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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
DD is a bright, verbal, and very social 27 month old. She is generally very sweet and loving. She is usually happiest when out of the house around other people.

We've been having a serious issue lately with her hitting or kicking me or something that hurts me, continuing when I tell her "hitting hurts" or "ow, that hurts, please use gentle hands when you touch mommy". And laughing as I become more insistent and eventually lose my temper.

Here are some examples:

In the shopping cart her feet kick my belly if she's kicking. I think initially this was accidental, but when I pointed out that it hurt nicely a few times, she continued. As I got to breaking point (handling her legs roughly trying to get her to stop) she just laughed and laughed. This has happened a few times. I can't remove myself from her reach. I suppose I could exit the store without any purchases, but I don't think that would really solve the issue. This has happened several times lately.

She often fights diaper changes and getting dressed by kicking and flailing. I try to give her as much control as possible, but obviously at some point she needs a clean/dry diaper and clothes on. She often hurts me kicking during a diaper change or sitting in my lap while I dress her she bangs her head back and whacks me in the mouth (it's just where our respective heights fall right now). I can remove myself from the situation at home, but not in the middle of a diaper change, especially if it's dirty.

I find myself handling DD in a much rougher manner than I feel comfortable with (not hitting, but squeezing her legs holding them down, etc) and yelling at her (which results in her laughing and me really having trouble staying under control).

I should note that I'm newly pregnant and not feeling great - tired, sensitive, and fighting nausea - which I'm sure makes me more sensitive to being hurt and less patient than normal.

Any advice appreciated.
 

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I would remove both of us from the situation if at a store and say, I can't let you hurt me so we have to go.
When changing a diaper, I would as much as possible stand out of reach and quickly change the diaper again saying I can't let you hurt me. You may have to hold her legs for a little while.
It's important to be consistent in your reactions and she will eventually get that she can't do this. I understand your anger and squeezing her when she laughs but you should avoid doing this as it negates what you say about not letting her hurt you or not letting her be hurt by anyone. Just tell her very seriously that you cannot let her hurt you. If you need to restrain her or leave a situation so be it.
This is natural for this age but it will get better. You can also demonstrate gentle touches and ask her to demonstrate gentle touches on you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks sophiesgrandma. We do work on showing gentle touches, and have done that for more than a year. DD can show sweet gentle touches, or give hugs, after hurting someone. She also readily says "I'm sorry" without prompting. Sadly, lately she's more likely to just do it again (hit, kick, etc) with me. The squeezing is really just holding her legs so they don't kick me, but when she's fighting me it feels rough IYKWIM.

I guess I need to work on removing DD and/or myself from the situation. I know it's the best thing to do, but lately it seems to happen at times when I feel trapped. I need to be able to run errands with DD. If we're half way through a shopping trip, I'm just not comfortable walking out and abandoning my basket when she's kicking. She's not screaming or causing a scene (and neither am I). She's not hungry, sleepy, or the like. I always carry snacks and time errands pretty well. She likes being out, and generally if she's being difficult, it's 10 times worse when we're home alone. She's SUPER social and gets very frustrated being home with just me for a whole day. An errand here or there on days that we don't have play dates or the like saves her sanity, and often mine as I'm pretty social myself.
 

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My DD went through the same thing, she still has moments of hurting and laughing. During grocery shopping I would just go to the side or front of the cart if she started kicking. I also started using the car carts with the car on the front, I can buckle her in and not worry about being hit. I had her start standing up for diaper changes and that ended the kicking, but started a time of running away. We also started doing 'down dog' when it was wiping time, so she gets clean. Good luck!
 
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