How many of us have not been in a store when our child wants the candy that just happens to be perfectly displayed at their eye level?

We deny their first request as they always seem to be asking for something. Their second appeal gets overturned as it’s too close to dinner. The next demand becomes fraught with tears and the stomping of feet and we firmly reply in the negative saying that this behavior is not appropriate and it needs to stop.

Their final outburst is a scream as they wriggle on the floor for all in the store to see. So how do we handle what has now become a full blown tantrum?

o We give in as we can’t take the embarrassment
o We hurriedly pick them up and flee the store leaving our basket behind
o We get pulled into having a tantrum of our own scolding the behaviour

Now if our child is very young, we may opt for one of these familiar responses, however, what happens when they become a teenager who has grown bigger and taller than we are and they are denied breaking curfew or going to a party?

The truth is that no matter what age our kids are, they are going to want something and there are going to be times when they aren’t going to get what they want.

An interesting perspective is to look at how we behave when we don’t get what we want, as we don’t actually teach our kids by what we say so much as by what we do!

For example, let’s say we have asked our child to clean up the mess of wrappers and dishes they had left in a room. They don’t do it on the first asking, so we ask again, this time with a little more oomph in our voice, but still no response. By now we’re getting a little frustrated and by the fifth or sixth time, we’re yelling for them to show up immediately and clear their things or else! This time it works!

It’s ironic that we as parents get our own way when we get mad, yet are surprised when our children try to do the very same thing!

So what can we do?

o We can inspire them to follow through without having to resort to getting angry at them
o We can pay attention to how we deal with the let downs and disappointments in life
o We can find a way to healthily release our anger so it isn’t triggered by our kids

Really, all we can do is take care of our own tantrums! We all know that the stork didn’t include a handbook with our little bundles of joy and no matter what age our children are and whatever mood they’re in, there is one thing that remains constant…and that’s us, bearing witness and the more we can focus on our own behaviors and reactions, the better equipped we will be to weather the storms of the tantrums!

Author's Bio: 

As an awareness coach, spiritual counselor, emotional fitness trainer, author and speaker, Jo-Anne Cutler is passionately committed to bridging the energy, communication and connectedness gap between kids and their parents. By being aware of how disconnected cycles behaviors impact our children, we can shift what we are unconsciously teaching them by example and will inspire a new legacy of parenting for generations to come! To contact Jo-Anne please visit