Tag: advice

8 Ideas to help a sensitive child

8 Ideas to help a sensitive child

Do you have a child who becomes upset very easily? One small comment and they are crying and emotional. My oldest child is just like this and has been seeing the guidance counselor at school to learn different coping skills. I am going to share with some ideas that have helped us and hopefully they can help you.

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Photo by Janko Ferlič on Unsplash

1. Deep Breaths

One of the best things that have helped us is to teach our daughter how to take deep breaths to help her calm down. When we start to see her getting upset we remind her to take five deep breaths and to count. After her deep breaths, she is usually still upset so we move on to our other strategies. The deep breaths help her calm down so that we can talk to her and help her decide which strategy she wants to use.

2. Personal Space

Create a space just for your child. This will be where they go when they need a break and some time to think and cool off. We decided to use the bay window in her room and to add some pillows and blankets so that it is a nice cozy place where she can go and take time where it is quiet. To help make it personal to your child you can have them help you decorate the space and give you some ideas to add. My daughter loves looking at pictures so we added a photo album full of pictures of the whole family.

3. Encourage Creativity

This can be writing, drawing, or building with blocks. The important thing is to find something they really enjoy doing. Then add that to their personal space so they can use it to help them relax. My daughter is really into drawing pictures so she has a notebook and a pencil in her personal space.

4. Books

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Photo by Debby Hudson on Unsplash

It is important to provide options for your child. This helps them feel like they are in control of something. Even when they feel like they can’t control their emotions at that moment they know that they can control what they do when they go to their personal space. Books are a great option to provide to your child. Whether they can read or not they are calming and it helps encourage a love for reading.

5. Sensory Items

Sensory items are a great tool to use to help your child calm down. There are some great DIY calming bottles and recipes to make slime. These are not only great items to put in your child’s personal space but they could come in handy if you are out and about they are struggling to manage their emotions.

 

6. Give them space

When your child is in their personal space cooling off it is important to let them be. They can’t process their thoughts if you constantly go in and bother them. If you are worried about them then peak in and check on them then walk right back out. They will tell you when they are ready. My daughter will go up to her room and cool off and within ten minutes she will back down ready to talk.

7. Talk to them

After they finish cooling off take that opportunity to talk to them. Ask them how they were feeling and what made them upset. Help them process through the situation. Tell them how proud you are that they used their strategies and took the time to cool off before getting really upset.

8. Talk to their teacher

If you are concerned about the way they handle their emotions then reach out to their teacher. Find out if they are also getting easily upset at school as well. Ask the teacher if there are strategies that they can use at school to help them manage their emotions. With my daughter, the teacher reached out to me about it. She made the suggestion that my daughter sees the guidance counselor and talk about different feelings. I thought this was a great idea. She also explained to me how during class she gives her breaks when she can see the emotions building up. It made me feel better that I wasn’t the only one noticing it and that the teacher wanted to help her deal with different situations appropriately.

As a parent, it can be very stressful when your child is getting upset and you can not even talk to them. When this happens remember to breathe as well. The worst thing we can do is get upset with them and make them more confused. When they are taking a break it is okay for you to go take a break too.

Teaching our children strategies helps to make them more independent and helps them manage stress better. We can’t always be there when they are struggling but we can prepare them with the skills that they need to get through it.

Comment below with different strategies your child uses to help them manage their feelings.

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How to potty train your toddler in one weekend

How to potty train your toddler in one weekend

Potty training can be such a dreadful part or motherhood. The accidents and the number of methods were the most overwhelming part for me. I found this great method that worked when I potty trained my oldest child and I am going to share it with you.

My daughter was fascinated with the potty when she was around a year old. I let her go on the potty when she wanted but I never pushed it on here. This turned into a short-lived phase.

When I thought that she was ready, I decided to try and get her potty trained and she had no interest in going on the potty at all. I made her a Frozen sticker chart (which happened to be her favorite movie at the time) and she ripped it up. That is when I realized it was going to be a lot tougher than I expected.

My mom gave me this book on potty training over a weekend. I felt really doubtful, but I read it anyways. After I read the book I decided I was going to give it a try. I picked a weekend and made no plans that involved us leaving the house.

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I highly recommend Potty Train in a Weekend by Becky Mansfield. I added a link to the book below. The book goes over potty training around the world, identifying if your child is ready to potty train and the different methods of potty training. Then she goes into the method that she uses and how she accomplished potty training during one weekend.

A fun way to get your child interested in potty training is to read some books about going. This can help them understand what exactly is going on during this unusual weekend for them. Sticker charts can be a great motivator and help to reward them when they do go. For my first child, I used popsicles to reward her and my second child loved getting stickers on her chart. After the weekend there may still be some occasional accidents but not very many. I like to use the training underwear for a while just in case we do have an accident then the mess isn’t as bad.

Remember potty training is just another one of those phases that aren’t as enjoyable as some. Try to make it more enjoyable by really celebrating when your child makes it in the potty. You can make it a fun weekend by planning some activities to do while you are spending that extra one on one time with them. Try to really take advantage of that quality time with your child.

I hope this helps you and your little one out. I know it really made potty training easier on me. Let me know if you have used this method and if it worked for you, or if you had a different method that worked out.

 

The Truth about Toddlers & Night Terrors

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When my daughter was two we went through this horrible phase of night terrors. She would wake up screaming, but she was still mostly asleep. It was such a helpless feeling as a parent, to sit there and watch her and not be able to do anything to make her better.

What a night terror looked like for her

When her night terrors started, they were pretty regular. We would be woken up to her screaming and at first, we would try to hold her and talk to her to try to get her calm. Soon we realized that when we did this she would get louder and more upset. She was mostly asleep when she had a night terror and she never remembered them the next day. After a while, she started to sleepwalk during her night terrors. She would always walk to the same spot, our back door. She would just stand there and scream.

After the night terror

Once the night terror is over then it is important to make them as comfortable as possible. My daughter was still pretty out of it after an episode but she would make requests like wanting milk, her blanket, and her monkey. We tried to have these things ready for her so that she could go right back to sleep and get some rest.

Look for patterns

I read online that night terrors can happen from stress or exhaustion. I looked back at anything stressful that could have caused her to start having night terrors. The only thing that we could think of was trying to wean her off her pacifier. After one night terror, we gave the pacifier back to her, but she was still having the night terrors after that. The night terrors started to fade after several months. She would still have them but they were less often. We noticed that the days that we had a lot going on were usually the days that were followed by a night terror. So we connected her night terrors to being overtired. We tried to make sure that she was getting plenty of sleep and if she was tired we made sure she was able to rest. She is five now and she hasn’t had a night terror in over a year.

How we coped as parents

It was very hard but all we could do was stand there, close to her, and make sure that she did not get hurt when she had an episode. I remember one night when she had a really bad episode and she was flinging herself all over the place she hit her arms and legs on the bed and the walls. I ended up moving her to the floor away from everything just so that she didn’t get hurt. It made me feel better knowing that she didn’t remember any of it and that after she was done with an episode it was over for her. I didn’t have to worry about her being upset the next day or worrying about having another one, because she had no idea what was going on. That was the thing that comforted me the most because it is honestly one of the hardest things to watch as a parent. They look so scared and upset and all you want to do is hold them and comfort them and make it all better, but you can’t.

Remember moms, this is just one phase of their childhood. It will come and it will pass and then there will be a new phase. I hope this post helps you get through those episodes that feel like they go on for hours and to let you know that you are not alone. Being a mom is the best superpower there is.

I would love to hear about your stories and how you got through the night terrors with your toddler. What things did you do to help and what things made their episodes worse?