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19 months hitting/throwing/pinching/hair pulling in temper

(21 Posts)
clemette Wed 12-Aug-09 23:54:48

I'm sorry if this rakes over old ground, but I wondered if anyone can give me some ressurance about DS?
1) He is a big thrower - of all things and he throws really hard. We have tried no/removing item/distraction but he simply picks up another item and throws that too.
2) He pulls his sister's hair very hard. He really twists it and makes her cry. He does say sorry and stroke her afterwards (if prompted) but will still keep doing it. We are currently trying the tactic of paying her lots of attention when he does it and ignoring him but it's not really working.
3) He also hits, pinches and throws things at us when he is in a temper. We have tried to stay calm and say no hitting and not giving in to his mini tantrums but sometimes he really hurts!

So - I was just wondering if anyone has been through this, and that, with patience and time, it resolves itself? Or is this a sign that he may be an aggressive child? My mum (who is generally not to be listened to) says we need to be much stricter with him (she believes in smacking and locking in his room - we definitely do not) and I was wondering if we were being a bit wishy-washy??

Anyway, with a four year old who exhibits teenage beahviour and our ASBO baby I am sometimes at my wits end. Any words of wisdom?
Thanks in advance.

NanaNina Thu 13-Aug-09 00:43:57

Definitely don't agree with your mother but think youmaybe need to take a more firm approach. I think supernanny would be thinking of a naughty step or something similar. I think time out is the best way forward - for a very short time as he is still very young.

i certainly don't think this means your son is an aggressive child and I think throwing in particular is very common in little boys for some reason.

You are of course doing exactly the right thing in staying calm but I think you need to covey to him that he must not do these things and maybe timeout is a first step. Worth a try anyway!

Good luck and I'm sure there will be more useful posts for you soon

clemette Thu 13-Aug-09 09:31:19

Thank you. I feel very strongly that he is too young for any form of time out (all I have read suggests that it can't work until they are at least two). But thanks for the reassurance that he will grow out of it!

Hollyoaks Thu 13-Aug-09 09:38:46

My dd is 18 mo and gets put on the naughty spot if she nips kicks etc.. and ignored when she has a tantrum. The tantrums arent getting less frequent but seem to be getting shorter (i hope).

I have found the naughty spot effective as a deterrant for her and she doesnt like it when she gets put on it. As for the tantrums, I'm not sure you can do much to prevent them IME, just wait till they turn 2!!!!!!!!!!!!

clemette Thu 13-Aug-09 09:42:58

Thanks for your reply, as I said I have decided against the naughty step/time out for his age.
I was really wondering whether it was a normal stage for toddler boys, and something that they eventually grow out of.

LoveBeingAMummy Thu 13-Aug-09 09:45:45

My dd who is almost 17 mths does similiar in fact has now also started to bit herslef when mad shock

Hollyoaks Thu 13-Aug-09 09:47:00

Well I was just pointing out that it does work for children his age as I have experience of it, but if you don't want to try it then thats your decision. Its also something girls do as well so I think it is normal toddler behaviour. Out of ideas.

bubblagirl Thu 13-Aug-09 09:47:11

to be honest removing from room with a firm no hitting worked wonders wasn't time out just removing every time ds done it
he soon realised to play nice kept him in same room within a week he wasn't doing it any more just consistency with it ignore when removed from room firm dont hit

it is a phase but also needs to be dealt with this is the right age to start as ds grew out of it so quick the odd occasion he did do it i removed him again and he learnt the times he was removed was much less

if out the same again remove him from said child away from others and then again every time he did it with a no hitting or pushing whatever action was he'd soon go in and play nicely

bubblagirl Thu 13-Aug-09 09:48:52

lots of praise when he plays nicely after being told off and maybe a kiss for the person he hurt with a huge praise for being so nice

clemette Thu 13-Aug-09 09:51:29

Thank you. He doesn't hit other children, he only hits family wink.
Hollyoak, I didn't mean to be disrespectful - I just don't agree with time out for tiny tots. My DD (who is 4) occasionally has a mini time-out on the bottom step, but she fully understands why (and will stay there - there is no way DS would sit still and then I would be getting into the situation of holding him on the step which is too physical for our liking).

HumphreyCobbler Thu 13-Aug-09 09:54:57

the main problem with removing when you have a thrower is that they chuck things about in the other room instead and you're not there to stop them. My ds will throw chairs!!!

also it is not always safe when you have other children to just disappear out of the room

I think people who think you should just be stricter with toddlers are reaping the benefit of having more compliant toddlers. My ds just racks up the strop if I show that I am angry. I am a teacher who only had to look at a child to make them behave as well, so toddler tantrums came as a complete shock

I think you are on the right lines, just remember that it will pass. Loads of them do this. My older ds is screaming at the moment, I would welcome a return to the throwing!

clemette Thu 13-Aug-09 09:59:36

Thank you. I am also a teacher (well I was until July) and am shocked my death stare doesn't work. DH jokes that I should threaten them with detention!

Thank you for reassuring me that it will pass - that is what I was hoping to hear smile

bubblagirl Thu 13-Aug-09 10:03:13

well maybe have a quiet corner you could move him to in the same room as you and just ignore for 1 min then let him play again if he does it again move him back again
it really is worth doing i have a friend who done nothing and now no one wants to take there children round there he hits pulls there hair and is at an age where he should know better his over 3 now she says its normal behaviour but we all know its not

my ds was well out of the stage by 2.6 and have had no problems since i wasn't strict just made it look more fun to play nice if you didnt you wasn't part of the fun play lots of praise for good behaviour and all was well

it is normal for this age test boundaries but its also right for us to teach correct behaviour its confusing for them to be allowed to hit and throw and have no reaction to one day being told off its mixed messages and causes frustration in itself

clemette Thu 13-Aug-09 10:12:08

I do teach correct behaviour - he is not allowed to hit and throw - I just choose not to use the time out/naughty corner idea. If I put him on the floor there is NO WAY he would stay put for one second never mind one minute so the situation would escalate into a battle.
We model good behaviour, use lots of praise, and insist on "sorry" (even though he is too young to actually understand). As I said before, we take things off him if he throws, and firmly say "no hitting" if he hits.
I don't mean to seem dismissive, but we have thought long and hard about the implications of physical removal. Even Jo Frost doesn't recommend it for under twos!

I am not really after tactics (we will keep plugging away with our techniques) but just some reasssurance from those with older children that aggressive behaviour at 19 months doesn't equate to aggressive throughout childhood!

HumphreyCobbler Thu 13-Aug-09 10:12:50

you can't ignore a child who is throwing stuff around, thrashing on the floor, or banging their head on stuff though!

I do agree that being consistant is key, I think the approach outlined in the op will work. And that praise of good behavior is necessary.

I did what the op said she is doing with regards my ds when he was that age, he grew out of it. So that approach can work too (until the next bit of behavior comes along!)

bubblagirl Thu 13-Aug-09 10:19:37

oh dont get me wrong im not saying your doing anything wrong just explaining how i tackled the behaviour not saying you have to do that yes they will grow out of it and its good your modelling correct behaviour your doing all the right things i didnt do real time out until he was 2.4 and have never had to use it since before he was 3 he is now 4 one look from and the threat of time out he stops as i was consistent and he knows i'll follow through

keep your chin up your doing good we all choose different methods that were comfortable with and yes they do grow out of it if taught right in whatever way we choose to teach its just consistency and large glass of wine at the end of the day lol

RumourOfAHurricane Thu 13-Aug-09 10:28:13

Message withdrawn

clemette Thu 13-Aug-09 11:21:49

Phew - I will carry on riding it out.
The irony is he is an angel at nursery - no aggression at all!!

moanieminny Thu 13-Aug-09 12:58:20

Hi Clemette,

Greast thread. My DD1 ist 22 mths and the same...obviously not just a boy thing. Tried the naughty step thing and didn´t work anyway so you are right re age!

May have to buy helmet and protective clothing until phase is over....hmm

Supercherry Thu 13-Aug-09 16:47:56

Clemette, I think you are doing the right thing, just keep at it, he will learn eventually what behaviour is naughty. At 19mths, I don't believe he would have the understanding to know that the behaviour is wrong as such, just that it gets a reaction. He is acting on impulse, there's no malice in a child of this age. It's all just learning, and things take a long time to sink in.

It's normal behaviour, my DS 18mths loves to throw, I wouldn't call him aggressive though, you can tell he is just doing it because he likes to throw! All my friends with similar aged DCs or older say that they all go through the same phases.

I also agree that time out wont work at this age, he just won't have the understanding to link the behaviour with the punishment.

Shineon, I don't agree that a 'good old fashioned bollocking' is appropriate for toddlers either, or 'scary' voices, that's just modelling aggressive behaviour in itself, unless I've misinterpreted your post.

clemette Thu 13-Aug-09 19:10:51

If you find a face protector let me know! Thanks again for the reassurance

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