Mom Goes Viral on Social Media for Gentle Parenting Hack While Defusing Toddler Tantrums

Raising a child in the social media era comes with its fair share of benefits – for example, we’re now exposed to parenting hack after parenting hack as everyone shares their personal tricks to effectively, properly, and safely raise their child. Before social media, these things happened through word of mouth.

On November 19th, a 26-year-old mother by the name of Alivia Cromartie posted a rather interesting parenting hack on TikTok – while the video has since been deleted, she also posted it on Instagram. The video is roughly 30 seconds long, but it gives parents a way of calming their child down during a tantrum.

Instead of letting them use the tantrum to get what they want, the parenting hack is to distract them. For Cromartie, she does this by running around in circles around the house and creating a bit of a ‘controlled chaos’ around the child in the form of zoomies – also known as frenetic random activity periods (FRAPs). 

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Before being deleted, the parenting hack received more than 15 million views and has racked up more than 8,000 likes on Cromartie’s personal Instagram account. The video began with her 18-month-old daughter crying and screaming in the middle of the kitchen – according to her mom, she was hungry. 

In an effort to diffuse the situation, Cromartie starts running around the house. While her daughter is still crying after one lap around the house, she started letting out giggles the second time around. By the third time, her daughter was happy and would wait for her mother to come back around before giggling again. 

The tantrum only lasted a few seconds once Cromartie started running in circles. It’s a result the mother – who lives in Georgia – gets often, captioning the post, “Works every time!” with a crying emoji and hashtags – #gentleparenting #blackmotherhood #generationalhealing #toddlermomlife and #blackmom. 

In an interview with TODAY, the mother explained that “Icey gets upset when her food takes too long,” adding that she has done zoomies in the grocery store – even running up and down the aisles at times. And based on the comments and messages she receives, she’s not the only one having success with it.

What Are Instagram Users and Experts Saying About This Parenting Hack?

There might be some of you reading this and thinking to yourself – “What the heck are zoomies and is there any science behind it being used as a tantrum-reliever?” While the term ‘zoomies’ or ‘frenetic random activity periods’ is unknown to many, they’ve likely seen it in action if they have a dog or puppy.

Anyone with a dog has watched them randomly go completely insane for a few seconds as they run around the house frantically and uncontrollably. Known as ‘zoomies,’ researchers believe dogs do this when they have pent-up energy after several hours of under-stimulation – like when the owner is at work.

After the video was posted, mothers from around the world started chiming in with their own thoughts on the parenting hack. One user saw it as a win-win scenario that not only results in a happy baby, but a couple minutes of cardio exercise. Another user said it helps when you ‘redirect their thought process.’ 

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According to Rebecca Schrag Hershberg, PhD – in her book titled The Tantrum Survival Guide –parents should avoid telling the child how to feel or invalidating their feelings when a tantrum starts. They should also avoid lying to the child, using sarcasm during a tantrum, and taking the tantrum personally.

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