Little dilemma arose at play group the other day - 1 yr old DD was lying down playing with a squidgy toy when a boy crawled over, snatched it and then thumped her in the head with it. It must have been quite a bash as she actually cried: she's usually so laid back it takes a lot to shock her into tears! I picked her up and calmed her down - but the boy's mum didn't do ANYTHING - even apologise! I don't know how old the boy is, but he must be around the same age as he's not walking yet. While I appreciate there's only so much you can do to tell off one so young, what do people think about how to deal with such a situation? Should I have given him a telling off in the absence of any from his actual parent, or should I have said something to the mum or what?
I wouldn't tell off a baby that young - maybe said "oh, be gentle!" and picked up my baby, but don't see the point in telling him off. Maybe the mum should have apologised but at that age they aren't being malicious or naughty.
When DS2 was that age, I was in zombie mode 24 hours a day I was that tired. I really wouldn't have noticed if he'd have taken an axe and hacked another child to death! Not that he ever did something that bad, but there were times when I realised after the event that another child had upset HIM and I was just kind of staring and not really SEEING if you see what I mean.
If the other mum actually did notice and just shrugged it off or laughed as if it was nothing then that would have pissed me off. But if she was just in her own world staring into space as I was at that stage then it's more difficult!
That's a fair point and one I hadn't considered! I'll be back at the same group next week and will keep an eye on him if he's there - he seemed a pretty boisterous little lad, which could explain a possible 'own-world-ness'....
I would have dealt with it the same I would if it were my baby doing the 'hitting', a 'No, we don't hit'. I realise a bit useless for such a young baby but you might aswell get into the habit. I would then remove my child, comfort, get another toy and keep an eye out in future.
I wouldn't make a big issue of it with such a young baby but it would've been appropriate for the mum to have said something, eg. 'I'm sorry, is your DD OK?'.
There are certain children at the playgroup I go to with DS that are more inclined to lash out so I just make sure I am sitting next to DS if he is playing with these to prevent the hitting/kicking before it occurs.
Likewise, while my DS was going through a itting phase, I made sure I watched him like a hawk so he never hit any children at playgroup.
Just keep watching and comforting if your child gets hurt, at this age. The only exception is if a child bites mine, in which case I would always approach the adult and ask him/her to reassure me about the child's health. Even with older children, if you don't know the child you can't assume they are on the same page developmentally, as they may look. A child with a developmental problem might look old enough to comprehend a request not to hit, but might not be able to comply. You just have to be vigilant for your own child.