How To Keep Your Child From Hitting Others
When our child slaps another child, we are all embarrassed. Their anger terrifies and humiliates us. We may understand that she’s lashing out because she’s stressed or afraid, but it still seems like a crisis. Our “fight or flight” reaction is triggered by her violence, and our own kid appears to be the adversary. We feel compelled to act immediately. Action that is punishing.
However, disciplining a kid who hits does not prevent the child from hitting again. It just enhances the childrens anxiety, increasing the likelihood of further striking. You must address the sentiments that motivate the striking to put an end to it once and for all. Here’s how to do it.
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Why Do Kids Hit Others
Aggressive behaviour can be caused by any or all of the following factors:
Being put in a difficult position
Inadequate speech development Lack of regularity Extreme irritation or anger
Adult supervision is lacking.
They are imitating the aggressive actions of other childrens in their environment.
One way to start is to look for signs in your childrens behaviour to determine whether any of the conditions listed above trigger aggressive behaviour. The greatest approach to fight poor behaviour in the future is to learn as much as you can about the variables that cause it. Here are some questions to ponder:
Who is it that my child hits, bites, or kicks? Is it anything he does to a certain friend? Is this something he just does to me? Or is he prone to being combative with whomever he is with? If it’s only one person, attempt to figure out why he’s assaulting that child, such as extremely aggressive play, a bad match of temperaments, or a lack of clear-cut regulations before the game starts.
Also, what appears to be the source of your childrens aggressive behaviour? Is it brought on by annoyance, anger, or excitement? See if any trends emerge. Is he like this when it comes to toys and he’s frustrated about having to share? Or does he become agitated when there’s too much going on and he’s overstimulated? You’ll probably discover trends if you pay close attention to the events.
Finally, how does he show his aggression? Is it via angry words or angry actions? Is his initial response to hit out and hit, or does he become verbally hostile first and then physically aggressive?
You’ll be well on your way to effectively reducing your childrens aggressive behaviour in the future if you answer these questions.
In this post, I’ll show you how to assist your child to become more conscious of his aggressive impulses and how to educate him to calm down or find other solutions to his issues.
How To Keep Your Child From Hitting
You could believe you can’t see it coming, but if your child hits in social circumstances frequently, you can expect striking in every social event for the time being, unless you intervene. The best prevention is the normal preventive maintenance that all kids deserve: Daily roughhousing, daily one-on-one time with each kid, rituals to make your child feel safe, and accepting all emotions as your go-to response to whatever your child expresses (which includes making sure that your child gets regular opportunities to cry). Preventive maintenance maintains your child mentally in excellent form, making him less likely to get into an accident or wind up in the breakdown lane.
But how can you avoid striking in a setting where there are other children? Maintain a strong relationship with your child so that he or she feels more connected to you. That way, whatever occurs, he’ll feel prepared since he’s backed up, and he’ll be less inclined to lash out. You’ll also be able to keep a better eye on his emotions. If you feel him becoming agitated, physically close in on him and the other child. Your presence may soothe him or aggravate his distress; in any case, breathe deeply, take him away from the other children, and go to Step 7. What’s the good news? You’re assisting your child in dealing with the emotions that drove his striking, and no one else had to be harmed!
When Your Child Hits – Breathe
Remind yourself that she’s pounding out of fear. This is something I can manage. She’s in desperate need of my sympathy right now. To avoid additional aggression, place yourself between her and the other child. By intentionally dropping your voice, breathing deeply, and blowing out your stress, you may restore a sense of safety and demonstrate self-regulation.
Be A Role Model
Hopefully, another adult will be present to look after the child that was struck. You’ll have to hug and soothe that child if you don’t. This also allows you to cool down before engaging with your own child, ensuring that you are not yelling at her.
Put your arm around your child and face the other child once the injured child has calmed down. Inform the other child.
“Ouch, Samantha is hurt…hitting hurts!” you may say to assist your child to learn empathy by pointing out the effect of her hitting on the other child.
Making your child feel like a horrible person, on the other hand, will backfire: “Mom says I did something wrong…but I couldn’t help myself…
What if she stops loving me because I’m such a horrible person?” This dread is what creates the shameful blank gaze we observe after a child has been violent. She is frightened and put on the defensive when she is lectured on what she has done wrong. As a result, she looks us down and shuts us out, her heart hardening.
See The situation From Your Child’s Shoes
Your child is a small person who is easily overwhelmed by the vastness of the universe. He feels alone and scared as a result of being overstimulated and separated from you. Alternatively, he may have some fear pent up from a previous event, and in this current circumstance, he is unable to handle all of his worries, causing his old worries to surface. Those emotions are unbearable for him. As a result, he lashes out. You’ll feel more pity for him if you recall this. You’ll need that pity because your childrens heart will not soften unless you first soften yours.
Remove child From Situation
To maintain your calm, take a couple more deep breaths. Inform your child.
“It’s painful to hit…It was too much for you with the other kids… we need some alone time to de-stress.”
Don’t be a jerk about it; instead, be courteous and considerate. You’re not punishing; instead, you’re taking preventative measures. Unless you assist your child deal with his emotions, he will almost definitely continue to hit. So take him out of the scenario to allow him to weep or laugh, both of which might help him work over his fear. You can make him feel comfortable enough to accept and experience those emotions and anxieties, and the striking will cease.
Avoid The Lecture
Isn’t it time you told your child that striking isn’t acceptable? Yes, of course! Isn’t it something he already knows? He couldn’t seem to stop himself. Helping him understand the feelings that caused him to hit is the best approach to stop him from striking. And unless he feels protected, he won’t express his feelings. Telling him what he did wrong isn’t going to make him feel better. You’ll teach afterwards. First, deal with your emotions:
- “You must have been in a lot of pain when you hit Erik….
- I apologise for not being able to assist….
- I’m standing right here…
- You are safe…”
Embrace The Tears
If he has a tantrum because you took him out of the game, remember that he is showing you all of the stress that caused him to hit and is letting it out. That’s a positive development. When our children cry, it’s difficult for most of us, but that’s largely because we can’t endure their pain. Make a promise to yourself that you will just breathe your way through it. The more tears he sheds, the more sensations he’ll work out, which means he’ll feel better and be less inclined to hit. Warmth is more important than words. Only talk enough to keep in touch and make him feel comfortable. Don’t start delving into his emotions. Keep your sympathy for him so he may weep and you can love him through it.
What if she doesn’t shed a tear? Make your own heart softer. Recognize how difficult it is for her:
“You smacked Samantha… you were angry… I couldn’t assist since I wasn’t there… you were concerned… Wasn’t it a difficult task for you?”
Allowing her back into the play scenario if she still doesn’t cry is hazardous since she is likely to hit. Return to teaching, but keep in mind that you’ll need to get her smiling before you return to the other kids, or else there will be more hitting.
That isn’t to say that you should give a lecture. Consider this an invitation for your child to consider healthier methods to deal with those sentiments, which he could remember the next time he’s angry on the playground. Do it lightly and with a sense of humour. You may need to put off having this talk for a few hours until you can do it quietly.
Tell the narrative as follows:
“Remember how you slapped the little child at the park today? Do you recall how angry he was? That bothered him. Ouch! I know it was difficult for you as well. You must have been in a bad mood to hit him. Tell me everything about it.”
Pay attention to him and consider the following:
“You were upset with him?
…It was too crowded in the sandbox….
Wow, so you were concerned that he might ruin your tunnel? Understandably, you were unhappy….”
Set a clear boundary for your behaviour:
“I understand why you felt like hitting because you were upset. That is how everyone feels at times. AND, regardless of the circumstances, hitting is never acceptable. It is painful to hit someone. With your words, you can keep your tunnel secure.”
Then assist him in pursuing other options:
“You obviously want to keep your tunnel secure. What else might you do instead of injuring the other person the next time you’re angry?” Allow him to respond.
If he requires assistance in coming up with options, provides the following: “Could you give me a call? Could you get up and leave? Is it possible for you to stomp your foot? Could you hold yourself up by clapping your arms around your body like this?”
Then have him practise these reactions until he gets them ingrained in his muscle memory.
“Let’s get started. This plush animal is attempting to steal your vehicle. See? You’re engaged and want to smack him. But keep in mind that there are ALWAYS alternative options! So you clap your arms over your body and call me, okay? I’m currently conversing with another mother. I’ll come if you call me loudly — MOM!! Please contact me immediately away.”
Tune Into Your Own Feelings
You, too, have strong sentiments about this, especially if your child hits frequently. Fear is most likely lurking behind your anger. Fear that your child is sick, that you’re a terrible parent, or that he’ll grow up to be an axe murderer. None of these statements are correct. However, you must allow that fear to surface and be felt for it to be exposed to the light of day. Then it will shrivel and blow away, allowing you to properly assist your child.
Our children catch up on our fear and become more uptight as a result. They’re privately terrified of disappointing us, that they’re badly broken in some way. Anxiety makes it more probable for a child to react violently. So you’re not to blame for your childrens striking or strong emotions. Your child will feel comfortable enough to go through her own fears if you can control your fear and remain empathetic.
When there is no longer any fear, there is no longer any hitting.
Isn’t that the kind of future we’d all like to see for ourselves?
What Not To Do
- Never bite or retaliate in any way. It’s tempting to want to educate your kid about how it feels to be the victim of violence, but when you use a childish method of communicating, you’re really teaching your child that aggressiveness is the best way to resolve a disagreement. Try your hardest to keep your cool, even if it’s difficult.
- Do not let your child watch violent television or play violent video games an other screen time. Too frequently, the most violent character is portrayed as the hero on television and in movies, sending the idea that violence is only a means to an end in problem-solving. This message can easily be avoided if you are on top of their viewing habits. While some children are unaffected by television or video violence, others who have a predisposition to behave out violently with their peers could be highly influenced. You can assist your child achieve their best behaviour by understanding his or her temperament and what he or she can handle.
Recognize the stifled conviction that underpins the wrongdoing. A kid who hits is generally motivated by the erroneous idea that “I don’t feel like I belong or am significant, and that hurts, therefore I want to hurt back.” When you respect your children’s sentiments and assist them in acting correctly, they will feel encouraged.
Many individuals cite the biblical adage “spare the rod, spoil the kid” as a reason to spank their children. The rod was never used to beat the sheep, according to biblical experts. The staff or crook was used to gently prod and guide the rod, which was a sign of power or leadership.
Our children certainly require gentle nudging and guiding, but they do not require being beaten, hit, or humiliated.
Do not hit your child to demonstrate to onlookers that you are a responsible parent who will not let your child get away with things. That is just too essential a bond to have with your child.
What To Do When Aggression Is Extreme
While aggressiveness is common in childrens, you should be aware of your childrens behaviour over the line into what is deemed typical for their developmental stage. In your child, look for the following signs:
A pattern of rebellious, disobedient, or aggressive behaviour toward you or those in positions of authority, such as teachers or daycare providers. A pattern is defined as persistent behaviour that does not react to the aforementioned treatments.
Easily loses their cool
Frequently quarrels with grownups
Engages in activities that are designed to irritate others.
Others are to blame
Acts irritated or is too sensitive regularly
Continues to be angry.
It’s crucial to remember that any or all of the aforementioned issues might appear in young children at any time during their development. If your childrens behaviour persists and it interferes with their everyday functioning, such as their ability to behave at school or maintain friendships, see your pediatrician, as it might signal that they have underlying psychiatric issues that need to be addressed. You will need to get your child assessed by a mental health expert in this instance.
As you navigate the maze of your childrens growth, parenting an aggressive kid might be one of the most difficult difficulties you’ll encounter. Even if it may feel hard at times, teaching your child new and acceptable methods to connect with other children and adults is not impossible. The trick is to create an obvious, simple, and consistent plan and stick to it calmly. Keep in mind that you are the finest model of acceptable behaviour, and your small child is observing you.
What You Should Do Next:
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- Easily get kids to listen – the FIRST time. No yelling or reminding…not even once!
- Put an end to daily power struggles. Bedtime became a breeze, and all the dawdling, chore wars, sibling rivalry, and mealtime meltdowns disappeared.
- Reduce backtalk by HALF! It’s simple once you know the secrets of these two ‘buckets.’
- Say goodbye to punishments that DON’T work. There’s a 5-step formula that works WAYYY better than time-outs.
- Feel amazing, confident, and empowered as a parent, every day. I NEVER go to bed feeling guilty anymore! (Okay, well maybe sometimes…’ mom guilt’ is still a thing.)
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