It’s tough to enforce rules when kids throw a tantrum. But learn the one big reason parents should stand their ground during these meltdowns.
Imagine throwing a tantrum… and getting everything you demanded. You might think this is ideal for your child, but being too lenient can often lead to adverse consequences.
Giving in all the time may lead her to believe that negative actions are the way to get anything. She learns that throwing a fit means mom and dad break down and oblige. So, she’ll use this method more often than not to get what she wants.
The thing is, kids are incapable of running a household. When decision-making falls on your child’s shoulders, chaos ensues. Offering choices empowers and holds her accountable, but letting her decide everything leads to a household with no order, respect, or authority.
Then, when she grows into an adult, she’ll discover that the rest of the world doesn’t bend to her whims the way her parents did. She’ll face peers and adults who will have little patience for her antics. And she won’t understand that jobs, partners, and goals don’t always come so easily.
Why parents should stand their ground
These are all useful reasons to remember when your child is being difficult. But the biggest reason you shouldn’t be so permissive?
These tantrums frighten her.
From her perspective, “winning” every argument means that the tantrums she throws are more powerful than her parents. You can’t afford to succumb to every meltdown or outburst, or give in to every whim or unreasonable demand.
Yes, you’ll pick your battles—some issues are easier to resolve when you let it go (not to mention saving your sanity). But she needs to know that her parents will stand their ground against her whims and tantrums.
You see, when she throws tantrums, her brain can’t process events logically. The emotions that run through her can often feel like a monster taking over. She can easily feel out of control and vulnerable, even as she yells and screams.
Tantrums in themselves are scary enough. Now imagine feeling like no one—not even your parents—can put a stop to them. By standing your ground, you’re promising her that you will help her through these emotions, and that you’ll be the anchor she needs through the storm.
She’ll also know that she doesn’t bear the power to make big decisions. Despite her demands, the prospect of having so much power can feel terrifying to her.
Instead, she thrives under the leadership of responsible adults, not with free reign beyond her capabilities. Encourage her to explore and assert herself, but within the boundaries you’ve established.
We see tantrums as kids wanting things their way, but what they really want is for us to help them. I realized that fussiness wasn’t yet another challenge in this parenting journey. It’s an experience reminding our kids that we’ll be there for them, even from their own fears.
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Get more tips:
- The Surprisingly Simple Question You Should Always Ask Yourself before Disciplining Your Child
- How to Discipline a Toddler Who Doesn’t Listen
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- Toddler Not Listening? 10 Things You Can Do
- How to Stop Yelling at Your Kids