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AIBU to expect a 3 year old to be disciplined after bitingy 3 year old.

(32 Posts)
Cuppaand2biscuits Mon 16-May-16 19:20:50

I have a very lovely friend who lives close to me. Our older children are in the same class and our younger children are the same age.
Her dc is quite aggressive towards mine, he hits, pinches, bites and pushes for no reason. I assumed it was a nasty phase bur I've really had enough now. Today he bit my dc for no reason at all, my friend made sympathetic noises to my son and apologised to me. Her child was not told off, all she said to him was that he made my son cry.
I've been thinking about it all afternoon, I feel like it's been tolerated for so long that it's become no big deal, she didn't even react. I worry that my son has become the victim, and have encouraged him to stand up to him and tell him to stop when he hurts him but usually he either looks at me as if to say help or he crys.
I don't want to lose this friendship, I can't offer advice on how to deal with it because she hasn't asked for it. I don't know what to do.

DonkeyOaty Mon 16-May-16 19:26:57

Meet up sans children

limon Mon 16-May-16 19:34:16

He is only three . What kind of disincline do you think woukd be appropriate? When my child had bit another at three I had words ie: taken her to one side and explained that we do not bite other people as it hurts them which sounds like what she has done?

AndNowItsSeven Mon 16-May-16 19:36:37

Three year olds bite , explaining that he upset your ds was the right thing to do.
I think you are over reacting tbh.

FutureGadgetsLab Mon 16-May-16 19:41:53

He's three. Toddlers bite.

madein1995 Mon 16-May-16 19:44:50

I think getting the biter to apologize to the 'victim' would have been good too. If it keeps happening time out for 2 minutes so the biter can think on what he has done would be a good idea, but for the first few times telling them its not nice to bite and getting them to apologize would be fine.

MooPointCowsOpinion Mon 16-May-16 19:44:59

I wouldn't expect much by way of punishment as long as the mum said clearly no biting, ouch, poor [your DS] etc.

I would want to be right next to my child though and preventing this happening again. If they are having unsupervised time together, start insisting you both sit on the floor with the kids while you chat so you can prevent any more injuries. Prevention better than cure.

Cuppaand2biscuits Mon 16-May-16 19:47:11

I expected her to take him to one side and explain that what he did was not acceptable and would not be tolerated. He's 3, he's not a baby, he's well.old enough to understand that biting is nasty and hurts people. He's also old enough and clever enough to know their are never any consequences for his behaviour and he can continue to hurt because he gets away with it.

Atenco Mon 16-May-16 19:48:10

Been there, OP. My friend never said anything to her dd when she hit or bit my dd and I eventually got so fed up the friendship came to an end. Then my dd went into that phase and I was very strick with her about it but she did stop biting until the victim's mother insisted that her child hit back. She only tapped my dd (and burst into tears) but that was the end of the problem, oddly enough.

Witchinghours Mon 16-May-16 19:49:22

If my 3 year old bit another child I would explain to him why it was wrong, make him apologise and take him home. Yes he's only 3, but I would make it clear that biting has consequences.

If your friend is treating her DC's rough behaviour like it's no big deal, that will be the message to her DS. I would stop play dates for now, they don't sound fun for your DS.

FutureGadgetsLab Mon 16-May-16 19:49:39

Thibk you're being precious OP. Obviously it's upsetting, but saying "that's not nice!" is enough for a 3 year old.

He's a toddler not a Machiavellian super villain.

Iliveinalighthousewiththeghost Mon 16-May-16 19:53:20

Yes children will be children. They bite scratch push hit. It's just a part of their development and growing up.
However A little "Say you're sorry for biting little biscuit. That was not nice. So many people seem to have an aversion to children being disciplined. It doesn't harm them honest.

Cuppaand2biscuits Mon 16-May-16 19:56:56

I know that toddlers bite but isn't it our job to make it clear that it's not acceptable?
She really didn't react, he did it, said he hurt him with his teeth and walked off. She didn't fetch him back or go to talk to him, just called after him . Its not just happened the once, it's every time we see him.

coldcanary Mon 16-May-16 19:58:48

Ive had a biter of the same age, it's mortifying.
Taking the child to one side and explaining in a simple way that it's unkind to bite and asking them if they would be upset if your DD bit them would be appropriate (along with an apology) at that age. That's pretty much all that could happen but it's better than nothing. YANBU.

WellErrr Mon 16-May-16 20:00:52

I have a three year old, and an almost 2 year old.

The almost 2 year old is a toddler. Toddlers bite. If they bit I wouldn't be too bothered, would do the whole 'ow, say sorry' etc.

The 3 year old is a little boy, not a toddler. He knows fine well that biting is wrong and I'd be extremely cross with him if he did bite anyone.


Iliveinalighthousewiththeghost Mon 16-May-16 20:01:55

Well maybe you need to stop meeting with the children. If it bothers you so much As it seems they don't get on.
The thing with children is. They're not adults where they'll. "OK, We don't like each other but we'll have to get along for X's sake. If children don't like each other. Then that's it. They won't put on pretence.

honkinghaddock Mon 16-May-16 20:02:51

If a child is persistently biting, hitting etc you need to be right next to them to stop it before it happens. Disciplining after the event isn't going to be effective.

MrsTerryPratchett Mon 16-May-16 20:03:24

I expected her to take him to one side and explain that what he did was not acceptable and would not be tolerated. Your 3 yo must have better language skills than mine grin

She should have looked him in the eye and told him 'no'. I don't like forced apologies but I do suggest that DD apologises and I do it a lot myself. She's a very good apologiser as a result. Unlike the children who were forced and do sullen, resentful apologies.

ZenNudist Mon 16-May-16 20:04:19

I think you're overreacting too. It's known technique to deal with biting three year old to offer sympathy to the injured party and try not to give them too much attention from bad behaviour. It would be right to tell him no and explain it hurt your ds.

If it were me I'd do time out for a bite and possibly withdraw some other treat if one was scheduled (for the biter only) so they don't link bad behaviour with still getting what they want.

Sounds like this mum is a bit wishy washy with the discipline. Telling your ds to stand up to him is pointless. Ywnbu to avoid them for a while, just til her ds is out of this phase.

I think that's the best plan, just avoid her for a bit but don't make a big deal of if. Have errands or other unavoidable plans.

When you do get back together don't be afraid to tell her son off if she doesn't. You can't do time out but you can tell him no firmly and stop him from doing things that hurt your ds. You probably just need to be a bit more confident and robust about what you're willing to put up with.

BombadierFritz Mon 16-May-16 20:04:20

That age is definitely old enough to tell them off and have a consequence. I used to take my 2 year old home if he did that. I expect she just didnt want the hassle of actually doing something about it. How about not meeting up with kids for the next few months? Just explain its until the biting phase passes, which it will. Sometimes they become a bit obsessed by one particular child and always bite them. A bit of time apart will break the cycle.

Gasp0deTheW0nderD0g Mon 16-May-16 20:04:32

YANBU. 3 is old enough to be told that what he has done is not acceptable, not just have a very slightly reproachful look from his mum.

honkinghaddock Mon 16-May-16 20:05:55

Different 3 year olds will have different levels of understanding and self control.

DoItTooJulia Mon 16-May-16 20:07:57

But your friend the books- Teeth are not for biting, feet are not for kicking and hands are not for hitting.

You could tell her that her Ds being rough is upsetting your Ds and thought the books might help?

Oh I don't know actually-could be a bit PA.

wonderingsoul Mon 16-May-16 20:09:00

Hes 3.. hes old enough to be told no harshly and sent to sit down for a couple if minutes to think about hes behaviour.

Personally i would bring it up with your friend. But uf you sont want to i would ethier

A dealnwith it myself next time it happens ( i do this with friends children.. as they do mine....but i realise not everyone is comfortable with other people disapling their children)

B dont have play dates till hes stopped

snorepatrol Mon 16-May-16 20:12:32

YANBU and you're not being precious.
My child was a biter and at three years old if he bit anyone then I'd start with a gentle 'we don't do that because it hurts'

But if he was persistently biting, hitting and scratching the same child each time they met; then I would realise the gentle approach wasn't working.
I would give him a short time out each time he did it, until he realised this was a consistent, consequence, of his behaviour.

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