thread: [advice] dealing with DD...

  1. #1
    BellyBelly Life Subscriber

    Feb 2006

    [advice] dealing with DD...

    So dd almost 3 is a very strong willed gorgeous little girl.
    We have some issues with tantrums lately, long loud tantrums.
    We seem to have an issue with control ( not a word I like to use ) she simply wants everything her way (understandable at 3 right?). I try to give her options, it's a) or b) so she does have some options.
    Tonight she ended up having a huge tanty, resulting in crying, screaming, hitting ectc.. For 80 mins.
    Now im not doubting myself ( anymore, thanks rouge) but wondering if a different style of parenting would work better with her or we just need to work through this rather long and tiring phase.
    ......DD1 was so compliant lol

  2. #2
    BellyBelly Member

    Mar 2009

    Olive I wonder if it is a #2 personality trait! DD1 here was always concerned about my approval so she was pretty compliant. Although I do remember 3 being more challenging than 2. My DD2 sounds very similiar - she has always been very sure of what she wants and dedicated to getting her own way.
    When things get violent and out of control we try to use a thinking space - she is supposed to stand and think about what has happened that is not ok - realistically at this stage I am standing with her talking her through it. So what she did that is not ok, reinforcing what it is she needs to do next time and then why x) not a) or b) was not an appropriate choice/action etc.
    We are currently battling about bedtime/dinner and bathing as a common theme. Then there are clothes/shoes/sitting in the car seat.....actually the list goes on.
    Here DD1 has just started school and there has been a lot of focus on her new things and routine. TBH I think DD2 is feeling a little left out and that has not helped. We are trying not to sweat the small stuff and let her be herself as much as is safe etc.
    We have a few simple house 'rules'.
    - When the issue is a safety thing no means no
    - No one missed out (for anything - talking/taking turns etc)
    I am sure it will pass soon! I'd love any tips you have too.....

  3. #3
    Registered User

    Apr 2008

    We have exactly the same issues here Hun. Dd1 is very compliant, dd2 is soooo strong willed. She screamed this morning for almost an hour and ended up weeing all over the floor. I don't really have any advice, hoping that it passes and we are bumbling through.

  4. #4
    BellyBelly Member

    Dec 2006

    I reckon it's a no 2 trait too! Jess is the same she screamed for almost an hour and I still have no idea why!

  5. #5
    BellyBelly Member

    Jan 2012

    Just a possibility but have you thought about tracking her diet to see if there is a common factor in the lead up (that day or days) to when she has these big outbursts. We did that with my DD1 at the same age and noticed a build up in 'not great' food choices was often followed by much bigger tantrums.
    When we cleaned out colours they went back to being controllable or much shorter in duration.

  6. #6
    BellyBelly Life Subscriber

    Oct 2003
    Forestville NSW

    First of all xoxoxox

    As you know, I have too much experience with out of control tantrums. It sounds as if she isn't able to regulate herself very well. My DD2 will tantrum and then is able to snap out straight away... whereas DD1 isn't able to snap out of it. I had to always let it run its course.

    For me, I had to learn how to separate my emotions from the experience. Sometimes you can't compromise and have to stick to the answer... so if that is the case, then you have to figure out how to ride out the tantrum. I remember that it is her having issues regulating herself. If I see it going that way, I will try to do some OT things which help them regulate their emotions, deep breathing (we practice blowing up balloons to see who can do it the longest), core strengthening work (wheelbarrows, planks, etc etc). But they only work if I catch her before the meltdown.

    If they have gone over the edge, its generally a tired thing and/or a regulating thing... so there are not many options then, the best thing to do is ride it out. Let them know you love them and you understand they are feeling frustrated/tired/hungry whatever and give them a voice for their feelings, sit near them or cuddle them HARD and take breaks if you need too.

    For us, a lot had to do with avoiding issues which caused meltdowns, so if she was tired and hungry and couldn't eat because she was so tired than I wouldn't fight dinner... I would ignore and when everyone else was finished then I would encourage her to get up and move on, if she cried that she was hungry but not this food, whatever, I would offer milk (rice milk) and leave it there, she was too tired to eat properly and then I would do calming activities like massage, cuddles whatever. I had to choose my battles. What battle I would work on this week... if it was dinner, well than I needed to be prepared for the backlash for that week...

    LAstly.... xoxoxoxo love you

  7. #7

    Oct 2004
    In my Zombie proof fortress.

    Just want to say, it is also a first child thing. DD1 was horrid, she still is, but it has just evolved with age. I still have memories of her screaming and beating the bedroom door for an hour plus, or kicking the back of my car seat, all over little things, like leaving someone who we had just visited. Nothing would work to calm her.

    Wish I had some answers for you. I would seriously look at food, I do know it had an effect on DD1.

  8. #8
    BellyBelly Member

    Jul 2006

    Great post christy! I think it is important to pick your battles. I know when DD has meltdowns (she is an only child) it is usually due to tiredness. So either I have to catch her before the meltdown and advert attention to something else or if I miss it, ride it out. I know that she eventually calms down and usually will want a cuddle or massge to help her wind down then she eventually goes to sleep or recharges. I also like Maks rules - safety is an important one & we put our foot down with DD if her safety (or someone elses) is compromised. I'd stick to what you are doing, I think it wouldn't be beneficial to try a completely different strategy I think that would add to confusion and possibly longer tantrums.

  9. #9
    BellyBelly Life Subscriber

    Jan 2006

    Absolutely what Christy said! My DS is the same.

  10. #10
    Life Subscriber

    Jul 2006

    I feel for you hun My boys are similar - DS1 was never a tanty chucker, DS2 is a champion tantrumer. It really seems to come down to personality. It does get better - now at 5, DS can snap out of it more quickly and it's not as extreme, but he still does get upset at times when he doesn't get his way.

    I think that to a certain extent we have to accept that some kids take longer to manage and understand their emotions and to see our role as helping them learn. As frustrating as is it to deal with at the time, it helps them to be reassured that it is ok to feel the way they feel. That anger, sadness, frustration are all ok feelings, but that together we will find a way to help them deal with it better. Easier said than done though, I know.

  11. #11
    Add Rouge on Facebook

    Jun 2003

    I totally 100% agree with Christy. You are doing a great job. Swearz xxx

  12. #12
    BellyBelly Member

    Jul 2008
    summer street

    we call those epic meltdowns here. Dd hasn't done many, but boy she can drag them out when she needs to. I'm still muddling my way through it all tbh, but things that helped for us:
    *Dinnertime is now 5pm. Any later and she would start acting up.
    *I am currently getting in the bath with her and ds, and
    *I am letting her sleep in my bed a lot more (which has also solved the teeth cleaning dramas it seems). For us it seems the closer I keep her, the better she is, so the tantrums were her feeling out of control and scared. I think it's normal as they gradually get more independent.
    *we made a calm jar (suggested on one of the threads here from the blog herewearetogether). It's basically glitter in colored water, and when dd gets angry I ask her to go and shake her calm jar. It is working so far!

    I also think independence in safe ways is important choosing their own outfits, deciding when and what she wants to eat, what we will do today etc.

    Good luck. Three is a tricky age. They're so lovable and cute and just gorgeous, buut the flip side is this raging, moody aggressive monster who appears when you least suspect it

  13. #13
    BellyBelly Member

    May 2008

    I'd have to say also that it's not only a #2 thing. DS1 has just turned 5 so we're talking a little older here but i think the issues are still very similar (sorry to say ) I do find that DS1's confrontational moods will come and go weeks at a time. Our most recent was when we were on holiday (great timing DS ), as DH is at work he doesn't have to deal with a lot of the ' daily issues' so i found that him and DS were clashing a lot. DH is quick to anger in that he'll raise his voice and have his say and i have noticed that DS just does it right back. There seemed to be no authority at all. Left us questioning ourselves a lot, de-briefing together a lot and just trying to figure out how to do things differently as what we were doing clearly was not working.

    I felt we needed to try keep calmer with our responses, if he didnt' like what he heard and made a fuss we calmly stuck our ground, only repeated what we were reinforcing a couple of times and then told him that he knows what our answer to his issue is. I find repeating myself over and over again only encourages him to go on and on. If it continued we gave him some kind of consequence, like not going in the pool that day or taking his bike away from him for a few hours. It was tough and i'm sure we looked like a doosey of a family but my god it was tough. And after all that he seemed to snap out of it about 2 days before we left and has been great since we got home

    Every day is a battle/learning curve/time to rethink my ways of dealing with things. I'm doing my best to do the right thing by my children i really don't want to cause any detrimental effects with the way i parent. Sometimes i wish there was someone watching over me (like that english nanny lady) who could stay ok you handled that well or you didn't and you could try this, this or this.

    DS2 is definately presenting us with some different and earlier attitude to what DS1 did and i haven't quite figured out where to approach it from yet, he'll be 3 in March. So far it's mainly a tantrum here and there that we just have to work through.

    Good luck, all i could say is try and keep calm, the kids feed off us and how worked up we get and definatley stick to your first response