Child, Family, Kids News, Parenting

Tantrum in children in public

Tantrum in children in public

How to handle a child tantrum in public?

“I want that toy car now!!! I WANT it!!!! Maaaama!!!” Angry and completely distraught, 4-year-old Tim stands in the toy department of the drugstore and revolts. His voice swells, tears spurt from his eyes, and he waves his arms wildly. His mom knows it’s almost time and he’ll throw himself on the floor screaming. She carefully looks around and indeed: the first people are already watching the scene taking place here.

The reactions of fellow human beings

A tantrum in public is always unpleasant and often unsettles the parents of the raging child. They think the whole world is watching them and they actually get a wide variety of reactions from the environment. Some guess “The child needs a good beating” and others say “I know that from our offspring”. Scrutinizing looks, uncomprehending shaking of the head and annoying rolling of the eyes – parents of an angry child have to endure all this in such a situation.

And right now they need all their nerve for their roaring offspring…


Rehearsals and big public appearances – in the supermarket, kindergarten or playground

First of all: the rehearsals for this “appearance” in public have already taken place at home in your own four walls. There the child first tries out and “tests” its parents. How long do I have to scream to get my way? When will my mama go soft? What do I have to do to get her around? What methods can I use to impress her? And then it’s off to the big stage – the child wants the chocolate in the supermarket, the cute little doll in the toy shop, and the beloved fries at the snack bar. What can parents do to overcome such uncomfortable situations? More about tantrums at home

How to respond to your child throwing a tantrum in public

Playing through the situation beforehand The
child’s reactions of anger and defiance are often predictable. It is mostly similar situations that turn the otherwise lovely child into a real “blob of anger”. As a parent, you can take advantage of this by going through the situation and possible solution strategies in advance. How exactly do you want to react when your child throws a tantrum? What can you possibly do in advance so that it doesn’t get that bad in the first place? And what are the consequences of the child’s behavior?

Remain steadfast in a fit of anger in the supermarket, on the playground or in kindergarten
Even if it is uncomfortable: remain steadfast and don’t be overwhelmed by your offspring’s violent roar of rage. If you have decided that there is no chocolate from the supermarket today, then there is none. Point. Out of. End. If you give in now, your child will know: I just have to scream long enough and then I’ll get what I want! Thus, the conditions would be more than favorable that the next outburst of anger will follow shortly.

leave the situation
Not every day is the same. Sometimes, as a parent, you shrug off a child’s tantrum, and sometimes you can’t stand it and other people’s reaction to it. If you have caught such a day, then leave the situation with your crying child if possible. It’s no good if you lose your nerve over this. Then postpone the shopping or break off the cozy meeting with your girlfriend in the cafe.

Discuss consequences beforehand
You know exactly the situations in which your offspring throws their famous tantrums. It is usually shopping, as there are many tempting things that the child really wants. Talk to him beforehand about how you will react when the roar of anger starts. Many parents then grab their child and immediately bring it to the car. There it is placed in the child seat, buckled up and the car is locked. Take a deep breath, slowly count to 10, and try to think of something nice. Depending on your child’s age and temperament, you can then continue shopping on your own.

React unexpectedly
Are you spontaneous and have enough self-confidence? Then react completely unexpectedly! If your child throws itself on the floor screaming, do the same and shout with it. Or analyze together with the other passers-by in the pedestrian zone the angry something that no longer wants to be carried in the pram. You could address people directly: “What would you say? Judging by the voice, it could be some kind of lion or what do you think? Have you ever seen something like that live?” This kills two birds with one stone: you don’t let the situation pass you by passively and your child will most likely stop nagging because of the unusual reaction. Maybe you both have to laugh too!

Tantrums are part of the healthy development of every child. The little ones are discovering more and more their own ego and thus distancing themselves from their parents. The time of the tantrums is a very important phase – and sometimes just this thought helps to avoid getting lost in the whirlpool of anger and defiance.


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