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Having a rough time with my two year old ds. Whenever I try to talk to him about something he did (frequently, that something is hitting or knocking down his little brother), he just ignores me. He looks away and gets involved in something else, and it's like talking to a wall. If I get down on his level and try to look him in the eye so I know he hears me, he flips out. He doesn't seem to give a hoot about hitting his brother, and the talking obviously isn't working. It's so frustrating, and I know he's only two, but there has to be something. It's just so apparent that he has no regard for me. What do I do?
 

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Ya know, I've noticed this in my ds. I think it has to do with "saving face" Like, he knows he did something unacceptable, and it's making it even worse to be "lectured" about it. I think it hurts his feelings or something.<br>
Usually, if I just let it go, I can see that he did indeed learn from the situation.<br><br>
There is great info on how to deal with hitting here (and in the "past questions" section): <a href="http://www.becomingtheparent.com/all/subsection13.html" target="_blank">http://www.becomingtheparent.com/all/subsection13.html</a>
 

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First, stop the hitting. "You may not hit, hitting hurts." Physically stop him and move him.<br><br>
Then, name the emotion behind the hitting, "You're frustrated!" "You're excited!" "You're angry!" This gives him vocabulary for the future when he's able to say that instead of physically acting it out.<br><br>
Then give an acceptable alternative for the hitting, "Let's jump up and down to get the angries out." "Let's nurse to calm down." "Let's sit on the bed and snuggle into the pillow until we feel better." "High-five!" (if it's an excitement hitting.<br><br><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/redirect.html?ie=UTF8&linkCode=ur2&camp=1789&creative=9325&tag=motheringhud-20&location=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.com%2FDealing-Disappointment-Helping-Things-Their%2Fdp%2F1884734758%2Fsr%3D1-1%2Fqid%3D1170834900%2Fref%3Dpd_bbs_sr_1%2F103-2039778-8105409%3Fie%3DUTF8%26s%3Dbooks" target="_blank">Dealing With Disappointment</a> has lots of self-calming activities to teach him which will help him to develop skills for dealing with big feelings.
 

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It can help to wait until after the heat of the moment to talk about it and doing so privately. I've experienced the saving face sort of thing, too. Waiting til the child is receptive to talking is helpful. Also, asking the child for ideas about what he could have done instead of hitting can help. Essentially, help your child brainstorm for better ideas instead of lecturing or "talking at" him. He undoubtedly knows he shouldn't have hit (my ds used to cover his ears and shout if I tried to tell him something he knew). But knowing something and being able to control impulses are two different things.
 

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Is it all the time or just after unacceptable behaviour? Because at that age, he'll be ignoring you for a while <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">. Actually I think sometimes they are so tuned in to what they are doing they really don't pay attention to other things.<br><br>
Usually I refer to DS as whatever he's playing at the moment. Like "excuse me mister fork lift operator...." and he always answers with a smile on his face.<br><br>
But if it's just while hitting, that kind of thing, stop the behaviour and explain why. Try to find something to get his attention elsewhere. I notice when I just stop the behaviour, give a fast calm response, and help him move on to play something else he just forgets about it quick
 
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