HELP. Discouraging nonverbal 2 year old from hitting/biting/pulling hair? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 5 Old 07-01-2013, 06:33 PM - Thread Starter
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This behavior has recenty started and we are at odds of what to do. Her main target is her older sister, but does it to others as well. I haven't recognized a certain trigger for her to do it..sometimes she lashes out from anger or frustration, but other times it seems to be completely out of the blue. We take her aside and explain that she may not hit/bite/etc., that it hurts and is not nice, show her how to be nice and easy, and I have been following up with asking her to show me how to be nice and loving. I also be sure to encourage her to say sorry, which is typically a hug since she isn't verbal. I am guessing that the whole not speaking well thing along with turning 2 (tomorrow!) AND cutting all four of her two year molars could have something to do with it. I'm not particularly concerned about the behavior as a whole, just with how to deal since she is really hurting her sister and has done it to other kids, too. Her bigger sister is awesome with her and has tried being patient, but it is so obvious how hurt, physically and emotionally, she is by it. She has retaliated, but I keep reminding her to try to stay calm because she is a baby and has a lot of learning to do.

I don't want to have to keep them separated..and I also don't want to helicopter over everytime they play or if she is playing with other kids. I need some advice, mamas.

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#2 of 5 Old 07-09-2013, 05:08 AM
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Maybe you can help your old kid be more responsive to her sisters cues, needs etc or learn to distract her. you can also try to work out what is actually bothering her - seeing what problems occur regulary and try together with her to find a solution. you may need to use pictures or simple yes/no questions 

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#3 of 5 Old 07-30-2013, 12:29 PM
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Being non-verbal and hitting/biting tend to go together so you may also want to work on the communication piece as a way of reducing the unwanted behavior. It seems to start to fade out as kids get more verbal/ better at communicating.
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#4 of 5 Old 07-30-2013, 01:20 PM
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I agree that communication problems often lead to this. Imagine wanting to tell someone to move over a bit, but not being able to, but wanting them to move and getting frustrated and finally just hitting them to get them to see that you want them to move.

I try to give them words, like empathize with them. "You look frustrated. Do you want your sister to move? You can say, 'move please' if you want her to move. But be gentle." And speaking in the positive (be gentle) seems to sometimes work better than speaking in the negative (don't hit.)

And of course consistency helps, as it does with most stuff. But to some extent it'll probably go away on its own as she develops the ability to tell people what she wants.
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#5 of 5 Old 07-30-2013, 07:41 PM
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Physically catching them before the blow falls works if you're vigilant or her sister is. Diffusing the situation before they even try is even better, lots of good suggestions above on that.

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