5 month old sounds like he is throwing temper tantrum! Please Help! - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 9 Old 01-24-2009, 10:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hello. I am in need of some suggestions. I have a 5 month old son who has been having trouble for the past month and I can not figure out what is going on. He sounds and looks like he is having a temper tantrum: screaming/yelling at the top of his lungs (not crying), kicking legs and arms, pulling my hair, scratching me. My husband and I are very committed to attachment parenting. I bf on demand, co-sleep, baby wear, and practice elimination communication with our son, so I try to be aware of his needs as humanly possible. I also know that he is teething. The screaming can occur spontaneously at any time. He go from being very happy to screaming (like a tantrum) in a matter of seconds. I am aware that 5 month old babies cannot have tantrums. However, I am concerned because he is trying to tell me something and I do not know what it is. He just had a doctor's appointment and he is perfectly healthy. I use minimal to no cow's milk and drink goat's milk. I am mostly convinced that this has nothing to do with my diet. This has gotten so frustrating that it is difficult to parent him the way my husband and I desire (attachment parenting). We thought is was a phase like many of his others at first, but he has not let up and only increased with intensity. Any suggestions will be great!
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#2 of 9 Old 01-24-2009, 10:48 PM
 
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It could be frustration. Sometimes they are close to mastering a new skill and can't do it and get really ticked about it.

Or reflux?

Or some other food reaction?

Just stay calm. Keep trying different things. It will pass.


ETA: Oh and teething can be exquisitely painful. Try motrin or tylenol and see if that helps. (Hylands teething tablets are nice, but for hardcore teething misery ime, you need something stronger.)
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#3 of 9 Old 01-24-2009, 10:51 PM
 
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My daughter used to get really frustrated as a baby, she wanted to be able to do skills that she couldn't do yet and she'd get very angry. There really isn't anything you can do right now, it'll pass! I know it can be frustrating, but I just kept telling myself that it wouldn't last forever.
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#4 of 9 Old 01-24-2009, 10:52 PM
 
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My babe does this, often when she is over tired. I just ride it out.

I wear my hair up almost all the time, because I tend to lose my patience when I have a screaming baby who is also pulling my hair. There have been a couple of times I have had to put her in her exersaucer or down on the floor when I need to take a breather after she hurt me, but most of the time I repeat "You can't pull Mommy's hair / scratch Mommy. That hurts Mommy."

She is definitely starting to develop her own opinions though.

Wife to DH (06/10) and Mummy to DD (07/08).

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#5 of 9 Old 01-24-2009, 11:06 PM
 
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Well, a 5 month old can't have a "manipulative" tantrum (i.e. give that or I'll have a fit), but I can readily believe that a 5 month old can be frustrated.

He might also be overstimulated. I'd keep a log of when it happens. Our ds was very very easily overstimulated (dd easily, but not AS easily). I remember one plane trip when he was about 4 1/2 months where he wouldn't relax, wouldn't nurse, and was pretty miserable (as were all the other people on that plane!). What ds needed was absolutely minimal interaction. So we'd hold him firmly, walk and not say anything.

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#6 of 9 Old 01-25-2009, 06:41 AM
 
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I certainly think a 5 mos old can have tantrums. It may not be very common, but I believe it to be possible. My DS is 9 mos and has been having trantrums (as in, "I'm going to kick and scream until you give me what I want") for months now. My DD never did that this young, though.

In any case, whether it's a tantrum or just frustration, he's clearly trying to communicate something. I'd see if you can try to figure out what he wants and if it's reasonable, give it to him. If not, I just hold and rock while telling him gently that he can't have X but can have Z instead.

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#7 of 9 Old 01-25-2009, 07:00 AM
 
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absolutely no lie, my 10m old has been throwing tantrums since he was about a month old. I am not kidding in the slightest when I say he would hold his breath if we tried to put him in the carseat, unti he turned bright red and then scream bloody murder.

They dont throw them on purpose to make our lives miserable but believe me, your 5 m/o is probably mad about something.

Right now, my 10m old thinks he can do everything by himself, and he cant even walk yet, lol. He tries to put socks on, and when someone goes to help him, he screams and slams the socks down on the floor.

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#8 of 9 Old 01-25-2009, 06:39 PM
 
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Why do you think a 5 mo old can't have a tantrum? They sure as heck can have a tantrum! I can't remember my oldest but I know she was an old pro an tantrums by a year. My 2 yr old was clearly throwing tantrums by 5 months when she didn't get what she wanted. She could throw some whopper tantrums to and it was very clear it was out of sheer frustration she wasn't getting what she wanted right that minute. Having already gone though the queen of tantrums I had a sense of humor about the baby's tantrums and didn't let them get to me like I did my other child.

Seriously?
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#9 of 9 Old 01-25-2009, 10:32 PM
 
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This is from wiki...

Quote:
a fit of bad temper wherein the higher brain functions are unable to stop the emotional expression of the lower (emotional and physical) brain functions. It can be categorized by an irrational fit of crying, screaming, defiance, and a resistance to every attempt at pacification in which even physical control is lost. The person may not stand or sit on their own. Even when the "goal" of the person is met, he or she is not calmed.
Real tantrums are not fun for anyone no matter how old. It's a loss of control and once the control is gone it's not about manipulation (not that a baby can manipulate). I've always found with an infant, if I can get to them as soon as their frustration starts to escalate (catching them at fussing) before things snowball into a full blown "tantrum" things are over with quickly. If I couldn't figure out how to calm them, things just got out of control. If it reached that point of irrational emotion and uncontrollable physical response, it was basically too late and we just had to ride it out with lots of comfort and re-assurance. With my last little guy, our sling was a life saver. It was like legal infant sedation
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