Most days I have a pretty good 15 almost 16 month old. He wakes in a good mood and only gets really cranky when he is tired. But lately I have been having a time of it because he has decided to throw fits whenever he gets a chance.
It started out very innocently around the time he turned 1. He would get upset and do that dead weight thing and even went as far as to bump his head on the floor. I ignored it and it seemed forgotten. Fast forward to 3 months later and he will have a full on screaming, whining, fall on the ground with a red face fit. If he wants something and you tell him no, watch out! If we are home I usually just ignore him until he calms down. I need to be better about getting to his level and explaining why he can't have what he wants and then let the tantrum works its way out of his system.
But the absolute worst? Yeah, that's when we leave home and head for a store. It doesn't matter what store or how long I am there...he will have a breakdown. His favorite place to do it though is Target. Apparently something about Bullseye the dog drives him crazy. He can be all calm in his car seat, jamming to the tunes that Scout plays and as soon as we get into Target and I begin to shop, all heck breaks loose. He's pointing to everything, he wants out the cart or stroller, he wants to nurse, he wants to sleep. I pretty much lose my train of thought and hurry out the store in defeat. I have tried taking him to the toy section and letting him play with something while we shop, doesn't work. I've tried talking to him as we go around and get him to look at different things. Doesn't work.
The advice I've gotten is that I either ignore him or leave the store. There are days I just can not leave the store (hello, groceries!) and ignoring him...well that just makes me sweat and get agitated as I can't concentrate on what I need. Even with a list. I spend my time telling him to hush, that screaming in public isn't acceptable. I talk to him in hopes that he will realize that I know shopping is not something he is ever going to like doing but a necessary evil when Daddy is gone 4 days and we need food. Or I need a break from hanging around the house.
His tantrums would not bother me so much if I didn't feel like a total failure when I can't get him to quiet down or stop from even starting. I feel like everyone is looking at me and thinking "look at that mom, she can't even control her child." Trust me, I am not that parent. Most of the time I don't care what other folks thinking of how I am raising my child, mainly because I know I am doing a good job. But when it comes to these episodes, I can't seem to be confident in handling them the correct way.