Thursday, March 19, 2009

Crisis Averted, Tantrum Defused


With Aaron, you have to celebrate the small victories. I notched one in the win column yesterday morning. He was up early, so I gave the little guy a break and decided not to let him stew in his crib but rather catch some extra TV before his sister got up.

But he wasn't as pleased as I thought he might be. He wanted a blanket, he didn't want a blanket, he didn't like what was on Qubo, it was too early for PBS to be showing cartoons. And he was getting increasingly cranky.

Not wanting to reward this sort of petulance, I said as firmly and nicely as I could: here's your blanket, this is what you're going to watch, or you're going back up to your crib. I then left the room.

That's when the fireworks began. Whining, stomping, balling up of fists. The volume and the fervency steadily rose. Realizing I wasn't going to come back in the room, he decided to take his tantrum on the road, and ran into our office and threw himself on the ground. No reaction from me. (Except for a stifled smile that I averted from his dark gaze; I mean, the little guy really puts his all into his performances.)

Finally, he gave up, trudged back to the living room, and plopped himself in front of the TV. Hopefully, next time he'll remember that tantrums don't work. Well, he won't remember; but hopefully, he'll tantrum for less time before he comes to that realization.
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