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Ds is throwing toys. At me. On purpose. What to do?

505 Views 12 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  Hoopin' Mama
Hi all,
Ds is 17 months and has taken to throwing his toys around. He thinks it's funny, but it's a real problem. He sometimes throws them at the dog, because he plays with the dog and throws his ball for him.

How to handle? I'd like him to stop for the dog's sake and it also won't be very pleasant if someone in a playgroup gets hit with a block. Last night I got hit in the forehead with a plastic hat and it did not feel good.

I don't think it's right to make the dog go outside and taking the toy away from ds seems too much like punishment. I've tried redirecting and showing him how to play with the toy, but he thinks what he is doing is hilarious and he won't stop. I've tried ignoring it, wondering if he wants the reaction out of me, but that doesn't seem to work either.

Any ideas?
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You know, one of my children used to do that and I thought I was going to blow up. Then I listen to Aldort's tapes, Babies and Toddlers, to Tame or to Trust which was reviewed in Mothering a couple of years ago. It changed my life.
Get these tapes or CDs. They are the best of anything I ever read or listend to on parenting.
You will learn how to find out WHY your toddler is driven to do what he is doing. Once you know what need he has that this game provides for, you will know how to prevent and meet the need. Then, there is the aspect of being willing to provide leadership and be gentle but clear. The book, Raising Our Children, Raising Ourselves by same author is incredible and will help you with this. It is good you are facing it this early. Aldort also gives phone advice. She is the best and very warm and caring.
well 17 months sounds like the kind of age that they all love to just throw toys - so how about finding some softer toys that he can throw safely and put the big/plastic/heavy ones somewhere else for a while ?? - soft balls, small cushions, plush toys - there are lots of things he can throw without causing damage
or how about both of you throwing some soft toys around for a while so that he has a chance to enjoy it ..............?
it's just play - it's only difficult because of the type of thing he has to play with
say "no throwing" we take the toy imediately. and redirect. that usually doesn't cause crying or conflict, it's just the natural consequence, we're nice and gentle about it.
in our family, we do not throw things. It just will not be allowed to continue. so, the toy goes out of reach.

and be sure to never laugh or smile about throwing, even if he is. that would encourage it.
It helped with my dd to find things that it was okay for her to throw, and encourage her to throw that stuff. We encouraged her tossing toys down the stairs, crumpled up newspaper into balls and tossed those around...that sort of thing. Also, dh and I really started watching ourselves and trying to make sure we don't toss things (I would toss toys at the toy basket when cleaning up, sometimes we'll say "toss that remote, please", etc).

Anyway, we basically tried to get the newness of the throwing out of dd's system so it wasn't such a huge deal. If she throws things AT us, we say something like, "That hurts, please hand it to me nicely." There have been times when dd will throw books at me because she wants me to read them, and I just have to get up and move away after letting her know it hurts me.

Throwing at this age is totally appropriate, and it's a skill so I don't know how much I'd want to totally discourage it. I would focus on what dc CAN throw.
Thank you for the relpies!
I do get that it is an age appropriate thing. But it disturbs me a bit to see him purposely throw something at the sleeping dog's head. Ds has his own ball to throw, and he knows he can throw the dog toys that are outside for the dog.
I'll just continue showing him what he can and can't throw and hope it clicks.
Ok, so I was at the library today and I was sitting on the floor looking over some board books trying to pick a few out. All of a sudden I'm hit in the face with a board book. It hit me right below the eye. I hate to whine, but it really hurt. He threw it at me on purpose over a small book shelf while laughing.

This has to stop.
I gave him a stern look over the book shelf, said "we don't throw books", packed up the books and left the library.
This behavior seems to almost always stem from over-excitement in a way. He was already acting a bit over stimulated in the library, and a lot of times when he goes after the dog it's before bedtime.
I know he's not doing to intentionally hurt me. But he's very smart (well, okay, he's about average
) so I know he can learn not to.
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Did you show that it hurt you at all? Wimper, cry, etc? Maybe he doesn't understand that he's actually hurting you.
My ds,17 months also,has been hitting alot. lately. I get up,and walk away. As I am walking away from the situation,I tell him "That hurts. I won't let you hurt me." Hmm,I dunno what to do about the dog,other than maybe take the dog from the room,and say the same thing,but say it for the dog.
We went through this with our DS too (he's now almost 2 yo), and I chalked it up to cause and effect. My assumption from watching him was he was wanting to see what kind of effect he would get from throwing something at someone or something. Same thing as his little hitting phase he is just starting to get out of.

What worked for us, was like one PP mentioned, not throwing things ourselves unless it was a situation where it would be acceptable for either of our DC to throw, and then when he did throw something at me, DD, DH etc, we were very firm, but very gentle at saying "no throwing at Mommy/Daddy/DD/dog etc" letting him know it hurts us, and then redirected him to throwing his toys in the toy basket, and made a big deal when he did it and we all joined in etc etc. It honestly took a week or two, but now that is what he uses when he throws.

For us what helped the most was stepping back and trying to figure out as much as we could, why he was doing it. Once we realized he wasn't intentionally trying to hurt anyone, but just that he got a reaction most times when he did it, it was easier to deal with. Same thing when he started hitting (*sigh* LOL), but the same tactic worked there too.


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Originally Posted by Kathryn
Did you show that it hurt you at all? Wimper, cry, etc? Maybe he doesn't understand that he's actually hurting you.
I will definitely try that next time. I don't know why I didn't think of that. I'm sure he doesn't realize.
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