I am in an unusual position at the library. I get to see things happen over and over. From this I learn patterns.
One of the patterns is the 3:30 to 4:30 crash. In general, small children tend to lose their minds between 3:30 and 4:30. Usually these are children below the age of six.
They need to have either had a nap or had something good to eat around a 2, in order to prevent this. Otherwise they tend to fall apart. They start to become cranky and they wail. Nothing consoles them. “Irritable” is a mild word to describe what happens. By “good to eat” I mean something healthy and nourishing – not candy, and not caffeine. Real food, not a snack.
Parents don’t notice this because they don’t see it happen over and over again like I do. They just think they are mis-behaving, when they just being small children. They can’t help it. It isn’t their fault.
They don’t have the capacity of self-regulating. Nor are they able to know how to ask for what they want. They just know they don’t feel good. So they wail. Don’t punish them for it – plan for it.
How many of us suffer from the exact same crash and we don’t realize it?