Friday, June 8, 2012

Tantrum Conundrum

Am I the only naive first time mother out there that thought temper tantrums weren't supposed to kick in until 2 years old?  I'm not sure where I got that idea but somehow I was under the impression that we'd have smooth sailing until the so-called "terrible two's" kicked in.  Boy was I wrong!

My darling little 14 month old started in with the tantrums about a week after turning one!  In the beginning they were completely random and usually corresponded with sleepiness.  Now they typically occur during what I so lovingly refer to as "the witching hours," between 5-7pm.  If you set him down when he'd rather be held... tantrum.  If you close a door he would rather have open... tantrum.  If he points to outside and does his sign for "more" (translation: I want to go outside right now) and you tell him, "in a minute"... tantrum.

The worst is dinner time.  It has turned into a battle royale! 

(photo credit)
"In one corner, we have a head strong toddler that will not buckle by eating any tasty treat you put in front of him!"

"In the other corner we have two desperate parents attempting to be as head strong as their toddler by not caving and giving in to the tough guy's demands!"

"Who will win?  It's any body's guess!  Will the toddler get tired and eat the dinner that was served that night or will the parents buckle in an attempt to have a peaceful dinner and give the toddler blueberries because it is the only thing he will eat?!?!?"

Here's my problem...  I want to help my son.  I know I have to be strong and I can't let him get the better of me every time he throws a fit.  On the other hand I am constantly asking myself this question, "is Baby Boy giving me a hard time or is he going through a hard time?"  Is he truly testing his boundaries with us and attempting to get his way or is he teething, tired, and maybe, just maybe, he genuinely doesn't like what we've given him to eat?  I'm screwed, aren't I?

One thing I tried recently was asking daycare how they handle his tantrums and if he gives them a hard time during meals.  I couldn't believe their response.  "Baby Boy NEVER throws tantrums and meals are never an issue."  WHAT?!?!?  Apparently he saves his tantrums for us.  Gee, thanks?

Hubby and I are not going down without a fight!  We've made some changes to our dinner routine and we've purchased a new high chair/booster seat which allows Baby Boy to be at the table with us.  I'm hoping are efforts aren't futile.  Wish us luck!

Do you have a trantruming toddler?  What tips and tricks do you use?  Have any helpful advice for us?


  1. I usually give blueberries if that's all she'll eat! I figure it's better that she eat something rather than nothing. Also reading "Love and Logic Magic for Early Childhood" and a lot of their methods make sense to me. It's an easy read.

    1. Thanks! We've been looking for a good book on the subject ourselves so I will have to check out your recommendation! You are right about the blueberries... the other plus is that at least they like something that is good for them!