aggressive behavior

[deleted account] ( 2 moms have responded )

I'm going to ask this in a few different places, as I am flummoxed.

My kids are 9 months old (born at 35 weeks). DS is 22 lbs of pure muscle and boyish aggressive fun. DD is 18 lbs of pure girly tenderness. I didn't push these gender roles on them, they have them, and strongly. There's absolutely no violence in my home or where they visit. Neither physicall, verbal or emotional. Television is maybe a part of a few hours of their week on weekend mornings that Daddy is taking a turn (I sleep in one day a weekend). We don't play overly rough with them, though we do play. They're both at great places, developmentally. Both standing, with DS doing a little bit of proto-cruising (looking for that extra grip next to him, trying for it, sometimes achieving it, but usually sitting, turning and standing back up).

DD understands "no," and sometimes obeys it. She is aware of the emotional moods of those around her. DS, on the other hand, does not. He thinks everyone is playing, and that "no" is just a game.

The big problem comes in with DS playing way too aggressively with DD. She adores him, but he tries to push her down to stand up off of her, to catch her and grab her. Just is generally too rough. This freaks DD out. She screams, sobs and then needs reassurance. She can't outcrawl him, can't push him off of her (hell, I can't easily, he's too strong) and can't generally get away from him. She still wants to be around him, mostly, but is stressed by this. We have a 2 year old that regularly visits the house and even he is stressed out by DS's aggressive play. He doesn't bite or hit (yet), he just grabs too much, pinches, pulls and is sort of scary.

The only thing I've really been able to do is to separate them, but this is happening all the time starting recently. I'm a stay at home Mom, and standing over them and separating them every 5 minutes is a bit much. Does anyone have any solutions or thoughts? I have not been physically reprimanding him when this happens. Simply saying no, and separating them. Usually picking her up and comforting her, or picking him up and putting him in a jumper or much further away. I'm quite firm, quite consistent, and quite miserable about this situation. What do you do when one baby is so much bigger than the other and doesn't understand "no"?

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Liz - posted on 08/02/2009

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My son is much the same way. He does understand no he just tends to ignore it a lot. He's a very determined little boy when he wants to be. My daughter on the other hand usually tends to listen a lot better. They are going to be 14 months old on the 8th ( 12 and a half months old corrected). They went through much the same phase. Though now at this age my daughter can fight back, and my son tends to leave her alone a lot more than he used to.

He stated to crawl around before she did so he was all over her. Now it's a lot more even ground. At that age it is hard because time outs and what not doesn't really work all that well, and I personally believe that physical reprimanding is a bit much for that age. My twins outgrew it after she started to fight back. Maybe she just needs to learn to fight back as well?

Melissa - posted on 07/23/2009

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I have identical boys, 10 1/2 months (8 1/2 corrected). Timothy is bigger and more advanced than Matthew from birth. Timothy crawls and is like a steam roller moving over his brother. He doesn't know he will hurt his brother and Matthew gets quite upset. I don't seperate them, because eventually Matthew will have to deal! He cries a lot from getting hurt, but I think as twins they will always be trying to get Moms attention. I have boys, so it is different. But if you keep favoring your daughter, she might become used to that and never be able to stick up for herself. Someday, she will be more advanced, and that is the day you will be tying to keep her from upsetting him! lol She's a girl, they are just more mature... I have a four year old girl and from birth has had a way with getting our sympathy. She has a big brother too! Good luck, and just try to have her learn to keep him away... she is smart, she'll find a way!

God Bless!

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