If there’s one thing I’ll never understand, it’s why toddlers get SO mad when things don’t go their way. Maybe it’s the fact that they are learning what the feeling of frustration feels like or just don’t understand why they can’t have everything they want.
Some of Bubba’s recent meltdowns have included:
Unable to get one of his socks off.
Needing a refill of juice.
He can’t find his toy bunny.
He has to get his diaper changed.
He ran out of fruit snacks.
It’s raining and we can’t go outside.
Like I said, I don’t understand why it’s always the end of the world when these things happen, however, to him, it is..
I decided it might be fun to flip it around and freak out every time one of these little things happened to me. Maybe I would understand what goes on inside a toddler’s mind. And if not, it would be pretty funny to pretend it really was the end of the world every time these things happened.
The Brita is empty: Gosh darnit, all I wanted was a glass of water and now I have to fill it up and wait for it to get cold. WHAT IS THIS WORLD COMING TO!?
I can’t find my keys: I might as well crawl back into bed and just cry; this is terrible!
I got defriended on Facebook again: Sound the alarms; no one likes me, everyone hates me, let’s go eat some worms. (Just kidding, that’s disgusting… and a really weird song now that I think about it.)
I have to go to the bathroom: Do I really have to get off this couch and walk to the bathroom? I DON’T WANT TO MOVE.
I just ate the last red Starburst: If I could get a word out after blubbering over the fact that I just ate my last red Starburst, I would explain how depressing that really is.
Ok, on the real though, it’s totally normal for toddlers to have these moments. They’re extremely frustrated when something doesn’t go their way because they are little independent people and want to be able to do everything themselves. Just as they’re learning, we as parents are learning too.
Here are a few things I do when these little instances arise:
1. Help him, not do it for him.
2. Explain that he just needs to ask for help and I will assist him.
3. Stay calm: toddlers learn from example and if you get upset that they’re frustrated, they won’t understand how to ask for help in the future.
4. Comfort, don’t baby them: If they’re upset, tell them it’s okay and that you understand, but don’t talk to them like they’re a baby. They’re on their way to becoming a little person and won’t understand how to act like one if you don’t treat them that way.
Growing up is tricky and since all of us are new parents at some point, it can be hard to grasp the parenting concept when under frustration. Take a deep breath and remember it’s new for everyone!
Now where’s that last red Starburst?…
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