How do you teach a one year old to stop hitting his mommy and daddy?

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Becky - posted on 05/14/2009

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My son will swat at me and my husband when he is trying to get our attention, we will tell him no hitting, and he says "hi" and waves. I dont know if your child is just trying to get your attention or if it is for another reason. We have started to put our son in timeout for this. It doesnt hurt us when he hits, but we dont want him to think it is okay and hit another child or baby.

Anita - posted on 05/16/2009

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If you havent done time out b4 your hild might not understand. When you one yr old hits u nxt time, put him down if u are carrying him and get down to his level, grab hold of both of his hand firmly and whilst telling "no hitting mummy/daddy/...because it hurts" squeeze it as u say the word "hitting" and "hurts" and then ask "do u understand?" you most likely sont get a response but when they get older and the vocabulary expands they will start to say yes or nod...after asking if they understand guide them to sit and say "sit on ur bottom" and sit there with him for a minute whilst still holding his hand firmly..don;t let him get up until his minute is over (this sitting down for a minute will be like time out)...NOTE: he might scream and cry if he doesnt want to stay out but be firm and consistnat...good luck

JERI - posted on 05/15/2009

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My daughter went through this phase, too... It seemed like she became "slap-happy" overnight, at a time when time-outs didn't really mean anything to her. I think it was just as frustrating for her as it was for us. She didn't quite have the communication skills down, and hitting was the only way she could get her point across (Though, I am still not sure exactly what that point was...). We worked on "gentle" play -- lots of baby dolls, books and stuffed animals -- which seemed to help. Also, as she learns more and more words and is able to communicate better, the slapping and frustration level has subsided considerably. Good luck!

Carey - posted on 05/14/2009

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Time out is definitely the way to go. My 18 month old is doing the same thing for attention/ when he's mad. Time out let him know that it's not okay.

Emily - posted on 05/14/2009

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Under 2 is too young for punishment, he won't understand or remember why. Distraction is the key. maybe he is ready for more physical play? mock wrestling or chase? Every other phrase i uttered for months was, don't hit muumy, don't bite mummy, don't pull mummy's hair, just physically stop want ever he is doing, say no, that hurts mummy, and move on with some distraction, toddlers don't feel empathy at this age. sigh...this to will pass.

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Desha - posted on 05/22/2013

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WELL I STOPPED MY ONE YEAR OLD FROM HITTING ME BY GIVING HER NICE TOYS TO DISTRACT HER SO SHE WOULD BE BUSY PLAYING WITH TOYS SO SHE WOULD NOT HAVE TIME TO BE HITTING

Jane - posted on 05/16/2009

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Quoting Emily:

Under 2 is too young for punishment, he won't understand or remember why. Distraction is the key. maybe he is ready for more physical play? mock wrestling or chase? Every other phrase i uttered for months was, don't hit muumy, don't bite mummy, don't pull mummy's hair, just physically stop want ever he is doing, say no, that hurts mummy, and move on with some distraction, toddlers don't feel empathy at this age. sigh...this to will pass.



Hi!  I agree with Emily.  Punishing under two is pretty much a waste of your time.  All children go through this phase, and it is a phase.  You can distract your toddler  at this age....and that is the key to switching his behavior.

Jennifer - posted on 05/16/2009

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reasoning with my baby is definitely useless for us, so we just try to teach her to touch gently, and make it as fun as it can be. touch face, nose, eyes, ears, mouth, it's like a distraction. soon she forgets about hitting and keeps up with this touching game.

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