So, my big spirited girl is 3.5 She tantrums maybe 2-4 times a day, but they're big freak-outs. Hitting, pinching, pushing, screaming, throwing things, flailing. Mostly aimed at me. What used to work best was picking her up and holding her until she calmed down, and physically (gently) stopping her from doing those things. I've read just 'bout everything, and mostly things are going way better. I think this new round is being caused by DS becoming more mobile and into her stuff. The biggest problem I have, though, is that when she's in the midst of it, she wants to be ON TOP of me, flailing and screaming at the same time. Meanwhile, my 11 month old mellow DS is scared by his sister's behavior, and usually starts crying and wanting me also. It doesn't seem fair to put him somewhere to contain him (much less, how to accomplish with a whirling dervish on top of me at the same time) when he's scared, and it's her behavior that's scaring him. But, I don't really have anyplace where she will stay, either. She will not stay in time-out. She can climb out of the playpen (easily). She will not go someplace until she calms down. I have tried to get her to stay in her playroom, have used baby gates, etc, but realistically, there's no way to contain her. What's ended up happening is that I'm holding him out of her reach, while she flails at my feet, or, like today, I have one tucked under each arm. None of this ends up feeling gentle. I work really hard to minimize her disruptions, and we talk a lot about calming breaths. No tv, no sugar, plenty of sleep, lots of warning when we have to do things a certain way, etc. What I really need some ideas on, though, is what to do when she's screaming and attacking me, and her little brother is right there.
Sorry if a bit of a ramble, it's been a crappy day.