Hello everybody. I hope all of your little ones are good. I wasn't sure where to post this question so I hope this is a good place. My nephew has started biting people. :( I believe he's almost two. We think he's doing it because he hasn't started talking yet and he doesn't understand how to communicate what he wants. So he gets upset and then bites. :( I only have one child and she doesn't bite, and for my sister-in-law this is her first child that has gone through this phase. We are not sure how to handle it or how to get him to stop. I told her what I did when my daughter would bite while nursing and she's going to try that. We were just wondering what others have done and what did or didn't work. FYI: this is what I did with the biting while nursing....When my daughter would bite I would just make her unlatch and tell her no biting. I would then make her wait a little before letting her nurse more. I wouldn't jump or let her know that it hurt by reacting to what she did. (it hurt though haha) She lost intrest in biting because she wasn't getting any reaction I think. Any help or advice that you have would be a huge help. :) Neither one of us agree witht he old teaching of biting the child back, and we don't want to spank or smack the child either. My sister-in-law was thinking that maybe she could tell him not to bite and then put him in timeout or something. The other child that he's biting is his almost 3 year old sister, so her not reacting to being bit is out of the question. You can't really tell a 3 year old not to cry when bit. Thanks again. :)
I'm with you on not biting back or using other forms of physical punishment. While biting hasn't been a big issue for us (thankfully), we did have a phase where hitting was a bit of a problem. I would agree that it's the age and probably a lot of frustration factors in (not being able to express yourself must be miserable, right?).
My son is 2.5 now and does time outs on his own for behaviors that call for them, but at your nephew's age we did a bit of a modified time out. From what I've read in books and articles there seems to be a consensus that kids aren't ready to sit on their own until at least 2 y/o. So what we did at that time was to sit with our son in the designated time out area. We wouldn't talk to him or make eye contact - basically we sat him on our lap so he faced away from us, set the timer for a minute (using the min/age guideline) and sat until the timer went off. If he struggled or tried to fight us we would just firmly (not enough to hurt, of course) hold him on our lap, continuing to "ignore" him until the timer went off. Then when the timer went off we'd turn him around, make eye contact and remind him (briefly and firmly) why he got the time out and why he shouldn't do the behavior again. "We do not bite. That isn't nice and it hurts. Do not bite." Then we'd give hugs, tell him we love him and send him on his way. This method really seemed to work for us. After a couple of time outs for the behavior the hitting really decreased.
Just for a bit of background, we do employ the "1-2-3 Magic" method of counting for behaviors that aren't physical like this (like if he's just not listening or is whining or something like that - something that's just annoying, but isn't harmful), but behaviors like biting, hitting, kicking, throwing toys, etc - things that could cause immediate harm - get an automatic time out. Like I said, at this point our son is up to two minutes and does the time outs on his own, but when he was younger than two we did that modified time out. Could be worth trying. :)
Regardless, I think it's a pretty common phase and hopefully as his language skills continue to improve he'll grow out of it quickly! Good luck!
Thank you so much for the advice. :) I didn't even think of sitting down with the child so they learned what a time out was for. That does make sense though. How are they going to understand and know that they did something wrong unless you teach them. Like everything else they learn. :) Thank you so much again.