Posted by: Kitty | 2012/09/14


To Purple and other mommies

My son is 10 months now, still a baby really, but he bullies the other babies in his class. He has quite a temper, and when he gets angry, he''''ll pinch you, or slap you, he really hurts you sometimes. We keep saying NO, and telling him he''s hurting you, but it does not seem to be working. Now it''''s at a point where his teacher puts him in his crib when the other children are playing on the carpet, because he hurts them. I don''''t know if he even knows he''''s hurting them. He''''s a very good boy, friendly and so cute. But this thing I don''''t know how to handle or what to do. When he was merely about 2 or 3 weeks old, he already had bursts of anger, which later on went away, but now I''''m wondering why he is doing this. He''''s very hard handed and rough when playing with things, throws it around, or shakes it, but very hard. Will this phase go away, or is it a sign of a problem. He''''ll also take whatever another child is playing wiht. It''''s as if he wants to be in control or dominate a situation. Is that even possible for a 10 month old???
Any advice will be appreciated

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Posted by: Kitty | 2012/09/14

Thanks P, that makes me feel a lot better. I''ll keep an eye out for classes, and try to attend some of them.

Reply to Kitty
Posted by: Purple | 2012/09/14

We all worry when our children behave like this.

No, at this age, your child has no idea that he''s hurting other children - afteralll, when he bangs his toys around, they don''t screech in pain. When others cry ow or cry - babies just think its an interesting sound and will often repeat the action to hear the sound again.
What I find helpful with my kids is to teach them to be gentle, so when they are playing with their toys or other children, if they are rough, I say " gentle"  and we stroke and gently pat the toy or child.

Being self centred is part of a baby / toddlers survival skills - if they weren''t and we still lived in caves, they wouldn''t get fed or have their needs attended to. Over time we gently teach them how to do things in a more socially accepted way and their need to be the centre of everyting diminishes.

Sorry I can''t offer any advice, but you might find it helpful to go along to a mom and baby class together - there are many, they all advertise int he baby magazines, as then you get to interact with your child with other parents and children of the same age, and the facilitators are usually very knowledgeable on childhood development and can give helpful tips.

Until they are around 3 or so, they have no concept of ownership or other kids feelings - so if they want what another child has, they will take it. Its quite normal. Although he doesn''st understand you, give him another item, take the contested item away, give it back to the child who had it and say " lets play with this until they''re finished"  - " we take turns" . Eventually over a few years the message sinks in.

You might want to go and visit some other creches and ask how they deal wtih situations like this and perhaps change his creche to one more interested in helping to teach the right behaviour than isolating such a young child. Separating children in such situations is helpful when they''re older, but at 10 months its not a long term solution. Try and find a creche where at least the owner and perhaps one or two of the carers has some training in early childhood development. I have found that these are generally better run with less panicking every time children do perfectly normal but undesirable things like biting or snatching.

Even the most well brought up children pick their noses, tell tales, snatch toys, refuse to share and behave like monsters on occassion.

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