In making more of an effort to keep updated on this blog, I have spent the last couple of days going through different topics that I should write about.
I instantly remembered reading conversations on the parent groups about this mysterious word that KS kiddos (and let’s be real, all kiddos) seem to melt down about. That pesky two letter word NO. And wouldn’t you believe, we have the same problem in our house!
We noticed it started to get worse at around his 3rd birthday. Which is also fitting because we didn’t have the traditional terrible 2s that most warn you about. Nope, we had the I may murder my child 3’s :D. However, the one parenting thing I can confidently say that my husband and I have on lock is maneuvering the word NO and also calming the tantrums to under 5 minutes without yelling or losing our cool.
So what do we do? Options.
This parenting tool originally was something I had “come up with” off the top of my head, but after a recent discovery – there are a lot of parenting books that use this method as well! WINNING!
So how do we use options instead of no? Well, if Cheekies is wanting something or is throwing a fit about something, we will give him two options to choose from that are parent approved in the direction we want him to go.
EXAMPLE: Halloween just happened and obviously Cheekies wants candy for breakfast dinner and lunch.. the candy is also a common tantrum we have faced the last month. 9 times out of 10 he wants candy BEFORE dinner.
Instead of telling him “NO. You don’t need candy.” I will first start by telling him that he needs to eat his dinner first and then he can have a piece of candy. I have already predicted that he will throw a fit, but trying to tell him he needs to eat before treats is something I find important because he will sometimes listen. (hooray on those days) But alas we normally get a small tantrum.
My next step is to crouch down on his level and give him his options: “Here’s the deal, we can either eat our dinner and get a piece of candy, or we can not eat our dinner and get zero pieces of candy. What would you like to do?” This gives him the control toddlers are subconsciously battling with as they mature, but it also allows them to do what you need them to do without telling them NO.
We have done this at home, in stores, at disneyland, and school, anywhere we need to. It works for us immensely and will probably be something we practice for a while. We have been able to get his tantrums calmed within 2 minutes of it starting which I find to be a success. And if the tantrum does turn into a mini meltdown, we go into our meltdown parenting style which I will go into on a different post, but its mainly giving them chill time and redirecting.
Anyways, I hope this helps for some of you. I believe this tool is probably best used the younger they are – not sure how it will work with older kiddos. And AGAIN, this is what we do and what works for us.
Share in the comments below what your experience with the word NO and how you overcome these battles 😀