We’ve all been there. You’re strolling down the produce isle and you can sense a meltdown coming from your kiddo. You try to hurry, but you’re only halfway down your grocery list. Do you abandon cart and run for the car? Or do you put on a smile and pretend that your kid isn’t screaming at the top of his lungs? MomTrusted has some advice for dealing with public meltdowns and how to avoid them in the first place. Think of it as your guide to smooth sailing at the grocery store:
Avoid meltdowns by avoiding boredom
One of the classic reasons behind a tantrum is just plain boredom. Grocery shopping can be boring for little ones so here are a few ways to make the chore as much fun as possible:
-Have your little one help you find what you’re looking for by hosting a scavenger hunt.
-Kids love the scales at the grocery store. Plus, they’re great learning tools! Ask them to help you weigh the fruits and veggies.
-Help teach counting by writing the objects on your list nice and big and crossing them off as you go. Then, ask your child how many items you have left to grab.
-When you’re ready to checkout, ask your little one to help you sort your items as you put them on the conveyer belt. You can organize by size, shape or color.
How to handle grocery store meltdowns
If it’s too late and your child is already crying and screaming loud enough for the whole store to hear, don’t panic. Here are a few ways to handle a public, grocery store tantrum:
-Stay calm. Reacting emotionally will only trigger strong emotions from your child.
-Do not cave. If he or she is crying because they want a piece of candy, do not give them the candy! You’ll only be reinforcing poor behavior and creating more work for yourself down the road.
-If it’s really disruptive and not ending, step outside or take your little one to the restroom until they calm down.
-Ignore looks or negative words from strangers. It happens to the best of us.
-Apologize. A screaming, crying child can be embarrassing because we all know how disruptive they are so apologize to fellow customers. While they may not love the meltdown, they’ll certainly appreciate you acknowledging it.
-“Great Games for the Grocery Store.” Disney Family
-“I’m embarrassed by my child’s public tantrums. What can I do?” Baby Center
-“How to handle public tantrums.” Circle of Moms
-Photo courtesy of digitalart/freedigitalphotos.net