A mom’s viral post is offering a fresh perspective on parenting during tantrums.
On Sunday, Australian blogger and author, Constance Hall, wrote a powerful Facebook post (with a few choice words) encouraging people to be less judgmental when observing parents in difficult moments.
Hall wrote that she recently heard someone discuss a mom who was “just sitting there” while her child had a meltdown.
“A friend told me that she saw a mum in a cafe who’s kid was throwing a royal fuckery of a tantrum and she had the audacity to just sit there,” she explained.
Hall continued with some personal perspective:
“I have been that mum. I have bribed, I have begged, I have stroked a child during a tantrum, I have lugged that child to the car, I reminded myself that it’s going to be ok and repeatedly told my child that I loved him, that she was going to see consequences if she didn’t stop, I have felt like throwing a god dam tanty my cunting self after one and I have also been that women, who sat there and did nothing.”
Ultimately, Hall wrote, sometimes the only thing you can do while your child is having a meltdown is nothing. “Time will heal all tantrums,” she said.
Circling back to the conversation that prompted her to share these thoughts, Hall said she asked her friend not to see this mom as “just sitting there” and to instead see her as the mom “who is always there while her child melts down.”
She concluded, “Because being there and doing nothing are two very different things.”
Hall’s Facebook post received over 55,000 likes, and the comments section is filled with stories from fellow parents who have dealt with their fair share of tantrums.
Commenter Brenda Balash wrote that her son has autism and often melts down. “A few months ago at school pick-up, he had a massive meltdown in the footpath. All I could do was lie on him on the concrete (he likes the pressure) and wait for it to pass,” she explained. “Stood up and walked through the sea of parents who were staring with our heads held high. It was the first time I didn’t give a fuck what others thought.”
Sarah Bee wrote, “Sitting with quiet love and empathy beside a child who is struggling with big feelings is not ‘doing nothing.’ It’s staying calm and showing your child that you care and that you will look after them and everything else until they calm down.”
Added Bee, “It’s modeling good behavior. It’s showing them you love them and you can handle their huge emotions. It’s supporting them gently through it.”
Here’s to all the moms and dads doing the best they can in this tantrum-filled parenting world.