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Infant Care (up to 18 months old) Message Board

Infant Care (up to 18 months old) Board Index


I have a 23 month old and have gone through this twice, once about 15 months and one about 3 weeks ago. Both times the same thing worked so I will share it with you.

Guess what? Time out and swats on butt may work for older kids but NOT for toddlers. Guess what you are doing ? Giving them attention ! Yes even negative attention but toddlers are so self centered they will take any and all attention. I have a book about toddlers that suggest IGNORING bad behavior as long as it is not harmful is the most effective, because toddlers just HATE to be ignored.

My son has similar personality to yours, sweet and laid back then suddenly turned monster overnight. I was not going to accept that the every 3 minute tantrums were just normal. I had to intervene. I did 2 things.

1- Cut back ALL sugar from his diet for a few days, including juice, cookies, cereal bars, cereal, and anything that said it had sugar in it. AFter about 3 days I reintroduced juice in diluted form. Juicy Juice has 26 grams of sugar in each cup! Yogurt about 17 grams or more, etc. ONce I cut back the sugar he had worse tantrums at first then suddenly began eating more normal foods and since he is eating better now, not as irritable and not as easily frustrated.

2-Since we got into this habit of ."Wahhh grrrrrr [email protected]!!" Oh what s wrong are you ok? can i help you?" Just seemed to make tantrums worse and left US frustrated. NOw, since I know he can communicate , we ignore all the screams, cries and tantrums. If he is hurt, then we comfort. If he is doing something dangerous such as throwing something at us, I pick him up put him in his room and say, NO throwing! You play by yourself!" and shut the door. I use the baby monitor to listen in. He plays by himself a few minutes then I hear him trying to get out. I go to him and he is usually ready for a hug. I say are you ready to come out and play nice now?

If he is not hurting anyone or himself, I COMPLETELY ignore him, if I am playing with him and he starts, I just get up and walk away. IF he is frustrated because he cannot fit a circle into a square and screams and throws the shape, I ignore it. Does this sound mean? YEs it does! But it is not. Becase I know my child can communicate. And by ignoring the tantrums it forces him to attempt communcation. The first 2 days it all got worse. But by day 2 he suddenly changed. The circle didn't fit, he screamed, threw it. Then after like a minute picked it up and tried again. Didn't fit. Then walked across the room and handed me the shape and pointed to the puzzle saying uh uh uh circa circa So then I say wow you used your words good job do you need help?

Sorry to go on and on. This is an issue dear to my heart, because I believe that NOW is the time to start getting control of your chlds tantrums and believe it can be done. I worked with preshool kids for many years and can't tell you how many 4 year olds are still throwing fits.

I am happy to say, my son is doing great. He still throws tantrums here and there but has made drastic improvement. I still keep his sugar levels very low and notice a change when he eats a lot of sugar or doesn't have a lot of protein. good luck I hope this helps.

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