Coping with Toddler Frustration

What to do if your toddler has more will than skill.

You Can't Always Get What You Want

It's no secret that life is full of irritations, as anyone who has sat in a traffic jam or tried on the 25th pair of jeans in a fitting room will tell you. However, handling frustration is a much bigger obstacle for young children. "When my daughter Shelby was 2, I unearthed a bunch of old Weebles for her to play with," says Andrew Gale of Brooklyn. "She kept trying to lay them on their side, and they kept popping back up. Every time that happened, she'd shriek with rage."

How do you explain to a toddler that Weebles wobble but they don't fall down? And how do you help her turn her most discouraging moments into learning experiences that encourage her to ask for what she wants, problem-solve, and try new ways of accomplishing goals? With a lot of patience and some advice from experts and parents.

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