My 3-year-old son cries and screams, picks up a Lego and chucks it. I stand there frozen, staring at him, unwilling to give into his antics. He’s my youngest child, and even though he struggles with speech delays and motor planning issues, I refuse to acquiesce to this behavior. I’ve learned over the years how to wait out a meltdown. Still, the frequency of his outbursts is troubling, and I’m at the limits of my knowledge on how to handle them.
“The speech and occupational therapy are helping him tremendously, plus we do exercises together at home. But look at this behavior! What am I supposed to do? I’m at my wit’s end,” I lament to my friend as she watches the scene before us. She’s a child psychologist, and I’m hoping her professional expertise will provide some much needed tips. During this particular tantrum, we find ourselves at her in-laws’ house to celebrate a holiday together. Being in a safe private place helps me to be more patient with his increasingly loud screaming.
“They say playing with your child for 20 minutes a day can really help even out their behavior.”
My friend’s words hang in the air between us.
You can read the rest of this post here on YouPlus2’s “28 Days of Play” series.