My daughter with special needs is 3 now and I also have a 16 month old daughter. My 3 year old is so mean to her little sister and I have tried literally everything to make it stop and I don't know what else to do. My 16 month old just started walking a month ago because everytime she stood up before her sister would push her down and then get right in her face and laugh at her. She still does it all the time. She will follow her around the house and shove her over and when she tries to get back up do it again and again. I feel so bad, I have tried disciplining her but nothing seems to work! Also, everytime my 16 month old cries she will go right in her face and laugh as loud as she can. I honestly don't know why she does it, I really don't think it's a jealousy thing and she doesn't do this to any other child. In fact she's as sweet as can be to every other child and baby we ar around. I just don't get it and I'm really running out of patience. Has anyone else ever dealt with this?
Special needs DD VERY mean to younger sister. What to do?!
My dcn (same age difference) went through something like that (though I didn't know about his SN then); I just watched them like a hawk for a while and kept them separated as much as possible. Later I realized that he had an underdeveloped sense of empathy and we've been working on that; he had a lot of improvement during first grade. My sister's middle child has more significant developmental special needs than mine and this was a problem for her as well; I think she ended up doing the same as I did but there is probably a more proactive way to deal with this--perhaps you could find a play therapist to work your sn dd, and perhaps the two of them together.
I second pretty much everything Emmeline said. It sounds like play therapy could be really helpful. At 3, I'm not sure there is a whole lot of discipline sort of things that you can do that will work.
We went through something with my boys at an older age. Obviously, it was different because of the ages, but we could not leave my oldest son alone with his younger brothers for a good 6 month period. He simply could not be trusted to not play to hard or to not lash out. It was really frustrating, and a lot less got done around the house than it had, but it was the only way to be assured no one got hurt.
Is there a way that you could gate them apart when you aren't able to be within arms reach?