As a marriage and family therapist, I am passionate about helping people have healthy and happy relationships. Especially with their children. But let’s face it. Parenthood is one of the easiest places to lose your patience when dealing with the many varying emotions of kids. So here’s one of my favorite parenting tips for handling kids’ meltdowns:
One of my favorite things to do when one of my children is having a meltdown over something incredibly immature (like losing their mind when I take away a milk cup that they just poured all over themselves :) is to channel what easily could turn into frustration from me into love for them and their immature state.
I do this by focusing on the reality that their immaturity and meltdown (as a result of it) represents how young they are. Do 30-year-olds have tantrums when someone takes away something that is causing them harm? No! (Or I hope not regularly.) But children do. Because their brains are young. And growing. And very immature…in the kindest and factual way I can use that word.
When I focus on this, it seems silly to waste time getting frustrated at their meltdown. By all means, they are doing enough of that for the both of us. And the calmer I stay, the quicker we move through it. And sometimes as crazy as it sounds, when I focus on this reality, I can actually feel love for them instead of frustration for them during a meltdown. Because it reminds me how little they are. And how precious my role is in helping them grow. And that allows me to help them through it with patience and love.
I hope this can encourage you the next time you’re faced with tears!
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