Big’s tantrums usually last about 5 minutes. 10, max. Not, bad, right? What’s my secret?
I usually go in for the kill after about 5 minutes. I put on my “Mean Mommy” face and extremely sternly say “THAT’S ENOUGH!” Add in a couple of Scary Mommy head spins, some Angry Mommy fire coming from my mouth, and PO’ed Mommy steam coming from my ears, and I’ve scared the tantrum right out of her!
I hate it.
I hate turning into the head spinning, fire spitting, screaming lunatic Mommy. It’s not what I want my kids to see nor is it what I want to model to them. AT ALL.
But, being Compassionate, Understanding, Caring Mommy, always came with a price. Or so I had come to believe.
We’ve, once again, picked up the Love and Logic book to deal with behavior issues. Today, I spent 4 solid hours doling out choices and listening to the ensuing tantrums that resulted from the kids picking one choice with their mouths (“would you like to stop crying and get to keep your stuffed kitty…”), but choosing the other choice with their actions (“…or would you like to keep crying and not get to keep your stuffed kitty?”)
Big screamed through her entire 1.5 hour quiet time (but oddly found time to make my bed for me). Middle cried for half of her quiet time, only settling down for the last 30 minutes because Big was done with her QT and already eating dinner.
Dinner. At 3:30.
I was DONE.
I’ll spare you the details of the longest 4 hours of my life, but suffice it to say, straight Love and Logic just isn’t going to cut it for my girls. The sing-songy tone and the constant choices seemed to rile them up more, not to mention they had NO idea what to do with Compassionate, Understanding, and Caring Mommy. The calmer I was, the more worked up they got.
However, I think we can ALL do without Mean, Scary, Angry, Po’ed Mommy.
I’ll have to focus on introducing them to Firm and Loving Mommy. I like her best.