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Your Spouse and Adult Temper Tantrums

adult temper tantrums

We are all familiar with children going through temper tantrums. Whether they are in a restaurant, store or any other location, if a child does not get what they want, it is common for a child to make a big stink about it. This is simply part of childhood and it is up to the parent to work with the child and to let them know that they are not able to get everything they want to in life. While most children eventually grow out of throwing a temper tantrum, some do not, and this is simply not something that stops when they hit adulthood. For children that received everything they wanted growing up whenever they threw a temper tantrum, they are much more likely to continue this when they become adults. However, an adult temper tantrum is much more extreme than a child’s. A child is expected to have a tantrum from time to time, but an adult, not so much. Adult temper tantrums do take place though, so you need to know what to look out for and how to deal with these sorts of situations.

What is an Adult Temper Tantrum

Adult temper tantrums are much like a child’s tantrum. They might not roll around on the ground or start stomping their feet all over the place, but they are going to raise their voice, yell and make a scene. It usually also happens when an adult does not get what they want or their way. It also usually comes about where the adult makes someone else feel smaller than them and they can even go into attacking the person in a verbal barrage of insults. It can become rather loud as well, not to mention it might linger for far too long. While it happens all the time where someone might experience problems with service or an issue with where they go, there are always better ways to have an issue corrected over an adult temper tantrum.

Know How to Handle an Adult Temper Tantrum

If you are like most people, you might know someone who suffers from these sort of outbreaks. It can be rather embarrassing to be around them, because although they are the person who is going off, you are often grouped with them, so if you try to go back to the restaurant or other location where the person had made a scene, you might not be allowed back at all. Due to this, you need to know how to handle an adult temper tantrum and what to do when adult temper tantrums start to flair up around you.

If you are in a situation where a person is directing their tantrum at you, you need to acknowledge that they are made. Do not just acknowledge it in your head but actually say it out loud. Try to affirm their feelings in a positive way to help defuse the situation. You do not want it to escalate, as this might turn into a fist fight or another problem that you just do not want at all. While this usually helps, if the person starts to direct their anger and attack you directly with verbal put downs, you need to stand firm and calm, look them in the eye and simply tell them that you are not going to put up with their verbal attacks. If it continues on, you need to leave the location for at least a period of time. If you know the person, you need to step out for at least an hour or so. This gives them time to cool down and think about the situation. Chances are, they are going to calm down and eventually apologize to you, or at least come about the situation with a cooler head. With some people, the temper is just going to boil over. While everyone can get upset and, at times, yell at certain situations, it is often rare, especially in public. But for some people, this is more of a regular occurrence and they need time to simmer down.

If you are in a restaurant with someone who does not like their service and they are putting up a scene, it is important to step in early, if you can. You need to wait for a moment to interject yourself into the conversation. However, do not attack the person, but instead just try to agree with them and tell them that you can take care of it and that they should step outside or something so they don’t make a scene. Most people know when they are becoming upset and know it is better for them to be away from the situation, but once they get going, it is hard to stop. As long as you are a close friend or family member, they are not going to lash out at you. Of course, there are some people who just cannot be dealt with, at which case you almost need to allow it to go its course. Should this happen though, make sure to linger after the person leaves so you can at least apologize to the server, especially if it is not their fault. If this is a place you frequent and want to be allowed back, talking it over with the staff after the person leaves can help. You might also want to slip them an extra tip. This can help them feel better about themselves and might actually make you seem like the good guy upon leaving.

Adult tempers are no laughing matter. While most adults have learned how to handle themselves in front of others, it is not always the case. If you are around someone who has an issue with their temper, you need to know how to defuse the situation. Of course, when you are not able to change their course of action, you can at least clean up their mess when they leave and then decide whether or not you want to continue going out in public with them.

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1 Comment

  • SammyJayne Haigh
    Apr 30, 2016 at 09:09 am

    “when you are not able to change their course of action, you can at least clean up their mess when they leave”

    Seriously? No. Adults have the responsibility of cleaning up their own mess and being held accountable for their own actions. The adult who throws a wobbly at the staff needs to go back to the restaurant in a quiet time, acknowledge the damage they have caused, apologise and make amends. The server may well have made a mistake or whatever but ultimately humans do make mistakes and nobody deserves to be on the receiving end of a temper tantrum.

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