Is anyone's 15 month old hitting?

Kim - posted on 08/17/2009 ( 19 moms have responded )

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My son is 15 months old and would occasionally swat or smack me or my husband. We respond with a firm 'NO HITTING' and if he does it again, he is put down on the floor or removed from the situation. This past weekend my mom was here visiting and I noticed that when I got hom from work, he would start htting me or swatting more than usual. She said he was perfectly fine all day and then once we got home, he started acting out. Now I know kids act out more for their parents than others, but not sure why he is doing this all of a sudden. Anyone else experienced this? I don't believe he is hitting anyone else (like schoolmates, teachers, grandparents, etc...) from what I've seen. I'm thinking he's just trying to get our attention and not able to communicate through words.

19 Comments

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Adrienne - posted on 09/25/2009

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My daughter has just starting hitting my husband and me. She thinks it is funny. So far, we tell her that we don't hit things and we are gentle. Then she gives me a hug, only to start hitting again after that! We keep repeating the same thing to her and then we move away from her if it continues. She seems to be losing interest in the hitting. She already went through the biting phase (we told her that we only bite food) but she still pinches me although that is getting better as well. I think they are testing their boundaries and every child is different so responds to different things. My daughter is very verbal and seems to understand what we say to her (however she doesn't always listen!) It is just a matter of gently reminding them that they need to be gentle and hug rather than hit. (over and over again) Eventually they do "get it".

Missi - posted on 09/13/2009

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my son is much of a hitter, but i nipped it in the bud pretty early, if he does smack me he get a NO and swat on the hand, if he does it again, just a swat and sat in time out, but it has rarley ever coem to that, in fact he is bitten alot at daycare because he will not fight back, poor boy is in for it...lol

Sharna - posted on 09/13/2009

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My little man hits too...its not out of frustration but that he thinks its funny when I say ouch....I say 'No that hurts mummy' but he still does it....I think its just a phase and if u persist with explaining as to why they shouldnt do it...then I think they will get it in the end.

LOL he even has a habit of coming up from behind pulling up my top and pinching at my love handles....or when i pick him up he would pinch at my arms and laugh.

If he does hit....I say no, be gentle...and he then just starts to pat or rub....its very cute!! I have a video of it on youtube too....one good thing is that he is always very gentle with other kids and animals...he never hits and always pats.

Nicole - posted on 09/10/2009

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I must say by daughter hits as well. Usually when she does not get a response from her dad and I quick enough. The one time I reacted she increased; after that I tell her no hitting and walk away. When i pick her up from school is usually when the most hitting occurs. I think they miss us.

Anna - posted on 09/10/2009

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So pleased to hear other mum's with the problem. I love the idea of gentle hands (Gemma's suggestions) because I don't think they are being mean, they are just trying out their hands!! But it is disheartening when they only do it to their parents. My little girl only smacks, scratches or pinches me or her dad. Perhaps she feels comfortable trying things out on us! I started saying no to her but she has started copying that and saying no to everything so I think I will try the "gentle hands" approach.
Bear with it though, I've been in tears when she has head butted me in the nose, scratched my face and nipped my arm.

Jennifer - posted on 09/10/2009

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My 16 month old is the meanest baby ever!!! She hits, bites, kicks, scratches, pinches, pulls hair, head butts, hits with things like, phones, remotes and toys. And she's very strong, she dragged her 6 year old sister across the living room by her hair, and ended up ripping our a whole handfull of her sisters hair!! She bangs her head on everything (on purpose), and seems unfased. The Doctor said, she won't bang her head if it hurts. I really don't know what to do. I gvie her a firm No, don't hit! And also use short time outs. The reprimands don't seem to do anything, and the time outs work at that moment. Nothing seems to stop her from doing it again, and again, and again. And she always laughs, she thinks it's funny!! If you find anything that really does work, please, let me know!

MS - posted on 09/09/2009

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U TRY TO GET ON UR KNEES 2 HIS SIZE N TELL HIM IF U HIT ME AGAIN IM GOIN 2 HIT U BACC KIDS UNDERSTAND N IF HE HIT U HIT HIM BACC BT HARDER N HE GOIN TO GET TRIED IF GETTIN HIT TRY IT N C WAT HAPPEN. GOD BLESS!

Bobbi Jo - posted on 09/09/2009

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I have 15 month old twins and yes, they both hit, usually each other, but on ocassion me or my husband, ans usually in the face. They are also biting each other alot!!

Geo - posted on 09/09/2009

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I have a 16 month old doing the same exsact thing... He actually hit me with a toy in his hand this Saturday, buising my face. We usually extremely loving and caring but when we get home he's been acting up. Hope someone posts some ideas.

Tara - posted on 09/09/2009

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omg I'm soooo glad that it's not just my daughter! My daughter hits a lot, really. She hits my husband and I, and she hits her grandparents/aunts/uncles! She also likes to pinch and scratch. But I did notice she isn't meaning to actually hurt anyone. If I fake a cry or pretend that it hurt she bawls and hugs me and says sorry.. So, I don't know why it happens, but I'm with ya! Anything to stop this behavior!!!! She usually just laughs at me when I get onto her, so it's impossible to reprimand her as usual. I'm also lost at this!

Kate - posted on 09/08/2009

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Yeh, my daughter does sometimes, it's just so unexpected too!!! I've recently had an operation on my nose and she keeps bopping or whacking me on the nose and bloody hell it hurts. I do the same, I say NO, no hitting. But I think she thinks it's funny. So, I have also gone to looking quite upset, now she realises and starts to call after me ... I wish she would stop, really, for the sake of my nose. It's easy enough to say keep it out of the way, but you have to keep doing things and it's always unexpected.

Janea - posted on 09/03/2009

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I have twins and i had this problem big time i still do but its the normal sisterly fights which is still a work in progress. But Juliana (the first born) was a real bad hitter she would push hit throw all that kind of stuff at her sister. Well we started out with be nice no hitting or no whatever she did. Well when they started walking she would push her sister down more so she started getting a light firm pop on the hand. And now they are 15 months so whenever either one of them does it they get a light firm pop on their hand a warning they have to go tell their sister sorry give hugs and kisses. if they do it again samething except i put them in time out. I think its something that needs to be stopped.

Jemma - posted on 08/23/2009

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My girl does this as well (she will be 15 months this week). She hits me, my husband or my son. I just remove her hands and say "Not nice to hit Amelia" and then move her onto another activity. This has worked for her so far. My son went through this stage as well but he was a bit older. I asked his kindy what to do (he was about 2 years old) and they use a strategy called "nice hands" when you say to the child "no we do not hit we use our nice hands" and if they dont know how you show them how to use nice hands. When I heard this I thought "wow how PC is this?? This will never work!!" but it DID! It does sometimes work for Amelia when she is being rough with the cats we say "use your gentle hands" and guide her hands to be gentle. This is working too.

Anyway sorry for the long reply!!

Angela - posted on 08/22/2009

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MIne is 15 months and hits as well, he even thinks it's funny to hurt me when I say ouch. I've just been saying "no, that is not nice", and try to distract him by doing something else. He has even started hitting friends :( I have no idea where he picked this up from??? I'm being told it's a phase and they will grow out of it, I just hope it's soon.

User - posted on 08/20/2009

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My son will hit at me and my husband as well now and then. I will tell him that he is being "naughty" and "that hurts Mama" and give him a sad face. Once I pretended to cry after he hit me and he came up to me and laid his head on my lap and looked as if he was going to cry too. My son too will bang his head if you take him away from the situation or if he gets too mad or frustrated at the situation. Sometimes he bangs his head pretty hard and will cry. I take that oppertunity to say "see that hurts, don't do that if it hurts sweety".

If he is hitting more when you get home...I am not sure your routine when you walk in the door, but maybe if you go straight to him pick him up and give him hugs and kisses and tell him how much you missed him before you do anything else...maybe it will lessen the hitting. My nephew will do this to my sister after she gets back from a business trip (he is almost 3 years old) and tries to put her suitcases down, go to the bathroom, change out of her suit...then goes to him.

Clare - posted on 08/19/2009

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My little one is hitting also. She doesn't quite get that it hurts me and is just getting her frustration out. I don't know how she is going to 'get' the hurting part though because she hits herself and tries to bang her head on things all the time. It doesn't seem to bother her. If I take away the item she is hitting with she just finds something else (like the floor or the bed head) to bang her head on. It is really strange behaviour but the doctor doesn't have any explaination for me. I've checked her ears and clean them regularily but there isn't anything wrong. Strange little monkey she is.

Ashley - posted on 08/18/2009

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Yes my daughter has been doing this as well. Getting frustrated,or if i take anything away from her. It's normal. Alot of children do it and they just don't understand what exactly they're doing. All they think they're doing is venting their anger,or frustration or whatever, or maybe they're just "playing". I do the same thing jennifer here said, remove her from the situation by sitting her away from whoever she's hitting and tell her no. I don't know if "time-out" would work on my child though because i don't think children this young understand the concept of time out. But you should frown upon the behaviour like you have been to try and teach them that what they are doing is wrong. If the behaviour persists,maybe time-out would be effective. They are still learning and they look to you to show them and help them develop.

Jennifer - posted on 08/18/2009

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My little guy likes to hit. He hits me and his little brother. The doctor said we could start doing time out for it. A minute separated from the situation, but I haven't tried that yet. It doesn't seem to be out of aggression so much, as fun, and not knowing that it isn't a nice thing to do.

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