hi....question about hitting stage?

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-29-2009
hi....question about hitting stage?
14
Wed, 10-28-2009 - 11:02pm

I have a four year old step son that everyone has classified his behavior as a

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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-19-2003
Fri, 10-30-2009 - 1:21pm
It is normal but just because it is normal doesn't mean you let it go and hope he out grows it. You need to talk to him when he isn't upset about how to appropriately respond when he's upset, when he wants something someone has, when someone wants something he has (even if they grab it out of his hands), etc. You are going to have to repeat yourself a lot and give him lots of reminders. Remind him about how you expect him to behave before he's in a situation that has caused problems before. With my daughter we use to go over situations on the way to preschool. I'd ask her "what do you do if Jay grabs the car you were playing with? Do you yell at him? Do you hit him? Noo! What do you do? I tell him I was playing with it. What do you do if he doesn't care? Tell the teacher!" In the beginning she'd tell me she didn't know the answer but it got so she could say her part and actually do it which was a big thing because she would get so upset when other kids took things she had. Praise him when you see him responding appropriately even if he is only doing it because he noticed you watching (for example he was about to hit someone who grabbed a toy from him, saw you watching and then put his hand down. Praise him because he made the right choice). If he responds to your reminder quickly, tell him thank you for listening. If he does hit someone, talk about what he did, why he did it and what he should have done instead when you are both calm. It is okay to sympathize with him about being upset; it is okay for him to be mad and upset, what you want is his response to those feelings to be appropriate. At first, you are going to let him yell, stomp his feet, cry when he's upset. After a while maybe he needs to start using a quieter tone to let people know that he's upset because Stan took his favorite car. With Lindsay, once she understood that she could tell us with words how upset she was, she did have the need to yell at them about it or to yell when she told us about it. But learning those words and remember to use those words did not happen over night.

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-29-2009
Fri, 10-30-2009 - 10:29pm

I should have been more specific, it's unprovoked and not when he's angry. When he's mad he'll flop on the floor and lay there until he either he gets what he wants or everyone leaves the room.


he'll walk up to the person and hit them or punch them, sometimes even bite them, or now with the little kids he'll walk up and push them down. there was famiy in from out of town and they wouldn't allow their kids to play with him because he swung at one of his cousins, no reason just did it and took another one to a room and shut the door, i know he did that because he was jealous. One time my husband was holding him and

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-19-2003
Mon, 11-02-2009 - 10:23am

That makes it harder.

I do think you hit on something when you mentioned some of it might be jealousy. He doesn't want the other kids to have any of the attention. It sounds like he is willing to take the negative attention, just to make sure he has all of the attention.

He's also learned from other adults in his life that it is okay to hit and hurt others. That is going to take a long time to correct, especially as you don't have custody of him. How do the relatives react when he hits or pushes people?

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-29-2009
Mon, 11-02-2009 - 1:40pm

We usually take his hand and say "no...be nice and apologize", which is usually met with flopping on the floor. my husband and i've quit trying to punish him because he will continue the behavior or say "(mommy's boyfriend's name)

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-15-2006
Mon, 11-02-2009 - 3:58pm

It sounds to me like something out of the realm of normal behavior.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-19-2003
Mon, 11-02-2009 - 9:12pm

I think tevits (I hope I spelled that right) hit on something, has cps been called on what the previous boyfriend did to him? They must have been if the cops are involved. I would do what she suggested and contact cps and let them know that you are willing to take custody of him. That way it will be in the record so if they do take him away from his mom they can call you two.

It is sounding more like he is responding in a way that he feels is appropriate based on what has been done to him. Its a bid for attention coupled with this is how he thinks you act towards others. Lack of follow through will not help his behavior at all. Consistency in both routines and reactions to his behavior (both the good and the bad) are needed. Consequences work best if they are immediate and even better if they are a natural consequence whenever possible (oh you peed in your pants so now you don't get to see the rest of the movie while we go clean you up. where as if he had said that he needed to go potty you could pause the movie while he went).

In all honesty he should not have to hide from people where he was or who he was with, but I'm sure you know that.

It sounds like you are in a difficult position but are trying to do the right thing. Hugs.

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-29-2009
Tue, 11-03-2009 - 12:49am

CPS has been called, a few times actually. first time was when he was eight months old and had a suspected broken nose, my husband was there when it happened and he had

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-19-2003
Tue, 11-03-2009 - 1:41pm

I'm sorry if I missed something. Does CPS have your husband's phone number and address? If they have it they don't need to ask a relative (aka, the mom) for it and have them say they don't know when they really do. Have you talked to a lawyer about what your husband needs to do to gain custody? Kids have been taking away from their parents for less than what you are telling us. Yes it is hard to know exactly what happened when the child is only 4 but that is what cps and a court appointed child advocate is there for. Each case is different and what was expected in one case is not necessarily going to be how it is with the next case. Times and circumstance have changed, we now know way more than what we use to and it is not always in the best interest of the child to keep a family together, or the child with his mother. Is there a reason why your dh needs to work towards proving he is the better parent? I'm not asking you to tell me, I just want you to think about it. If there isn't a reason (even something as simple as allegations in the divorce decree) then why does his dad feel he needs to prove fitness? Standing up and saying I have the more stable homelife. I have a wife and another child and we are all more than willing to have my son move in. I will continue to allow him to see his relatives on both sides and I will get him the help he needs to make the adjustment, to learn that he is safe in my house. A family law attorney is going to be in a better position to let you both know what your rights are, how the process now works and what you can do to better your chances of winning custody.

I am not positive how the law works in your state but I know if most states you can not tie visitation rights to up-to-date child support payments. They are two separate issues and the courts do not like it when people try to do that.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-15-2006
Wed, 11-04-2009 - 3:19pm

I agree, I think your husband should call cps and get in touch with the case worker.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 09-29-2009
Sat, 11-14-2009 - 9:29pm

we have implemented a strict punishment system...you hit, you're done...no toys, no tv, no snack...you go home or to bed, not grandma and grandpa's bed, you're own in the guestroom.

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