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When DS1 was three, he used to have massive tantrums that were so violent that to keep him, me and the house safe, I had to hold him so tightly in my arms that he couldn't hit or punch until he calmed down. This morning, I spent 45 minutes helping DS3 through a similar tantrum and was completely unavailable for the other 2 little ones while I did that. I realized I have no idea how to handle such massive tantrums if more than one of them has one at a time or if one of the others does something dangerous.<br><br>
Any ideas from BTDT mamas would be helpful.<br><br>
I have been dreading having 3 3-year olds, and this is why.
 

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We have a total-heck-just-broke-loose backup plan, that I go to when I have more than one kiddo melting down at one time, or whenever mayhem has taken control. I have an overhead door latch on the inside of my own bedroom door, and the kids can't open it. When heck breaks loose, we all go sit on my bed. They can rave and holler and carry on as much as they need to, and we're all safely contained within one room, so I can keep an eye on everybody. My room is the most uncluttered room in the house, so there's no safety hazards to speak of, and so it works out nicely. I don't open that latch until I have everybody calm and collected and listening to "reason." (As reasonable as any three year old ever is, of course...)<br><br>
Make sure you turn off the stove or oven and secure any other dangerous situation, before you go to your "bug-out" plan.<br><br>
When out in the world, if I have to deal with a tantrum, whether it be one kid or all of them, we immediately head to the car. I have perfected the technique of tucking one twin under each arm like a football, and making DD1 hang on to my purse strap, and we go to the van, and I put everybody in the van and close the door, and then we sit in the van until order has been restored. Luckily DD1 is paranoid about being separated in a public place, so she will always hold on, even if she's a mess otherwise. If she wouldn't, I would probably go back to bringing the double stroller, and put two kids in the stroller and one under my arm.<br><br>
'Cause yeah, I have one high-strung 5 year old, and two 3 year olds, and sometimes you just have those MOMENTS. The ones that try the patience of angels. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up">
 

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Ugh. Tantrums. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"><br><br>
The best I can offer is that with just my two, it's very rare that both of them go all-out like that. I actually find that at 4 years old, when one of them (usually Kate) is having a violent tantrum (which she is prone to do), her sister is almost aggressively cooperative. You know, as if to prove to me that the other one is clearly the bad seed to her perfect little angel. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
I did have them both go nuts on me just this past Tuesday, both hitting and kicking and biting me. Obviously I couldn't hold them both (and honestly I didn't want to because that puts the biting parts too close to parts I prefer not bitten - namely, all of me). That was a challenge. If I remember correctly, I put one on the sofa and the other was on the floor, and I just sort of stood by as they screamed and went crazy. It's a little foggy to me right now, somehow. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"><br><br>
If I had three, I would probably think now about where I could safely place the other two when one needs that high level of your attention. For mine sometimes that is on my bed with the TV, if things are really that bad. Then just hope you don't have to do it that often.
 

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Oh, and I agree with Llyra about the twins-as-football hold and sitting in the car until they can be strapped into carseats or released back into the wild. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> Hopefully you'll have at least one who is calm and cooperative.
 

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Ugh, lots of love. I've noticed lately that Claire will start to tantrum simply because she sees Ben doing it (looks fun? productive? I'm always like wth!?)<br><br>
We also have a child safe room in our house (two adjoining, actually). It's handy for some many tiny people.<br><br>
I'm feeling you. My oldest was like that, and now my fourth. Ben is on that path, too. Sucks. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">
 

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I'm not strong enough to hold two that are tantruming at the same time. They're almost 3 and only 24 lb each but I still can't do it. They still can't escape their crib so I resort to putting one in there if I have to. In my books, 3 yr old is WAY harder than 2!<br><br>
OGirlieMama, I can't believe they're 4 already.... where'd the time go!!?
 

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I have one child that is incredibly high needs. When he has tantrums I just walk away and if they are violent I just make sure that he is in a safe place (like on the floor as opposed to on the stairs) and then just take the others away. After a while when he is ready he calms himself down and comes to find me and we have a really long cuddle and when he is ready we talk about what set him off. I just make sure that everyone else is safe from him.<br><br>
We have a small mini market in the neighborhood where we live and I have left him crying and throwing a fit on the floor while I finished my shopping. When I was ready I just called out to him that I was leaving and he calmed down and still crying walked with me to the car - but at least he wasn't thrashing around anymore. It works for both of them in that if I ignore the tantrum it usually peters out quickly.<br><br>
When both of them are going at each other, I make sure the baby is safe (I have a pack'n'play in the living room where we spend most of our time) seperate them and then wait for them to calm down. Usually I pick the baby back up, sit on the couch and start reading a book to her. That usually does it pretty quick.<br><br>
I never go out in public alone without them strapped into the double stroller. Before they are released (like at the mini playground at the mall) we go over ground rules and any infraction sends us back to the car. That involves the two footballs with the baby in the sling in the middle. Sigh. But I only had to do this twice for them to get the message <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up"><br><br>
I'll be watching this thread for more ideas.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for the suggestions. So, far it is looking like the only thing that might work for us is distracting the other two with something safe and contained.<br><br>
I wish I could make a tantrum-safe room in the house, but the only way to make any room safe enough is to take the beds out of their bedroom and leave nothing but the mattresses and soft bedding (so at least he can't hurt himself as he throws everything around the room). I'm not willing to do that to the other two unless I absolutely have to.<br><br>
Keep the stories and suggestions coming. I need all the ideas I can get.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>MamaRabbit</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15374341"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I'm not strong enough to hold two that are tantruming at the same time. They're almost 3 and only 24 lb each but I still can't do it. They still can't escape their crib so I resort to putting one in there if I have to. In my books, 3 yr old is WAY harder than 2!<br><br>
OGirlieMama, I can't believe they're 4 already.... where'd the time go!!?</div>
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I know! I have no idea. I never really understood the meaning of "time flies" until I had these two. I actually can't believe today is my fifth Mother's Day as an honoree. How can that even be possible?
 

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My experience has been like Betsy's in that it's pretty rare that they both have massive tantrums at the same time. I think they either want to be seen as the good one not tantruming, or it doesn't feel like a safe time to have a fussy fit when the other one already is. Although I do remember one time when they both fell on the floor screaming at Starbucks. That was my fault, really. They had been napping in the car, just woke up too soon and I took us all in for a snack.<br><br>
I've done the football holds to the car. I think the worst is when they fall apart in public. Even if the other ones are behaving appropriately. I've just sort of put on blinders to the rest of the world and do what I have to do to help the screamer, while keeping the calm kids safe.<br><br>
With 3 littles and a big brother, I think TV is your friend during a tantrum.<br><br>
I'll cross my fingers for you if they ever all 3 lose their minds at the same time!
 
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