know what it is.. It is the full moon. You think I am kidding don't you? Ask almost any teacher and they will agree with me. I am not sure when the full moon actually is, but it was pretty full last night. Kids just act CRAZY during a full moon.

Oh and welcome to the year of the twos...Lovely isn't it?

Lost in Space said...

Danger Will Robinson

Jen said...

Oh my God. I cannot help you. I wish I could, but alas, we have been having a similar problem here. Kate has refused to sit down in her booster seat at dinner with us, and even spent all of dinner one night in the pack & play for timeout. She kicks and screams and makes herself sick she gets so mad.

I have found that distraction sometimes works, but not usually. For the dinner thing, we are now giving her one chance to eat: with us or not at all. If not at all, then she goes to time out and we make a big production about how fun dinner is and how good the food is. She is now eating with us. We'll see if it lasts. I hope you can get Becca to calm down soon.

Oh, and I think Tracy is right about the moon. The cat and the kids get crazy at the same time every month. WEIRD.

Joel and Angela said...

Don't know if it actually helps them, but I have always put them on the step or in their room and walked away (or told them not to get up until they are done). It somehow seems to either work or just make me feel better because there is space between us.
A

Bevo said...

Put the little calf in time-out telling her in a very calm, but firm voice that you will talk to her when she calms down. Then go on about your business.

If that doesn't work, put yourself in time-out.

Andrea & Ben said...

I think a mommy time out with lots of wine sounds great. Is that not PC? Is that not how it works? I am screwed later other wise ;0)

Anonymous said...

Nanna is exactly right. Put her somewhere that you don't have any eye contact and tell her when she can finish whatever is causing her grief then you will be happy to welcome her back in with you. If she is at all like her Daddy, she will hate not being able to see what is going on and how each of you reacts to her.
I loved Nana's other resolution to put yourself in time out. Too funny.

Natalie said...

Everyone has good suggestions. I tell Olivia that I don't understand cry and will talk to her when she's ready. It's also been suggested (in books and by friends) to validate what she's screaming about if you know what it is she is screaming about.

I did just validate what I assumed Olivia was feeling when I din't let her put Lila's diaper on a stuffed bear that "peed in his." She was pissed and I said, "oh, you must be bummed that you can't use Lila's diaper. I guess you'll have to use something different." She ran away and found something else to do. But, who knows. Maybe she just thought I was crazy and gave up the argument. Sorry I can't help. I need help in this area too. I don't know anyone who handles them worse than I do. Really, I just freak out half the time.

Feener said...

i too try to ignore and she just follows me and screams at me. i have tried to validate her - NOTHING works. time outs are a joke, she won't stay anywhere unless I physically hold her. meanwhile my daughter is 3 1/2 NOT 2. I feel so bad for her b/c I do feel there is something wrong and that is why she has the fit but I have no idea what is wrong ???? FUN stuff.

marthamydear said...

When Maclain gets that way, it's an indication that he's tired. He might have had a restless night or whatever. Usually he gets put into bed and told that if he's acting that way, he must be tired so he needs to go to bed. Sometimes he will cuddle up with his blanket for 20 minutes or so just to get some down time. There are occasions where he falls asleep. Yes, it messes up the day since the nap is at the wrong time, but he's a lot more pleasant when he wakes up!

sgtsharp said...

Throw your self on the floor and throw one right next to 'em your'll really get some weird looks from 'em. or I agree put 'em in there room until there done, I still do it with my 6th grader & 2 grader.So you parent with todders it really doesn't end.add music from the shower scene "Psycho"

Swistle said...

I think different parent-child combos handle it differently. Like, sometimes it's good to ignore it, but that doesn't work for everyone. What I usually do is spend a short amount of time trying to deal with it (explanations ((like, "I'm sorry you're upset, but the knife is not safe for you to play with")) and distractions and cuddles), and if I find I'm getting frustrated, I switch to ignoring. After awhile, I try the explanations/distractions/cuddles again, and sometimes by then it works. If not, I eventually threaten (and follow through if necessary) to put the child in his/her crib (or playpen, if no crib) to calm down a little. I leave them to it for awhile, and then go back and try the explanations/distractions/cuddles again.

Anonymous said...

totally agree with the moon observation....(14 years of teaching middle school AND several years of owning neurotic cats...yes, both groups are strangely similar...the cats being nicer)AND of course, Mommy time out is a must!!! who cares about the fingers wiggling under the locked door- turn your back and put on the headphones!!!

:-)

xox Amy

Angie said...

Ashlyn was in the advanced tantrum group. She started before 18 months, and I would just ignore them at first. That didn't work for us. A lot of times, I tell her that she has to go to another room if she is going to throw a fit, and she does. Then, when she has calmed down, I'll ask her if she is done. Then I'll tell her to wipe her face and come back in with me. We also do time outs for tantrums. Ashlyn's tantrums were really terrible right before two until a few months after, and mostly when she was tired.

desperate housewife said...

I actually second Tracy- full moons will MESS with you. Old people in nursing homes get crazy, women go into labor, and kids become ornerier than heck. Mine sure was.

Alishia said...

I stick my daughter in her crib with a book and some water and let her cry. Sometimes it works. Sometimes I drive away laughing! (You know I'm kidding.)