10 Moms Share How They Survived Their Toddler's Public Meltdowns

10 Moms Share How They Survived Their Toddler's Public Meltdowns

Don’t worry, you’re not the only one with a kid who melts down in public.


By Nicole Fabian-Weber

Tantrums. They're the thing parents of toddlers probably dread the most -- especially when they're in inopportune places. Dealing with a toddler temper tantrum in the house is one (not very fun) thing. But out of the house? No thank you.

In an effort to show that we mamas really are in this together, we asked 10 women to share how they handled their toddler's tantrums when they've happened in the worst places ever. Whatever works, works, right?!

1. "My daughter has a MASSIVE meltdown in the grocery store one day. I mean MASSIVE. My husband ended up carrying her out of the store kicking and screaming, while I ran around trying to grab just the bare minimum of what we needed. As if it wasn't embarrassing enough to have your toddler melt down in public, someone followed my husband to our car and took down our license plate number, then sat there staring at him as he put her in her car seat, got into the car and turned on the ignition, and sat there with the A/C running until I got there. I think they thought he was abducting her!" -- Jeanne S., mom of a 9-year-old girl

2. "I'm not really into screen time for my daughter, but when she lost her mind while we were waiting in line at the post office recently, I caved and gave her my phone. Not my finest parenting moment!" -- Anna P., mom of a 2-year-old girl

3. "Years ago, we rented a beach house with friends, and my youngest daughter freaked out one night while we were all walking around on the boardwalk. It was awful. Finally, I took her down to the beach and told her to run in a circle 10 times to get some of her energy out. It worked!" -- Elizabeth A., mom of two girls, 10 and 8

4. "Chocolate. For me. Whenever my kids freak out in public, I simply act like everything is fabulous while calmly removing the kid from the situation. If we wait it out, sometimes the kid gets tired of tantrumming." -- Michele Z., mom of 5-year-old twins

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5. "This probably isn't the best way to handle things, but whenever my kids would start throwing a temper tantrum in the store, I would tell them that that man/woman over there is staring at them, and usually they'd stop!" -- Ilene P., mom of two girls, 7 and 5

6. "I didn't mess around when it came to tantrums. One time, my son lost it when we were at a Mother's Day barbecue, and I put him in the car and drove him home!" -- Lori H., mom of a boy, 15, and a girl, 12

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7. "Once, when my son had a crazy temper tantrum inside of a toy store (when we weren't buying toys for him), I put on a giraffe mask and started dancing around! The things we do for our kids!" -- Lauren G., mom of a 4-year-old boy

8. "I usually just calmly and quietly leave wherever we are -- even if that means that I have to go back later on." -- Erin W., mom of a 5-year-old boy

9. "I give them snacks! I always feel like my kids freak out when they're hungry, so I always have something handy for them to eat. In fact, I did it just today when my daughter starting carrying on at the bank!" -- Megan N., mom of a boy, 6, and a girl, 4

10. "My daughter had a crazy meltdown not too long ago at a fairly nice restaurant. Everyone was staring at us -- it was awful. My husband and I had to take turns quickly eating, while the other one walked around outside with our daughter. Fun!" -- Ally R., mom of two girls, 3 and 5

How do you deal with public toddler meltdowns?


Nicole Fabian-Weber is the mama to a toddler girl and a baby boy. She lives outside of NYC and writes for The Stir and numerous other online publications. Right now she’s probably fantasizing about sleep.

Image ©iStock.com/kirin_photo


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