It Takes Two to Tantrum

Recently Minki and I went shopping. This is not something rare (you all know I’m a little bit of a shopaholic). So there we were, looking all cute (obviously) and super excited about our Mommy and Daughter bonding time.

Everything went great… until the BIG T happened…

The thing is: While my little mini-shopaholic were standing there screaming her lungs out and stomping her pretty little feet, I realised: I DO NOT HAVE A CLUE WHAT TO DO?

Should I pick her up?

Leave her to cry it out?

Give her a sweetie?

There I was looking like a “bad mom” AND people were starting to look at us like “shame, she clearly doesn’t know how to raise a good-mannered human being.”

 Embarrassing and Awkward and Humiliating.

 So, I did some research to help some of your fellow Mamas avoid this rather embarrassing tantrums in public areas, or rather give you some helpful tips to deal with it.

Me, myself and I

First things first: It’s important to (try to) understand baby’s behaviour. The period between 18 and 24 months is referred to as the terrible twos, because this is the time kiddo starts to develop her sense of self.

She wants to eat by herself, walk by herself and even throw away her diapers – by herself!

You get the idea?

This is great, because she is starting to understand that she is not just an extension of you (yes, grab a tissue Mama) and that she’s a little human being in her own right.

Just so you know!

But what do you do?

Step 1: Ignore the paparazzi

Kiddo is attracting all the attention to you. Don’t drown in embarrassment! Pretend that you’re at home and act the way you would there. Research shows that the only thing people judge is your reaction to the tantrum.

If you look calm, even if you’re doing nothing to stop the fit, people will think “now there’s a good Mom.”

So: fake it (the calmness) until you make it!

 Sometimes doing nothing is the best reaction to a tantrum.

Step 2: No rhyme or reason

Don’t even try to reason with baby.  

Experts agree that children do not begin to develop the reasoning skills necessary to understand simple rules or verbal explanations until around 3 years old.

Thanks very much Helene, I still don’t know what to do!

Remove her to a safe space and let her cry or act it out. Ignore kiddo and do not respond until she stops screaming.

Eventually baby will calm down and you can distract her.

Step 3: Distract her:

It’s pretty easy to distract a (calm) baby. After moving her to a safe space and leaving her to act out, try to divert her attention. “Help Mommy push the trolley!”

Step 4: Be consistent

Always act the same! Ignore the tantrum and do not give in.

Next time you’re out in public and kiddo is testing her boundaries here’s your go-to list:

• Act Calm

• Get kiddo to a safe space

• Ignore her

• Do not give a damn about people staring and judging.

Repeat to yourself: I’m a good Mama… I’m a good Mama… I’m a good Mama…

Stay Stylish (and Calm)



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/ Baby

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Comments (2)

  1. Carla Young :

    Ek lovejou blog! Dit voel of jy vir my skryf! ? My dogtertjie Mila is ook besig met die groot “T” ?
    Love the way you write!
    Dankie Pretty Belle!

    • Helene Olivier :

      Hallo Carla,

      Jippie! Jou boodskap het nou letterlik my week gemaak! So lekker om te hoor dat jy die blog lees en geniet en dat dit iets vir jou beteken! Jou dogtertjie is super oulik (ek sien haar so op Facebook). Geniet haar en baie sterkte met die groot T! Ons sal op ‘n manier daar deurkom! Geniet jou week verder!


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