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3 year old biting

(10 Posts)
jabberwocky Tue 18-Jan-05 17:32:35

A friend's ds recently bit the daughter of another friend at a party (luckily my ds was home with dh). He was jealous because she was sitting on the lap of another adult and I guess getting more attention. Anyway, he rushed at her gritting his teeth, and latched on for dear life. He had to be literally pulled off of her and, though he didn't break the skin, he left very deep marks. I was horrified and thought it was really OTT behavior. Another friend (who is childless BTW) said I was overreacting and most children do this. So, was I wrong?

fostermum Tue 18-Jan-05 17:35:07

children do often go through a little biting stage usually between 2 and 4 i think

jabberwocky Tue 18-Jan-05 17:40:12

I guess I thought it was more like little nips. Is this type of biting behavior really common?

fostermum Tue 18-Jan-05 17:43:12

can be,dont know why they do it but with kids ive known only lasted a couple of days

Gobbledigook Tue 18-Jan-05 18:14:15

I think it's really common to have a 'phase' of it around 18 months/2 yrs. At 3 I must admit I wouldn't expect it but recently ds1 (3.10) bit ds2 for some reason (he only did it once and never again)and then at playgroup a friend (3.10) bit ds1 too but it's never happened again.

I think it's normal but it doesn't mean you have to like it! I was quite shocked when ds1 bit ds2 and when ds1 got bitten because I must admit I thought they were at an age where they didn't do it - seems I was wrong!

jabberwocky Tue 18-Jan-05 18:28:54

Thanks, GDG, my friend seemed to think it was unusual for me to be shocked about it. Another reason I was concerned about this particular child is that he tends to be quite physically aggressive when playing with the other children in general. I had thought that 3 was a little old to be still biting. The other thing is that any time he hurts one of the other children it seems to be quite premeditated. I have discussed it with dh and we are keeping ds out of the play group when this boy is there for now.

Catbert Thu 20-Jan-05 22:40:45

So how DO you deal with a persistent biter? I have one, and she goes in phases (she's 2 1/2). Sometimes I think we're through it, and then it starts happening again. Almost everything else "terrible" about the two's I can deal with, but this is driving me mad. She's been doing it for a long time.

She only bites children she knows well.

Usually under some sort of "sufference" (i.e. being wrestled to the floor, being crowded etc) although I have never seen this as "mitigating" circumstances (I always feel more cross with her for biting, than for the child in question having "provoked", I certainly don't have that "my child can do no wrong attitude).

I know why she does it - because it normally stops whatever behaviour she finds unwanted from another child immediately, and she does it almost as a reflex reaction... But...

And I am starting to lose my temper big time with her when she does it now, and although if she ever does it in a controlled environment (i.e. at home, or at a friend's house) I can take the more calm, remove her from the situation approach - what do I do like today when she did it to a friend in the pool because he was trying to climb on her back and take her toys away, and I have only just got in the pool with her and my 10m old baby...

It's easy to say "just take them home" but the hassle to get there, pay four quid and then have to get out and get everyone dried and home in floods of hysterical tears, kinda puts me off...


I also hate the fact that I am judged as some sort of bad parent who doesn't discipline because she bites.

Frizbe Thu 20-Jan-05 22:49:03

It's so tempting to say bite her back, but I guess that's not allowed these days, although it would certainly stop her.....

Catbert Thu 20-Jan-05 22:52:21

Although you can't bite back, I have told her to bite herself after one time, which she did, and shocked herself by hurting herself. I felt bad about it, but consoled myself by knowing I didn't inflict it upon her directly.

This did work for a while, and it did at least show her what biting is all about.

But she began again, and now won't bite herself anymore!

jabberwocky Fri 21-Jan-05 17:23:15

don't have any advice catbert but bumping this for you as I am interested in what others have to say about it.

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