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My 3 1/2 year old son is smart and funny, he is very advanced verbally for his age and is very good about telling us how he's feeling - sad, frustrated, angry etc.<br>
Our Neighbor across the street who is almost five has become a very close friend in the past month or so, he comes to visit often and is a really wonderful little boy, I love watching them play together <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br>
Lately however my son has taken to getting very agressive with his friend <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> They will be playing very nicely with cars or running through the sprinkler and all of a sudden my son will want to just wrestle him to the ground or tackle him. Sometimes it's seems to be a game they play but last night our neighbor was hurt by my son - luckily we are very good friends with his parents and they are very understanding and laid back people - but my husband and I have been very upset about it. We try our hardest to teach non violence, we don't watch TV because we feel too much of it is too violent. I'm struggling here, I just don't know what to do?<br>
I am wondering if he is feeling too powerless in his own environment? Maybe we tell him "no" too much? Maybe he's feeling ignored - He has a 7 month old baby sister and she does require me to take time away from him - Or maybe this is just normal child behavior and he needs a more creative physical outlet like Karate or gymnastics or dance?<br>
I need some help here as I'm starting to worry about my son becoming a violent teen and me being unable to control him<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/yikes.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="EEK!"><br><br>
I know this is a bit of an overreaction but you know how easy it is to do that as a mama! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/rolleyes.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="rolleyes">:
 

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It sounds as though the "aggression" you are describing is not true aggression at all, but rather a form of rough-and-tumble play. He's not angry with his friend in any way or trying to hurt him, right? I think every family needs to make their own rules about this kind of play, because it can certainly get out of hand, or someone can get hurt by accident. I think your idea of finding a positive outlet for that energy via karate class or gymnastics is an excellent one.
 

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Well, my 4 1/2 y/o dd does it too. The only solution I've found is to step in each time and tell her to get off (while pulling her off if need be). I think one time she did it out of anger but usually she thinks she's having fun and doesn't understand that people don't like to be wrestled to the ground. She also hugs too much (ie- keeps hugging even when the other kid says stop). I think she's just a very physical kid and your kid probably is too. We need to help them learn boundaries but it's not something they will learn overnight. Mostly they have to grow out of it, but meanwhile just keep talking to him about it and stepping in.
 

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Thank you ladies - I'm feeling better about all this now <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br>
We have had a week of a lot of talking and about giving 'personal space' and he seems to understand it - he still will start to tackle his friend but when I gently remind him to 'give him space' he backs off and they seem to find other games to play instead!
 

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Just one more (almost) 4 y.o. here, who does get physical from time to time. It's embarrassing when somebody else gets hurt <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/redface.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Embarrassment"> , but I'm pretty sure he's not going to turn into a teen psychopath. The first few times he did this I wondered if this was something to worry about. Then I noticed that nearly all the 3 and 4 year olds in his preschool get physical at least once in a while.<br><br>
It's just one more opportunity to learn how to get along with others.
 

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Thank you for the question and all the replies and for this great board. I'm relieved to hear my son is normal. It's worried me too and I can't figure it out because I am very selective about what I let him watch on T.V. and thought he had learned the whole "be gentle" and "we don't hit" lesson since toddlerhood but lately it popped back up again as well as pretending to be a "bad guy".So we just have been reinforcing the boundries,trying to redirect and stay as positive as possible without focusing too much attention on it. But it has worried me. Now I get it that it's just a phase.. Thanks so much. Whew!<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/redface.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Embarrassment">
 
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