What To Do About Hitting

12 Replies
sterlinberlin05 - November 18

My ds is 3.5 years old. He doens't do it a lot but it almost like if I ask him to do something like wear his seat belt he might say no. Then I sternly tell him yes you are and sometimes he'll just slap me in the face!! Sometimes arm but usually face which I think is just because that's the closest. But could it be because he's embarassed? We don't whip him and he see's no violence between my husband and I. Maybe it's my neice I watch whos 5 and has an older sister?? I tapped his cheek today because he was being so ugly to me then slapped me and I just kind of reacted, I felt so bad but I'm so confused, If I correct him about it like grab his arm or just anything negative he start screaming and crying and kicking!! I don't want to hit him becuase I feel it might just teach him hittings ok but my mom was like slap his ass good one time and he'll quit but I don't think I can do that. It just seems like it's getting more and more frequent. He has always been so sweet and wonderful and understanding and it seems like since I've started watching my neice but I don't want to point any fingers and maybe its a faze? what do you think I should try??


another Karen - November 19

Hello, smacking kids has become such a controversal topic now. I guess you can read all the replies you get and see what suits you best. I agree with your Mum. It is hard, I had a situation with our 2.5 y/o dd the other day where she kept taking her dress off repeatedly. I started to smack her each time she went to lift it up. I ended up putting her in her bedroom and clearly told her that she stay's in there until she keeps the dress on and stops crying. For a hectic half hour each time she quietened down I went in to find it off and thrown in the cupboard. So on it went with a huge struggle and tears and left her in there again until she went quiet, all the while avoiding talking and eye contact. This went on and on and on until finally I walked in, she handed me the dress, let me put it on, she took my hand and motioned for me to open the door. We walked out together and she climbed on my lap for a big cuddle. Anyway, smacking didn't help the situation this time, it may another. It is hard to be a big meanie but parenting wasn't meant to be easy. Try to remember that how you treat them now will determine how they treat you and the community you live later on in life. Best of Luck hey.


krc - November 20

LOL, my son is only 1 and a half and he is going thru this slapping me in the face phase. It doesn't matter how many times I pop him on the top of his hand, sternly tell him no, or whatever method I use, he seems to think it's funny. It drives me nuts!


SuzieQ - November 23

KRC - my dd is 13 mos old and doing the same thing. Luckily, she only does it when nursing, so I simply take her off the b___b and then she doesn't do it. It kind of drives me crazy though!!?


in the woods - November 23

If a kid was sweet all the time, I would start to worry. Growth includes testing the limits, it's a necessary step. I agree with your mom - once in a while a *shock therapy* would show them where exactly the limits are. With my 3yo who also would rather monkey around than do what I'm asking him to do, I use the "one-two-three" count, and somewhere between "two-and-a-half" and "three" he gets around to the business at hand, because he remembers what "tree" would mean.


Joanne - November 29

For direct defiance, I agree with a firm swat to the bottom. For other misbehaving, many times other things work like what "another Karen" said.


Mamabear - November 29

my son pounded me a few times, but I grabbed his arm just before he would swat me again, and I raised my voice and said "Hey! Mommy doesn't hit you! Don't you hit Mommy" A few times of that and the hitting seemed to stop. I think it was innocent because he would giggle.... but he now knows that kind of 'touch' is not acceptable. Sounds much easier than what you're going through tho..... I'm sorry, I know its frustrating. Go with your gut - if hitting back doesn't seem right to you, then don't do it. Best of luck!


Kelly K - December 19

Ironically what worked for us was me pretending to cry and saying it hurt. My daughter started crying and came up and hugged me. She has only hit me once since then and apologized right after (she still got in trouble though).


mjvdec01 - December 19

Have you tried time outs for his bad behavior? One minute for each year of age. Put him in a corner, sit and block it if you have to, don't let him come toward you and do not make eye contact. At 3 and a half he knows the behaviors is not good, so there is no need for a warning first. When he comes out remind him of what he did and why it is unacceptable and make sure to tell him that it is the behavior you don't like, not him. I started using this with my daughter at 19months and it has worked wonders for us. However it does mean that you have to be willing to drop everything for the punnishment, so if you are already in the car you have to go back inside the house. Another good thing to remember is that a bedroom should never be used for time outs, there are too many things for them to do in there. It needs to be somewhere where there is nothing for him to do but think. Use this for your niece as well. You may be able to get her to discontinue the behavior in your presence. Good luck.


amea - January 9

thank you for all your posts! I am dealing with hitting and bitting with my 15 month and with my 20 month cousin... when they are together it is always certin that someone is going to go home with a bruise. I wasnt sure it my 15 month old would understand time outs but i think i will start bring it in gradually and hopefully be able to convince my aunt to start with her little boy. thanks agian!


mjvdec01 - January 9

amea, they say to wait until 18 months to insitiute 'time-outs'. I hope you really do try it. If you follow the instructions I gave in my previous post IT WILL WORK! I was pretty specific in the instructions but if you need clarification on anything let me know. In the mean time with your 15month old, you can start l verbalizing that the behavior is not acceptable and that it hurts mommy when they behave that way, believe me they understand a lot more than we sometimes give them credit for. You do need to discipline at that age but it is just more verbal and eye contact than actual consequences. Let me know how it goes!


amea - January 10

Thanks MjVDec01 for your adviceiv just got one more Q.... my daughter dose not listen! and i know some of it is her age... but if i ask her to come see her toy or something like that she runs right to me but if we need to go brush her teeth or anything she really dosnt want to do she runs away or will complety ignore me.... its just so frusturating! im staring to relise that mommys need time outs 2!! lol


mjvdec01 - January 10

amea, do you have a changing table in her room? I brush my daughters teeth on the changing table and give her something to play with that she doesn't get any other time. I usually sing a silly song while brushing and then give her the tooth brush, while I change her diaper. Maybe you could try two tooth brushes and let her have one and help while you get the job done. As far as her not listening to you, she does hear you, she is just chosing not to respond. That is okay, my daughter did that at her age and now at almost two she knows that mommy is serious. Madalyn gets one warning and then that is it, it's off to 'time-out'. You do need to verbalize when she is acting up, and you have to make sure you get down on her level, wether she will look at you or not. Try not to grab her and pull her toward you, just get as close to her face as you can and tell her what she has done wrong, also, don't be afraid to take a toy away if she is abusing it. She will probably freak, but she will get the idea. I hope this helps.



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