Temper tantrums are a normal stage of development for toddlers, but knowing this doesn’t necessarily make it any easier on you. When your 2-year-old is screaming, you may want nothing more than to scream back, fight with her or even give her a good spanking. None of these methods work. To handle a screaming 2-year-old, you need to remain calm yourself. At 2-years-old, your child is not throwing a tantrum to get under your skin–she’s doing it because she’s frustrated and doesn’t have the language to communicate her desires. Positive discipline can nip the problem in the bud.
Look for A Safe Place
Put her in a safe place. Once she starts screaming, look around. A toddler temper tantrum is often accompanied by thrashing around and throwing herself on the floor. She could be in a place where doing this could hurt her. For example, if she’s in your arms, and she starts screaming and pushing to get down, she can get hurt if you accidentally drop her. Gently put her down on the floor; you may even have to lay her down.
Remain calm. If you start yelling back, you are only going to make the situation worse. Instead, you need to be calm, which can help him to see that you still love him, even though you may not like what he’s doing.
Validate Her Feelings
Validate her feelings. Say the words to express her feelings out loud, which can help her to use words instead of tantrums in the future. For example, you might say, “I can see that you are upset that you got a blue balloon instead of a pink one,” or “You must feel angry because Mommy said you couldn’t watch that movie.”
Hug him tightly. This shouldn’t be a bear hug to show him that you’re in control. Rather, it should allow him to feel comforted in your arms.
Talk it Out
Talk to him after he’s stopped screaming. At this point, you can speak to him in a calm voice about what he did and why he cannot throw tantrums.
Give her a punishment if you feel it’s appropriate. Based on previous discussions about her screaming, you may want to give her a punishment, such as sitting in time-out or taking away a favorite toy. Talk to her to make sure she understands why you are doing this.