What could be worse than your child throwing a tantrum in the middle of Walmart? Perhaps broadcasting it to all of your friends and family to see.
But dad Terrel Rico Relz Crawford didn’t seem embarrassed when his 3-year-old daughter broke down into tears after her mother took a cellphone out of her hands. In fact, he embraced the situation and turned on his camera.
Crawford took what could’ve been an uncomfortable situation for many and turned it into a teaching moment for his daughter, Ari, and other parents.
Then, he turned to her and said:
“Are you going to listen? Cause everybody see you acting a fool. I’m not taking you back into Walmart until you stop with your mess […] We don’t have to walk around Walmart with your mother, that’s a privilege.”
Crawford spoke directly to the camera and explained that he doesn’t mind when his kids throw tantrums, but he does have a problem when they keep yelling after he tells them to stop.Facebook
He said when children are spoiled, they can have a difficult time being told “no” and to “stop.” It’s important to teach kids how to take responsibility for their actions and to handle situations like adults:
“They will listen and they will be made to listen or they will get in trouble. I don’t beat my kids, my mom beat the hell out of me. I don’t do that to my kids. I take stuff from them and make them sit down. I look at them in the face and tell them, ‘I’m not bothered because I’m grown.'”
Toward the end of the video, his daughter stopped crying. She wiped the tears from her face, looked at her dad, and agreed to stop screaming in the store.
Crawford explained it isn’t always easy to be a good dad, or even a good person, but he sometimes has to be firm with his children and put up with public tantrums in order for them to learn:
“Being an African-American father, in general in the world, you don’t get that much credit. Being a father in the world in general, we don’t get as much credit. But I’ve always worked against that. It never mattered what I went through personally, I always wanted to be a great father to my children.”
In an interview with Dearly, Crawford said he wanted to tell parents that patience is key to being a good leader in the family:
“One must learn that we are in the same boat as the child. We have to be on the same page at the same speed, accepting the same energy AS IT COMES.. There’s no magic spell it right or wrong in this. It’s simply trial and error lol try and repeat, works sometimes not at all times. Each and every situation is different so access it the same but pick and choose how to handle it correct with no damage or least amount as possible. Over all, stay blessed and stay motivated, peace love and happiness!”
But he noted that sometimes it can be difficult to be stern with his beautiful daughter:
“It breaks my heart, especially when I really have to be stern with her.”
He told USA Today he chose to be a patient parent in order to teach his children not to act violently when responding to a threatening situation:
“They know that we’re, you know, black, white, Mexican. They’re gonna face something eventually (where) somebody’s gonna be so evil and negative towards them that they’re gonna want to lash back. I teach them all the time that you always have the choice to not do it. Remember that.”
Crawford is a motivational speaker, vlogger, message therapist, and dad in Howard, Ohio. He told USA Today he realized how important this topic was after it went viral, though he noted there are many other ways to parent children.
He hopes to start a blog with his sons to teach about spending quality learning time together.
As previously reported by Dearly, there are many different ways for parents to handle public outbursts. Parenting associations recommend that parents should handle public outbursts by getting down to their eye level, explaining the situation, leaving a public space, and listening to them cry.
Hand in Hand Parenting wrote it can be difficult for parents to handle public outbursts because tantrums are considered unacceptable:
“We live in a society that has a demanding and judgmental attitude toward parents and young children. Often, the attitude toward children in public is that they should be seen and not heard, that the parent should be in control of the child’s behavior, and that children who are having tantrums in public are a nuisance. In short, children are not fully welcome.”
But, as Crawford noted in the video, he didn’t care about what was considered acceptable. He cared first and foremost about being a good dad.
After Ari stopped crying, Crawford picked his little girl up from the hood of the car and carried her back into the store to join the rest of her family.