One Way to Handle Screaming

When my oldest son, Grant, was a toddler, he got frustrated easily and threw screaming tantrums. I tried speaking to him, holding him, and even picking him up and taking him to his room. But these tactics only seemed to make him angrier – and made me the audience for his "show."

One day when he began to scream, I decided to exit the show. Without saying a word, I walked into my bedroom, sat down on my bed and began to read a magazine. Within minutes he came to me, still crying but more in control.

"You left me!" he said, whimpering.

"Screaming hurts Mommy’s ears," I calmly replied. "I won’t listen to it. If you need help, you must use your words." The next time Grant
saw me exiting the room during a tantrum, he stopped screaming and asked me to stay.

This article appeared in the March/April 2012 issue of Thriving Family magazine.
Copyright © 2012 by Katrina Arbuckle. Used by permission.