my 4year old son keeps biting me what do i do

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Krysten - posted on 02/03/2009

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My son was a biter and it was the worst. I can remember crying as we were leaving yet another birthday party because he had bit someone.  I really think it is a way children are trying to get attention and they just aren't verbalizing it. Give him a baby chew toy. Tell him if he is going to bite he needs to bite something appropriate. Encourage him to "use his words" and don't be afraid to scream in pain if he bites you. Then he will be startled and realize the impact he is having.  I don't think biting him back will work (or at least for very long).  Good luck

Jackie - posted on 02/03/2009

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I agree with Nikki...biting when a child is younger is one thing but your son is 4 and knows better.  Give him a bite back and see what that does.  It sounds terrible but I am assuming time-outs aren't doing the job anymore?!  good luck...it isn't nice to be nervous when your child comes near you.

Christina - posted on 02/04/2009

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Quoting Natalia:



I personally don't think that biting and hitting back is OK.  It seems like then you would have the problem of him hitting, pushing, smacking, biting kids back in retaliation when it's done to him in a preschool situation.  We are here to teach our kids right from wrong and sometimes the lesson will take more than once to sink in.  They are a bundle of emotions and sometimes they have impusle control issues and basically lack the control to stop themselves before they do something.  He might know that it's wrong to bite, but maybe he can't control the impulse.  Talk to him about it, let him know that it hurts and that we use our hands for hugs and our mouths for kisses.  The next time he starts getting frustrated stop and get down on his level and help him use his words, help him find the right words to discribe how he's feeling.  Let him go in his room and punch his pillow.  Let him do some angry scribbles with crayons.  Teach him!  That's what we're here for, we aren't here to control them.  We're here to teach them.  They aren't born knowing the right thing to do.  Help him! 






 






Hope this helps!






Natalia





like this idea too



 

Natalia - posted on 02/03/2009

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I personally don't think that biting and hitting back is OK.  It seems like then you would have the problem of him hitting, pushing, smacking, biting kids back in retaliation when it's done to him in a preschool situation.  We are here to teach our kids right from wrong and sometimes the lesson will take more than once to sink in.  They are a bundle of emotions and sometimes they have impusle control issues and basically lack the control to stop themselves before they do something.  He might know that it's wrong to bite, but maybe he can't control the impulse.  Talk to him about it, let him know that it hurts and that we use our hands for hugs and our mouths for kisses.  The next time he starts getting frustrated stop and get down on his level and help him use his words, help him find the right words to discribe how he's feeling.  Let him go in his room and punch his pillow.  Let him do some angry scribbles with crayons.  Teach him!  That's what we're here for, we aren't here to control them.  We're here to teach them.  They aren't born knowing the right thing to do.  Help him! 



 



Hope this helps!



Natalia

[deleted account]

Young children tend to bite out of frustration as they cant voice their feelings/needs/wants. A four year old has the vocabulary to tell you whats wrong. I agree with all the other parents who choose not to react physically. A parent who resorts to biting/smacking has lost control themselves and as such has lost their power base. A simple "It hurts me when you bite, please stop. If you bite again you will have a time out" is appropriate for any child over three. Also ask them what the problem is, the usual "use your big words and tell me what you are feeling". Its is very important for children to know that they can express their feelings regardsless of what those feelings are. Good luck. A great author on this topic is Steve Biddulph, i think the title is The guide to raising happy children.

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Kira - posted on 02/04/2009

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I would try using a firm voice sayung NO and that that behavior is not appropriate followed by a time out. If that does not work, I might try telling him that you will take away priveledges, toys, etc, and then do it. Do you think he is biting bc he cannot verbalize? In that case you might try to find other ways to communicate until his speach develops. Hope this helps, I have 2 sons, neither bit, so I am not talking from first hand experience on this topic, just general discipline...

Christina - posted on 02/04/2009

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If biting him back doesnt help, which soemtiems it doesnt, and soemtimes may bring more of a behavior than you bargained for but maybe he needs to be shown another way to release his frustration. Boys sometimes need more tension releasers than girls( cortisol in boys is much different than in girls) research it and youll be glad you did. Try to figure out when and why he is biting and maybe next time when you see this might happen get the boy some twizzlers or gum, or a mini trampoline. trust me it sounds wired but it works. if you can start interveineing before this happens hell foprget all about biting.

Andrea - posted on 02/03/2009

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I agree with the other moms, BITE HIM BACK! He will realize how it feels and if he realizes that you will bite him back, he won't want that and he will stop! I didn't have that, but a boy I babysat for did that and his mom told me she bit him and if he bit me, to go ahead and bite him back. So far it worked great! He hasn't done it since!! it does sound bad, but sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do!

Sherrie - posted on 02/03/2009

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Hey,



I had quite a few problems with my kids, and someone gave me a book called how to train up a child and it has dramatically changed the way i raise them, they are the most wonderful children now!! it is just a matter of training them properly, so they are great kids.  Go to a website called www.kidsinmind.com.  It is incredible.

Nancy - posted on 02/03/2009

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I would have a discussion about alternatives with the child that is older. Perhaps he is trying to get your undivided attention. Have a talk about this when he hasn't recently done this. Ask him what punishment he should have that might help him stop doing this. Then institute the punishment consistently. I don't really like the bite them back response. How do they get that this is wrong if you do it to them? That's kind of like hitting them to stop them from hitting. Children need to learn ways to communicate their frustration that are not physical or abusive. Same for children that are hitting their parent. Are you paying attention to their needs at the time? Get down to their level, look them in the eyes and ask, "What is bothering you right now? Tell me, and we'll try to make things better." Teach them that communicating does work, by responding and not ignoring.

Cortney - posted on 02/03/2009

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I went through this too. Good to know I am not the only one out there. :) DON'T Bit him back. It doesn't work, at least not for me. I think it just teaches them that it is okay to bit since you bit them. I found that one of the best things to do was take something away from my daughter that she really likes. Her thing is her blanket, take it away TILL they listen. Ask once for an apoligize, etc. and she really listens. And that way your not yelling, bitting, or spanking. :)

Jennifer - posted on 02/03/2009

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Try a nice healthy snack. I don't agree with biting them back. Two wrongs do not make a right. He's bored and needs something to do. Try a craft or the snack idea and see what happens.

Shuntay - posted on 02/03/2009

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this is what i did i bit my child back not hard or anything just enought to show that it wasnt a good thing to do

Vicki - posted on 02/03/2009

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Hi, I would really have to say that 4 yrs old is old enough to know better. If stern words don't work, for example: that hurts mommy, don't do it, in that tone of voice of DONT MESS WITH ME. Than maybe a 4 minute time out would help. It may take a couple days for it to take effect though. Be patient. I've heard a tap on the mouth has been effective as well-along with saying not to bite. Good luck!

Vicki Reinbolt

Kayla - posted on 02/03/2009

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sorry you are dealing with this. At age four and six they really should know what they are doing is wrong. Unless they are developmentally delayed, I think at these ages it is safe to assume their behavior is a way to bully you. I would use a tone of voice that makes them jump out of their skin.



If that fails, yes I would bite back. I say this with their age and assumed mental development in mind.



If you suspect there are impulse control problems, I would give her a toothbrush to bite and insist she bring it with her everywhere.



With the hitter, you could restrain his arms for a while and restrict his movement until he would RATHER keep his hands to himself.

Ryan - posted on 02/03/2009

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Quoting Brooke:

Biting him back only reinforces that biting (and/or some kind of physical reaction) is an acceptable behavior. It is not. Try to figure out the trigger for what is making him bite to hopefully avoid the situation. If he is biting out of frustration, help him put words to his feelings and find a new way to deal with them (squeeze a stress ball, hug a pillow, etc). Tell him calmly but firmly, "Biting is not nice. Biting hurts. We do not bite. If you bite, you take a time out." He is 4 yrs old, so he can take a 4-minute time out in his room. Set the timer, set it up out of his reach, put him in his room, and close the door until the timer goes off. You will probably have to repeat this process many times before he relearns how to react, but you must remain consistent.


I think the above advice has been the best that I've read on here.  If you 6 year old is hitting you and your 4 year old is biting you, it's a sign that they don't know this is wrong.  Or they are just completely taking advantage of you, and think you won't do anything to them severe enough to get them where it hurts.  Longer time outs are appropriate for this kind of behaviour, not just 4 minutes, but 10.  On top of that taking away a privilage, video games, a playdate, a VERY favorite animal.  And the most important thing is DO NOT cave.  If you go back on your word, your kids don't get the message.  If you stick to the same punishment, the child will get the point and stop doing it.  It's not going to happen in a day, but give it a week.



I truely believe children mimic our behaviours, what are you teaching your child if you bit or hit them back.  You are the adult, you must act like it.  Some kids, it may work to teach them that biting works...but man the picture it creates in my head, an adult biting her child back????  It just doesn't sit right with me.  If that is the road you are going to take, that is your choice though.  To each their own!



My two year old was hiting other kids at playdates, so we started with time outs for hiting, then one playdate he kept doing and doing it, and I kept putting him in time outs for it, I was tired and didn't get much time to chat with the parents, but after that playdate, we haven't had any problems with him hitting.  Because he got a time out EVERY time he did it.  It's not always easy doing it, but in the long run it gets easier!

Ryan - posted on 02/03/2009

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Quoting Brooke:

Biting him back only reinforces that biting (and/or some kind of physical reaction) is an acceptable behavior. It is not. Try to figure out the trigger for what is making him bite to hopefully avoid the situation. If he is biting out of frustration, help him put words to his feelings and find a new way to deal with them (squeeze a stress ball, hug a pillow, etc). Tell him calmly but firmly, "Biting is not nice. Biting hurts. We do not bite. If you bite, you take a time out." He is 4 yrs old, so he can take a 4-minute time out in his room. Set the timer, set it up out of his reach, put him in his room, and close the door until the timer goes off. You will probably have to repeat this process many times before he relearns how to react, but you must remain consistent.


I think the above advice has been the best that I've read on here.  If you 6 year old is hitting you and your 4 year old is biting you, it's a sign that they don't know this is wrong.  Or they are just completely taking advantage of you, and think you won't do anything to them severe enough to get them where it hurts.  Longer time outs are appropriate for this kind of behaviour, not just 4 minutes, but 10.  On top of that taking away a privilage, video games, a playdate, a VERY favorite animal.  And the most important thing is DO NOT cave.  If you go back on your word, your kids don't get the message.  If you stick to the same punishment, the child will get the point and stop doing it.  It's not going to happen in a day, but give it a week.



I truely believe children mimic our behaviours, what are you teaching your child if you bit or hit them back.  You are the adult, you must act like it.  Some kids, it may work to teach them that biting works...but man the picture it creates in my head, an adult biting her child back????  It just doesn't sit right with me.  If that is the road you are going to take, that is your choice though.  To each their own!



My two year old was hiting other kids at playdates, so we started with time outs for hiting, then one playdate he kept doing and doing it, and I kept putting him in time outs for it, I was tired and didn't get much time to chat with the parents, but after that playdate, we haven't had any problems with him hitting.  Because he got a time out EVERY time he did it.  It's not always easy doing it, but in the long run it gets easier!

Mary - posted on 02/03/2009

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My daughter bit me once. One time. I didn't bite her back but I was very firm with her and told her how much it hurt and explained how she needed to be loving.  Even though it didnt really hurt, I totaly over-reacted so she would understand just how much it would hurt if someone bit her. 



Try that??

Brooke - posted on 02/03/2009

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Biting him back only reinforces that biting (and/or some kind of physical reaction) is an acceptable behavior. It is not. Try to figure out the trigger for what is making him bite to hopefully avoid the situation. If he is biting out of frustration, help him put words to his feelings and find a new way to deal with them (squeeze a stress ball, hug a pillow, etc). Tell him calmly but firmly, "Biting is not nice. Biting hurts. We do not bite. If you bite, you take a time out." He is 4 yrs old, so he can take a 4-minute time out in his room. Set the timer, set it up out of his reach, put him in his room, and close the door until the timer goes off. You will probably have to repeat this process many times before he relearns how to react, but you must remain consistent.

Rhonda - posted on 02/03/2009

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My Daughter bit my son once, i bit her just hard enough for her to know next time it could really hurt, i also told her i was going to pull every one of her teeth with a set of pliers.



This worked and she never bit again, but in this day you need to be careful with what you do as its "against the law" to punish your child!



As for your 6 year old, you need to let him know who the parent is, try time out 5 minutes, and an additionaly 5 minutes for everytime he hits, also take away any games he enjoys playing with, then each day that goes by where he doesnt hit you give him one thing back, but as soon as he hits you again, start taking things away from him.



make sure you take his favorite first, but dont return it until its the last thing you have left of his.

Shelley - posted on 02/03/2009

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I know it sounds horrible but when my daughter started biting I bit her back, not hard but hard enough to feel it. She quit REAL quick.

Alison - posted on 02/03/2009

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Put your foot down now, as it will only get worse, bite him back hard, and when the 6 yr old hits you, make sure you smack him back.



 



Kids have to be taught where the boundaries are and are forever trying to push them further.



 



Years ago my daughter (2) climbed into my 3 week old son's cot, stripped him off completely and bit him hard on his stomach. My mind went into overdrive and imagined what could have happened if she had decided to throw him out of the cot. I bit her very hard on her arm and left a bruise. I was questioned at the nursery the following day, but after showing what she had done to my son no further action was taken, and thankfully she never bit ANYONE again.



Good luck

[deleted account]

Biting back seems archaic to me. As parents we're supposed to model what's right and model nonaggression. I think that just teaches them to be afraid.



There are dozens of potential reasons for biting. Here's a link to a book about biting.....



http://www.amazon.com/No-Biting-Practice...





Why Toddlers Sometimes Bite
Instead of focusing on the biting, focus on finding the underlying reasons your toddler needs to bite. I don’t mean what she wants at the moment (lollies, attention, toy) but the reason she resorts to expressing herself by biting. Look for frustration, a feeling of  disconnectedness, jealousy, helplessness or a need for love, affection and autonomy. Take care of the underlying cause and the symptom will vanish.





http://www.naturalparenting.com.au/flex/...



HTH !

Louise - posted on 02/03/2009

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bit him back sorry he will not understand he is hurting you till it herts him worn him first if you do that to me again i will bight you thants not nice next time he does it bit him

[deleted account]

Quoting Joanne:

thanks i will try biting him back but hes at that age and he tells people things i wouldunt want people thinking i bite my 4year old son my 6 year old hits me as well



As for your child telling someone you bit him. Make sure that he tells them why you had to bite him. And its actually a good thing that he tells people , that means it made a lasting impression and he hopefully wont do it again. And for the 6 year old hitting you he is old enough to be grounded. Take away the tv, outside play, desserts, video games. Also getting him into some sort of activity like karate or soccor, might help too.

Kasey - posted on 02/03/2009

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You just need to stand firm, they need to know who the boss is, if they think they have control over you and you are not firm with them, they will continue and boy, kids sure can be mean!

Kasey - posted on 02/03/2009

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I have had the same problem with one of my children.  This sounds horrible, but they bite out of frusteration, for the majority of kids and they don't know what it feels like and how bad it hurts.  The best thing, sorry to say, but bit him back, he doesn't know the pain and until he knoows, he may continue biting.  That was the advice that I continued to get when my daughter was going through a horrible biting spell.  Good luck!

User - posted on 02/03/2009

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My son is 29 and he bit his sister when he was around 2-3y/o. I bit him once, not hard but hard enough to surprise him and he did it again. The next time I bit him I did it a bit harder, actually left teeth marks on his soft skin....that made him a believer! I think taking away a favorite toy and being consistent with whatever you try are great tips. Good luck!

Joanne - posted on 02/03/2009

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thanks i will try biting him back but hes at that age and he tells people things i wouldunt want people thinking i bite my 4year old son my 6 year old hits me as well

Christina - posted on 02/03/2009

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It sounds awful but bit him back. Just hard enough to let him know that it hurts. My parents bit me and it worked. My youngest bit too and it worked for her also. Good luck.

[deleted account]

My parent bit us back....that put a stop to it real quick. My brother had the same problem with his youngest and he would tell him if you do that I am going to take your Diego away. Which was his favorite thing in the whole world. That worked for them.

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