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Toddler is intentionally causing himself harm!?!

Posted by on Jan. 29, 2013 at 9:34 PM
  • 7 Replies
A little background first:
My youngest son was born in December 2012 and has been in and out of the hospital since then for a multitude of things. Most recently he had a surgery last month and was back in the hospital all of last week and is currently still in. We also have an almost 3 year old boy who we have tried to shield from most of this and actively try to make sure he knows he is just as important/loved/etc. we have always tried to make sure he gets special one-on-one time with my husband and myself regardless of what else is going on in our lives(ie hospital stays).

As always when our youngest is in the hospital we take turns being at home with E. today was my turn and mostly our day went about normally. We baked cookies, played in the snow, colored, etc. then this afternoon I came into the kitchen and found him intentionally banging his head on the corner of the chair-as soon as he saw me he started bawling!!! He had a pretty good sized bump on his head at this point. I calmed him down then asked what he had been doing. He proceeded to tells me that he wanted owies like O!!!

I am totally flabbergasted! Is this a normal reaction? I don't even know what to do at this point? Help!!!!!

by on Jan. 29, 2013 at 9:34 PM
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Replies (1-7):
by Geek Goddess on Jan. 29, 2013 at 9:37 PM

I think it's a pretty normal reaction based on the situation. I am sure you are doing a wonderful job of trying to make him feel just as special, but for some reason he still feels "left out" and needs attention. Maybe something I can suggest is an "E" day. He maybe feels bad that he always has to do something based on "O". Maybe do a family day where "E" gets to choose the activity that he and "O" get to do. Maybe having control over something may help him feel like he has more attention? good luck!

by Platinum Member on Jan. 29, 2013 at 9:41 PM

Very normal. My daughter did it too and then just stopped one day. Either they like the sensation or they're fustrated over something and don't know how to express themselves.

by on Jan. 29, 2013 at 9:43 PM

My daughter was diagnosed with brain cancer back in July.  She is 10 and her story went public very fast due to the kind of cancer she has.  My daughter gets stuff in the mail so much we had to open a PO box for her because I did not feel comfortable giving strangers my home address.  My son is starting to have some issues with feeling left out so we are going to set something up in the spring for siblings of sick kids.  I am going to try and get toy donations to give away.  My husband is a DJ so we are going to get a fire hall and have a dance.  We are going to have pizza and food.  I just feel so bad for any child that has a sick sibling.  It sounds like you are trying to do the best you can.

by Ruby Member on Jan. 29, 2013 at 10:02 PM
I think its fairly normal. Kids don't always see the disadvantages if a situation and empathy isn't quite developed yet. So a toddler will see someone getting a lot of attention rather than someone is sick and in the hospital and scared so mom and dad have to be there. Does O have owies on his head?
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by Member on Jan. 29, 2013 at 10:10 PM
He does have scars and such on his head, and some rashes from EEGs. But no super recent owies?
by Ruby Member on Jan. 30, 2013 at 2:42 AM

yep--he still sees the baby getting more attention

by CAFE SASSY HBIC on Jan. 30, 2013 at 2:44 AM

Normal but very sad. Just keep reassuring him of how much you love him also.

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