My almost two year old boy is trying to master the fine art of throwing a tantrum. I have to give him credit that he really has a certain flair for it, but, of course this usually places me in quite the predicament.
Oh, the things I have tried…
When he first entered this phase (that is what I hoped for, maybe I am a little bit in denial), his tantrums were really violent and he ended up hurting himself by banging his head so hard he will have a bump afterwards.
The methods I have tried included: ignoring the behaviour, getting mad, losing my cool and spanking him, begging and bribery, praying, ignoring the behaviour, walking away, grinding my teeth and ignoring the behaviour.
My preferred method is to ignore the behaviour because this seems to have more of an effect on him and is better for my emotional state.
By now he has genuinely mastered the art of throwing a tantrum. He doesn’t harm himself anymore because I think he realized that self injury isn’t necessary to achieve his objective. Before he falls down he carefully scouts his surroundings to ensure that he won’t get hurt in any way when he “takes a dive”. He also knows what pitch his screams should be to get the desired effect.
The only upside is that his brilliant tantrums are becoming an endangered species.
But the other day as he was displaying his tantrum drama and I was once again doing my best to ignore his behaviour, my oldest son took me by the hand and with tear-filled eyes begged me to help his brother to stop crying.
My heart just melted with the realization of how much he cared about his younger brother. From then on he sort off put himself in charge of his brother’s behaviour. Now just when little brother wants to start a performance my oldest son calmly tells him to stop and believe it or not, he listens. Another priceless moment…