13 month old hitting mommy in the face and laughing when I dicipline!

Danielle Elizabeth - posted on 03/10/2013 ( 14 moms have responded )

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Hi ladies, my daughter is 13 months old and has recently started hitting me in the face when she's angry. I tell her "no" in a firm voice and tell her that hurts mommy and show her " nice" by giving her a hug or kiss. If she is in one of her moods she will continue to hit and laugh almost like it's a game. How can I show her I mean business b/c I don't believe in hitting. Is she doing this just to test boundaries b/c I KNOW she knows that she she shouldn't be hitting.

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Shea - posted on 03/16/2013

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Sometimes NO isn't always the best way to go about it. Children that age want to be in control so they tend to test boundaries often. If your child is hitting and laughing they most likely think you're playing a game and when you get upset they do too. When they hit and laugh i find its better to be understanding and simply say ouch that hurts mommy.. Hitting isn't very nice.. If you want to hit lets go find your drums or whatever toy he/she may have that is acceptable to hit. That way you're not just getting upset but offering a solution. And make it a big deal anytime they fall down or get hurt to say "Ouch that hurts" they will remember that. Children don't want to hurt parents just get attention. So when you encourage good behavior they see they have impressed you and the bad behavior will stop. Even if you don't believe they are capable of understanding you because they are fluent verbally they often do. And your reaction to the negative situation is key.

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Danielle Elizabeth - posted on 03/18/2013

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Shea, I really like your outlook on the situation and it sounds like your a good mom . I agree positive re enforcement has the most positive impact on our children's behavior . I have been giving her extra praise when she gives hugs and kisses to show her that behavior will make a happy mommy and she has been doing great, still pulls hair when she's really tired but I'll take that over getting smacked and getting a bloody nose from my 1 year old!

Cheryl - posted on 03/18/2013

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Due to her age, I would say no in a stern voice and then tell her that you hurt mummy. I agree that the kiss/hug may be confusing the situation. Just go on playing after than. If it happens again, remove yourself. If she can't play nice, she doesn't get to play with you. I think she will pick this up quickly.

Danielle Elizabeth - posted on 03/18/2013

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Mary, I agree with you but my daughter has learned the word nice so she does understand what I am telling her. She would pull our cats tail and I would show her "nice" by petting him , and now she says niiiice while petting the cat. So when she hits me and I tell her nice and shoe her how to be nice to mommy by hugging or kissing I'm hoping it works like it did with the cat.

Mary - posted on 03/18/2013

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Maybe I'm reading your post wrong but maybe by hugging & kissing, you could be sending conflicting signals. 'No. Don't do that but Mommy will give you a hug or kiss if you do.' Its difficult because they honestly don't understand what you are saying. Actions speak louder. My little girl used to do it - for a very short time - while she would sitting on my lap, facing me, & we'd play. I would tell her 'No!' In a stern tone. If she did it again, playtime would be over. I'd put her on the floor or couch next to me & give her a toy to play with. She only did it for about a week or 2. Same thing with the biting.

Shea - posted on 03/16/2013

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Also if she is doing it when she is angry perhaps there's a better way to go about the initial problem leading to this. If she can't have a treat or she needs to not hit others find acceptable/encouraging ways to let her know. "I know you want a treat but we have to eat dinner first. After we eat we will pick one out." then remove it from site. or "I know you like playing with your brother. But I can't let you hit him. Ouch that hurts. Be gentle, Watch mommy. Now you try." If they have baby dolls roll play and show them how to be gentle. They get upset because they can't express their feelings but if you respond understandingly it may make all the difference. Don't interact when they are having a tantrum or crying but stay close so when they are ready you can give a hug and say I'm here I love you. Just a thought.

Danielle Elizabeth - posted on 03/15/2013

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Thanks ladies , I tried setting her down alone and when she would cry it just broke my heart bc I thought maybe she didn't understand why mommy was leaving her in the crib and I was being mean! I guess I just have to let my heart break bc I can't let her hit or pull hair and then know if she cries mommy will come running!

Lisa - posted on 03/15/2013

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Hi! My 15 month old son does this as well, so did his 3 older sisters at this age! We tell him no! Then we'll say be nice boy then showed him how to gently stroke/rub our face, head, arms, etc so now if we say be nice he'll do that. They will get it as long as you are consistent. It's so normal at this age, they are testing boundaries! He laughs when he pushes over our dining room chairs and trash can all day, we just have to use diversion and show him something else to do! . I've noticed he hits and pulls hair a lot when he's really tired so maybe try putting your little one in the crib for a few minutes and see if they pass out, works for us :) Good luck!

Niki - posted on 03/15/2013

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Guessing she likes the attention of your discipline. What if a smack to someone meant a very stern no and a trip to a penalty box (read crib, pack and play etc.) with NO toys, and an empty room for a few minutes. The lesson being - people don't want to be with you when you hurt them. No conversations, just let her sit for a few. Take her out, start over again. This is not a timeout as much as a life lesson. I used it when my oldest would bite me at that same age, the lesson - when you bite while nursing, the food source is done & and when you bite people, they don't want to be by you. It worked like a charm after a few days.

Patrice - posted on 03/13/2013

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my daughter is the same way. she hits her brother and he yells mom she hit me. even though I know it did not hurt she laughs at him. so its like I have to tell her to stop and then tell him to stop over exaggerating about the situation. but I am going to try that walking away. thank you

Saniya - posted on 03/13/2013

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I'm facing the exact same problem with my 13 month old son .. He hits me pulls my hair n just does the opposite of what i say when I say the word no .. He also bangs his head to the floor if he's deprived of something that he s asking for or wants ... I haven't figured out a solution as yet ! :(

Laurie - posted on 03/12/2013

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My son (19 months) has a similar behavioral issue! SO sweet most of the time but hits, bites, misbehaves and laughs when he's disciplined. We've tried what you're doing, time outs, ignoring, walking away to no avail. We finally decided to see a Developmental Pediatrician as he also has speech delays. Sorry I don't have any advice, but I share your frustration!

Amy - posted on 03/11/2013

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Tell her no hitting and then put her down in the floor and walk away from her. Babies want attention and if she knows everytime she hits you're going to ignore her the behavior will stop. When my daughter went through this phase it was only with her brother because she got such a reaction from him.

Danielle Elizabeth - posted on 03/10/2013

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Ps she is otherwise the most affectionate little thing ! I have gotten so many comments on how loving she is bc she gives great big hugs and loves to give kisses

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