Parenting Advice: Stopping Tantrums in Children


Karen Phillip

Relationships Expert

What is the reason our children throw tantrums? It is because they want something now and often because the parent has not agreed to provide it. If a child throws a tantrum and the parent gives in to their performance they are setting themselves up for ongoing problems as the child simply learns that if I get angry and loud, they don’t like it and give me what I want.

tantrumChildren should know at a very early age, by 24 months at least, what is acceptable behaviour and what consequences will occur if unacceptable behaviour occurs. Saying this however creates another issue, clarity on your boundaries. Telling a young child to be good, to not misbehave means nothing. While we may understand what it means, they can’t. I ask parents to simply advise what it is you are requesting from your child  such as ‘when we are out sweetheart mummy (or daddy) would like it if you use your inside voice please, stay very close to me when we are walking and not ask for anything. I have some items (treats, play things, games) with me and you can have them during the afternoon. Do you understand what it is I would like you to do today’?

This is much clearer and simpler for a child to understand instead of ‘be good’.

If your child decides that they want something else and want it now, use the yes word to deflate their escalation and continue. The more children are informed of their boundaries and consequences, the better they are. If however your child does throw a tantrum, separation is often the best remedy. Where possible, separate the child from the situation and you if you can. When at home place them into their room or another area away from you. If out at the shopping centre, sometimes the baby change room area can be a safe place to allow them time to regain some control. Going down to the carpark or even sitting you child in their car seat can help. I usually advise the parent to remain outside the car so they don’t hear the full blown tantrum as it is the sound that affects us considerably. If we remove our child to somewhere like the car, their room or change area, they are safer as they can’t run or injure themselves which sometimes can happen with an aggressive tantrum. No need to speak to the child while this behaviour is occurring as they have no control at this time, wait until it passes, do not give in, then continue with your outing. If at home you can leave them in their room for a time until they and you are ready to reconnect.

Find out more from Karen about stopping tantrums in children:

Like what you read? Subscribe to our free newsletter for exclusive content and special offers


  • Insta: Follow

    • Estée Lauder for the win. #renutriv launch was one to remember. Truly #blessed to call this work. @esteelauder @katiegildea @eddie_yacoubian #incredible
    • My loves #werk #family @mbrown_beauty @__jessicasarah @latessaphotography #renutriv
    • Would have been rude not to dip my toes in 😉 #bondi #sydney #springbreak #happy #bluesky
    • Double Dutch! Loved our exclusive interview with design duo @viktor_and_rolf  It appears I'm always @parkhyattsydney with Dutch men 😂 #flowerbomb #viktorandrolf #fashion #ngv #interview #rescutv #Dutch #couture
    • Into the bones. Intense. 😜 #love #truelove
    • The gang's all here. @allsaintsclinic @ultherapy #sydney #spring #sunday #rosebay @sabrina.fabi
    • Celebrating #worldchampagneday with @sallyburleigh @champagnepommeryau #catalina #mykindofday #champagneday
    • Celebrating world champagne day @catalinarosebay as guest of @champagnepommeryau #pommerysurglace #champagneonice #champagne #worldchampagneday #champagneday #pommeryroyalbluesky
    • In the wise words of Doris Day #queserasera  whatever will be will be... Tag a friend who needs to hear this today. #quote #instalove #love #dorisday #trust

  • Get fashion, beauty, finance, health and love advice from our experts.

    Rescu is an online fashion, beauty and premium lifestyle site. Whether you are looking for fashion, beauty, finance, health and love advice you will find a wealth of information from our resident experts. We publish new content daily so don’t be left behind. Log on daily for the latest fashion, beauty and celebrity news as it happens. Subscribe to our newsletter and enter our contests to win fantastic freebies.