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View Full Version : DESPERATE to stop hitting/pushing



gcj
02-13-2014, 12:25 PM
I have a 22 month old who is a hitter and pusher. She hits hard and sometimes her pushing comes with a run up and shove from behind....so it's kind of scary. She's mostly after 1 other girl who is 2 months younger than her..so basically the same size.
Problem is this has been going on for 6 months. There is no improvement. She doesn't care/react to any discipline. This makes me feel that there is no deterent since she just doesn't care. The mom knows and sees it, too.
I've just realized today that my exhaustion and unhappiness with this job right now is all about this situation. I just don't know what to do about it. I don't want to get rid of her...she has an older sister and that would be giving up 2 spots and you never know what you're going to get....could be worse! But it has to stop. I'm also taking in a younger one soon and it worries me what she'd do to someone younger.
For my well-being and the well-being of the others, I see that it has to end, but I don't know how.
Any advice??

bright sparks
02-13-2014, 12:37 PM
Well quite honestly if you are working with the parent and have tried different forms of discipline over the last 6 months with no success then it really is a no brainer. You need to clarify what it is you actually want. You say you want to be free of unhappiness and exhaustion which you know is a result of this child but then you say you don't want to get rid of her because you will lose two children. Well it is one or the other I think. 6 months is more than enough time to invest in a child to make behavioral changes but you say you have not seen any change or success. What about the other child who is being pushed? You owe it to her to have her safety and best interests at heart. It is your duty as a good caregiver to protect her from this and it seems you have tried your best at trying to help the child but enough is enough. You owe it not only to yourself but to every other child in your care and their families to terminate immediately. This isn't just minor bad behavior, this is physical harm and is completely unacceptable. Protect the victimized child and terminate the problem child immediately. I think you do know what you have to do, but you are just afraid to act on it because it leaves you in a financially tight spot.

Busy ECE mommy
02-13-2014, 12:50 PM
Terminate. You can't have other kids being bullied while you are supervising their care.

playfelt
02-13-2014, 12:52 PM
If you feel you can't terminate then separate - the problem child goes into a play yard - not a playpen like for napping but one of the ones you use to section off a large enough area to play. They get only a few toys and anything tossed out stays out. If tossing is still an issue then limit what they start out with to stuffies and similar soft toys only.

At the same time the others are not allowed to stand there and goad her into throwing. They should be playing out of tossing range and ignoring the one in the playpen.

You heap your attention only on the others and do this for a week. After that start to let the child out to be your shadow while you do something with the group and then use the play area for when you move away from the group. Over time increase the time child is out.

The good news is some of this is age related in the sense of parallel play and seeing the other child as an annoying toy and not as a person and that comes with age and maturity.

If parents are not on board for helping or admitting there could be issues than keep the play yard plan to yourself because you don't want them doing anything at home that undermines what you are trying to accomplish at daycare.

Spixie33
02-13-2014, 12:53 PM
Yikes that is a tough one. What will you do if she pushes the younger girl into the coffee table or down onto a toy and you have to explain to the parents why the younger child has a bruise or goose egg? :(

Do you put her in time out or give her consequences when she gets aggressive and tell her that it is not okay to push and hurt others?

If you really don't want to terminate then you will have to watch this girl like a hawk or have her constantly at your side so that she won't have the opportunity to even be aggressive.

Be firm because you have to nip it in the bud before something more serious happens or it escalates.

Crayola kiddies
02-13-2014, 12:58 PM
Terrific advise play felt !!!!!! I agree totally ..... I do exactly that when my bully kicks it into high gear....I have a super yard just for those times I also use the high chair ... Strap Em in and you get to color ... Or not ..... But you have to sit there

Samantha33
02-13-2014, 01:01 PM
I have been in the same position recently. I don't want to give this little boy up, you never know what ahead. Anyway, what I do now is keep him busy, sitting down, at the little table. Books, puzzles, Mr. Potato Head, coloring, cars, sitting down toys. That's his table. When we do playdoh that's where he sits by himself. He gets to excited as soon as he is involved with other children. This has helped greatly. If I'm doing something with the whole then he comes to sit or dance whatever with us. Hope this helps. Good luck.

gcj
02-13-2014, 01:26 PM
some useful tips...thank you. I'm not ready to give up this family...it's not just a child, it's the family. It's not a financial thing...it's the package deal. It's the dynamics with the older child...it's a lot of things. I will talk to the mom today about a plan of action and results and a deadline, though.
I've kept her separate in the past as punishment, but perhaps I need to do this more long-term. I'm going to give it a try...

playfelt
02-13-2014, 01:31 PM
You have to look at the keeping her separate as a learning time for her not a punishment. If we don't play nice with our friends we don't play with them period. I have a tendency to just do things my own way and leave the parents out of it. If you tell them you are going to isolate their child till she smartens up and acts properly it isn't going to go over well but/...... the other options aren't going to go over well either if they have to leave care. What goes on at home the parents deal with in their way. What goes on at daycare I deal with in my way. If what I do has no effect and I see no other options then parent can be told look I tried a zillion things and it is getting no better so you are gone.

In this case I think a lot will get better as the child gets older and more verbal and develops some actual play skills but right now needs to learn that no means no and you get separated every time.

5 Little Monkeys
02-13-2014, 01:51 PM
I agree and like Playfelt's suggestion. As I've said before, I'm not a fan of terming as this doesn't help the child, it just passes the problem.

AmandaKDT
02-13-2014, 02:01 PM
You have to look at the keeping her separate as a learning time for her not a punishment. If we don't play nice with our friends we don't play with them period. I have a tendency to just do things my own way and leave the parents out of it. If you tell them you are going to isolate their child till she smartens up and acts properly it isn't going to go over well but/...... the other options aren't going to go over well either if they have to leave care. What goes on at home the parents deal with in their way. What goes on at daycare I deal with in my way. If what I do has no effect and I see no other options then parent can be told look I tried a zillion things and it is getting no better so you are gone.

In this case I think a lot will get better as the child gets older and more verbal and develops some actual play skills but right now needs to learn that no means no and you get separated every time.

Yes, this child is very young, not even 2 years old yet. They still have lots of learning and growing to do. I have a 19 month old that hits and pinches reflexibly when she thinks things aren't going her way. She has slapped my own 21 month old across the face for no reason and it never even crossed my mind to terminate her. I keep a close eye on her and pick her up and remove her from the other kids when she starts doing it (with a stern No Hitting). I will put her in the hallway or kitchen and walk away. It is kind of funny, she will just stand there for a minute and look at us, not sure what is going on and not too happy about being segregated. But she always comes back into the room better behaved. I will just continue doing this and expect with consistancy that it will eventually stop. Now if she were 4 years old and still doing this it would be a different story...

kassiemom
02-14-2014, 02:57 PM
I have to disagree with terminating due to bullying, she is not even 2 yet I would hardly call it bullying I would call it being a 22 month old who is asserting her place in this world. I had this problem with my own daughter and I tried it all. A friend finally suggested this and I tried it and it worked!
When the child hits/pushes without saying anything pick her up and put her in time out (i had to strap my daughter in a highchair she is very spirited) Put on a timer and just say "When the timer goes off you may leave"
She is likely doing this for attention so positive or negative will please her. by not speaking to her about the whole thing at the time its not giving her the attention she wants.
Every morning i would say to my daughter " If you hit or push today You will be getting a time out."
she will catch on fast :) And of course make sure to give lots of snuggles and positive attention when she is being good!

gcj
02-16-2014, 07:07 PM
Well, I have 100% cooperation from the parents. They are on board with separating her as a learning tool, not a punishment and upon their request I'll bring her into the group for short periods where I'm free to be there on the floor with 100% of my attention and use positive enforcement. If she does 5 minutes without hurting anyone she gets congratulated and a sticker....and we'll gradually increase the time. I feel good about this...
The reality is that I cannot have my eyes on her 100% of the time if she's always in the group. There are periods of the day, like in the morning while I'm preparing my kids' school lunches and this is one of her worst times, since she knows I'm preoccupied. So, if she's separate, she can't hurt anyone. I think this is a way to solve my immediate problem and also long-term....here's hoping!

Samantha33
02-17-2014, 07:15 AM
gcj, wonderful. I have found that is the only thing that's working right now, and it's a saving grace for me. He still gets to play with anything that can be put on the table and sing and dance and circle time with the group when I'm there. Best of luck!

JennJubie
02-17-2014, 10:29 AM
I agree and like Playfelt's suggestion. As I've said before, I'm not a fan of terming as this doesn't help the child, it just passes the problem.

I completely agree. Also, if this becomes a pattern in the child's life, it will only teach the child that people will give up on them when there is difficulty.

5 Little Monkeys
02-17-2014, 08:17 PM
Exactly Jen!

**There are for sure times when terming is or might be the only option however, I would need to feel and know that I did all I could before I chose that option.

Secondtimearound
02-18-2014, 01:59 PM
Under 2 seems to be quite young for terming due to bully behaviour . I agree with the time by herself if you are going out of the room but seperation doesn't teach !! I would suggest shadowing and keeping her close to you . If she goes to push I would be close to change her response ! I verbalize a lot , no no no hands are for clapping kind of idea , we are nice to our friends !!!
It will take a lot of one on one but I think as her verbal skills improve the behaviour will too !!

bright sparks
02-18-2014, 02:27 PM
Under 2 seems to be quite young for terming due to bully behaviour . I agree with the time by herself if you are going out of the room but seperation doesn't teach !! I would suggest shadowing and keeping her close to you . If she goes to push I would be close to change her response ! I verbalize a lot , no no no hands are for clapping kind of idea , we are nice to our friends !!!
It will take a lot of one on one but I think as her verbal skills improve the behaviour will too !!

I love what you say about separation doesn't teach. I think it does but only to a certain extent. It is one thing to separate as a form of negative reinforcement but you have to teach what appropriate behaviour is and shadow the child to give them opportunities to TRY and learn to behave appropriately.

There are lots of comments about not terminating and I think I was maybe the first and one of very few to say to terminate. I do not terminate lightly and didn't suggest it as such either. The OP was the one who stated she had been dealing with this for 6 months with no improvements and that no discipline helped the child. It doesn't make them a lost cause and it doesn't make them a bully. A bully usually acts with the intension, but how can a child this age purposely antagonize and physically harm another child on such a continuous basis??? I simply made my point in relation to making you think at what point do you not put the well being of the other children ahead of this child who you have clearly devoted so much time and effort to who is to date NOT improving at all.

I think a lot of great suggestions have been made and they could really help, but I urge you to set boundaries and timelines that don't just allow for time to help this child, but also prevent the other children from further negative impact as a result. Separation is for sure going to prevent them from physically harming another child but you can not keep them separate forever and it will teach them how not to behave, if you are lucky, and hopefully break the cycle so that once they are reintroduced into the group again "full time" if you will, they are no longer acting in this way and are able to learn appropriate behaviour. But, I would suggest you set yourself some limits as you have already invested 6 months with no improvement. It is one thing to work with a behavioural issue and see tiny baby steps of progression but its a very different thing if your efforts see no improvement at the cost of either another child being hurt continuously, or you giving so much time to work with the problem child that it takes your attention away from the others more than it should.

I kept a child for nearly 2 years with horrific behavioural issues and he was never physical with another child beyond throwing toys which were never actually thrown at another child but ultimately resulted in some injuries. That child was not a bully, he had areas he needed help in and that's exactly what I dedicated myself to doing for him and the family. It didn't however change the simple fact that his behaviour put the others at risk over an extended period of time and took extra time away from the other children so I could further invest it into helping him. At what point do we say enough is enough. I hate passing a child on for another to deal with, but as with the OP's situation, this is not just about doing what is best for one child, but what is best for the group.

I really hope you can work through this with success. It sounds like you are well invested in this child and I just hope the family realizes how lucky they are.

bright sparks
02-18-2014, 04:27 PM
My opinion , separating doesn't work . If your not interacting with anyone how would you learn to keep your hands to yourself ? Under two and time outs ? Yup don't think they work either ! If your shadowing a child you are right beside them giving them plenty of feedback to their behaviour .if you are suggesting I was commenting on your comment I have to admit I don't always read everyone's comments , I was offering my own ! I have to laugh because it's funny how easily things can be misread....I was agreeing with you. When I said I love that you said separation doesn't teach, I meant it which is what I went on to say. Negative reinforcement can be an effective way of teaching consequences for inappropriate behaviour, in some cases depending on the child and their level of comprehension. I went on to agree that in order for the child to learn what is acceptable they have to be taught which is exactly what I said. Hence why I go on to comment about being able to give the child enough one on one to achieve this without it costing the other children something, especially after the OP said they had already been working so hard for the last 6 mths without success. Sorry if it wasn't clear but I was absolutely agreeing with you.

Secondtimearound
02-18-2014, 10:43 PM
Lol I actually edited that out !! I realized after I wrote it I may sound like I was being rude ! But thanks for clarifying !!

Judy Trickett
02-19-2014, 06:45 AM
Well quite honestly if you are working with the parent and have tried different forms of discipline over the last 6 months with no success then it really is a no brainer. You need to clarify what it is you actually want. You say you want to be free of unhappiness and exhaustion which you know is a result of this child but then you say you don't want to get rid of her because you will lose two children. Well it is one or the other I think. 6 months is more than enough time to invest in a child to make behavioral changes but you say you have not seen any change or success. What about the other child who is being pushed? You owe it to her to have her safety and best interests at heart. It is your duty as a good caregiver to protect her from this and it seems you have tried your best at trying to help the child but enough is enough. You owe it not only to yourself but to every other child in your care and their families to terminate immediately. This isn't just minor bad behavior, this is physical harm and is completely unacceptable. Protect the victimized child and terminate the problem child immediately. I think you do know what you have to do, but you are just afraid to act on it because it leaves you in a financially tight spot.

I couldn't agree more. SIX months is a loooong time to have worked with a behavioural problem with no results. And even worse, it is a LONG time for the other, poor little dcgirl, to be constantly victimized in what should be a safe place for her to spend her days.

You need to terminate. Your responsibility is to ALL the children in your care. Obviously the child either has some serious mental problems OR everyone is NOT on board as they claim with regard to disciplining this behaviour or it would have STOPPED by now. If you say that YOU have been trying to stop the behaviour then it has to be that they are not doing their part at home with regard to acts of aggression.

She needs to go.