what would you do? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 4 Old 03-06-2003, 05:42 PM - Thread Starter
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We have a unique situation -- we live in the same house as my SIL, BIL, and nephew - 2 yrs 10 mo old, AP all the way, very verbal and mature. DH and I have DD, 10 mo old.
Our nephew is having trouble sharing, which doesn't concern me much--we negotiate and when necessary use social interaction consequences: "if you don't choose to share your toys we will have to leave now. we can't play together unless we are ready to share..." He catches on very fast and he'd rather play than hoard his toys.
The bigger concern is that he is often purposefully mean to her. He will put his feet in her face when he thinks nobody is looking or push her hands off the furniture so she must sit down or risk falling. He will limit her interaction with the toys and he has even pushed her over on purpose. This is only about 5% of the time. The rest of the time he interacts very well with her and is aware of her space and her needs. His mom is on top of his problem behaviors when she is present, but because of the house situation, that is not always the case. I'm on him as well, but it troubles me that the behaviors continue and he's getting sneakier about it as he realizes we won't tolerate it. At this point we verbally address the problem behavior and tell him it is not acceptable and why. He generally stops at that point. I guess what worries me is that I feel like I can't trust him. But then I remember that he is not even three and I can't expect him to behave at a level above his maturity.
Any advice?
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#2 of 4 Old 03-06-2003, 05:54 PM
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This sounds like how my 2.5 year old acts with his sister 10 months old.......I just figured it was somewhat normal behavior.....I will be interested to hear what others say....

Grace - photographer, wife and mom to 4 great kids (Ethan 5.00, Ainsley 4.02, Owen 12.04, and Ellis Ann 10.07) :
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#3 of 4 Old 03-06-2003, 07:10 PM
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what i get from your description of the situation is...maybe the boy is acting out his frustrations of being made to share on what he sees is the reason he has to share.

maybe forcing sharing isnt the best option
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#4 of 4 Old 03-06-2003, 07:42 PM
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I agree that if you are all living together forced sharing is probably a little aggravating to a 2 1/2 year old. My boys are about that far apart. Does he have toys that are special and he doesn't have to share? And even still play around other people? In our house most toys (and other things) are to share, but all four of us have things that our our own and we don't have to share. Like I can read my book in the living room and I don't have to share it with any one else, of course I often do and I have plenty of other books that I am not tyring to read right now that they can look at. But I think that property rights are important and I also think that kids learn them very quickly.

Another idea ais teaching him/them how to handle problems-

Maybe a trade--at that age (10 months) my oldest could trade the baby for anything and he thought it was wonderful that his great big brother gave him this excellent waded up piece of paper in exchange for the green car.

He obviously knows it is wrong or he wouldn't be sneaking around. Okay you did it! You taught him it is wrong to hurt his cousin! Now lets look at the new problem of teaching him what to do instead. Remember that he doesn't have enough experiences to know what else to do, that is where you can teach him.

How about ignoreing the mean behavior? When it happens don't say anything to him. Just scoop up dd and talk to her or start reading a story to get them both to sit next to you for a while and after they are calm try to fix the problem.

Is he bored? Can you work on identifying those feelings for him?

Are you all just dying for spring? (I can't wait until we can go outside for hours every day, I really believe that is the biggest cause of fighting here)

Hope some of this helps!
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