My daughter is 2, will be 3 in october. She seems to have a lot of anger that she cant deal with. As soon as she doesn't get her way, she screams, clenches her fists, grits her teeth and throws whatever is nearest to her. She is also very aggressive, she constantly hits and pushes my 15month old son - she made his nose bleed this morning. Usually its for no reason, if he just walks past her, she'll push him over. Sometimes it is obviously jealousy, and I try very hard to give them both equal amounts of attention. I have tried ignoring the behavior, using time out, talking to her about why she needed to hit him, why she's angry, giving her a soft toy/cushion to hit instead. I am about to try reward chart which worked very well with potty training, (although I'm not sure whether this is the right way to teach her that hitting isn't right). Nothing has worked so far, I dont really know what else to try. I'm at the end of my tether with it, and often find myself getting very angry with her in response to her behavior. Should I speak to a specialist, or is it just normal behaviour that I need to deal with?
My son is 3 and displays much of the same behavior. I have spoken to a couple of counselors about it, and may say that there is something underlying this type of behavior. I think my son's comes from his dad and me being split up. He often says he loves mommy and daddy, and I can tell he would be so happy if he and I were together.
I feel this underlying issue drives his anger. Is there something she might be trying to say by acting this way?
When I got married last October, my son's temper changed pretty radically at that time also. he has always been pretty temperamental, but he seemed to really change. He was often angry and he would hit me if he got mad, and other stuff like that. My counselor told me this was his way of dealing with the major change since he can't talk out his emotions.
Has there recently been any big change in her life? Does she go to daycare? Maybe something is happening at daycare that's making her angry?
As far as punishment, you would need to be VERY consistent when she does the hitting and pushing thing. Don't let her get away with it once. Try time out and a behavior chart. Take stickers from it when she's bad (hits, is mean, and pushes) and when she has had a good day, or did something nice, like share with her brother, give her a sticker.
Try these, if things don't get better, try to find out a GOOD child counselor in your area, and it wouldn't hurt to take her there, May sound crazy for her age, but I have also been referred by counselors to other counselors that are good with kids. They say no age is too young to start with that kind of help. They know ways to get into the child's mind, like by drawing and talking on their level, and watching reactions, and such.
It couldn't hurt, that's for sure.
The only thing I can think of that would make her behave like this is jealosy of her brother. Ever since day one, she has tried to hit at every opportunity. I couldn't leave them for a minute on their own when he was tiny, as she would sneak up and hit him over the head. I've started a sticker chart and we'll see how that goes. I had been very consistent with time out - for several months she has sat at the end of the hallway on her own for two minutes everytime she hits/pushes me or James, sometimes she would be sat there most of the morning because as soon as she'd come out of one time out she'd go straight into another! But it didn't seem to make any difference so I stopped. I tried time-in instead, giving her a cuddle and talking to her and trying to express her feelings for her. I think this may work better with her, she is extremely sensitive.
It's nice to know someone else has similar problems (not nice for you though!)
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