Dealing with tantrums is a real challenge. Any mom with a child knows she will have to go through this at some point.
Just ask Mirma Tica-Ortiz, mom to 1-year-and-9-month-old Mikael, and Tina Villasenor, mom to 1-year-old Juana. Now that their little ones have begun asserting their independence, these moms deal with tantrums more often.
“Juana gets frustrated daily,” shares Tina. “She usually grunts or screams and makes gigil when she can’t open a container, or if we’re taking something from her. She also gets frustrated when she is practicing a skill like walking, and she fails.”
Mirma, on the other hand, recalls the first time Mikael threw a “wild tantrum” in public. “We were at the mall when he refused to sit in his stroller because he wanted to touch the display items. I remember him crying and screaming, and people around were looking. It was quite challenging because it felt like nothing was going to console him.”
In situations like these, it’s so easy for moms to lose their cool, especially when they are at the receiving end of their children’s frustrations where the latter would hit or kick. Usually, kids throw tantrums to try to get what they want, to express anger and frustration, or to test the boundaries parents have set.
Mirma and Tina agree that tantrums are natural among toddlers. Here, they share a few tips on how they deal when a child throws a tantrum, and what they do to make the moment an opportunity for teaching and learning.
1. Stay calm and acknowledge the emotion.
When Juana throws a tantrum, Tina makes sure to acknowledge it and suggest a positive alternative, if needed. “When she would throw her toy, I would say something like, ‘Tell Mama what’s wrong. Are you not in the mood to play with Teddy?’
“Our children are just learning how it is to have negative emotions, so they cannot express themselves nor process their feelings. Best to be calm, patient, and try our best to talk them through the process of learning to be human,” she says
2. Allow the child to express his frustration.
Scolding the child or forcing him to hush at the height of emotion will get a parent nowhere and might even worsen the situation. Mirma makes sure to bring Mikael to a quiet corner to cry when an episode happens in public.
“When he is calmer, I gently speak to him to explain why he needs to obey. I just need to allow him to express his frustrations,” she says.
3. Don’t be embarrassed.
When a toddler throws a tantrum, especially in public, it’s easy for parents to feel embarrassed. But according to Mira, “Crying and screaming or throwing a tantrum does not make your child bad nor us parents bad, for that matter.”
“As parents, we should also know that how we react will affect our little ones. Toddlers are very intuitive, and even when we don’t say they feel our emotions,” she adds.
4. Be consistent.
It is essential for parents to say what they mean and mean what they say. “I believe that consistency is key in showing the child that crying and throwing a fit will not get him his way,” Mirma says. “Communicating this consistently, even if we think he doesn’t understand, is important.”
5. Turn tantrums into a teaching opportunity.
When Tina had to take Juana’s pacifier to wash it, the latter held on to it and screamed. “I said firmly that the pacifier is dirty and that I need to clean it first because it is not safe for her to use. I shifted her attention to something else, washed the pacifier, and returned it to her to show her I keep my word,” narrates Tina.
“I think this behavior is normal for her age, but I also believe it is the perfect opportunity to teach her things like being patient,” she advises.
Like Mirma and Tina, you, too, moms, can turn a “fit” into a “feat” when you teach your own kids a gentler approach. And this gentleness can also extend to the products you use on them.
JOHNSON’S® believes that gentle parenting is the key to creating a better, kinder world for children. It aims to foster an environment where kids understand the power of a gentle word or touch, and where they can feel confident to heard and understood. Last August, the brand launched a new parenting movement encouraging parents to #ChooseGentle.
The event was attended by gentle parenting advocates Bianca Gonzalez-Intal, John Prats, Sunshine Garcia-Castro, Saab Magalona, Divine Lee, and Paolo Valenciano, as well as other moms, who learned about Sarah Ockwell-Smith's 3 Cs of gentle parenting: that parents must learn to Connect or bond with their children, Communicate to understand their behavior, and be Consistent with the boundaries set with them.
This belief also reflects in how the brand creates their products to suit baby's skin. When choosing products for your children, go for those that are gentle on the skin, like the Johnsons Baby products–now 100% gentle and designed for zero irritation as it is free of parabens, phthalates, sulfates, and dyes. There are JOHNSON’S® products for your baby’s every age and stage, including top-to-toe baths, shampoos, lotions, oils, powders, and more.
Keep calm and be gentle during a tantrum. Like Mirma and Tina, you’ll be all the better for it.
For more information, visit www.johnsonsbaby.com.ph and follow the brand on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. You may also watch their videos here and here. You can purchase their products from major supermarkets and drugstores nationwide and online, and on Lazada
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