Parents can be a big irritant when their child is upset, and sometimes even the toddler themselves are.
A new book from Australian author, author and parenting coach Dr. Amy Farr, entitled How to Handle an Angry Toddler, offers tips on how to manage and contain an agitated toddler.
Read more The book is based on research done with toddlers aged two to six and their caregivers.
“The research showed that kids who were the most reactive in parenting were also the most hyper, and the hyper-reactive kids were more likely to be aggressive,” Dr. Farr said in a statement.
“So it was a little bit like a little bomb that was going off all the time.”
Dr. J.J. Smith, a developmental psychologist who teaches at the University of Queensland, also noted that it can be tough for parents to let go of the toddler.
“What’s really important is to let your toddler go,” Dr, Smith said.
“Don’t let it hurt or cause harm to you.
Don’t be afraid to let him go.
If you’re going to let it go, then you’ve let it down.
So let’s just get over it.”
The book includes seven tips on handling anger and tantrums from experts in child psychology, child development and parenting.
Here are some of the key takeaways: Take a break from yelling and aggression The first step in handling an angry, upset toddler is to stop the screaming.
“Just let him have a good laugh,” Dr Farr says.
“Let him know that you love him, that you’re happy with him.
You can’t be so harsh and be like, ‘I don’t care what he does.
I just don’t like him anymore.’
He’s just been upset, but you have to let that go and take it from there.”
If you have the energy to do that, you’ll find that you’ll soon be able to let the child go.
“As soon as you start to be less confrontational and just allow him to be with you, you’re in a much better position to get him back to normal,” Dr Smith said in an interview.
“He’ll be a much happier, healthier kid.”
Read more Don’t make excuses for an angry child.
“Be really clear about why you’re being angry,” Dr Siegel said.
When you’re getting emotional, say things like, “I can’t explain it to you,” or “I’m not angry anymore,” Dr J. J Smith said, adding that these are good signs that the toddler is ready to move on.
Be supportive When you have a child who is angry and demanding, you can also try to help by giving them a hug, holding them close, encouraging them to sit on the lap of the other person, and so forth.
You’ll need to make sure that your body language is supportive, Dr Smith explained.
“We call this ‘the hug rule,'” Dr Smith told the ABC.
“It’s basically you’re hugging the other parent and saying, ‘This is what you want from me, this is what I need from you.
Let’s get it together.'”
Read more Dr. Smith said that you can encourage your child to calm down by being physically and emotionally present with them.
“If you’re sitting with them and they’re looking at you and you’re kind of holding them and telling them to calm, you know what I mean?
If you look at them and you say, ‘You need to calm your nerves down, calm your muscles down, you need to just relax.
You’re not going to be able be angry anymore.
You need to take a break.
Just let them be and let them relax,'” she said.
Be kind to your toddler’s anger It’s also important to remember that there’s a difference between what the toddler wants and what the child is willing to give up for it.
“Your child doesn’t necessarily want to hurt you,” Dr Riddell said.
Instead, they want to be loved.
“They want to feel loved.
That’s their desire,” Dr Karp said.
So when the toddler says they want it, Dr J Smith advises parents to simply listen.
“Do you hear what he’s saying?
Listen, be understanding, and just try to be a good parent and give him what he wants,” she said in the book.
If your toddler is refusing to give in to your demands, “Don: Don’t just shut up.
Don’t make excuses.
And don’t give up.
Just keep going.”