Worst places for a tantrum

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Parents of children aged 0–5 have revealed the most embarrassing places their kids have thrown a tantrum, and how they most like people around them to react when their kids are in the middle of one.

The survey was carried out by TantrumXYZ, the people behind the new website - www.tantrum.xyz - for tech-savvy but time-poor parents who need to get a lot of information and products fast.

Out of 1,100 parents, it found that taking their child to work only for the child to throw a tantrum was ranked as the most embarrassing tantrum scenario, with 65 per cent of parents choosing this option as the most embarrassing.

This was followed by on the plane and on the bus, ranked equally as joint second.

At the supermarket was the next most excruciating venue for a hissy fit.

Hassled parents voted overwhelmingly for bystanders to ‘carry on as normal and pretend it isn’t happening’.

Not one person surveyed wanted people around them to ‘offer advice’ or ‘ask if you need any help’.

“With parents, mothers in particular, feeling pressure to drop in to their workplace while on parental leave so they’re not completely forgotten, the pressure is on when their child decides to have a crying fit,” said Lisa Williams, mother-of-one and co-founder of TantrumXYZ.

“If you witness a tantrum, our parents have voted overwhelming for one way in which you should behave – just keep calm and carry on as if it isn’t happening.

“And whatever you do, don’t offer advice – or the parent may just end up having a tantrum of their own.”

Dee Booth, behavioural consultant and founder of the Sleep Fairy & Parent Rescue (http://sleepfairyparentrescue.co.uk/), offers the following tips to parents on how to deal with tantrums while in public places.

Wait until you have developed a consistent response to tantrums that you use at home before you take them somewhere ‘important’ like a workplace or a wedding.

Avoid rewarding tantrums at all cost: trying to bribe a child out of a tantrum is telling them that tantrums are useful ammunition for getting what they want or something else equally great.

Distraction may give temporary relief, but it has a worse effect in the long-term. The child is still getting something good from throwing a tantrum. The exception to this is if you are somewhere where you feel you have no option to let them shout it.

If you would like your child to behave during something like a work visit, try to pick a time when they are not hungry, tired or feeling unwell. And if the atmosphere is going to be formal, perhaps make the visit extremely short and ask any colleagues who want to spend longer with you to join you for a walk or go to a nearby café or playground.

If your little one does decide to kick off, pick them up, take them out, and go somewhere quiet. Let them shout it out until they’re calm, and once they’re calm, go back in.

If your child has a tantrum on a flight, I advise people to let their child shout it out and get it out their system. Say to passengers around you, ‘This will take 20 minutes’ and apologise. Chances are, your little one will be as good as gold for the rest of the flight.

Remember that tantrums are a normal developmental phase for all children, and a tantrum is a way of them expressing their feelings. By trying to appease them, you are effectively stopping them from expressing themselves.

Also remember that this is unlikely to be the first tantrum ever witness by the people around you. Many will have had their own children or been around other children, and will know that it’s par for the course – a tantrum is often much worse for you than it is for others.

Most embarrassing places for a tantrum to happen:

When you’ve taken them in to work (65 per cent)

On a plane/bus (10)

At the supermarket (7)

In the library (5)

At the in-laws’ house (3)

How should other people react when your kid is throwing a tantrum?

Carry on as normal and pretend it isn’t happening (73 per cent)

Give you a sympathetic look (12)

Make light of the situation and laugh about it (8)

Help distract your child with something else (6)

Ignore both of you (1.)

Have you downloaded the free YEP app available on Android and iphone?