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Author Topic: HELP !!!! 3 year old tantrums !!  (Read 967 times)

Chooch

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HELP !!!! 3 year old tantrums !!
« on: Jul 12, 2004, 09:46:08 AM »
Loking for some advice on how to handle my 3 year old daughter's tantrums...
well, blood curdling screams is more like it ..

My ex and I have joint custody, and my visitation schedule is every wednesday and every other weekend ..

before I bought a house and my daughter had her own bedroom, I had a studio apartment, so .. her and I slept in the same room .. her in her crib and me in my bed...

hence the seperation anxiety ...
bedtime lately has been hell ...

crying, screaming as if someone is kiling her .. wanting daddy to lay down and sleep with her.

these tantrums normally occur at bedtime, but have been increasing with her 3 year old defiance ..

Does anyone have any suggestions ??

Thansk in advance.


patton

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RE: HELP !!!! 3 year old tantrums !!
« Reply #1 on: Jul 12, 2004, 02:05:55 PM »
Son did this when he was around 3 or 4 years old.  Probably sleeps with Mom or Mom lays down with daughter.

I finally got a CD player and bought some "sleepy tapes', we would read a while before bedtime (night time books) and then turn on the music and I'd pat him on the back.  He would konk out pretty quick then.

Now I don't pat him anymore, he's 4, but he still likes his music on and the reading time.

lacunar

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RE: HELP !!!! 3 year old tantrums !!
« Reply #2 on: Jul 15, 2004, 08:54:27 AM »
There are two types of tantrums that toddlers have:

type one is a cry for help because the child is overwhelmed by the situation (e.g. hungry, tired, over stimulated, very afraid, just plain old freaked out by something or the other).  The child doesn’t have the perspective or the vocabulary to express his condition, so the child then starts resorting to the tantrum behavior.  

type two is the kind where the child is hoping to manipulate the parent into getting the child’s way.


I handled type one by getting to the child's level as quickly as I could to start reassuring him that relief was on the way, and then trying to find out what needed to be relieved.  This paid off in that my child knew I would always take time to understand him, and then would help him cope.  To this day, he knows he can trust me with things that distress him.

Type 2 I would ignore him after restating whatever decision I had made. (e.g. Sorry, we are not going to the park until your room is clean.)  The payoff there has been very few attempts by him to manipulate me with tantrums.

I would guess that your 3 yr old is afraid, and needs to let you know just HOW afraid he is.  I would help him by accepting his fears as real (to him), and then finding a way to help him dope that works for both of you.  I would also try to find out what his mother does at bedtime and try to replicate some of that routine.  Patton's solution sounds like a good one to me.

My son slept with his mom and I until we separated; he was 4 at that point.  He is 8 and still sleeps with his mother and half-sister when at their house.  He still wants me to sleep with him.  I am slowly but surely weaning him away from that idea, but I also understand how important it is to him.

Yes, modern American culture frowns on older children sleeping with their parents, and I certainly think that a non-infant male child sleeping with his mother in a father-absent home is fraught with potential emotional harm.  But I also understand that his sense of family is closely associated with his early childhood custom of sharing our bed, so I am treating the issue delicately.

 

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