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07 Sep 2007

Impossible 16 month old
I feel like the worst parent on earth. My son is 16 months old and he is being very difficult. Most days its okay and I can handle him, but today because he refused to have a midday nap, he just whined and complained the whole afternoon - he wants water, so I give him water, then he wants juice and I give him juice, then he wants water again and so it goes on. It doesn't help leaving him water in a bottle where he can get it, because thats not the water he wants - he wants it out the tap in the pooh cup, or no the cup mommy has, or no the blue one - its different everytime. He is also hitting my husband and I, and has started biting too. I really don't know where this is coming from as he is at home with me all day. Tonight though I reached boiling point. He threw his entire dinner bowl of food at me. There was food absolutely everywhere, in my hair, up my nose on the wall and floor behind me and he thought it was a huge joke. I was bleeding as the point of his plastic bowl got my eyebrow and I have just got home with 3 stitches. When this happened I didn't think and I reacted by smacking his hand hard and shouting at him that he was very naughty. I now feel like I am a child abuser. Please can you help me? I don't know firstly what to do about the whining, and secondly about the hitting, pinching and biting. Also, how do I reprimand at this age without smacking again? I don't want to smack him as I am now positive that now I smacked his hand, he is just going to smack and hit us more.
Answer 337 views
Expert
childhood diseases
paediatrician

01 Jan 0001

You are right, hitting him will only increase the likelihood of him thinking that hitting is acceptable behaviour. It is very difficult to keep one's cool when a child is being difficult, but this is what is needed now.You must simply ignore his behaviour, so when he starts performing don't wait around for it to continue.Tell him firmly to stop and if he does'nt listen, see that he can't hurt himself in any way and simply walk out of the room and close the door. Only re-enter the room when he has stopped crying.
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