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Dad & Grandpa Caught Watching Their Toddler Have A Tantrum In Grocery Store Explain Why They Did Nothing

Photo: @justinbaldoni / Instagram
Justin Baldoni, father, toddler, tantrum

Parenting children is no simple task, and any parents of toddlers can attest to that.

With heightened emotions and no formal way of expressing them, especially if they are still learning to speak, being a toddler is no easy feat either.

This is the message that one father wished to send after posting a photo of his toddler daughter on a grocery store floor in full-tantrum mode, with himself and his own father standing over her.

The father explained why he did not intervene or attempt to correct his daughter’s behavior.

The dad claims that he and his father did 'nothing' to stop the toddler's tantrum to allow her to experience the emotions she was feeling.

Justin Baldoni, actor and author of “Man Enough” posted an Instagram photo in 2017 that depicted himself and his father, standing over Baldoni’s then-one-year-old daughter, Maiya, as she was facedown on the floor of a Whole Foods grocery store having a temper tantrum.

The photo was captured by Baldoni’s wife, Emily.

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The two men look at the toddler silently as she experiences the flood of emotions she cannot verbally express.

“Two men, standing together in silence, forever bonded by an unconditional love for both each other and this brand new, raw, and pure soul who we would both go to the ends of the Earth for,” Baldoni captioned the image which he calls one of his favorite photos with his dad.

“I can only imagine how many times I did this when I was her age.”

He recognizes the hardships of being a toddler and emphasizes that he tries to have patience and compassion with Maiya every time she has trouble managing her emotions.

“Our children are learning and processing so much information and they don’t know what to do with all of these new feelings that come up. I try to remember to make sure that my daughter knows that it’s OK that she feels deeply,” Baldoni wrote.

He also has an important message to parents when their own children throw public tantrums.

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Baldoni encourages parents not to feel embarrassed by their children’s behavior and not to parent based on what everyone else thinks.

“My dad taught me so much about what it means to be a man, but this post is about one thing and one thing only: being comfortable with the uncomfortable,” he shares.

“There are no perfect parents, but one thing my dad taught me is not to parent based on what anyone else thinks. My dad always let me feel what I needed to feel, even if it was in public and embarrassing.”

Baldoni adds that his father never interrupted his tantrums with “don’t cry!” or “you’re embarrassing me!” which he only realized how poignant it was on his emotional development.

Baldoni plans on parenting his daughter the same way. 

“It’s not embarrassing to me when she throws tantrums in the grocery store or screams on a plane,” he wrote. “Let’s not be embarrassed for our children. It doesn’t reflect on you.” 

Baldoni also acknowledges the importance of adults feeling big emotions as well.

“If we got out everything we were feeling and allowed ourselves to throw tantrums and cry when we felt the need to then maybe we’d also let ourselves feel more joy and happiness. And that is something this world could definitely use more of,” he added.

Baldoni’s post quickly went viral and gained the attention of many people who praised him for his message.

“So proud of a dad who does beautiful things,” one Instagram user commented.

“Thank you for being open to showing men a new way of seeing themselves. It’s so important!” another user wrote.

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Other parents revealed that after seeing Baldoni’s post, they are attempting to incorporate his parenting methods to raise their own children.

“I struggle with this all the time, I am the culprit of telling my four-year-old to stop crying but over the past year I’ve been trying to make the effort to let him know that he can cry and asking if there is anything I could do to make him feel better,” one parent shared.

“I agree that children should be allowed to feel the full range of emotions and not be embarrassed or scolded. This is critical in raising emotionally aware humans.”

Others pointed out that parents should not be concerned about the judgment of others when their children are having tantrums since most people are occupied with their own lives and likely do not notice.

“I feel like when our children do these things we automatically think everyone else is watching and judging but if you look not one person in this picture is even looking,” another user noted of Baldoni’s picture.

Baldoni’s viral post and message remain relevant to parents of toddlers everywhere.

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Megan Quinn is a writer at YourTango who covers entertainment and news, self, love, and relationships.