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Old 08-11-2011, 10:20 AM   #11
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Re: Tantrums at church...and elsewhere.

My son's not quite at that stage yet, but I've heard some people actually have luck getting their children to behave better when they sit in the front of the church. That way they get to see what's going on, etc. It's a daring approach and I don't know if it would work for you. Just thought I'd throw it out there.

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Old 08-11-2011, 11:03 AM   #12
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I am a ministers wife at a small churrch. My kids are very disruptive as most 2 yo are in church. We sit right on the front row every service...Sunday morning and night, Tuesday night and Friday night. Serivices are usually 2 hours. Its a pain...and I usually want to cry by the end, butits important to us to have the kids there. As our childrens ministry develops I'm sure it will improve, but ds is encouraged go participate in church. Rigvht now he is fond of the drums. Talk tgo you minister and see what they recommend.

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Old 08-11-2011, 05:24 PM   #13
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Re: Tantrums at church...and elsewhere.

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Tantrums can often be a sign of being overtired. May I ask what your daughter's sleep schedule is? Does she still take a good nap? What time does she go to bed and wake up? Is this consistent?

No, that's not it. She sleeps 12 hrs a night and gets a 2 hr midday nap. She's been on a regular sleep schedule since 4 mo old. These tantrums in church are a direct result of not getting to run around when she wants to run around.

LOTS of great feedback and suggestions. I feel less overwhelmed after reading these and after talking to my mom. I *thought* my parents never missed church but Mom told me that when we were kids, when each of us hit about the 2 yr old mark, she would (*gasp*) stay home with the 2 yr old while dad went to church! I had no idea...my folks *NEVER* miss Mass.

Yes, to the pp who asked, Catholic Mass. And fortunately our church is so welcoming. My priest suggested trying to let her run around in Mass but she's simply too disruptive running up and down aisles so while I appreciated his willingness, it was just too much to put the other parishioners through. Our church is mostly older people and my dd is the only young child so people truly are more patient than they might ordinarily be if there were a bunch of fussy kids at Mass. She's the only one there to cause a ruckus.

You've all given me some good ideas to try. It may be a bit of trial and error and accepting the fact that it's alright to leave if need be since this is likely just a phase. I feel reassured after reading these posts. Thank you all so much. I'm out of town this Sunday so I won't be at our usual church.

Thanks again for all the feedback!
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Old 08-11-2011, 06:00 PM   #14
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Re: Tantrums at church...and elsewhere.

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Second, if people say they aren't bothered - trust them. Yes some will be, but the Catholic Church (I'm only assuming because you mentioned Mass) advocates for having the little ones in church with you regardless of whether a parish has a cry room or not. Children are blessings from God even when they aren't "behaving".
I agree with your overall message I just wanted to point out that this is not necessarily true. I grew up Catholic and remained Catholic until about the time I had my first. One of the many reasons we left the religion is that in the Catholic churches I was at as a child and once we moved away I never once saw one that was welcoming to the little ones. They always sequestered the kids to the cry room-if there was one, if not then you were given the hairy eyeball until you just left. I can totally respect why people don't want kids disrupting them in church but IMO kids should be a part of the church and welcomed. I want a church that welcomes my child into the congregation, not to a room at the back of the church off by themselves. I'm sure this is largely a regional thing though.

But if the OP belongs to a supportive church then by all means please bring your kids. It IS hard taking care of a little one who wants nothing to do but run around and be crazy BUT it's important for kids to grow up in the church. It was hard in the begining for us, as I mentioned before, but now that my kids are past that stage, they LOVE church. It was totally worth going through all that garbage to see them enjoy it so now.
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Old 08-11-2011, 06:08 PM   #15
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Re: Tantrums at church...and elsewhere.

Is there any way you can try Sunday Mass? I have found all across the country Saturday evening Masses are for the older quiet people, Sunday morning are for ridiculous early risers and then there's usually a later Sunday morning one that is usually very family friendly.

I insist on us going to 10am Sunday while my kiddo is loud and rambunctious. I don't feel as paranoid about every little peep, because there are a hundred other kids doing the same thing. Then he really only needs to go out when he's screaming or out of hand.
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Old 08-11-2011, 08:25 PM   #16
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Re: Tantrums at church...and elsewhere.

I would like to also encourage you to continue to take her to church with you. I have five children with the youngest two being 2 and 8 months. My husband is a worship leader so I have to do it all on my own as you do.

What helped me the very most was stopping worrying about what other people thought of me. I have a big problem with that in general but especially when my kids are screaming or the like. My familly hysterics are much less dramatic when I am focusing on the children's needs instead of allowing my pride to be bruised to the point where I get agitated with the kids for embarrassing me. with their behavior.

I do not make my kids participate because I can't make anyone "worship." But I do teach them to be obedient and quiet as instructed.

I also think it's relieving for me to know that God is genuinely pleased with my attempts to instruct my children in the ways of the Lord. So when I miss service or can't hear the sermon because I am tending to an issue I thank God for my many blessings and I don't resent the children for needing that extra attention from their mommy. The training pays off in the end and it is only a short window of time that we have our children with us to teach.

You are clearly doing a wonderful job. I can tell because you are concerned with this issue.
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Old 08-11-2011, 08:32 PM   #17
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Re: Tantrums at church...and elsewhere.

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Originally Posted by epiclesis View Post
Is there any way you can try Sunday Mass? I have found all across the country Saturday evening Masses are for the older quiet people, Sunday morning are for ridiculous early risers and then there's usually a later Sunday morning one that is usually very family friendly.

I insist on us going to 10am Sunday while my kiddo is loud and rambunctious. I don't feel as paranoid about every little peep, because there are a hundred other kids doing the same thing. Then he really only needs to go out when he's screaming or out of hand.
I *do* go to Sunday Mass. I live in a rural area and it's the *ONLY* Mass our church has. It's Sunday at 4pm.

If I want to go to a morning Mass, the church in the next town holds an 8:30am Mass but it's quite a drive so I'd have to get dd out of bed about an hour earlier than usual to get her breakfast and get on the road by 7:45am to make it to the 8:30am Mass - between the drive down and the drive back, I think it's only adding to the issue (45 min in the car, 45 min at Mass then 45 min in the car on the ride home is a lot of time to ask her to sit idly...90 min of drive time for a 45 min of Mass.)
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Old 08-11-2011, 08:35 PM   #18
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Re: Tantrums at church...and elsewhere.

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Originally Posted by 4dramamama View Post
I would like to also encourage you to continue to take her to church with you. I have five children with the youngest two being 2 and 8 months. My husband is a worship leader so I have to do it all on my own as you do.

What helped me the very most was stopping worrying about what other people thought of me. I have a big problem with that in general but especially when my kids are screaming or the like. My familly hysterics are much less dramatic when I am focusing on the children's needs instead of allowing my pride to be bruised to the point where I get agitated with the kids for embarrassing me. with their behavior.

I do not make my kids participate because I can't make anyone "worship." But I do teach them to be obedient and quiet as instructed.

I also think it's relieving for me to know that God is genuinely pleased with my attempts to instruct my children in the ways of the Lord. So when I miss service or can't hear the sermon because I am tending to an issue I thank God for my many blessings and I don't resent the children for needing that extra attention from their mommy. The training pays off in the end and it is only a short window of time that we have our children with us to teach.

You are clearly doing a wonderful job. I can tell because you are concerned with this issue.
Thank you!
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Old 08-11-2011, 11:13 PM   #19
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Re: Tantrums at church...and elsewhere.

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I *do* go to Sunday Mass. I live in a rural area and it's the *ONLY* Mass our church has. It's Sunday at 4pm.

If I want to go to a morning Mass, the church in the next town holds an 8:30am Mass but it's quite a drive so I'd have to get dd out of bed about an hour earlier than usual to get her breakfast and get on the road by 7:45am to make it to the 8:30am Mass - between the drive down and the drive back, I think it's only adding to the issue (45 min in the car, 45 min at Mass then 45 min in the car on the ride home is a lot of time to ask her to sit idly...90 min of drive time for a 45 min of Mass.)
Sorry - I must have misread your post. I had it in my head that you said you went Saturday afternoon/evening.


Too bad that's so far away for you to go to a different time - I have a friend who has a 7 year old, twin 2.5 year olds, and a 1 year old and they started going at 8am instead of 10am coz they found the kids behaved a lot better.

I guess maybe anything is worth a try at least once?

Last edited by epiclesis; 08-11-2011 at 11:14 PM.
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Old 08-12-2011, 03:32 AM   #20
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Re: Tantrums at church...and elsewhere.

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Originally Posted by epiclesis View Post
Sorry - I must have misread your post. I had it in my head that you said you went Saturday afternoon/evening.


Too bad that's so far away for you to go to a different time - I have a friend who has a 7 year old, twin 2.5 year olds, and a 1 year old and they started going at 8am instead of 10am coz they found the kids behaved a lot better.

I guess maybe anything is worth a try at least once?
Our parish is a network of 3 churches so it's our same priest at the other church I mentioned...and they have a cry room there...and there's a good network of young families there so I have thought about going to that Mass partly because she may behave better earlier in the day and partly because she'll see other children there and may learn to emulate good behaviors if she sees other children sitting doing so. I may have to give it some more consideration - it's really just the distance and having to get her up so early to get there that holds me back from trying it.

Yes, we're in an unusual situation with our Mass times, being in a rural area where there are so few churches and even fewer priests. I'm just thankful we even have a church in our town!
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