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beautifulchildren
beautifulch... asks:
Q:

What do I do with an 18mo old boy that throws hard objects and knocks heavy furniture over then laughs and runs out of time out?

He's a beautiful boy, but I feel completely NOT in control on a daily basis. I have a 3yr old girl who was much gentler. It's hard handling 2 toddlers, especially a wild one that won't listen when requested or reprimanded. I feel my anger building as the weeks pass, and I am not sure how to handle him or myself.
In Topics: Parenting / Our Family, Teen issues, Discipline and behavior challenges
> 60 days ago

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Expert

Boys Town National Hotline
Feb 24, 2012
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What the Expert Says:

It's hard to explain things to an 18-month-old, so that's why sometimes it's good to use the "show-and-tell" method.  If you angrily tell him not to knock over a rocking chair, he might not understand what you're trying to tell him.  All he knows is that you're not speaking pleasantly and it has something to do with the chair.

Therefore, take a deep breath when he acts out and then give him a little extra time.  Get down on eye level, be firm but not angry, and tell him very simply not to knock over furniture.  Then, right the chair so he can see it.  TELL him, but also SHOW him. :)

Good luck!

MKM, Counselor
Boys Town National Hotline
1-800-448-3000
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M2007
Feb 23, 2012
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Best Answer!

what's this?
from a fellow member
I have worked in day-care with children who are infants- toddler, and taught pre-K-gr 2, and it is VERY hard to take care of 2 toddlers, and give them the undivided attention, and hands-on training and conditionng they need. And, I think it's easier for a care-giver than a mom, because of the objectivity of being a trained professional at work.

I would recommend that you prepare two separate rooms that you can supervise, and keep up a fence for times when you need to keep the 3 yr old in time out. Also, just stay on your toes,and do not allow hard objects to be thrown. And remember, this behavior will not last for ever BUT, it is critical that you handle things pro-actively and effectively right now.

You can be pro-active, and effective by showing the two year old a fun game where he can throw stuff that is soft, and play it regularly and include lots of laughing, hugs and kisses, etc. Then- switch to a sad and serious tone, and demonstrate the game with a hard object(go throught motion)- this time no laughing hugging or fun. Talk about it when ever you get the chance, and discuss the danger, broken stuff, etc.- You can even tell him stories you make up about toys that got broken, and feelings that got hurt, injuries, etc.!... and elicit responses from him that demonstrate is understanding that you want from him in and words and actions he can give you. Then reward his understanding with praise and affection!

Above all, never forget he is younger than the 3 year old, and will always be in an earlier stage of development, and that subconsciously,, and consciously both kids will always be competing for your attention, and approval, and that the older child may be more able and inclined to get your attention.

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Additional Answers (5)

mmiller2004
mmiller2004 writes:
Make him stay in time out - even if you have to sit with him and hold him there.
> 60 days ago

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monique23
monique23 writes:
At 18 months I'm not sure that time out is really gonna work, as tough as it may be, talk with him in a gentle tone. He wants attention. He may not know how to play, play with him so that he can learn what is appropriate play. From the sound of your question I take it he's not your son, and if that's the case, if he gets attention and laughs and giggles from older kids when he throws stuff he's only doing it for the attention. But in my experience with my own kids (five ages: 15, 13, 8, 5 and 1) I've learned that when they are little like that reprimanding doesn't work, but rather talking gently and playing with him will give you better results. Hope that helps.....
> 60 days ago

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melodymj
melodymj writes:
When you talk to the toddler, be sure to get to their level and use short sentences when giving direction, such as "Time to eat. Sit on the chair nicely (While pointing to the chair)."--Using short sentences helps them to remember the direction given.

Give rules / procedures before beginning any activity. Remind them of the rules daily.

If rules are broken, then no activity begins until they follow that rule / procedure.

Be sure to commend them for good behavior, even if they did not know you were watching them.

Keep a calm demeanor!! Did you know that by demonstrating frusteration, some kids enjoy seeing that they are in control by having others experience certain emotions? Keeping a serious facial expression, with a firm voice will help keep you in control of the situation, rather than the child!

You will survive this situation! A book I highly reccomend is "Have a new Kid by Friday" and "Parenting with Love and Logic". I know they are young, but some of the methods from the book can help. I totally commend you fo seeing this problem and trying to do something for your child.

FYI - I am a mom of three--all my kids went through that strong willed child phase and I am a special education teacher.
> 60 days ago

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ConnieThrelkeld
ConnieThrel... writes:
I had a daughter who threw terrible fits.  We tried many things at different times- we did time out,  took away favorite toys,  put her in her room for a specified time, took away television shows she loved, etc.  This dragged on for months.  It wasn't until I followed the advice of a friend that things began to change.  A child has to know that you are in control, that you are the authority and no matter how they act out, they will not get their way.  It is a battle of wills you must win.  Our solution- a simple wooden spoon.  One small swat to the bottom was all it took.  I know all of the arguments against corporal punishment.  I am also raising 5 well adjusted, well behaved, children from ages 5 through 18.  4 of them are boys.  Good luck!  Please read James Dobson's book "Bringing Up Boys".  Blessings to you and your family!  Hang in there.  It isn't easy, but most things that are worth it aren't.
> 60 days ago

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Dr.Monika
Dr.Monika , Child Professional writes:
Toddlers like to test their limits and will push as far as they are allowed.  

Time out will not work for an 18-months-old.  You can start using it at age 2 years, one minute per year of life.  

In the mean time, use a lot of positive reinforcement: reward your son with praises, hugs, and kisses for all the good things that he does.  When he does something that you do not approve of, get down to his level, look him in the eye, and in a loud and mean voice say "No!".  If he cries, don't feel bad, because it will mean that he got the point across.  

Be consistent and give your son feedback on his behavior right away.  When you are at the end of your rope, find a babysitter and take an afternoon off.  If your son's behaviors escalate, seek help of a pediatric therapist.

Bets regards.
> 60 days ago

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