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How do you react to a naughty baby?

(60 Posts)
AvrilH Sat 26-Sep-09 13:56:24

My 8 month old DD has just learned to crawl. She goes directly to the few things she is not allowed to touch and cackles with glee as she touches them while looking around to see my reaction.

So far I have responded with "Ah Ah", picking her up and moving her elsewhere. She thinks this is a great game and goes directly back to the radiator. Obviously my response has had the opposite effect to the one intended. So what should we be doing?

SausageRocket Sat 26-Sep-09 14:00:34

she is an mo baby. She is not naughty.

Continue with what you are doing but say 'No' firmly instead of 'ah ah'and move her away from the object. She'll learn. She's just curious and pleased with her new skill!

serenity Sat 26-Sep-09 14:02:36

Firstly, babies can't be naughty (too young to deliberately do things they shouldn't) As to what you're doing, sounds good to me. Welcome to the joys of a moving child grin You either move them (over and over and over again, until they get bored), distract them with something else, or move the thing they're after (or put something in the way so they can't access it)

Good luck!

GirlsAreLOud Sat 26-Sep-09 14:02:44

She's not naughty.

Just say no and move her.

And try not to label her with negative personality traits.

serenity Sat 26-Sep-09 14:05:56

That's a big crossposting consensus on the 'naughty' thing then smile

ruddynorah Sat 26-Sep-09 14:10:19

look up 'treasure baskets'.

she isn't naughty, she's curious. just as she's supposed to be smile

Jojay Sat 26-Sep-09 14:13:57

There's no such thing as a naughty baby! She's just curious, that's all.

With ours we've child proofed the room as much as possible but then let them get on with it, to a degree. At 8 months, she's not going to undertand if you tell her not to touch - it's different as she gets older and her understanding grows.

With things like radiators, imho they have to learn by their own mistakes. She's not going to seriously burn herself on one, but she'll soon find out that they're hot.

smallone Sat 26-Sep-09 14:18:18

[snort] at 8mo being naughty! Shes playing the game that you started. Move/baby proof anything dangerous or that you don't want touching. If there is anything left immovable then you just have to be on your toes and distract before she even gets there. We say "AH" too but in a short sharp sort of way, it was usually enough to startle dd enough to get to her in time to stop her doing anything dangerous. If you say it with a sing-song voice and a smile she won't understand that you don't want her doing it. FWIW if she burns her finger on a radiator, she'll certainly get the point! We used baby signing with dd and by saying/signing "AH - HOT" I think it was easier to understand why not to touch whatever it was. Esp once she learned what hot was!

AvrilH Sat 26-Sep-09 14:54:38

Thanks all!

I do still think she is being naughty, as she is doing things to get a reaction from me. Testing boundaries if you like. I don't think it is negative or bad for babies or children to behave in that way.

It is just that she is so cute doing it, it is hard to be stern and not smile.

dittany Sat 26-Sep-09 14:59:52

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Sidge Sat 26-Sep-09 15:06:41

She's not being naughty. She's learning about the world around her and your responses to her behaviour. It's all part of her social development.

Choose your battles - if you don't want certain things touched or picked up then move them or gate them off. Don't get bothered by her playing with some things, after all does it really matter if she plays with the remote control/door stopper/shoe rack (I know you didn't list these I'm just using them as an example).

Rindercella Sat 26-Sep-09 15:23:06

Your 8 month old DD is not being naughty, nor even testing boundaries. She has just started to be able to roam around under her own steam, so she is exploring the world around her. I would think it would be far more concerning if this weren't the case tbh.

I agree with Sidge on choosing your battles. You can say 'ah ah' so many times, but it is far easier to actually remove whatever it is out of her way. Same goes for those kitchen cupboard drawers, etc...just make them child proof and you won't need to worry about her getting into them.

Please try not to view your DD as naughty - she is a tiny 8 month old baby who is curious about the fascinating world around her [wmile]

Rindercella Sat 26-Sep-09 15:24:00

ahem, that was meant to be a smile at the end grin

slowreadingprogress Sat 26-Sep-09 15:29:24

Agree it's inappropriate to call her naughty. She's playing a game with you that's all. She's learning about cause and effect - she has realised that doing A) can cause B) and it's fun for her. It's completely natural, appropriate and healthy and it's what she should be doing in order to further her development.

Calling it naughty is very silly I'm afraid and where will you go when she's 3 and actually being naughty? If you label it like this now you'll only be giving her a label for herself - and kids are very good at living up to labels sad

You need to think in terms of baby-proofing your house rather than labelling this naughty behaviour.

slowreadingprogress Sat 26-Sep-09 15:31:29

in answer to your question what you should be doing is diverting her! get her attention away from the radiator and on to something else as quick as possible - don't just plonk her down but try handing her a toy or tickling her or just anything really. Diversion is key. And helps for years yet!

JackBauer Sat 26-Sep-09 15:34:36

You know when people mutter 'it was easier when they couldn't move' and say how parenting is wearing and non stop.
Well this is the start of what they meant.
She is not being naughty, she is exploring things she has, until now, only been able ot gaze at longingly.
Say no and remove it, or block it off, or let her carry on if it isn't dangerous.

Jux Sat 26-Sep-09 15:34:57

Like everyone else, my immediate thought on reading the title was "How can a baby be naughty? It's just not possible".

If there are things she shouldn't touch then put them where she can't reach them. It's not fair to put temptation in her way.

DH had a stand of family china (passed down from his great-gran) which was out in the hall. I warned him over and over again, but he refused to move it. One day, sure enough, dd pulled herself up on the very unstable stand and pulled it over. Everything was smashed. Was she naughty? No. Was dh stupid? Yes.

TwoManyFallsAndYouGetABadScore Sat 26-Sep-09 15:37:01

Avril, she is not being naughty. She is 8 months.

Tresure baskets are a great diversion. Loads of info on here if you do a search.

LeninGrad Sat 26-Sep-09 15:48:51

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

tootyflooty Sat 26-Sep-09 15:51:53

an 8 mths old can't test boundaries, she is exploring her surroundings ,and getting you to react to her actions is natural not naughty or contrived, just say no firmly and move her, she will get the message eventually, or distract her with something else.

Countingthegreyhairs Sat 26-Sep-09 15:53:28

A good tip is to clear out a low cupboard in the kitchen and fill it with safe, unbreakable stainless steel pans (or just the lids) and plastic bowls and wooden spoons and then just let your baby get on with it ...

A cardboard box would work just as well if you don't want her in the kitchen ...

TwoManyFallsAndYouGetABadScore Sat 26-Sep-09 15:56:27

That is a good idea counting, I remember now that DD sat for ages playing with the tupperware and wooden spoons I'd put in a cupboard. She was obsessed with it.

MrsBadger Sat 26-Sep-09 15:58:31

...and my 2yo still does it - it's now called the 'tea party cupboard'

lilymolly Sat 26-Sep-09 16:01:56

agree its not naughty, just normal exploratory play. She is way too young to be naughty, however I do think she is not to young to be told "no" when she is touching something inappropriate.
She will (hopefully) eventually learn not to go near it again hmm

Agree with the treasure box idea and also the idea of giving her some access to cupboard items like pans and spoons for her to explore.

LIZS Sat 26-Sep-09 16:02:21

She may be seeking a reaction but it isn't out of mischief - more to check you are there and react in the same way. Distraction is the route to go down - remove from any danger with a firm "no" and offer other things to do instead. She won't remember for too long yet, so reinforcement is required each time. If you start saying no to things out of prure conveneience it will confuse her and frustrate you. Remove breakables etc and leave a bare minimum for her to touch.

tbh if you insist she is naughty now , you will struggle more when she does become more consciously testing later on . Relax while you still can !

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