We get to say ‘OMG parenting’ with many different inflections. I know because I am a parent. Also, I have been looking into the faces of babies, parents, and grandparents for over 20 years in my work as a clinical and public health nurse. I have felt the joys, hopes, disappointments, traumas, grief, fears, concerns, laughter and love of parents and children. I have heard their thoughts and feeling. I have seen their actions and the effects of those actions. I have interacted with the myriad of professionals who weave in and out of family life. Because of this and being a parent, I have a great appreciation for the range of experience that exists within and between each parent and child.
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Parenting Q & A
If you have any questions, email me at ns@OMGparenting.com
My daughters hits and even bites sometimes. What should I do? She’s 2.5 years old.
You have an expressive daughter! However, toddlers have complicated feelings but only simple modes of expression.
I’m imagining you have already told her ‘hitting is not ok’. At her age, she is early on in brain development for taking a thought and using it to subdue impulses. You are helping her remember the thought as well as stimulating neural pathways that lead to different behavior. So, try these things:
- Using her toys, work out scenarios that lead up to her hitting or biting. Act out ways that you would like her to respond. Keep the responses simple, like saying ‘grrrrr’, while keeping her hands at her sides.
- Point to faces of different creatures and humans in pictures. Ask her what they might be feeling. Ask her what they can do with their feeling. Talk about that. Keep it simple, but the more her expressive self has words and modes of expressing, the less she will hit or bite.
- Make sure she isn’t seeing others hit and bite (including in any digital action)!
- If she’s in daycare, talk to them about what you are doing at home.
Be ready to repeat, repeat, repeat. And keep 1 and 2 fun! She’s expressive and it will serve her well someday.