hello, I’m basically a single parent needing alot of advice on my two year old who just doesn’t want to sleep at all, but is always so hyper regardless of how much sleep she has, plus help on how to deal with some pretty bad tantrums which includes hitting herself or throwing her self on the floor or even hitting me! I’m a parent that doesn’t do the whole “hit the child’s hand” I try to be positive with her or have some time outs, but nothing helps! Any advice on how to get your child to sleep or advice on how to cope with temper tantrums would be much appreciated!
Hi Tiamarie. My kids are teenagers now but I remember what it was like – I’m sure we’ve all had to deal with the terrible twos to some degree!
I don’t know what you’ve tried so far, but I found a regular bedtime routine worked for me – same time, same process – quiet time winding down, then bath, pyjamas on, story, lights off. From time to time we had a little extra thing like imaginary animals or birds who I would tuck into bed with them, or a special little thing I always said last thing. If they played up I used a technique I read in a book, which was go back straight away to reassure them for a minute & leave again. If it happened again I’d leave them for 5 minutes before going back in & repeat the process. Next time 10 minutes, next time 15 mins – add on 5 minutes each time. Eventually I found they’d give up & go to sleep. It’s horrible waiting while your child is crying & resisting the urge to run straight back in, but it did work. After consistently doing this I found the number of times I had to go back got less & less until soon they just went to sleep happily.
At one point I recall one of them went through a phase of getting back out of bed. V annoying! But you just have to keep calm, say back to bed, tuck them straight back in & leave. The more you engage with them & give them attention, even negative, the more you are giving them what they want & the more they’ll keep playing up. They need to realise it’s a pointless exercise.
It’s the same idea with tantrums – put them in a boring but safe place, & don’t give them any attention until they stop. I used the naughty step at the bottom of the stairs which was a technique I saw on Supernanny years ago. You put your shrieking child on the step, tell them you’ve put them on the naughty step & why, & then leave them there until they calm down. If they get off you just keep putting them back on. They do get the message eventually & it keeps you in control without losing your rag!
From my experience I think they key is to be consistent, persistent & stay calm. It’s not easy, but worked for me.
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