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Toddler/Baby Sibling Relationships
I know it is not unusual and i actually expected something like this but it tears me apart and i don,t know how to handle the situation.We have an almost 2 1/2yr old and a 2mo old baby and the 2yr old is hitting and pinching the baby,she pulls his fingers and has now also started to bite him every chance she gets.when i take a shower or go to the bathroom or do laundry i have to lock the baby into it,s room so his sibling can,t get near him.We have tried time-out and the naughty chair thing but it doesn,t seem to work.When she tries to bite the baby and i hold him away from her she bites me instead.I feel so angry inside when this happens or when a situation occurs that she has managed to get to the baby and hurt him.i have tried like some books suggests to have her help with the baby but in all she does she is very rough so i can,t really let her do anything.When i try to tell her to be gentle she just gets frustrated and kicks or hits towards the baby.I don,t want to paint her as a monster,i know she loves her babybrother in some ways,she actually says it and she does hug him and wants to be near him and she sometimes can be gentle with him so i feel she does understand.
i just don,t know how to handle those situations when she does
or wants to hurt him and i don,t know how to deal with my anger
i feel inside.
i would like to hear what other parents have done and how they
have coped.I do understand that it is not easy for her to
suddenly have to share me with the baby since we have been so
close during her first 2years.I know it is a big change for her.
trying my best
I adore my little boy who is 2.5 years and he is having a rough time adjusting to his new sibling. He is not an aggressive child - in fact he says he ''loves'' our new baby and wants to ''kiss her'' at bedtime.
However he is acting differently at bedtimes and naptimes, asking for ''one more kiss'' and ''one more hug'' over and over - up to ten or twelve times. This is adding 20 min or more on to a 20 min routine,. He also is acting funny - as in biting himself and saying he's ''sorry'' all the time - even if something isn't his fault.
This is breaking my heart. I could not love him any more and I know before this he was very secure. He had a 12 hour nightime sleep rountine (7PM-7AM) and a 3 hour naptime (11-2PM). What's happening is the insecurity at naptime and bedtime - not throughout the day.
I might also add that this was an unplanned pregnacy and he might be picking up on my own ambivilence. I just want to make him feel safe. I want to do what's right for both children - but it's hard. I hardly know the baby - and he's taking all of my time. I feel in my heart though -that she's getting stiffed. She's very easy - a nice baby- but I worry that I'm not doing right by both anon
Don't hesitate to hand your new baby to father, grandparent, friend so that you can have some important time with your son. My mother was adamant about this when my son was first a new big brother and she really was right. he invariably calmed down and became happier when I or my husband or both of us spent a bit of time with him alone.
also, don't worry that your new baby isn't getting enough attention. a wise mother once told me that second children are much better off in the long run for the experience they get that's different from that of a first born. I think this is true.
In the beginning, I certainly felt a little bit of ''who is this little person?'' regarding my second child. It took me longer to get a handle on her and on my relationship with her than it did with my first child. But I want to reassure you that she is now a shining star in my world just like her brother, and we are very close too.
yourself a little break, and know that things do fall into place. in the
away with your son and spend time with him alone when he most needs you.
get used to things by and by. but just know that it might take some time,
he might still be reacting to his new sibling in ways you hadn't foreseen,
even a year
from now. best of luck,
I have a 2.5 yo and 6mo, both boys. My older has had a
difficult time adjusting to sharing time/attention with his
brother. It seems everybody says (including the older sib) that
we need to spend more alone/special time with the older
brother. Logistically, how do people do this? I'm at home with
the both of them alone. The younger one doesn't nap for long
stretches in his crib (only in the car). My husband gets home
at 6:30 or 7p.
Mommy of 2 feeling stretched
Help! I need advice from parents that have survived the early sibling rivalry phase! I know it is fairly “normal” but any advice on how to best adapt and try and teach acceptance would be appreciated.
I have a 2.5 year old boy and a 9 month old baby girl. He was great at first when she was first home and relatively immobile. However, now that she has started to crawl and wants to always be a part of what her big brother is doing things are getting a little crazy. If he is in his room and sees her crawling down the hall towards his room he shouts “no” and runs to shut the door before she gets there – yesterday when there was a chair in the way he just pushed her down so he could close the door. He knows that pushing means immediate time out and we are strict about enforcing that but it just doesn’t seem to be sinking in.
I have tried giving leaving him in his room to play by himself,
tried bringing her toys into his room, tried setting up her own
play area but nothing seems to be working so far. Does it just
need more time? I guess at this age playing together is out of
the question, but how about getting him not to yell and get
upset every time she just touches one of his toys? Course it is
just fine for him to play with her toys whenever he feels like
it. Is it unreasonable to think I can be able to have both kids
playing in one room at the same time?. Is this how it is going
to be until they go off to college?
'only one of me' mom
Also - I have made it clear that taking an item away from her baby brother (or anyone!) is NOT allowed. It started out always leading to a time-out, and that curbed that behavior pretty quickly. Now I generally just help her ''remember'' not to take toys away, though sometimes a time-out is still necessary (particularly when I see a malicious look in her eye when she grabs the toy). Frankly, this is a more challenging issue all around - but I figure it's all pretty normal for their ages. Good luck! Sarah
I'm very concerned about my 2.5-year-old daughter, who still has not adjusted to the birth of her brother over a year ago. My children are only 15 months apart, so I know the adjustment has been very difficult for her. She expresses her jealousy and insecurity by displaying a lot of regressive behavior- - whining and crying constantly esp. if I'm giving her brother attention at the time, asking to be picked up all the time, asking me to feed her milk from her sippy cup as if it were a bottle, incessantly copying the babyish behavior of her little brother,etc. A lot of people have told me this is normal, but my main concerns are (1) that her brother is now over a year old, and her regressive behavior hasn't abated, and (2) she used to be a happy, laughing, out- going, independent child before the birth of her brother, and now she's very shy, whiny, needy, and seems not very happy. I know her brother came at a time when she was transitioning from real babyhood to a more conscious little girl, so perhaps her personality would have developed in this direction any way, but I can't help thinking that the arrival of the new sibling affected her sense of security greatly. She seems to be a particularly bright and sensitive child, seeming much older than her age. Most of her whiny, needy behavior is directed towards me, her mother. And to be truthful, the younger one is very demanding and just need more of me because of his age, and I end up having to spend most of my time and energy taking care of his needs. I have made a special effort to spend as much one-on-one time with my daughter as I can, but it doesn't seem to be enough. I feel quite guilty when I'm taking care of the younger one's needs (and I know guilt serves no one and it's not fair to my son), and when I have to discipline my daughter (esp. since her brother is too young to be discplined for the same behavior). I'm torn between being a more strict disciplinarian to help her establish boundaries and being sensitive to her (valid) desire for more attention. My main goal is to help her re-establish her sense of security and happiness (I really don't want this to carry over to the rest of her life), but I don't know what do to. Has anyone had a similar experience? Am I making too big a deal of this (some people dismiss this as just the terrible 2's)? Should I seek professional advice? anon
One thing that seems to help is carving out ''special time'' or separate time for each child. It doesn't have to be much more than reading a story. But it needs to be something that involves just you and one child at a time. A second thing that seems to help is explaining as much as possible to the older one why you need to spend so much time with the younger one (and/or vice- versa).
I wish I could be more helpful, but we're struggling with the same issue. I am interested in hearing what others have to say . . .
concerned as well
Help! I have 2 children, ages 3 and one month old. In the last
week or so, my toddler has begun to act very aggressively toward
our new baby. Pinching, lying on the baby, moving the baby's
head forcefully, striking...all causing our baby to squeal in
protest. My husband and I believe that this aggression is an
outward display of major jealousy/rivalry, which he has never
experienced to this degree and certainly cannot verbalize. When
our baby is being held or lying in the open, our toddler will
often hit or squeeze little , fragile body parts, apparently
intending to cause harm to our little one. It's difficult to
manage this behavior, because our toddler very often begins with
a loving, gentle interaction which suddenly turns into an
aggressive one. We believe it's important for our son to be
able to be near his sister, yet causing her harm is not ok!
I've spoken to other parents whose older kids ''picked on'' their
younger infant siblings, but it doesn't seem to be to the degree
we are experiencing. What is a parent to do!? When this
behavior began, my husband and I tried acting calmly by moving
our toddler away from the baby as a consequence to hurtful
behaviors. Well, this only seems to make ''getting to'' the baby
a bigger and more exciting challenge, and we are now sounding a
bit like a broken record with our words and the aggression
continues. On a day to day basis, I feel like I am playing zone
defense against my toddler for the sake of my newborn's safety.
I don't feel like my baby is safe when left alone unsupervised.
And there are moments when I resent the fact that my toddler is
requiring me to put so much energy and time into protecting our
baby. Time that could be spent bonding peacefully with my new
baby. My son can even verbalize that he needs to be nice to his
sister and that being mean to her is not ok, yet the behavior
continues. He even says that he wouldn't want such mean things
done to him... In desperation, I have tried pinching my
toddler ''back'' when he pinches his little sister, but we have
opted to stop this for it only demonstrates that these behaviors
are ''ok if mom and dad do it too....'' What experiences have
other parents had with toddler aggression towards a sibling and
what tactics have worked for it's management? In general, my
son is very loving and there are just as many times in a day
when he is gentle and sweet with the baby. However, I need my
son to understand that harming his little sister is not
ok!!!!!! Any advice on parenting classes/therapists that could
offer support would be welcomed.
One other resource that is helpful is a book called ''Siblings
Without Rivarly'' by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish.
Good Luck, another Mom dealing with the same stuff
In response to a request for advice on how to deal with a toddler who hit/hurt other kids, the advice was that the very first thing to do is to shower attention on the victim, then turn and punish the aggressor.
Our first instinct is always to turn immediately on the aggressor first, thus confirming to the agressor that this is the right way to get attention, even if it is negative. Maybe if you picked the baby up, walked away from your son, gave comfort to the baby (ignoring your son for a bit), then came back and punished him, he might change his ways.
If you do try this approach, and it works, I would love to know. I have a little hitter myself (not really agressive, just unsuare how to express himself)who now at 2 yrs 3 mths is learning to really catch himself before hitting. I do, however, have a baby due in a month and forsee some regressive behaviour. So, if you have the time and are so inclined, let me know. edna
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