Francesca - posted on 04/12/2010 ( 4 moms have responded )
My beautiful 11 month old daughter has a bit of a biting problem. This behaviour started during nursing and has somewhat transformed. I can categorize it two different ways.
When she nurses before bed, she often nodds off. When she does, she clenches her jaw, and bites me, cases me much discomfort. I know that she doesn't do this on purpose. And I have somewhat come to terms with this type of accidental bite (but if there are suggestions...besides weaning - I would gladly take them)
But the second type of bite worries me some. I understand that this bite is when she is frustrated. If I am not paying attention, or doing what she wants she bites me. For example, if she is tired from playing and has decided she wants an early nap, if I get distracted, or talk to someone or don't look at her when I nurse her. I was over for a playdate with a friend. She was on the floor playing with the other boy. I started chatting with my friend. She cruised over to me and bit me. It seems like if I break eye contact during her waking moments for any reason I get bitten. For these type of bites, well, I have tried every bit of advice I have been offered from my own network and am desperate to nip this behaviour in the butt as soon as I can. She doesn't bite anyone else. Not Daddy, not other kids, just me.
I have tried the Dr. Sears method (which slightly mortified me at first) with the whole nursing bit and it only encouraged the behavour more. I tried the Dr. Brown's method (and still use it even with its lack of success) where I have tried to remove her from situation. I say No, that hurts and put her down away from me. It doesn't matter if I pick her back up after a mintue or much later she will remember and bit me the moment I come back near her. This too seems to encourage it. My Dh witnessed one particularly bad day (she tends not too do it when Daddy's home) and he took some advice from my father. He bit her. I didn't previously take his advice because I found it counter productive. Well, That too encouraged it more. Now she is constantly putting her fingers in everyone's mouth to get bitten. My father says my Dh didn't do it hard enough but I am not willing to try that again. I found ignoring it at least doesn't encourage her to do it repetitively, but she still does it.
She is not understimulated. I switch up her toys so she doesn't get bored. We do tons of activities and playgroups every day. I never leave her in a room alone when she is awake. I mean, I have a play area in the kitchen set up so I can clean the dishes without worry. She loves her routine and between her naps and bedtime she gets about 14 hours of sleep a day. What am I doing wrong? Why only me?
My daughter is otherwise a great kid. She rarely cries. Super smart. She already has a few words up her sleeve. She is a shy, sweet baby, but boy is she stubborn.
I still use the Dr. Brown method consistantly because it makes the most sense to me, and I hope that if I am consistant and persistant she will eventually get it. But I would like to know if anyone else have a bitter? How did you cope? What worked well for you?
Thank you for any and all advice. Her six little teeth are packing an aweful punch lately!