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PLEASE HELP...how do i stop temper tantrums in the middle of the night...EVERY NIGHT!

My two year old is throwing INTENSE tantrums in the middle of the night...He wakes up and wants things such as snacks, juice, tv or games (things that all have a very specific place in our routine) and when I guide him back to bed he becomes seriously distressed. Its been everything from screaming to pounding on the wall, throwing things and hitting. It is disrupting our whole household...What can I do to help him without giving in and prolonging the issue...This has been going on 3/4 times a night, everynight for the past 2 weeks, there has been no sign that he's feeling sick, no changes in our day to day routine...could something be wrong?

Answer Question
 
sbenbenek

Asked by sbenbenek at 9:44 PM on Apr. 15, 2011 in Toddlers (1-2)

Level 13 (1,256 Credits)
Answers (13)
  • Sounds like terrible twos. Just take away snacks and tv during the day if he keeps it up. Tell him " If you dont go back to bed you're not getting anything but broccoli tomorrow, and No tv either!" thats it, you gotta be a little more strict.
    xmama_bellax

    Answer by xmama_bellax at 9:48 PM on Apr. 15, 2011

  • could a child so young have a sleep disorder? I would consult with a psychologist or a neurologist to see if something is going on. Those are classic sleep walking signs seen in adult sleeping disorders. Good luck
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 9:48 PM on Apr. 15, 2011

  • My 2 yr old little girl does this and I can't ignore it because we live in an apartment and when she starts kicking her feet, hitting the wall I have to give in or she will wake up the neighbors. If we had our own house I would just let her cry it out and not give in but I just get her something to eat or drink and then lay down beside her bed til she goes to sleep.

    I wish I didn't live in an apartment so I could do something about her tantrums :(
    L0vingMy3Girls

    Answer by L0vingMy3Girls at 9:49 PM on Apr. 15, 2011

  • maybe I misunderstood your statement. Is he sleepwalking when eating and requesting this stuff or he is waking UP and throwing a tantrum? Even if he seems awake he could be sleep walking. I've dealt with it my entire life - it started in my early childhood about 9 or so.
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 9:49 PM on Apr. 15, 2011

  • When my daughter started throwing temper tantrums we started using a method called "holding". You literally go in there, and hold onto him (your arms around his, your legs over his legs so he can't kick) and hold him until he stops thrashing/throwing a fit. He will scream, he will squirm, and it will crush your mommy feelings for awhile, but it works. It helps to teach them boundaries and that while their behavior will get your attention, its not necessarily a good thing, lol.
    It worked wonders on my daughter...after a week she stopped with the fits.
    an-apple-a-day

    Answer by an-apple-a-day at 9:51 PM on Apr. 15, 2011

  • Thank you all for the advice, I've been going back and forth between ignoring it until it passes (usually a good 20 mins of him having a fit) and trying my best to calm him down...both seem to work temporarily, but I've seen no end in sight to the nightly battle. I'm so relieved to know that it is not JUST my child that goes through this. I was definately begining to worry. @ lovingmy3girls...I live with roomates so the fits that happen in the middle of the night tend to be the ones where i give in the fastest so as not to disturb my pregnant roomie...I also hope to be in a home of my own soon so I can do the same. I wish you luck :)
    sbenbenek

    Comment by sbenbenek (original poster) at 9:56 PM on Apr. 15, 2011

  • I would give my kid a bedtime snack like a bowl of cereal or fruit.. Maybe they truly are hungry when they wake up like that. No games though. He might be having a growth spurt that makes him need more food.
    Autumn07

    Answer by Autumn07 at 9:58 PM on Apr. 15, 2011

  • so you vote anon down for asking a question? WOW peeps cranky tonight.
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 10:19 PM on Apr. 15, 2011

  • What's up with all the vote downs on this question...wow...

    sounds like a bit much even for a 2 yr old...I'd maybe bring it up wtih the doctor and see if they ahve any advise. until then possibly give him a small drink of water and maybe lay down with him until he calms down and goes back to sleep -

    good luck
    charlotsomtimes

    Answer by charlotsomtimes at 10:49 PM on Apr. 15, 2011

  • Stay calm, stick to your guns and be consistent. Do not give attention (except maybe try that holding method that was suggested; who knows, maybe it will work...). If you give in once and give him a snack, he will expect it every night. Hang in there! I know it is not easy!
    RobotLady

    Answer by RobotLady at 11:48 PM on Apr. 15, 2011

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