My 2 year old daughter Annie has been biting her 4 year old brother. I have been putting her in timeout for this but so far it hasn’t helped. One of the problems is that she won’t stay in timeout unless I’m there holding on to her which in my mind gives her too much attention. Is there some other way to discipline her for biting?
Two year olds still have to learn about someone else’s pain. Annie doesn’t have the ability to understand that she is hurting her brother, she just knows that she gets a reaction and lots of attention.
You are probably right that Annie is getting way too much attention for her negative behavior. First she gets your attention when she is scolded and then even if you ignore her she is getting attention because you are having to stay with her in time out. You mght want to try a different approach. In instead of giving her time out, try to teach her to replace the biting with a kiss. Tell Annie “no we don’t bite” and show her how to kiss her brother on the spot where she bit him. If she is able to do this then she gets a small reward such as a small piece of candy. She may then be able to associate her good behavior with getting a reward. This way she will be getting attention for the good behavior rather than the bad.
Be sure to give her lots of attention when she is behaving in a way that pleases you.