Dear Mary Jo,
What’s the best way to stop a public two year old temper tantrum?
Thank you, Leah
Everyone who has ever had a two year old understands your dilemma. Tantrums at two are a process, and it is not a reflection of your parenting skills. People who scoff or make remarks should be ignored. That said, there are things you can do to help your child through the process.
- Stay calm; two year olds heighten their demands the more frazzled you become.
- Practice prevention by not taking your toddler out when they’re tired or, if you do, try a child-friendly place. Nice restaurants and two year olds aren’t a good mix. Life does happen though and if you can’t avoid taking a tired two year old out when you know they’re exhausted, make sure you have a snack or activity that will help distract them.
- If you child’s tantrum is due to frustration because they can’t tie their shoe or master something they want control over, try to help them so they can be successful. This works to build independence and confidence in your child.
- Don’t give in to their demands no matter how embarrassed you are. Letting them have their way after you’ve told them no ensures they’ll have a tantrum the next time you take them out.
- As much as possible remove them from the situation when they begin fussing. That may mean a two minute time out where you sit with them and then bringing them back when they have calmed down. Repeat this as necessary if they continue. In a grocery store that may mean you end your grocery shopping sooner than you anticipated.
Dear Mary Jo,
I am going to college and my boyfriend is staying here. How do we keep it working?
There are no guarantees in love, and long distance relationships add more challenges. You’re beginning a whole new life, and you’ll be busy with your studies and new social life. There are important things to talk to your boyfriend about before you leave.
- Both of you must want the relationship to work and you both have to do your part. Feeling neglected because you can’t be together will destroy the relationship.
- Communication is key in a long distance relationship. Talk about your favorite ways to communicate prior to your leaving and set dates as soon as you can to meet up in person. Daily texts, emails, Skype, and Face Time can help.
- Emotional maturity is a must. When you miss someone and are worried about your relationship, your anxiety increases and creates insecurity. Expecting immediate texts, emails, or attention is not practical or emotionally mature. You cannot jump to conclusions if you want your relationship to work at a distance.
- Without trust no relationship can work and this is especially true in a long distance relationship.
- Be flexible with change in you and your partner. As you experience new things in college you’ll begin changing and so will your relationship. If your changes threaten your boyfriend, it’s important that you talk about how he feels. Taking a break from your relationship is better than doing something that breaks trust and/or respect for each other.