Behavior & Discipline

How do You Recharge After Your Child Has a Temper Tantrum?

From laughter to bubble baths, ADDitude parents share their favorite ways to de-stress after an ADHD child’s temper tantrum.

Temper Tantrums in ADHD Children
Temper Tantrums in ADHD Children

ADDitude asked: How do you recharge after your child with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) has a temper tantrum?

I look at my son’s baby pictures and remember how sweet a baby he was. This helps put things in perspective. Taking a deep breath and overlooking some of the smaller stuff helps when I’m at the end of my rope. -Amanda, Maine

I tell my children I am taking 10 minutes of quiet time, and to please “Shhh” for me, so I can settle down and meditate. -Andrea, New York

Listen to music and sing really loud — Queen and Def Leppard. -Dennis, South Africa

Glance in at them sleeping…works every time! -Amber, Ohio

[Free Resource: Rein In Intense ADHD Emotions]

I sit down and read a book. I can really lose myself in a good story. -An ADDitude Reader

I get up early every morning and take the dog for a long walk before work. I eat healthy meals, pray frequently, and attend support groups. -Danielle, California

I take long, hot bubble baths — and I make sure to lock the bathroom door. -Helene, California

I call a friend who is very supportive. -Jason, Connecticut

I write down my frustrations in my journal. -Janet, Texas

I look back through my son’s scrapbook and remember all the good things about him. -Lindsay, Canada

[Free Download: Kid-Friendly Mindful Meditation Exercises]

I admit it: I sometimes smoke marijuana. The drug clears my mind and straightens out my thoughts. Unfortunately, I can’t do it every day. -An ADDitude Reader

I unwind with a glass of wine while preparing dinner. Once the kids are in bed, if my husband is traveling, I dance in my bedroom to my favorite iPod playlist. -An ADDitude Reader

I put myself in parenting time-out and let my husband handle the wrestling and high-jinks for the night. -Michelle, Tennessee

I call up my girlfriend and vent, because her experiences are like mine. She understands my frustration — and I understand hers. -An ADDitude Reader

Short vacations or dinner with adults keeps me going. -Kama, Louisiana

I laugh — a lot. I have developed a healthy sense of the ridiculous through the years. Now I’m able to recognize that a lot of parenting is a hoot. -Cate, Australia

I go into my room, turn on the television, crawl under the covers, and pretend that everything is wonderful. -Tori, Indiana

[Reader Answers: Managing Behavior Meltdowns]

I give myself a 20-minute time-out after supper. I plan to do something I love and refuse to be interrupted unless it’s an emergency. -An ADDitude Reader

Going to the gym helps a lot. Sometimes, sitting in my room alone for 15 minutes, doing nothing, will refresh me. -Tracey, Virginia

I play the Brain Age games and Sudoku on my son’s Nintendo DS right before I go to bed. I switch his game cartridge back before I doze off, so the system is ready for him the following day! -An ADDitude Reader

I bake, read, meditate, and look for opportunities to balance the tense times with things that are fun — like reading together at night, watching TV, or playing a game. -Shawn, California

I work out with Jillian Michaels. She makes me sweat, which melts away the day’s frustrations. -Steve, Puerto Rico

[“The Day My Extreme Child Brought Me to Tears”]