This mum had a temper tantrum in front of her kids. And here’s what she did to fix it

I had a total meltdown. I lost my temper entirely one day, to the point of not recognising myself. The first thing you experience after the tantrum is pure unadulterated guilt. Throughout your life, you have been told that anger is bad and needs to be suppressed. But catch you on a bad day, it gushes out like hot molten lava from a mountain saturated with emotions? Don’t your outbursts indicate that anger seems to be a natural process that needs an outlet once in a while? And wouldn’t it be a better idea to accept it, channelize it and lead it to a constructive end rather than being in denial by bottling it up?According to Mathew McKay, a psychologist, kids learn an important lesson on seeing you lose your temper and then regain your cool. This shows kids, that it is ok to have a temper tantrum but what really matters in the end is that how you repair the damage.
  • NO BLAME GAMES: The first thing you do to catch the raging bull by its horns is to own up for your action and outburst. No matter who or what triggered it, blaming your kid for your anger is a big no.
Your kid is scared already and you need to assure him by saying something like this, “I am upset with what you have done but I shouldn’t have shouted at you like the way I did. I was wrong and I am sorry for what I did.” A small tip here is not to plead and overdo an apology. You can say what you have to without guilt and move on.


  • SPARE YOUR SPOUSE: It is so tempting to list out your spouse’s faults or and make that your alibi for a clean chit for your outburst. But your kids have unfortunately not had the opportunity to do a course on parenting and they get devastated when they see their parents pitched against each other. A quick turn around by saying something like this provides your kids with the security they need. “Your dad and I were mad at each other for some reason but we have discussed things through and we are ok now. When people live together they tend to argue or fight with each other but that does not mean they don’t love one another. This happens all the time with everyone.” If you can stress and add that you will handle the situation differently next time, you will have taught your kid a lesson from this experience.
  • WHEN STRANGERS ACT STRANGE: This has happened to me a couple of times. While driving, an auto rickshaw driver suddenly pulls up next to my car and overtakes making my car come to sudden screeching halt. And I blow my top off. I remember the day so well when I gave one driver a nasty piece of my mind with both my boys zapped in the back seat. Throughout the way back home I wanted to say something to make them realise their mom wasn’t a monster but could not think of anything. The next time when it happened, my radar went up and apologised to for my reaction instead of condemning my outburst which was very human. I spoke about how the driver’s recklessness had made me feel so angry and I emphasised that I would deal with my temper in a more constructive way.

mom explains to her son about why she got angry

Now comes the tricky part. You have conveyed to your kids that you are going to handle your anger in a different way but how.1. First try and find out what exactly it is that has irked you. Once you know that it becomes easier to control in since you have anticipated its coming. Knowing what time of the day you are usually angry can help you channelize your energy in a different task at that time.2. Talking through your feelings when something or someone has angered you helps. Accepting your reaction and deciding that you are not going to let it ruin your day further will let you control your anger before it controls you.


3. Take a walk, listen to some music, paint, meditate, do yoga, do embroidery or cook but vent out that pent up energy in a positive way. I know of a friend who just scribbles in a diary when she is angry and in sometime feels calm again.Anger is just another emotion that is a part of our system and is as natural as laughter. Turn around, face it and handle it. And let it not jeopardise your life or your relationships.