Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Waaaaa! I want it now!

My son is 13 months, but you would think he was already two because...the tantrums have begun.

He zooms up to my computer and bangs on the keyboard with his little hands which are surprisingly strong. I quickly run up to him, remove him from the situation and place him in front of a zillion baby-friendly toys as an alternative. He freaks out. He screams at the top of his lungs, he wails; tears streaming down his face. Did I mention that he is only 13 months old?

The most frustrating aspect of this situation is that he is still a non-verbal being. My son does not yet use words to express himself. Instead he reacts by screaming, crying, screeching and babbling. Houston we have a problem! I cannot communicate with my child!

Needless to say I've been at my wits end for the last couple of weeks. I've solicited the advice of many veteran mothers to combat the issue. Below are some of the pearls of wisdom they have offered:

1. Get him a toy computer. Clearly he is interested in the computer for a reason, give him a computer to play with that is all his own.
My response: A great idea, but I don't have the funds right now.

2. Give him an old keyboard to play with.
My response: It works...for a little bit. But...he still goes for my computer eventually.

3. Remove him from the computer, sit him in a safe place and let him cry until he is ready to be civil again.
My response: Baaaa! I can't take the screaming! I'm going bananas!

3. Distraction, distraction, distraction! Give him something else to play with. He will eventually forget about your computer.
My response: Maybe...for a minute...nah! The computer is still more interesting than anything else I could offer him.

If it's this bad now, what happens when he actually hits the "terrible twos?" Any advice, folks? 


  1. Oh no!! The same exact thing happened to us too. Zalah started with the tantrums right after the first birthday and we also didn't know how we'd handle her if she got worse. I also wanted her to be able to respond and listen and hoped that would help. She's just starting to listen now, but she still does what she wants. I think 2 will be better though, personally, they just throw different tantrums because they get more stubborn and less easily distracted (and scream words with the crying) As far as the computer, she would not stop. She didn't give the broken one a second glace. The only thing that worked was to take it off of the coffee table and put it on a regular one that she couldn't reach. Sometimes a distaction works if she really likes it (like the window) and then we move the comp so she can forget about it. I also was thinking of how kids really respond off of us, and how we really want to scream sometimes, but we know it won't help. I think they feel that and the anger probably scares them more, but it is so hard to be calm all the time! I'm definately not all sugar sweet 1950's or relaxed all the time!

  2. Most parents, including my own say it happens at Three more than 2, so maybe you'll have a break? Dunno. Obviously varies from kid to kid.

    If I can find my old laptop you can have it.
    Better come uptown and help me both find it & delete all "inappropriate material" before giving it to your son.

  3. Ms. Unorthodox - I am glad to hear I'm not alone. I guess it's just a normal stage they go through. I would like to permanently move the comp, but the problem's a laptop! So I like to be able to use it freely wherever, whenever.

    Minty- Let's do it! West End Avenue, here we come!

  4. I really enjoy the firmness in your discipline. Seems to work too.


What do you think? Feel free to agree or disagree, but hateful comments will be deleted.