On Tuesday, Katya had a little math meltdown. Getting a problem wrong and then having to do the work it would take to actually learn the concept rocked her world. If you’re a homeschool mom, or just trying to keep the kids’ math skills sharp over the summer, you’ve probably had your share of math meltdowns too.
So, I shared how I handled the meltdown, but then I realized that this is really the way I handle all meltdown type of scenarios. Here’s how it looks in the grocery store, which seems to be one of the most common locales for tantrums.
Remember why you’re going to the grocery store. You’re there to shop. Your job is not to make your child love going to the grocery store. You just need to get your shopping done. You don’t need to worry that this incident is going to cause your child to grow up into a selfish, spoiled brat. Just give your child something to do or something to eat, and get out of there as quickly as you can. Don’t get emotionally involved.
If your child begins to escalate, don’t engage. Don’t go head-to-head. Don’t make demands you really don’t want to keep. You are not going to change behavior in this moment. Save that for later. Smile at the people around you, make sure your darling’s strapped in securely, and get the shopping done as quickly as possible. Don’t bite the bait.
Some people who have never had children may look at you accusingly. Some people who had children long ago may raise their eyebrows. Some people who have children who, how shall I say this, are less spirited than yours, may smile a bit smugly at you. Your child is having a temper tantrum. It’s a normal part of growing up. Don’t make it a bigger deal than it is, and don’t take the blame.
- You don’t end up having your own meltdown or temper tantrum.
- You are freed up to examine the real issues.
- You maintain “parent” status and provide the stability that your child really needs.
- You can objectively consider what you contributed to the equation.
- You can make a gameplan to address the real issues in a non-conflict time.
Where do meltdowns and tantrums happen in your household? What tips do you have for other moms handling meltdowns and tantrums? Any questions you have for me related to this topic? I’d love to hear from you! Leave a comment below or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.