How do I teach my 17 month old to share?

Kristy - posted on 05/10/2012 ( 4 moms have responded )




My 17 month daughter is a really sweet, funny girl. But lately when she has play dates, she's always grabbing toys from her friend. The boy she plays with doesn't mind too much. But the she makes her girl friend cry every time they play together. Whenever her friend picks something up to play with it, she has to have it. Then it's a tug of war match and then tears from her friend. My daughter doesn't cry because she wants the toy. She just looks at the girl like she's wondering why she's crying. Then she'll give her a kiss. I feel like she's only doing it because she got a big reaction from her the first time. Like she's experimenting what will happen when she does different things. I don't think she understands when I tell her to share. I sometimes find myself tugging it out of her hand to give it back to the other girl because she's crying. I know that's SO not the way to do it since that's just doing what I'm telling her not to do. Very frustrating! Everything else came so easy. I'm lost. Help!!


Kim - posted on 05/10/2012




Taking it from your daughter and giving it back to the other girl while explaining that it isn't her turn and she has to wait and share is the right thing to do.
When I would play with my kids I would grab something I knew they would want and play for a few minutes. When they tried to take it from me I would keep it and say "no, it's mommys turn, you need to share with mommy." I would keep playing with it for a minute and then ask them if they would like a turn. I would tell them "now it's your turn, good job sharing" and we would keep doing it over and over. I would also trade with them so they learned to give something in exchange for something they want. We do this almost every time they play and both of my kids have always been great at sharing.
If my son was older and had moments where he didn't want to share I would then take what he had from him, give it to the other kid and not let him play. He knows that if he doesn't share then he will not get to play with it. If they are both fighting over it then I simply take it away and neither one gets it. Obviously he has his special things that are his only and I just get him to put them away when he has someone over.


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Dove - posted on 05/10/2012




You could intervene before she snatches the toy. Otherwise taking it from her and giving it back to the other child IS the right thing to do. As long as you explain that it's the other child's turn and in a little bit SHE can have a turn. Be consistent. She WILL get it.

User - posted on 05/10/2012




Children don't really learn what it means to share till about 2.5, often later. She's perfectly normal. Taking the toy off her and giving it to the other child is the right thing to do, otherwise she'll think she can always have what she wants.

S. - posted on 05/10/2012




Your daughter sound's as sweet as a button kissing her crying friends. what she's doing is just normal and I think your doing the only thing you can at this age, learning to share is a long process and no she won't have a clue what she's doing but she soon will and at least your on the right track. My youngest is 19 months and I have friends who have 9 month old babies we have now got to the point that I'll just say "don't snatch of babies" and she leaves it and walks away. When she's older you can tell her she shares or you go home but at this age she won't get it.

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