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How do I help my emotional 3 year old?

My daughter is a very sensitive, emotional 3 year old girl. She gets upset over the littlest things and lots of things are a crisis (can't get her shirt on, her sock is crooked, she wanted a drink (she didn't ask for one, so I didn't know) and will immediately become frustrated, start to cry, etc. We have talked with her about using her words when she needs something or needs help and we show her how to fix things if she is having trouble, etc. etc. but it doesn't seem to help. I know she is frustrated with some things, and I will keep trying to do the same things, bu I have 2 older children who did not respond in this manner. Is there another way to help her or is there something that I am missing?

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Asked by DWACMom at 8:36 PM on Dec. 27, 2010 in Preschoolers (3-4)

Level 4 (46 Credits)
Answers (7)
  • She's not old enough to understand your explanations. Just help her through each "crisis". Show her how to remain calm and let her know it's going to be ok and show her how to fix the situation. Teaching her coping skills now will help keep her calm when she gets older.

    Answer by admckenzie at 8:41 PM on Dec. 27, 2010

  • MY son is the same way and he's 9 . however the others were never like that . all kids are different, she will be fine.goodluck

    Answer by kileighsmommie at 8:42 PM on Dec. 27, 2010

  • My oldest son started throwing a tantrum when he became frustrated. I was told then that it was a type of situation for him where he was trying to figure out how to deal with frustration. I became good and diffusing a situation or at least giving him alternatives to his frustrations prior to him throwing his tantrum. I don't know if this helps you out at all but I think some kids just have a hard time figuring out how to handle different situations.

    Answer by marchar2002 at 8:44 PM on Dec. 27, 2010

  • my son is sensitive and gets more riled up if we raise our voices. Getting down to his level, telling him I understand he's upset in a really quiet voice usually calms him down then the task gets completed. Lots of praise then of course

    Answer by pacificamom at 8:59 PM on Dec. 27, 2010

  • Sympathize with her feelings. "You're feeling frustrated because you want a drink. Can you ask mommy for a drink? You can say, 'Drink, please?'".

    Keep your cool, and don't get upset with her. She's only 3.

    Answer by Anonymous at 9:21 PM on Dec. 27, 2010

  • my son is 3 and has always been this way and he is our first and it is a LOT of work and very hard to understand. He is very verbal and has the words to tell us and understand us.. we went through ECI because it just seemed like SO much was bothering him or upset that it was almost overwhelming. .he was "diagnosed" with severe anxiety -its very hard to deal with but since we didn't qualify for therapy through ECI, we are trying different methods of "tough love" ( so to speak) - I don't have advice but I share your concern

    Answer by maxsmom11807 at 11:36 AM on Dec. 28, 2010

  • my 4 year old little boy is like that....they grow out of it....just keep teling her that it is ok,its not the end of the world....maybe you could also try practicing things with her....she gets mad when the socks dont go on right,sit down with her and practice!! do it with her....

    Answer by SMALLfry05 at 2:36 PM on Dec. 30, 2010

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