Children Throw Tantrums and Emotional Meltdown: How to Handle Them

When your children are throwing tantrums and having emotional meltdowns, most parents will quickly feel anxious. Today, we are going to discuss why children throw tantrums and how you handle their emotional meltdowns.

Disciplining children can be a difficult task, especially when they are in the midst of an emotional meltdown brought on by frustration or anger.

When they are small, parents have to deal with tantrums differently than if their child is older. 

As kids get older, it becomes easier for them to communicate their needs and desires. 

When a child is in his pre-school years, the parents still need to be a parent but they should also try to help their kids learn problem-solving strategies.

Disciplining your child when he or she is having a tantrum will teach them how to cope with frustration next time it happens. 

It will also set a good example for your child to follow when they are the parents of their own children. 

A parent can never let anger get in the way of doing what is right for his or her child, and it’s important to not discipline out of anger either.

Why Children Throw Tantrums and Have Emotional Meltdown

Children throw tantrums because they are angry or frustrated about something. When they don’t get their way, kids will often act like bratty monsters until their parent gives them what it is they want. 

Basically, children act out when they feel like the rules don’t apply to them and they don’t have to abide by them.

When a child is thrown into an emotional meltdown, it’s often because he or she feels like they are not getting their way. When pre-schoolers experience frustration and anger, they don’t know how to control their emotions and therefore let them turn into something much bigger problems.

What Children Can Be Expected to Do in Tantrums and Emotional Meltdown

child throwing a tantrum
child throwing a tantrum

One thing you need to understand about children is that they can’t do anything and everything. 

There are things you’re going to expect them to learn and accomplish no matter what their age is. 

For example, you can expect a two-year-old child not to be able to use the toilet on his own or bathe without supervision. 

Or if he’s four, you can expect him to not be able to do his homework without help and fail at waiting for a turn when playing with other kids.

When it comes to tantrums or emotional meltdowns, you can expect your child not to be able to control their anger properly

They will throw fits and pout over something they can’t have or a situation they don’t want to deal with.

When a two-year-old is frustrated, he will be unable to communicate without tears and anger. 

Related Topic: Kid with Temper Tantrum

He will throw things, hit his parents, and scream until he gets what he wants. You can expect your child at that age to not know how to solve problems on their own.

When kids are between the ages of three and ten years old, they will go through many changes that include language development, motor skills, social skills, and independence. 

At this time, you can expect your child to act out if he or she isn’t getting their way. It’s also at this age where children learn how to say what they mean, so it’s no longer necessary for them to throw tantrums to get their way.

How To Handle Emotional Meltdowns and Tantrums

If your child is having a meltdown during the first few years of his or her life, you can expect that they won’t be able to handle these outbursts without your help. 

It will be necessary for you to guide them through these times and teach them how to properly handle frustration. 

For example, if your child is frustrated because the toy he wants is locked up, don’t just give in right away. 

You can explain to him that there’s a time and place for everything and when something belongs in the store, it’s not okay for him to take it out. 

Or if he is frustrated because you’re trying to get him dressed, tell him that he’ll have his own clothes on when the time is right and ask him what he wants to wear while you help him into his clothing.

What Happens When a Child Has a Meltdown or Is Having a Tantrum?

child throws tantrum

When a child is throwing a tantrum or has an emotional meltdown, it’s because they are having problems dealing with frustration. 

They don’t know how to handle what they’re feeling and as a result, they end up acting out. 

It comes from their inability to communicate properly, which leads them to not be able to handle outbursts in a calm manner.

While it’s important to understand why these emotional meltdowns and tantrums happen, it’s also important to learn how to handle them and prevent them from happening again. 

Many parents don’t know the proper way to do this and end up giving in to their child’s demands because they feel like there is nothing they can do. 

It only teaches the child that throwing a fit is okay and gives them an opportunity to keep acting out.

How to Stop Meltdowns and Tantrums Before They Start

When you find yourself dealing with a frustrated child, you need to learn how to stop these emotional meltdowns before they even begin. 

Instead of giving in to their demands and letting them get what they want, you should try to stop the situation before it gets too far. 

This can be done by distracting your child or encouraging him or her to do something else that will take their mind off of the frustrating situation.

Distracting Your Child

If your child is throwing a fit because he didn’t like the green beans you served for dinner, try distracting him by saying he can have something else that he likes better. 

It will give you the opportunity to offer him a healthier meal instead of giving in just because your child isn’t satisfied with what’s being served.

Encouraging Your Child to Do Otherwise

If your child is having a meltdown when you try to get him dressed, encourage him to do something else. 

You can offer a book or make-believe tea party while you gather the clothing he’ll need for the day.

Why It’s Important to Stop These Emotional Outbursts Before They Happen

If you fail to stop your child from having an emotional meltdown or throwing a tantrum, you’re just making it more difficult for him or her to handle the situation in the future. 

Instead of dealing with your child’s emotional meltdown head-on, you’ll find yourself saying “No!” or putting up a fight every time something happens that disappoints them. 

It will not only make it harder for your child to get used to the idea of having limits, but it will also make them feel like they can always get their way.

Are Children’s Meltdowns Normal?

When your child is having an emotional meltdown, you may wonder whether this is normal or not. 

You may have already checked with your family or friends to see if all kids go through it and found out that they do. 

Of course, there are some families who don’t allow their child to throw a fit because they think it’s wrong.

At the end of the day, you have to understand that many children are going through an emotional meltdown. 

They can’t communicate their feelings in a mature manner so they use temper tantrums to get what they want. 

This does not always mean that your child will grow out of it or needs any type of intervention. 

Instead, this just means that in some cases children need help in being able to communicate their feelings.

How to Handle Tantrums and Emotional Meltdown

When your child has an emotional meltdown or tantrum, you need to handle the situation as calmly as possible. 

It means that you should not scream at him or try to punish him. 

Instead, you should explain to him why he is being punished or you can pick another method of discipline that’s going to be effective without scaring your child into thinking they’ll always get in trouble for not listening.

If a tantrum occurs over something as simple as your child wanting a new toy, try offering them a different toy that’s similar to the one they wanted. 

This will take their mind off of what occurred and give them a different toy that’ll make them happy. 

Instead of giving in because you want your child to be happy, try offering a different toy instead to avoid situations like this from happening again in the future.


The best way to stop your child from having an emotional meltdown is by distracting them or encouraging them to do something else. 

You can also learn how to deal with tantrums in a calm manner without screaming, lecturing, or punishing your child afterward. 

This will help you create better habits for your children and teach them that they cannot always expect to get their way.

When you’re having a hard time handling your child’s meltdowns, try taking a deep breath and explaining to them that there is another option. 

This will not only give them an opportunity to be happy, but it’ll also teach them that they can’t always get what they want in life and they need to learn how to deal with disappointments.

When you start offering your kids other ways to fix the situation at hand, you’ll find that it’s much easier for them to learn how to deal with their emotions in a mature manner. 

Handling children throw tantrums is something they’re going to need as they grow up and it’ll help them be successful when they go out into the world as well as help them be a better individual in the future.

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