Advanced search

To be struggling with my son's behaviour

(19 Posts)
Elledouble Sat 11-Mar-17 19:13:57

My son is 22 months old. He's going through a stage we're really struggling with at the moment.

He's just so destructive - he's always loved books but he just wants to scrunch and rip at them now. He throws things, hits us, bites us and I'm just getting worried there's something wrong with him. We warn him and then put him in time out when he keeps doing something, we explain why we don't like the behaviour, we take things away when he throws or damages them. Nothing seems to make any improvement at all.

I had PND and was hospitalised when he was 5 months old. When I was well enough, when he was about 1, I went back to work full-time and so he's in nursery for really long days. Even they've had to talk to us about his behaviour - yesterday he bit another child and they had to put it in the incident book.

My partner (his dad) finds it hard to keep calm sometimes, I've told him he isn't modelling the kind of behaviour we're asking for but he claims he can't help it. So it's like having two toddlers round here sometimes.

I just worry that I've damaged him inadvertently and that it's all because he's hurting in some way. He's my first child so I don't know how much of this is normal.

So AIBU to be so worried?

mummymeister Sat 11-Mar-17 19:18:26

so, your partner behaves like a toddler and has an uncontrollable temper and you blame yourself because you were ill after your child was born!! come on. just read that back to yourself. your child will have no memory of what happened when he was 5 months old but he will remember seeing his daddy getting crosser and crosser wont he.

the key to this behaviour is consistency. both of you need to deal with him in exactly the same way. he needs to know that actions have consequences and if he misbehaves things are taken away or put away.

your partners behaviour will undoubtedly affect your child and he needs to be told this by you, loud and clear. basically he needs to grow up so that your son can. good luck op.

harderandharder2breathe Sat 11-Mar-17 19:25:35

You haven't damaged your child flowers

Your partner needs to grow up and be the adult and deal with toddlers behaviour.

It doesn't sound awful or out of the ordinary for his age btw (DS now not DH!) of course it needs dealing with as you are. But it's not a sign that you've failed as a parent or anything. Just normal toddler naughtiness.

thethoughtfox Sat 11-Mar-17 19:28:47

Don't put a baby in time out! They need to reconnect with you. Time out will have the opposite effect. There's a good book called Toddlercalm which explains why they behave the way they do at each stage which helps you understand and not get so cross with them, and gives gentle strategies to deal with this. The Sears' behaviour book is great too. Good luck x

Elledouble Sat 11-Mar-17 20:16:47

Oh aren't you supposed to put them in time out? We only stand him in the corner and explain to him why what he's done isn't nice sad

livingthegoodlife Sat 11-Mar-17 20:27:27

My 26 m old is very similar. My HV has given lots of help. Staying calm is key and continuity. I'm still in the depths so can't offer much help. I was advised to use time out.

Believeitornot Sat 11-Mar-17 20:28:25

What is your partner doing? That he can't help hmm

IamFriedSpam Sat 11-Mar-17 20:29:53

It sounds well within normal range of two year old behaviour. They have very little ability to control themselves at that age so while you're doing the right thing by telling him that X Y Z isn't acceptable behaviour you're not going to see immediate improvement because he just doesn't have the self control- it'll come. He's probably tired too being in nursery for long days but that will improve too as he gets older. Just got to make sure dad sorts himself out!

Elledouble Sat 11-Mar-17 21:29:51

So my son isn't satan spawn?

His dad is very hands on, he tries to do his best but he does have a short fuse. I've tried to explain that he can't ask our son not to lash out when he's frustrated when he can't do the same.

Moanyoldcow Sat 11-Mar-17 21:53:19

Google 'staylistening' - it will give you some alternatives to time out.

I have a short temper which I'm really working on (no hitting or anything like that) and have found ways to keep calm and model better behaviour.

One thing which has helped my son's behaviour is 'special time' where we dedicate time to him that he leads and we follow (within reason). We are closer for it and relate to each other better.

His behaviour is normal stuff - I found 2-4 a very difficult age to parent. You are doing great. Your illness is not to blame at all x

TittyGolightly Sat 11-Mar-17 21:57:08

Holy crap. He's a baby. He doesn't understand his emotions so how could he understand time out?!

Quartz2208 Sat 11-Mar-17 22:01:47

Have you looked into what the average 22 month old is like you seem to be treating him and expecting him to behave like a child twice his age. He has no idea.

Your unrealistic expectations I think maybe the cause of a lot of it

WorldWideWish Sat 11-Mar-17 22:07:28

When my DS2 was around this age he went through a hitting phase - it was so frustrating, as I just couldn't figure out how to stop him! Don't blame yourself, this is normal at this age. Keep being firm, and quite soon he will reach the age when you can reason with him.

Believeitornot Sun 12-Mar-17 07:47:05

Is he hitting your toddler?hmm

Elledouble Sun 12-Mar-17 09:17:36

God, no! He shouts, but he's not violent.

IHeartKingThistle Sun 12-Mar-17 09:20:41

I used short amounts of time out at that age - they're not stupid. But no long winded explanations. A very firm NO goes a long way. When my son started hitting he got NO and got put on the bottom step for a minute or so. Every single time. It worked. But I was a bit strict!

watchoutformybutt Sun 12-Mar-17 09:28:41

He's still basically a baby. I really do sympathise though. With my son I used to be tearing my hair out and we tried time out way too early, we just wanted something to "work". In hindsight he wasn't being naughty he was just being a toddler. He's now 4 and very much capable of being naughty and we deal with that in an age appropriate way. His sister is 20 months now and now I get that it's not just naughty behaviour but just their development stage it's easier to deal with.
They won't understand time out, they don't have any negotiation skills or impulse control really. Distraction and consistency are probably your best bets. With biting and hitting I would suggest showing you're upset or feeling hurt, try to encourage empathy when he hurts someone and always model "kind hands" "kind feet" etc. If you're having to use excessive amounts of time out it's not effective.

watermelongun Sun 12-Mar-17 09:43:12

Bloody hell its no wonder the baby is acting up - it's not on to shout at a 1 yr old shock obviously a firm voice is needed sometimes but if heaven g shouted at by your DH then it's going to have an effect on his behaviour. Your DH has to stop lashing out like this!

MatildaTheCat Sun 12-Mar-17 10:22:10

He's a baby. Ask your HV for some help with managing his behaviour and agree with dp that you will parent consistently, that's so key all the way until they leave home, frankly.

Stop looking for blame and focus on positives. Lots of praise and cuddles for behaviours you want to encourage and moving away from less desirable behaviours with a firm 'no'. If he can't handle books nicely ( he's too young to understand) only have them out when he's closely supervised. It's really draining but changing attitudes from a repetitive negative cycle to a repetitive positive cycle is transformative.

It will get better. My ds was a biter. Oh the shame. He stopped and became a rather nice child and adult.

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: