When your child is in the middle of a huge meltdown, it can be difficult to know what to do. You may feel frustrated, angry, or even embarrassed if you are in a public place. First of all it's important to remember that your child is not trying to be difficult. They are likely overcome by big emotions and have been hijacked by their central nervous system that thinks they are under threat. Under those circumstances they are trying to communicate their feelings in the only way they know how. It’s hard in those moments to remember what to do, because it is likely that you are also triggered by the situation. So here are three things you can do when your child is having a HUGE meltdown:
It's also important to remember that it's okay to walk away from a meltdown as long as your child is safe. If your child is becoming aggressive, it's important to remove yourself from the situation. Go to another room and take a few minutes to calm down. Once you have had a chance to collect yourself, you can go back to your child and try to help them calm down. This won’t work in public, but it is ok to remove your child from the situation and find a safe, quieter place to let their feelings play out.
Meltdowns are a normal part of childhood. They can be frustrating for both parents and children, but it's important to remember that they are not a sign of bad parenting or bad kids. By following these tips, you can help your child calm down and begin to explore how to support your child through these tough moments.
Parent coaching can help you learn to support your child through meltdowns. Next you'll discover how to help them build the self awareness, self regulation and self control strategies that they can draw on in difficult emotional moments. When we help kids to develop these skills from a young age we set them up for strong emotional resilience as as they grow into teens and adults.
Jenny Michaelson is a PCI,
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