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Terrible tantrums - 15 month old

  1. #9
    carang's Avatar
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    in that case your child IS crying for attention, literally.... i would have no problem whatsoever with going and comforting them. at that age, comfort is as important as food. BUT if your child is screaming out of anger because he doesn't want to clean up or he wants ice cream... THAT is a totally different story.

  2. #10
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    But last night, I really was ready to let him cry... I was so mad at him..... But saw my hubby helplessly trying to calm him down, and we both have to work on the next day.

  3. #11
    thanka2 is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gataloca View Post
    I understand Thanka and Carang approach, but somehow I don't feel that I can do it on my baby (yet)... Probably because I have always been kind of "attachment parenting" style... I tried following other approach before (Baby Whisperer) and somehow it didn't fit. So I have always tried to fulfill my baby's need as much as possible, so he would not cry as much. So I don't think he would understand if I suddenly let him crying because he cannot have something that he wanted... Instead I have always tried to explain to him why he cannot have the item or why I need to have that item back, and instead I offer him something else if he seems attached to that thing.... I don't think he quite understand my words, but usually he take it pretty well. I am usually quite flexible, and would let him have most of the things he is interested in (because I want him to have chance to explore more, not because I want to spoil him), provided that it is safe... My hubby on the other hand is too cautious and mostly would not let my baby hold items that are not "toys" or that he considers unsafe (e.g. bottles, containers with cream, lids, etc). He is sometime blunt at removing the object from my baby, making him cry. My hubby has tried that cry it out approach with my baby (specially when I am taking a shower).... It never worked, and I have always hated it.
    Hmmm....I think that at some point you're going to have to let your child cry when he wants something because you simply can't always give him what he wants. I think it's good to start establishing some boundaries when they're young so that when they get older you don't have to struggle as much. I would also like to add that to me the advice in Secrets of the Baby Whisperer never amounted to letting a child "cry it out." The way we did it we actually taught our child to self-sooth and put himself back to sleep and there really wasn't very much crying involved. In ten days he went from not sleeping through the night to sleeping 12 hours straight--the key was consistency. The problem is, most people just give up at the first whimper. The longest he ever cried was 15 minutes with that method.

    I don't think explaining most things to a 14-month-old really works--unless it is very simple. As you said, children at that age don't really have the cognitive ability to comprehend that type of reasoning I've always thought "no" was enough of an explanation for a child that age. I understand what you mean by replacing an object with another to keep a child from crying but I think that's totally different than every time a child cries (especially throwing a tantrum which to me means throwing their bodies on the floor and making a huge scene of it) because they aren't getting their way or exactly what they want looking for an object (or food) to pacify them and make them stop crying. That's a really tricky road to be walking down.

    This summer I taught in a playgroup and there as an 18-month-old boy whose grandmother did exactly that--she couldn't and wouldn't tell the little boy no and he was such a terror with the other children--constantly snatching their toys, pushing them around and then having a tantrum when he didn't get exactly what he wanted when he wanted it that the other parents and children didn't even want to be around him. His grandma was always just shoving a bottle or food in his mouth or finding another object to "make him happy." All I can say is "yikes"--the child already had a "social handicap" at 18-months-old because of the poor parenting choices of his grandmother. I feel sorry for him and his family because interviews for kindergarten roll around when children aren't even 2-years-old (my son was not even 2 when he interviewed for kindergarten) and staff don't look kindly on that type of behavior--seriously limits the child's choices.

    I have seen that children basically do what we allow and expect them to. So, whatever behavior my son is doing that I find inappropriate--it's best for me to just look at my parenting style and see where that behavior is being reinforced. Children are also much more capable than we give them credit for.

    Not saying your child is like that but I simply believe a tantrum should rarely if ever be rewarded. It's different if a baby wakes up from his sleep and needs to be cuddled back to sleep once in awhile. That's normal. But, I've seen adults in HK running around constantly trying just to keep the child happy--it's like watching a circus act with the juggler just trying to keep all the balls in the air. That's just not a reflection of what real life is about--sometimes the answer does need to be no--and not because something is dangerous but just simply because it's not the time or place for it. I'll tell you what, we started young with my son (6 months-old) and it's awesome that today he can say, "I want ice cream" and I will reply, "I know you want ice cream right now. Ice cream is really nice. But, we're not going to have ice cream, okay?" And he will reply, "Okay" without even questioning me. It probably would be a totally different story if I just had said "yes" to everything he had requested as a toddler. I think it's never too early to start modeling and teaching self control.
    “Many women have described their experiences of childbirth as being associated with a
    spiritual uplifting, the power of which they have never previously been aware …
    To such a woman childbirth is a monument of joy within her memory.
    She turns to it in thought to seek again an ecstasy which passed too soon.”

    ~ Grantly Dick-Read (Childbirth Without Fear)

    Mother of Two
    JMW, boy, born November 29, 2007, 9:43 pm, USA
    MJW, girl, born March 17, 2011, 4:14 pm, HK

  4. #12
    carang's Avatar
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    i think i just had that same ice cream conversation with my 6 year old....
    'mummy, can i have ice cream?'
    'no'
    'but i really want ice cream!'
    'yes, ice cream is delicious, but it is not an "every day" food'
    'ok'
    Lali07 likes this.

  5. #13
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    My boy hasn't have that kind of tantum yet. And I think he hasn't yet because 1) he cannot communicate quite well (probably that is why he feel so frustrated), 2) his mobility is not that developed to throw this kind of tantrum yet.

    This morning he just stood on my bed, raised his hand toward my desk, opened his hand and said "bah bah" like wanting to reach something. I knew he wanted my iphone. Instead I handled him my brush, which was next to the phone, and said "What? do you want my brush? Here, take it!"... he looked disappointed, but took it anyway, lol... Probably in few more weeks he would be screaming and crying "NO!!!! PHONE PHONE!!!"

  6. #14
    anotherone is offline Registered User
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    After speaking to a few mums I have decided to give "time-outs" a try, although deep down I'm still rather cynical about the effectiveness of such techniques on someone "only" 15 months old. The next challenge of course is to train the helper and the husband on this (not helped by the fact that I'm off on business all week next week), but that would be an entirely different discussion....

  7. #15
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    And btw thank you ALL for your very helpful replies! :)

  8. #16
    carang's Avatar
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    problem is this, if you are cynical about it... you go into it believing it won't work... then most people end up giving up too easily...

    good luck... you are going to need it! ;)

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