Do you help your toddler navigate social situations? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 3 Old 03-30-2011, 11:14 AM - Thread Starter
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I have a 22-month-old DS and I baby-sit a friend's 20-month-old DS during the week.  Since they're so close in age, we've had to do some work with normal toddler behaviors (biting, pushing, taking toys, etc) in order to keep everyone safe & in some level of harmony. 


My conundrum is this: what do I do/say when other kids do those things to them?  The more they understand that those behaviors aren't okay, the more offended they get when others push/hit/take toys from them.


Usually, I don't step in when someone else's kid is doing something because I figure it's not my place.  I mean, if it's truly a dangerous behavior, I'll try to re-direct if the parent isn't around or isn't addressing it, but other than that, I try to stay out of it.  But at this age, it's not like they have great tools to handle these situations--either they can throw a tantrum, push/hit/take a toy back, or just get over it.  It's not like they (or the other toddlers) have the language and social skills to talk through these situations.


So how much do you help your toddlers navigate social situations?  Do you ever talk to other people's kids about dangerous or universally unacceptable behavior?  (I'm assuming here that things like biting, hitting, and pushing are universally unacceptable!)

Loving life with DH DS1 (5/7/09) and DS2 (7/23/11)
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#2 of 3 Old 03-30-2011, 12:07 PM
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Well I wouldn't lecture or explain anything in detail to another kid, but I do sometimes say something like, "Oops, DS was playing with that, do you want to play with this until he's done?" or "Watch out for DS! Let's go around this way." Basically, address it as positively as possible, and keep it simple and friendly. I don't step in often, and I focus more on helping DS deal with things than shielding him or whatever, but I don't want him to get hurt or bullied or anything either of course. Fortunately we have a great group of friends and the moms are attentive and the kids get along really really well so we hardly run into issues except when we're with a bunch of strangers. Even then it's rare, because DS is very aware of his personal space and kind of protects himself I guess, for the most part, and rolls with the punches if something does happen.

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#3 of 3 Old 03-30-2011, 03:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Novus View Post


So how much do you help your toddlers navigate social situations?  Do you ever talk to other people's kids about dangerous or universally unacceptable behavior?  (I'm assuming here that things like biting, hitting, and pushing are universally unacceptable!)

Yes, I do talk to them, but not at 20 and 22 months.  I do intervene, distract, and redirect.  I have no problem intervening when someone else's kids are involved, even if the parent is in the room.  "Sweetie, we don't do that.  Here play with this..." In those situations, I've yet to encounter a parent who won't work with me.

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