Good ways to deal with a toddler who hits
July 31, 2011 6:41 PM Subscribe
How to deal with a toddler who hits?
posted by agent99 to human relations (28 answers total) 22 users marked this as a favorite
All right, so Baby99 is 22 months old and a really awesome baby. In the past month or so he's started getting much more aggressive. It's mostly with us (his parents), especially with me (his mother), though his daycare providers have recently told us that he's started pushing other kids (they say all the kids do it at that age and it's nothing out of the ordinary, so I don't think he's unusually aggressive). The problem we're trying to deal with is that he hits us when he doesn't get his way (countless examples from today, the most recent one from when I was putting him to bed and he got upset that it was time for lights out). I should say that he is also very affectionate with me when he isn't hitting me, but the hitting is getting old fast and we really want to curb it. He hits hard and he hits often.
We've been doing 1-2-3 time out type disciplining, and while it interrupts the behavior, it certainly hasn't diminished its frequency. Today we went so far as to abort a trip to the natural history museum because he was hitting me on the subway ride over there, so we just turned around and went home, explaining to him repeatedly why. This elicited a lot of complaints but it's not clear that he made the connection between hitting and lack of dinosaurs. Baby99 is way more verbal than other kids his age: he understands complex concepts, has a large vocabulary, and speaks in sentences, so he does understand what we explain to him (and often argues back, but that's another story . . .)
So, parents of toddlers and those who love them, what are some effective ways of dealing with toddler aggression?