Gettin’ Hit OnJanuary 21, 2010 at 11:30 pm | Posted in Giggles | 2 Comments
Both my babies were good babies. (Bun, are you listening??) Now, save the occasional grocery-store meltdown or I-refuse-to-wear-anything-you-pick-out tantrum, they are good toddlers. Except for, um, well, this one little thing.
I am the mom of a hitter. Giggles is a hitter. There. I’ve said it out loud. At least he does not bite, I console myself. At least he does not stick peas or marbles or chocolate chips up his nose. At least he does not pull his own hair out. (That was Lollipop!) You see where I’m going. It could be worse. Right?
My Inner Mommy
The I’ve-read-lots-of-books-and-know-what-I’m-talking-about part of me knows Giggles hits because he needs to communicate his frustration. And he does not yet have the vocabulary to talk it out. The oh-my-God-that’s-my-kid part of me really, really wishes he would start speaking in sentences. Yesterday.
Somehow, I wonder, did I turn him into a hitter? Did I permanently scar his emotional psyche by tearing aluminum foil too near his delicate infant ears? By letting the dog lick him? By depriving him of all-things-battery? Yes, I have Mom guilt. Always present, rarely useful.
From Zero to Gizmo
But there’s good news. Giggles hardly ever hits strangers. He takes what other kids dish out like a champ. He complies with requests from other mommies and daddies. The first time they ask. He giggles and coos at other people’s cats and dogs. Even the occasional hamster.
At home, though, it’s like pouring water on a cute furry creature. Voila, Gremlin! And I turn into Broken Record Mommy: No hitting the cat. Timeout. No hitting your sister. Timeout. No hitting yourself. Time— oh, wait, sure. Go ahead and hit yourself if that will make you feel better.
As the Wheels Turn …
More good news: He’s getting better. At least, now, he takes his time, thinks it through. I can almost see him working through the mental flow chart: “Is this transgression worthy of a hit? If yes, proceed. If no, consider alternatives, such as screaming.” “Am I willing to sit in timeout? If yes, let loose. If no, consider screaming.”
He’s working on his problem-solving skills. I’m so proud.
Hit the Decks
And, I remind myself, all too soon there will be another kind of hitting going on … the kind wherein he becomes a teenager and hits on girls. Ye gads. Can I give him a timeout then, too?