Managing Your Child’s Meltdown – 5 Tips To Get You Both Through And Back To Control

0

tantrumAs the mother of a child with autism, I can tell you with no false modesty that I have mad meltdown skills. My son was three at his diagnosis, and at that time his vocabulary consisted of a handful of words – and they weren’t always used contextually. He had tantrums dozens of times a day, and often for no cause that I could define or for the most innocuous reasons: his shirtsleeve got wet when he washed his hands, the smell of the cleaner they just used on the counter at the drugstore set him off, or I gave him his sippy cup with the wrong color lid.

Once he started with tantrums, it would often move into full-on meltdown, and a lot of the things I did with his sister when she misbehaved were ineffective. A time-out didn’t work because he threw himself from the chair. He self-harmed, which was another issue entirely. It was frustrating for both of us, but eventually, I learned how to read him, and I learned how to manage him – and me, in the process.

Here are a few of the things that I learned in managing serious meltdowns:

Stay calm. My mother once told me “It takes two people to have a fight.” If you’re screaming as hard as your child is, you’re letting him know you’re out of control, too. He needs your stability right now. Take a deep breath, reach down into that well of inner strength and remind yourself that you need to address this from a place of love, not anger or exasperation. I know that’s not easy to do – especially if you’re out in public and everyone’s giving you the “Hey lady, control your kid!” look, but you’ve got to do it anyway.

1
2
3
SHARE
Previous articleTeaching Young Children to Say Sorry and Really Mean It
Next articleBe Happy With What You Did Get Done Today

Ellie is a parenting and relationship blogger, a full-time working autism Mom, published author, and frequently exhausted person. In addition to her blog, SingleMomtism, she is the author of “Yoga Pants & Pinot: A Practical Guide to Surviving Divorce” and “David And Me Under The Sea: Essays From A Decade With Autism.” She has previously blogged for WomansDay.com. Most days you can find Ellie slogging her way through the world of single parenting, mid-life dating and reinventing herself with a pop-tart in one hand and a glass of wine in the other.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here