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Please help me.. I slapped dd's hand yesterday

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
I can't get this out of my mind. Last night, as dd was playing in the tub, she took one of her toys, filled it up with water, and spilled it over the bath tub onto the floor.

she's done this before many times, and I've tried redirecting, tried telling her why she shouldn't spill on the floor (she's 18 mnths, so that was probably futile) I tried taking her toys away after telling her I would if she kept doing it. The floor by the tub is getting really gross - we're going to have to replace it, and so every time she dumps water in there, I cringe.

so last night, as she dumped the water on the floor while I was trying to wash her hair, I said, "Ana, please keep the water inside the tub" and she looked at me, smiled and reached for more water with her 'turtle'. she was about to dump the water on the floor again as I gently pushed her hand so the water spilled inside the tub instead. we did that a few times - by now she's probably thinking it a game. so she grabs another toy and really fast is about to dump it over. I hit the toy and it flew out of her hands into the tub. she grabs another and as she was about to do the same thing, I take the toy away and slap her hand

it wasn't very hard, but she was stunned and started crying I felt so horrible and started kissing her and hugging her telling her how sorry i was.

I can't stop thinking about it.

She probably forgot all about it.. but I didn't.

What should I do next time? (I'm sure there will be a next time - tired, cranky mommy and a typical 18 month old...)

help me please.. noone I know IRL would understand
post #2 of 12
It happens to the best of us... and I'm certainly far from the best.

We picked up one a "splash protector" from One Step Ahead. It's like a half shower curtain and attached with suction cups to the wall and tub. I bathe with DD (easier on my knees and a luxury at the same time) and encourage her to splash and kcik all she wants. The curtain is tall enough that she can't pour water over the top and my being in the tub allows me to quickly sit her back down when she tries to stand.

Now if someone would just tell me how to keep her from standing on chairs... :/
post #3 of 12
Drain the tub. When my kids started dumping water out of the tub, they got a warning, then the tub was drained and it was time to get out. They catch on really quickly.
post #4 of 12
Or put a big towel outside the bath, or a large plastic bowl.

Remember, the reason (the only reason!) to have baths is to have fun!

We paint each other in our bath! And the walls! You just can't imagine!

post #5 of 12
(((hugs)))) about the hand-slap. I had a particularly greusome day with my ds culminating with me holding his cheeks and yelling (actually screaming) in his face to be quiet because 2 1/2 month old sister was sooo tired and screaming her head off in my arms because every time she started to doze off he was yelling, slamming, jumping, on PURPOSE. (yeah like ME screaming didn't make her wake up either -what an ass I am)_At 7 pm, he was tired and rammy, and I'm a new mommy to 2 and don't know how to effectively mother 2 crying needy children at one time. So he got shafted as I was sooo frustrated (he is 2 3/4). Anyway, *I* understand. Not trying to hijack. But I was there today and its not a nice place. It really sucks.

About the bath thing... I usually line the outside with towels incase errant water makes its way out (he drives his cars ont he edge and water always leaks). What I 'd have done in that situation that you just experienced (or any similar one) where it is becoming a game and you are getting pissed - remove her from the situation. Immediately. You will get a meltdown but she will learn from the association since she cannot learn from verbal redirection yet. Give her one chance, and after you have told her simply "no water over the side or out of the bath". Maybe the next day or the day after it will sink in. Kinda the same thing you do for babies biting the boob, KWIM ? Just say in a firm voice (after she already had her warning) "dd, no pouring water out of the bath. Time to get out. We can try again tomorrow". Take her out and let her scream her little head off, but she will get the message quickly, I believe.

May sound a bit harsh but what else to do ? KWIM ?
((hgus)) again.
post #6 of 12
Then again, there is always apple slices.

we usually have strwberries in the bath, or apple slices. If you want her to put something down. offer her a strawberry.

But I'd let her play out the game. It's only water. It's only a bath.

post #7 of 12
But I'd let her play out the game. It's only water. It's only a bath.
Yeah, but Chi-Chi mama needs a bathroom floor, which she isn't going to have soon because its getting ruined.

We scrub bodies and hair the minute they are in the tub. Then they can play.... but when someone splashes water out of the tub -- bathtime is done. Naked wet bodies are gently lifted out, wrapped in towels, and carried OUT of the bathroom. Gradually, they've caught on and bath/playtime has lasted longer.

Now if someone would just tell me how to keep her from standing on chairs... :/
Teach her to do it safely?
post #8 of 12
Hugs to you Chi Chi mama. I believe we've all been there, as so many of these posts attest. It's just nitty gritty freakin' hard sometimes. Just damn hard.

I like the towels around the tub AND the apple slices AND letting the game play out. Someone at MDC is a therapist for developmentally disabled kids and mentioned that food play and dumping water is something they work on in therapy and encourage, much to the dismay of grandmothers and some mothers. I remind myself of that when DS is dumping things...that's just me, not saying you should do that. I think it's a natural way to play, honestly. And my DS has somehow learned to help me clean up afterward.
post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 

thank you so much for your kind responses.

I used to take baths with her, but now we get a bit cramped in the tub.. I bought the 'splash protector' from onestepahead a while ago, but she hated it for some reason, so I returned it. I actually ran out of towels several times because of this - I need to go buy more

anyway, I really like the idea of getting her washed up first, so that I can take her out of the bath if she keeps doing something I"ve asked her to stop. usually, I let her play for a while, then we wash, then she plays some more.

hmm.. now that I think about it, maybe I can get some big container next to the tub, and she dump water all she wants. she is just having fun, after all. but I guess then how I do explain that sometimes it's ok to dump water, but sometimes not? : ok, never mind that idea.

thanks, everybody!!!!!
post #10 of 12
Thread Starter 


that sounds like a tough situation. a toddler and a newborn is a whole different ballgame!

what hurts the most is that dd is such a wonderful, kindhearted, happy child.. and I feel like I get upset at her just being a child and doing normal fun kid stuff.

I guess first step to making a change in your behavior is realizing it.

once again, thank you all. I can't put into the words how much your advice means to me.
post #11 of 12
Chi-Chi I think dumping the water over the edge into another container is a great idea We use a baby basin tub to do this. Ds also uses the basin in the tub as a boat. To me this is a win win solution.
Happy splashes
post #12 of 12
Lots of great ideas about the bathtime thing. I remember slapping my dd1's hand a couple of times when she was the same age...it was always pretty gently, and she always seemed to think it was a game and laugh...so there wasn't much point, kwim?!

But to stop ourselves from ever having that as an option, one of our phrases around the house became, 'We don't hit in this family because it makes people sad' (began when dd1 hit out occasionally).

But when you say 'We don't hit in this family' and your children learn that phrase - it applies to you as well! So hitting (even slapping hands gently) isn't ever an option...my dds would see to that (they'll tell each other that 'we don't hit' if play gets too rough).

Anyway...I found it to be a nice reminder for me.
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