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Bill Bounds   Print
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No matter what words of wisdom come from me or anyone else you receive advice from, two-year-olds will sometimes scream despite our best efforts to stop it. This is a fact. As parents, we simply have to figure out how to deal with it.

In our case, Iím finding my daughterís most significant impossible-to-control melt-downs seem to be due not so much to her wanting something we wonít allow her to have or us forcing something on her she doesnít want, but more to do with her not truly knowing what she wants or being torn between wanting one thing and needing another (For example, when sheís tired and needing to go to sleep but wanting to stay up or when sheís aware she needs her diaper changed but doesnít want it done.) This clash of wants and needs or her just being in a mood where she doesnít want or like absolutely anything, so everything annoys her, causes temper tantrums that can be measured on the Richter Scale. 

Whatís worse; these tantrums escalate quickly when we try to fix whatever is wrong. Itís as though she recognizes weíre just trying to quiet her and that offends her, which infuriates her. 

Recently, Iíve discovered that simply switching the scenery a bit can be a big help. If Iím the one trying to get our girl ready for bed and itís escalating out of control, sometimes just tagging out with my wife and having her take over (or the reverse if my wife is the one struggling initially) seems to be just enough of a change to cause our girl take a breath and start to calm. Iíll leave her in her room and then send the wife in after a moment. Sheíll hold our girl for a bit to start the depressurization and then proceed to work through what was causing the escalation in the first place. 

It certainly doesnít work all the time. Most definitely, there are some melt-downs that just canít be quieted, but it does help on some of these. If nothing else, it splits the tantrums up so one of us doesnít always have to take them on solo.

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Avoiding a 2 year oldís Tantrum
The other four-letter word
Call their bluffs
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