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3.4 yr old and agression

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  • 3.4 yr old and agression

    Hi all, I am a new member who I guess believes in positive examples and attachment principles although I don't tick every box...

    I have always tried to show positive examples of love and behaviour but lately my 3 year old has been whacking me on the face and this morning she whacked her dad because he wanted to say goodbye before work.

    Last week she whacked another girl, the girl was not hurt but I struggled as the mother of the child told me she 'would not put up with that' and wondered how I 'remain so calm'... I told my daughter that hands were not for hitting and that I knew she felt angry. She is very emotional anyway and when she gets angry she finds it hard to express herself without shouting. She answered me as she always does when I say 'we mustn't do that because people feel hurt etc' by saying 'I want to hurt X, she stole my toast' (she did take Missy's toast when she wasn't looking).

    Sometimes when I say 'it hurts Mummy when you do that, or I don't want you to do that because it makes people feel sad or hurt' she just yells the contrary- 'I WANT to hurt, I WANT to slap, I WANT to be horrible''...

    I get so upset because I feel like I am telling her what to do which lets face it isn't exactly intrinsically motivating is it....I know she is 3 but I have started to yell (occassionally) at her which I am very ashamed of, I have apologised and tried to explain why I did it and that it is not a good thing because it upsets people...I am hoping that she realises as time goes on that I can be wrong too.

    I don't know how to deal with this at all as it's pretty regular at teh moment. I can see her just being at odds and me feeling a bit pathetic and someone who cannot communicate with my child which is certainly what I don't want.

    Another additional thing is that she is very jealous of me cuddling her dad, and often wants to get inbetween us, she yells that 'Mummy is MY mummy not yours' I try to show that I have time for Daddy and she started spending some time alone with Daddy but she often wants just me. (she is 3 and 4 months and has ALWAYS been this way, it's as if she doesn't like him very much sometimes which I know isn't the case.
    IS this common? (Until about 6 months ago he worked like a madman as we lived in DUbai and she saw much less of him than she does here in SYdney plus prolonged breaks away in the UK the two of us...plus she is breastfed bfore bed but thats never enough she is always asking at night too )..

    Anyway a very long and tangled e mail starting with agression and probably an over emotional response but I value the input or ideas more enlightened attached parents might have for me. I don't believe in traditional timeout methods or withdrawel of love type things but I REALLY on't know what to do for the best.

    Look forward to replies and sorry for my typos it's 7.30 am here yawn...

    MissyLoo

  • #2
    I'm new to this forum, but not new to positive discipline so let me see if I can help at all.

    First off, the "we don't hit" doesn't work well in my family because, well, obviously one of us just did. We keep it simple, "No Hitting" and then remove the child. So in that situation, I would have simply stated, "No Hitting" and gotten our stuff and left the area.

    Secondly, when she hits you, obviously she is mad and wants to make you mad, so remove her from the situation (or yourself which at home, is usually easier). "I will not allow you to hurt me. When you want to be a nice young lady, we can talk" then walk away.

    As for the daddy thing, you need to put your foot down. "This is mommy, daddy time. We will have mommy, susie time in a little bit". But make sure to follow through.

    Positive discipline IS discipline, not being walked on and hit. You can put your foot down, and don't be afraid of her big feelings, she is allowed to have them. She is NOT allowed to hit, scream, yell, or berate you. You CAN walk away from that, as long as she is in a safe place.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Petie View Post
      I'm new to this forum, but not new to positive discipline so let me see if I can help at all.

      First off, the "we don't hit" doesn't work well in my family because, well, obviously one of us just did. We keep it simple, "No Hitting" and then remove the child. So in that situation, I would have simply stated, "No Hitting" and gotten our stuff and left the area.

      Secondly, when she hits you, obviously she is mad and wants to make you mad, so remove her from the situation (or yourself which at home, is usually easier). "I will not allow you to hurt me. When you want to be a nice young lady, we can talk" then walk away.

      As for the daddy thing, you need to put your foot down. "This is mommy, daddy time. We will have mommy, susie time in a little bit". But make sure to follow through.

      Positive discipline IS discipline, not being walked on and hit. You can put your foot down, and don't be afraid of her big feelings, she is allowed to have them. She is NOT allowed to hit, scream, yell, or berate you. You CAN walk away from that, as long as she is in a safe place.
      Thankyou for your reply, I do understand where you are coming from but the only thing for me is I won't walk away from her. I don't want to turn my back on her emotionally. I can't put it into words as eloquently as others might but for me personally I can't do that. It doesn't mean that I tolerate generally bad behaviour and let myself have no boundaries, esp where hitting is concerned. I will be interested to get a variety of advice and weigh it all up. Thanks again for your input.

      Missy

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      • #4
        I can respect that. I just want you to think about something. Have you ever NEEDED your space? Have you ever demanded someone back off? Alot of times that is what our kids are telling us when they get to the point of hitting. They need time to cool off, and often they cannot do that with us in their faces. I know that when I get REALLY angry, I just want to be alone until I am calm. Now notice, in my example, I give the power to her, "when you want to talk to me like a young lady, then come see me". This gives her the power to choose when SHE is ready for time with you. All she has to do is stop hitting and she can be with you. Most often, my son would stop immediately, because honestly, he wanted to be with me and I calmed him down. My daughter will go to her room for lengthy periods because she NEEDS that time. And my youngest, well, he just kinda lays in the same room with me.

        When I say remove yourself, it doesn't have to be from the room or out of sight, a few feet of distance is all that is needed. Enough space that she cannot reach you to harm you. But overall, I leave that one up to the child to decide, depending on their individual nature.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Petie View Post
          I can respect that. I just want you to think about something. Have you ever NEEDED your space? Have you ever demanded someone back off? Alot of times that is what our kids are telling us when they get to the point of hitting. They need time to cool off, and often they cannot do that with us in their faces. I know that when I get REALLY angry, I just want to be alone until I am calm. Now notice, in my example, I give the power to her, "when you want to talk to me like a young lady, then come see me". This gives her the power to choose when SHE is ready for time with you. All she has to do is stop hitting and she can be with you. Most often, my son would stop immediately, because honestly, he wanted to be with me and I calmed him down. My daughter will go to her room for lengthy periods because she NEEDS that time. And my youngest, well, he just kinda lays in the same room with me.

          When I say remove yourself, it doesn't have to be from the room or out of sight, a few feet of distance is all that is needed. Enough space that she cannot reach you to harm you. But overall, I leave that one up to the child to decide, depending on their individual nature.
          Thanks for that.

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