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Not sure how to discipline hitting/kicking...

My almost 3 year old is going through a phase. When he gets mad or doesn't get his way he will hit or kick. I don't believe that spanking is apporpriate for this, because why hit for hitting? We try time out, but he either screams at the top of his lungs the entire time, or refuses to sit. If we try to hold him in place he will continue to hit and fight (he's a pretty stong kid too!). I'm not sure how to go about dealing with this behavior. I feel like I'm losing control. What's an appropriate way to handle this?

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Asked by Anonymous at 11:57 AM on Jul. 12, 2011 in Toddlers (1-2)

Answers (5)
  • I tell him "NO, hitting hurts Mommy/whoever he hit." Then tell him that if he does it again, he is going on time out or getting a toy taken away and follow through with that threat.

    Answer by hill_star03 at 12:03 PM on Jul. 12, 2011

  • When my kids pulled this stunt I'd grab the offending arm/foot, get inches from their face, and say, "You DO NOT hit/kick me" then I would send them to their room until they could be good again.

    Answer by Rosehawk at 12:11 PM on Jul. 12, 2011

  • If he screams during time out wait until he stops screaming to start the time. He'll scream for shorter periods of time as he begins to understand that screaming does not get him out. If you end the time out before he's calm he'll continue to scream and throw a big fit every time. Also, I would not try to hold him in place because that results in a physical battle. If he won't stay in a designated time out spot then try finding a location where you can detain him. WIth my twins we used their cribs in the beginning, and eventually started using their room.

    Answer by TweenAndTwinMom at 1:02 PM on Jul. 12, 2011

  • Do you still have a stroller, I would strap him in a stroller and put him in another room untill he had calmed down, I would do this every time he gets mad

    Answer by Reia631 at 2:21 PM on Jul. 12, 2011

  • I poked back. if they kicked me i poked their offending leg, hit me, pinch (tho not hard) the offending hand. If that didnt work I did the time out either nose to the corner, or drew a box with tape on the floor and made her stand in the box. I used books for "time" I would start out with X number of books, and if they broke the rule of the box, a book got added. the longer they stayed in place the books went down. I didnt ever have them stand too long tho. The closer it was to "time" I would shorten the time between books. (It was what I had on hand at the time)
    I heard on the Radio that the DJ has a bowl of squishy balls, and for each bad behavior a ball got taken away. (I think it started at 5) Each ball represents an activity that was taken away. No way to get the balls back. I think the child is either 3 or 4.

    Answer by baquick at 2:32 PM on Jul. 13, 2011

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