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Old 12-10-2012, 12:04 PM   #1
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Tantrums in the grocery store

My DS is 26 months old, and I've been having a very tough time with him in the grocery store. He doesn't want to be in the cart. The instant I put him in the cart, he starts crying and screaming "Walk!". When he does this, I just ignore the tantrum, like I would if we were at home, and continue my shopping (quickly!). Eventually he stops, though it may not be until we're at the checkout line. When he's finished, he sniffles a few times, says "Oh no! Sorry, Mama."

Is there a better way to handle this? I'm hesitant to take him out of the store, because then he's being taken out of the cart, which is exactly what he's throwing a fit about. I also shop at Aldi, and I don't want to just leave my cart, even if it is only a quarter.

When DH was shopping with my son once, he did let him out of the cart. He had to run after him and put back all the items that DS was throwing on the floor. I can't chase after him like that while shopping.

Thanks, mamas, for your advice and suggestions!

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Old 12-10-2012, 12:22 PM   #2
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I would give him one chance to walk, holding into the cart unless you ask him to grab something. Involve him in the shopping. But if he runs off etc he goes right in the cart no questions asked no negotiation and has to stay there until you're done.
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Old 12-10-2012, 12:44 PM   #3
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It depends on the child, but my boys would walk "ok" sometimes, dd I refuse to let her try because I know she will be pulling stuff down all the time. I bring a cup, snack and toys in with me to help keep them occupied. They also like to help by putting stuff in the cart and that works half the time to keep them happy. I have left without getting much because we were both tired. The best time to go shopping (for us) is after breakfast. They are full and rested and have played some by that point which makes for a more happy trip.
If all else fails And I NEED to get the shopping done then I give them my phone. Works every.single.time. I get looks from older people but I just keep on going. You do what works to keep your sanity.
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Old 12-10-2012, 12:56 PM   #4
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I would give him one chance to walk, holding into the cart unless you ask him to grab something. Involve him in the shopping. But if he runs off etc he goes right in the cart no questions asked no negotiation and has to stay there until you're done.
This is what I did with my girls. They got 1 chance to walk. I would ask if.they wanted to walk or ride. If they said walk I went over the rules and let them try to behave. If they wondered off they went into the cart. I never left the store b/c that would give them exactly what they wanted and I refuse to waste gas and my time b/c they wouldnt follow the rules. I would make sure they were rested, would take a snack, and get them involved. Just dropping things in the basket satisfied them but I have seen moms with binders of pic of the items they were looking for and have the kid help look then mark off the item.
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Old 12-10-2012, 12:59 PM   #5
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Re: Tantrums in the grocery store

We started going as a family and my 21 month old goes in the stroller. She hates the cart. IMO, it is better at this age to set up a situation I know will be successful by putting her in the stroller than to fight with her about the cart.
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Old 12-10-2012, 01:01 PM   #6
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Re: Tantrums in the grocery store

Offer a reward? Whether you choose to let him walk, or sit him in the basket, offer him a reward. Give him something to do. Give him a "list" to check off while in the basket, as you pick up items. Have him "count" the items as you put them in, or ask him to help you look for an item (that might be on the specific aisle you're in).
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Old 12-10-2012, 01:05 PM   #7
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Offer a reward? Whether you choose to let him walk, or sit him in the basket, offer him a reward. Give him something to do. Give him a "list" to check off while in the basket, as you pick up items. Have him "count" the items as you put them in, or ask him to help you look for an item (that might be on the specific aisle you're in).
This reminded me of when I was a nanny. I always made a list and brought it with me. In the store I gave the kiddo a crayon and asked him to check stuff off. I also had certain areas where he could and could not walk. Like the cereal aisle he could get out to pick a cereal. That way he had something to look forward to.
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Old 12-10-2012, 01:13 PM   #8
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Will wearing him be an option?
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Old 12-10-2012, 01:28 PM   #9
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Re: Tantrums in the grocery store

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Will wearing him be an option?
this. DH wears our 30 mo old all the time at the store. I sometimes do too, but am usually wearing the 6 mo old (unless DH is wearing him).
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Old 12-10-2012, 01:42 PM   #10
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Re: Tantrums in the grocery store

I shop alone. I do everything in my power to ensure that I do not have to bring ANY of my kids or DH. I don't even bring my teenager. DH works 50 hours a week and commutes an hour each way, making it 60 hours a week he's gone from home. But he's home on Saturdays and Sundays so I go shopping on Sundays. I spend more money, end up more frazzled, exhausted and it's simply not good for anyone for me to take kids with. They stay home with Daddy and get some time with Daddy and I shop.

However if you have to take the little one, some other things to try are a special shopping snack. You either bring something from home, something that you reserve just for shopping time, or buy it there before you do anything else. A snack gives the little one something to look forward to and keeps him occupied.

You can try giving him a choice-You may help me push the cart, or you can ride in the cart. If you run around, you will sit in the seat in the front.

You can try bribing him with a reward at the end. My meijer has one of the old fashioned horse rides. It's a much better reward than any sort of toy or candy.

You can try "time out" or whatever version you want to use. I have sat Raeanna "in the corner" in Walmart when I have had to run out and grab something and she was throwing a fit.
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