Teeth, and how not to use them

Little vampire

Boy2 has been a biter for quite some time. It started as a ‘I’m so excited and love you soooo much’ statement, dished out occasionally for me, but reserved almost exclusively for Boy1. It usually wasn’t too painful and as a phase it was relatively short lived and manageable. But alas, the biting has returned recently in a nastier, tougher, more painful guise. Initially it was, as before, just big brother who took a hit (I have wonderful photographic evidence but since it involves a bare bum cheek I thought it best to keep that one to myself!). But this week The Man, myself, and our neighbours’ 4 year old daughter have bruises to prove it too. Not good. Yes he’s only two and yes it’s a phase and yes it’s happened when he’s been tired or frustrated by a situation. But he has such fantastic speech and conversational reasoning for his age I thought we’d bypass the violent stage of the terrible twos. It kind of makes going to toddler groups different; the fear that you child is going to take a chunk out of someone else’s is not conducive to relaxed parenting. He’s cutting his last molars at the moment and is generally more difficult than usual so I’m hoping (praying, in fact) that it’s a short lived phase. I remember Boy1 pushing other kids at the same age and after 6 weeks he decided he’d had enough of being aggressive and he’s been placid ever since. I have a feeling Boy2 will be a far tougher nut to crack plus biting; it’s just a bit more hardcore isn’t it?

Quite by chance (and just to prove we are never alone in our parenting dilemmas), I discovered one of my oldest friends is experiencing the same situation with her 3 year old. For her this week has been one of ‘those’, where she’s put herself under self imposed house arrest rather than having to deal with another play date managing her son’s naughty gnashers, as well as coping with a teething baby and the inevitable lack of sleep that brings. This got me thinking about the best way to deal with the toddler who bites. Is it best to stay in, prevention being better than cure? Or instead continue to go out and about but armed with some pretty clear tactics on how to anticipate and deal with a biting incident? I’m not one who finds it easy to stay in so I need tactics and fast…

Of all the articles I’ve read this one from The Natural Child Project has been most interesting. It gives several reasons for why toddlers bite, and clear instructions on how to deal with the situation from an attached parenting point of view. I agree with a gentle approach but can often find myself doing or saying things which are counter productive and don’t model good behaviour. I know I lose my cool all too easily and despite the best will in the world I’m not the patient parent I long to be. But here’s to trying just that little bit harder.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s