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Need advice- 16 mo. old is biting!

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Joined: 16 Mar 2012
Posts: 12

PostPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2012 3:47 pm    Post subject: Need advice- 16 mo. old is biting! Reply with quote

Yes, we have *that* child! He's our second boy (first is 3.5 yrs) and I hear this happens. He was so sweet-natured and patient and all of sudden, he bites and hits. We are mortified. I think he is trying to assert himself, being the little one. And he doesn't discriminate-- friends, his brother, me, his dad, great-grandmother, etc.

Any advice much appreciated!

He's starting to get to terrible twos already and we need to help him to cultivate patience (ha!). I still haven't fully weaned him and now he's more "entitled" to his milk...meaning, he comes up and wines and cries until I nurse him! I don't want to wean him before he's ready (and we've done well to get to this point- i.e. I dropped pumping at work) but if I get pregnant with #3, I will need to stop? (Plus, I will want a break before the next one wants a piece of me!)

(I've been able to deal with his biting when nursing- I just stop and he gets that.. so we need a similar technique with his biting behaviour)

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Joined: 11 Jun 2010
Posts: 192
Location: Snellville, GA

PostPosted: Sat Apr 14, 2012 12:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have a 14 mo old, so I'm giving you my 2cents based on what I'd do with him.

Mine is biting while nursing from time to time, but I know that is b/c he is teething and those molars are coming in. Like you, I just end the nursing session. It is a tough thing to deal with (and painful!) but helps to know there's a reason. I also say, "No teeth. that hurts mommy!"

Lately, just yesterday in fact, we were at the playground and he kept going up to another child and hitting him on the head. He also does this with all of us. It's a recent thing he does I think just like you said asserting himself, or just playing really. My solution is to remove him from the situation so he cannot hurt the child and say, "No hit. That hurts!" At this age, I think the best way to deal with things like that is distraction or removing from the situation. If it means you need to leave a playdate, then do so if your child keeps hurting another. I apologize to the child/child's parent too, or tell my older kids that he is still learning and doesn't understand like a big kid so we need to teach him not to do those things. I also tell my older ones that I know it is hard to not hit him back but to call me and I'll get him.

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Joined: 20 Jan 2012
Posts: 87
Location: British Columbia

PostPosted: Sun Apr 15, 2012 5:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

He bites because you're all so delicious! ;)
Don't worry, most of us have *that* child at some point too, its a pretty common phase. My Dd2 went through a biting phase from about 16-18 months. She bit out of frustration, she bit out of excitement, she bit just because. Numerous times I'd be standing at the stove cooking dinner when she'd stealthily come up behind me and chomp on my hamstring, ahhh! Whenever she'd bite I'd give a firm "Ouch! NO biting. Biting hurts."
I was usually the person she bit although she did get her sister and playmates a couple times. I'd just peel her off, tell her "NO biting. Biting hurts. We don't hurt our sisters/friends/gramma etc." and direct her elsewhere.

I believe in self weaning also. You don't need to quit nursing if you're planning to get pregnant although I understand wanting to have a little break before another little bub wants a piece of you! Pregnancy actually changes the flavor of breast milk so many children will wean because of that. DD1 nursed up until I was 13 weeks pg with #2, I was quite happy to have a little break but at the same time was little sad - I think tandem nursing would be such a neat experience.
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Joined: 01 Apr 2010
Posts: 319
Location: WY

PostPosted: Sun Apr 15, 2012 7:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We also had "that child".. Most importantly, don't get upset about it. Realize it is totally a phase that will not last long!

I honestly could never understand the mothers at the daycare that were always so worried about "WHO BIT MY CHILD?" that the staff had to quit identifying the biter for fear of their wrath!?! It is absolutely a normal phase that anyone's sweet-natured child can suddenly choose to try!

I am certain my son learned it as a defense for all the bites HE was getting. He tried it on me- drew blood! He did get in big trouble for the bites that HURT- just told him, "no! that hurts mommy, daddy, etc." and then showed him the damage. He felt bad.

I did once bite him back (: Then I calmly explained about how it feels and why he can't do it to others. FYI- it was not a hard bite, just enough to make him think about his actions.

It was about that time that he finally "got it" and gave it up. We reminded him whenever he looked ready to pounce on someone.. but the key is to say no or stop CALMLY, so as to get the least reaction possible. Remove the biter from the situation after a quick apology, talk to them in private about why it is NOT OK, then make them return to apologize themselves.

As soon as they figure out the biting is not an effective technique to gettting what they want, and that they don't get much attention for it, and that apologizing and feeling badly aren't any fun, they will quit. Always point out & give them praise for NOT biting, too, if they chose a better way to respond!

Mostly, remember it in NO WAY says anything about your parenting, despite what the "horrified" other mothers might believe. They may be the next ones dealing with "the biter" once their "bitee" decides to try it themselves! Good luck!
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