Posted in Behavior, Toddlers

2 Year Old Pushing, Hitting & Kicking

My 2 year has all of a sudden started pushing other kids, kicking me when I change her and hitting me, other kids, and her daycare teacher. I've been telling her no and putting her in time out for over a week with no difference in her behavior. Has anyone else been in this situation and what did you do to get them to stop?

  • Kristen
    Jan 10, 2019

    If my son hits he gets a instant timeout. If he hits again his favorite toy gets put up so he can't get it but can still see it. If he ask for it we tell him he can have back tomorrow but it had to go in time out because we don't hit. Helpful that will help.

  • Anna
    Jan 10, 2019

    Yes-first it’s totally normal toddler behavior, not your fault at all (just to be clear; I was beside myself when it happened to us). Most important is consistency. Are there any big changes going on? Sometimes that can add to things. Also, if she’s seeing behavior at daycare from other kids, it can start happening. Be sure to talk to your provider and get on the same page about consequences for behavior. For us, we had a second baby, and our toddler really had a tough time adjusting. She was pulling friends’ hair at daycare, hitting; she even scratched her teacher once in the FACE :(. The most important thing that seemed to help was staying as calm as possible, and consistent. If she would start to hit and I could tell she was about to, I’d hold her arm and say, “No, I don’t want you to hit me.” If I could see she was upset, I’d acknowledge the feeling first: “No, I can see you’re upset, but I don’t want you to hit me. We don’t hit other people. It’s not okay.” If my husband or I were holding her and she would do something to hurt us, we would immediately put her down and walk away. We would say, “ouch, that hurts. I don’t want to play with you if you are going to hurt me.” This was (and still is) very effective, as she loves to have our full attention, of course. We were told by her teacher to make sure the consequences have to do with the behavior-if it’s hitting, the consequence is that we won’t play with her. Another thing worth mentioning is that we were never big TV watchers as I chose not to give her much screen time, but on the recommendation of a friend we started watching some Daniel Tiger episodes on Amazon Prime. There is an episode about this where Daniel gets mad, and they make a song, “It’s okay to feel angry, it’s not, not, not okay to hurt someone.” It’s pretty good and gives them a song to put with their feelings. Basically, it’s important to acknowledge the feeling behind the actions, as most actions are them trying to communicate something to you, but you want them to know that that particular way of expressing their feelings is not the correct way to do that. If it’s an attention-getting behavior, it may also be beneficial to ask your kiddo, “What are some good ways to get mommy’s attention?” Try to help them through it rather than punish them through it as much as you can. Now, at 31 mos, my daughter still sometimes tries to hit, but it’s usually much weaker flapping about and she knows it’s not acceptable and there are immediate negative consequences-but it happens with much less frequency. She is also doing much better at daycare, thanks to consistency between us and her providers. Hope that helps, and good luck!! This too shall pass. 😊