What can I do to better control my 3-year old's temper?
Q: I have a 3-year old daughter that has severe temper tantrums and I don't know how to control them. She is teaching my 9-month old bad habits. I'm getting frustrated with it. How can I control them?
A: First of all, it is very common for children your daughter's age to throw temper tantrums. They are still learning how to regulate their feelings and self-soothe (especially when they don't get what they want!). The best way to address these behaviors is to have a structured system for rewards and consequences that you use predictably and consistently on a daily basis. Although there are a number of great books on the subject, the one that I recommend most is 1,2,3 Magic, by Thomas Phelan. It presents a straightforward and effective system for both disciplining and rewarding your child, and at 3-years-old, she's at a great age to start.
Answered by Jeff Palitz, MFT