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How do I deal with 17mth hitting?

(4 Posts)
milkyman Fri 28-Mar-14 13:11:43

My ds has started hitting me in the face when he is cross, frustrated, tired etc... He did it today at a friends house and also did the same to friends legs when we took a toy off him when he left. I know it's normal but felt very embarrassed that they probably thought I didnt deal with v well - their children were behaving well but he was whiney and making his 'uh uh' noise...

what do you do?

TeenageMutantNinjaTurtle Fri 28-Mar-14 13:50:01

We had this around the same age with our dd. We tried the firm NO approach but it actually just made her worse, she would do it for attention and then lie on floor howling when she got the NO. She was hitting me and her nursery friends 2-3 times a day and sometimes more.

So then her nursery suggested ignoring her. When she hit me (or anyone at nursery), we would sit her on the floor away from the situation without talking and turn our backs on her. She stopped hitting anyone within a couple of days and has never really done it since.

I know the firm NO thing has worked for lots of people, but it didn't for us - hopefully you'll get a couple of suggestions here and you can try a couple of different things to see what helps.

milkyman Mon 31-Mar-14 12:51:40

Thank you

nldm1 Mon 31-Mar-14 13:10:50

In our house, from the age of about 1, physical violence has always resulted in immediate "naughty/time out" step. All other bad behaviour gets the three warning rule, but we made it clear from the get go that physical violence was not going to be tolerated. Neither of our DC went through a sort of violent phase because we completely nipped it in the bud with this and this alone.
It's well worth bearing in mind that in a child, the same receptors in the brain that are triggered when the child experiences physical pain, are activated when a child is ignored. This doesn't cause actual physical pain, but it does create an undesirable feeling for the child and children are like sponges, they very quickly learn the concept of cause and effect. Eg. I hit, I feel icky. I don't hit, I don't feel icky.
Some children will take longer to connect the dots, but with our two, it was within a week of these violent outburst beginning that they stopped, and all without us getting angry or raising our voices or doing anything more than picking them up, putting them on the naughty/time out step and ignoring them for a minute. This minute was, of course, followed by an explaination of why they'd been given a time out and they were told to apologise. If they refused, they got another minutes time out.
It is very common, but with calm, controlled consistency, it can be dealt with quickly and easily.

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