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How do you deal with a hitting, biting, hair-pulling toddler??
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How do you deal with a hitting, biting, hair-pulling toddler??

My 18 DD has always been strong willed and I know she does not mean any harm when she hits....she laughs and thinks we 're playing...but my lip got busted a few times and she is soooo strong!  I don't believe in spanking--I got spanked and told myself I would not do the same.  BUT I am sooo tempted sometimes.  I ususally tell her a loud NO! Take her and briskly place her on the floor in the corner or take her out of the room and tell her she can come back when she doesn't hit mommy.  Lately she is in to head butting---no one in my household does it so don't know where she picked that up!  SHe doesn't go to daycare, she is just in a difficult stage and I am just trying to figure out the best way to handle this.  (I am looking into daycare so that not only can I work from part-time to full-time but also to have someone else other than MIL watch her)  My MIL NEVER takes her outdoors or really plays with her ---she plops her in front of the TV which I am VERY against.

HELP someone Please before I lose it!!!!
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I never had problems with mine hitting or pulling hair, but they definitely went through the biting stage until i decided to give them a taste of their own medicine. I took the back of their arm and GENTLY bit down until they felt it. That cured their biting. They have no idea that what they are doing is actually hurting someone. So, by biting them back, they learned real fast that it does hurt.
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210400_tn?1325384170
Wow I wish I had some insight for you other than what you are already doing. When my son went through it I just continued to enforce that it hurt mom and not to hit. I tried to not pay a lot of attention to it because it seemed for a while it was his way of getting attention. Maybe this is her way of trying to get the attention she isn't getting when your MIL is watching her, since she can't tell you she is frusterated. I wish you the best, can't wait to see what others have to say.
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159354_tn?1286371288
Well - that fact at the end you said 'before I lose it'....is concerning.
I don't think you'd intentionally hurt your child but if that is how you feel, I agree spanking is not for you.

Well.  I have what the new age people call a 'strong willed daughter' too.  I call her a down right 'brat' sometimes.
Everyone on here knows me and knows I adore my children and never felt the feeling of 'losing it' so spanking on the bottom was hard on me yes but it wasn't abusive or anything that some people make it out to be.  

I took to the spanking 2 times in her life because of her 'hitting'.  

For most - I'm unpoplar for this approach as some will argue spanking a child for hitting is just allowing the 'violence' or whatever they call it.

Look - my DD hit me twice.  I put her in her room and went to get her later.  Mind you I did all of this without speaking to her.  This was exactly one week after her 2nd birthday....I remember this week clearly.

I went to her room and she received a 'controlled spanking'- I never did it in the heat of the moment.....I've never been hit again.

Also - I wouldn't allow her to get out of time out when she is ready - then she is controlling her punishment.  You need to be the one to decide when it's time for her to get up.
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Sue, I know what you're talking about.  Ariella doesn't bite us but she bites everything that's around her, hits herself on the head (I don't know where she got THAT from) and does hit us from time to time.  I have punished her a few times with time outs but she didn't understand what that was so that didn't work.  I am very abrupt with her when she starts acting out and I tell her "mommy doesn't want to play with you anymore" and try to ignore her.  That usually makes her stop.  Our situation is alittle different since she's acting out mostly b/c of the "competition" she has at home.  Ameera might be doing that b/c she doesn't have adequate interaction during the day so she's expressing herself this way.  I think her being among other children might be very beneficial to her.  Good luck.
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203342_tn?1328740807
This is hard, I know! I feel for you! I also admire you for keeping your cool and not wanting to spank. So, kudos to you for that! :)
I'd say just keep doing what you're doing. Next time she slaps, hits, or pulls hair, I'd grab her hand and look her right in the eye and say very firmly "No! You do not hit Mommy." Then put her down. When she's being good, really praise that.
I'm watching a 2 year old who hits my dog sometimes or tries to pull the cat up by the neck. I know she doesn't mean to hurt them, she just doesn't realize that it hurts the animals. So I tell her to pet gently and take her hand and show her how to pet. I know you're  not a pet, lol, but maybe you can show her what a "nice touch" is as apposed to hurting. It takes awhile for them to figure out that their actions has consequences on others, I think. Just keep working on it.
As to having a strong willed child, I can relate! I have one of those too! One good thing about these type kids is that they make great leaders some day! Just hang in there and keep doing what you're doing. God bless!
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218870_tn?1240259255
am I understanding correctly?  You put her in her room, came back a few minutes later and spanked her?  Do you realize that she had no idea what she was being spanked for.  Children have a very short memory for things like that.  Punnishment needs to happen immediately.  If you are going to spank you need to do it right away.  I am not against spanking at all.  My son will receive spankings, however I will not hit him for hitting.  What is that teaching him.  At this age, children do not know how to show emotions.  They are suddenly feeling things they can not express.  This leads to frustration and hitting.  If they are frustrated and hit you, you get frustrated and hit them back...what are you teaching them?  If hitting becomes a problem and it seems like they need to get frustration out, you can teach them to hit something else, but not people.  you can give her a pillow to hit. I always used the coffee table to hit because it hurts them a bit to hit it so they wont hit as hard and you can make a bit of a joke out of the noise it makes to hit it.  It can go from nasty hitting to a fun making music.  I guess, using your hands for nice things instead of mean things is more fun type of technique.  Or you can try to figure out what the hitting is stemming from.  What is happening just before you get it.  Is she babbling something you dont understand?  Is she bored?  Take a closer look at what is going on around the hitting and see if you can figure out what the stressor is that is causing the hitting.  Otherwise, it could just be a nasty stage you ahve to wait out.
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159354_tn?1286371288
My DD knew and knows exactly why she received her spanking.
Maybe some children forget why they were sent to their room but my DD always knows.

I would never ever spank her (keep in mind I've done this twice in her life) without her knowing why.  With that said I'd never even punish her without her knowing why (time out, toys taken away).  We talk about everything.  And well - not every child is the same.  Some children may have a 5 minute memory or less while others have very long term memory.
(I do have a child development background - I'm not an idiot here).

She is now almost 4 and she has never hit me or bit or pulled hair since those 2 incidents.  It may sound horrible to you but it worked for us.

My DD will recount something that happened to her when she was 1 so that 60 seconds I left her in her room to think about what she did - she didn't forget.

And it's not like I went back into her room swinging.  I sat down talk to her and said exactly what was going to happen next.  I didn't spank her hard.  It was a tap with two fingers...it was the principal of the matter.  
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I just wanted to say to that maybe she is getting it from TV - you said your MIL is putting her in front of it a lot.

Even though the program itself maybe okay....commericials or advertisements for other shows/movies can be very damaging.  Heck - when my DD turned 18 mos and started watching television, we cancelled cable completely and she is only allowed to watch a video that we can control.

Also know that you are not alone....A lot of us have gone through it and Thank goodness it is short lived.
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165078_tn?1255610007
I sure did not see you as the spanking kind.  I am just kidding. My dd is only 11 months so of course I have not spanked her but I will say that I am not against it.  She will have time out but she will also get her little hands smacked if she does something wrong.  Obviously this does not "hurt" them but it is a way of showing disapproval and the end of your rope.  I hope I never spank her but I am sure with the signs she is showing already she will be.  She is too smart.  She knows how to take down the baby gate and is almost able to climb out of her crib and she is only 11 months old.  I obviously cant spank her for that - she is being creative in her own self harming way but if she were to touch the stove knowing I said it was hot I will smack those little fingers.  

Deanne - Again - we are really wanting more??? hahaha  What are we thinking.  oh yeah - they are so cute and sweet and cuddling the other 23 hours and 45 minutes of the day.
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LOL - yeah - I always swore I was the 'spanking' kind of mom, until I did it.  Those 2 times were the worst days of my life.  I took it way harder than her. But it worked...Do I regret it - kind of - but it had to be done that way.  It wasn't about me hurting her it was about the feeling she got.  The hurt emotionally.  Because I don't care what any mother says....when your child hits you.  It breaks your heart.  I was just showing her it feels...it wasn't about the pain it was about the emotional feelings it brings on.

Abby and I have a great relationship so I'm not worried that I destroyed her or anything.  Those 2 spankings didn't throw her into a life of violence...in fact just the other day at school.  We went to get the baby and had to go through the 2 yr old room.  Well there is this one little boy who hits me, pushes, pinches, scratches me every time I walk into the room.  (other parents too, not just me) Well he pushed Abby down - hard and started to hit her.  We quickly left and I told Abby - you should have pushed him back...sorry, bad parenting moment, but I was ticked.  He is always hurting her.  She says, no Mommy that isn't right, he would cry.  

She is such a good kid.  Always thinking of the cause/effect even in the heat of the moment....She gets that from Daddy.  She is such a smart and compassionate girl.

You know - every kid is different - We look at Jake and think - we'll never have to spank him.  He's so sweet.  I remember at 7-8 mos.  Abby would hold her breathe and kick and scream when not getting her way....Something about those strong willed first born girls....huh?  Maybe it's the Philly blood...LOL

Yeah - Be careful around the stove....Abby was burned when she was little.  And I was standing right next to her....she was (they are) so quick.  She pulled a cup of coffee on herself.  She had to have surgery to repair her skin.  It was awful.  
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165078_tn?1255610007
OMG - that is so scary.  Sorry you had to go through that coffee moment.  Now I will never drink coffee around her again.

I think girls throw the fits more then boys.  My Godson was so good always - he is now 8 and still is.  Eva already has a fit and I just dont know how she even knows to do it.  When she throws herself back I sit her in her pack n play and walk away.  She cries and then I will go back and get her.  I NEVER give her what she wanted even if it was a bottle.  that drives me NUTS.  she is going to hurt herself.

I do have to say that I would have told her to hit the little boy too.  That is a hard situation.  A co-worker just had a problem like that.  Didn't know how to go about a girl in 1st grade who kept hitting her daughter and the teacher and parents would not do anything.  2 school meetings and her daughter came home again with a mark on her.  her husband then took her and taught her how to throw a punch.  She really did not want to do it and so they switched schools.  Her husband wanted her to hit that little girl so bad.  I could see why I would too.  Violence is never the answer but that does P me off.

Eva will hit back, I always did and I turned out ok.  I was attacked on a bus by about 20 girls when I was 17 and I went down punching.  The first girl who hit me had a busted nose.  The rest beat me up.  Never back down I think is the answer.  I would punish her to no end if she were a bully but I also will teach her defense.

Yes, maybe it is the Philly Blood. haha I am from Grays Ferry so I was born to defend myself.

I do not have a temper I am a really kind person always helping everyone even stranger - Eva has a TEMPER.  Not sure where it came from. Any advice on making that go away?
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165078_tn?1255610007
Ask your MIL if she is going to put her in front of the TV to put on something like Sprout that way even the commercials are kid friendly.  I think the head butting is just a natural part of their development.  I am sure that is coming up next for me.  They are born with these little tempers.

My mother and mil watch my dd but she does get a lot of outside time.  TV is limited but it is on.  Sprout is the channel of choice and I really believe it helps in her development.  She picks up everything and then repeats it.  Her new thing this week at just under 11 months is "I DID IT".  One of those shows they say that.  I did it I did it.  so now she says it.

Sorry you are having a hard time, I am sure it will pass.  Good Luck.
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LOL - I do only ever drink hot coffee with a lid now.  She actually pulled it off the counter...with me standing right next to her.  I cried for a year blaming myself.  

Abby never defends herself at school.  Poor kid.  I had a big brother and a big sister, so I knew how to take it but also knew when someone crossed the line and I had to (for lack of a better term) man up!

LOL- Eva's temper tantrums crack me up...Sounds like I'm living out Abby all over again.  Sorry....I know it's not funny cause you live it...but it's funny!!!

Jake is so freakin mellow and reserved it's amazing they both have the same genes.
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218870_tn?1240259255
you didnt say it was only 60 seconds (or I missed that part).  I appologize.  I had a picture in my mind of a child who was just playing in her room minding her own business and all the sudden getting spanked.  I'm sure you would agree that would confuse a child.  I now agree that is a great idea.  I think a lot of children get spanked because it makes the parent feel better to get out the immediate frustration, so I think more people should practice this and maybe parents wouldnt hit nearly as much and children would actually learn what they were doing wrong and how to fix it.  This way seems to accomplish both objectives at once.  Again, I appologize for the confusion.
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159354_tn?1286371288
No worries -  That's funny though - your picture of went down in my house.  It's really hard to know what people are really describing on the internet.

I guess you'd have to know my child to understand how this works anyway.  

There would be no way after being put in her room, she'd be playing.  She sits on her bed and screams for like 20 minutes....when she does get off her bed, she kicks and hits her door until you open it.....LOL

Trust me, I would never have spanked unless I thought it was necessary.  And again, it was only ever twice.  And she didn't just hit me.  She was wailing on me, kicking and hitting.  While I was pregnant!!!  This after I lost 2 babies earlier that year.  Sadly, I lost that one too (not because of her)....

She still remembers those spankings and I never brought it up again.  They were 2 days apart.  For the same reason.  
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218870_tn?1240259255
Oh I have a daycare.  I got that description loud and clear!!  I obviously dont spank the daycare kids, but each time something like that happens here, that little voice in my head says "Oh AJ would have a sore little butt if he does this." (AJ is my 7month  old son) It almost bothers me when parents dont spank.  Or I guess when they do for some things and not others.  I have a 3 year old girl who gets small taps on the butt when she doesnt listen when her dad is ready to go but the other day she ran right out into the street to her dads truck.  I have no idea how she didnt get hit by a car.  Her dad was screaming "wait, hold on..."  I turned around to find a huge smile on her face driving her dads truck britney spears style.  I find it hard to believe that out of all of the spankings he gave her here that she got rewarded for running in the street after being told not to.  I guess to whatever punnishment you choose, consistancy is the key.  
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