37 answers

Toddler Displays Strange Behavior

Hi Moms, I have been growing increasingly more worried about various aspects of my 15 month old's behavior.

1. For a couple of months, whenever he wants our attention or doesn't get what he wants or if we tell him no, he bangs his head against the nearest surface. It could be the wall, floor, fridge, something he is holding, literally anything. I keep telling myself it's just because he is a toddler, but it is so disturbing, I want to make sure.

2. He hits himself with random objects. He picks things up and whacks them against his head. This isn't always when he's mad- sometimes it seems random.

3. When he's angry he throws his head back forcefully. This means he hits his head quite often. We both try to anticipate when he's going to do it and try and stop him banging his head, but sometimes they just come out of nowhere.

4. He is soooooo clingy to me. Only the last few months has he wanted to go to his Daddy for cuddles, but mostly it's me. I love holding him, etc. but I have to leave for a couple of hours a day to go to class and he sobs so loudly I can hear him outside once I've closed the door. And it's his Daddy who watches him, not a stranger!

5. He is so violent. When I tell him no, he smacks my face, pulls my glasses off and throws them on the floor, pokes my eyes, pulls my ears. He also headbutts me. And he usually does all of these, not just one or two.

He doesn't speak yet, so maybe he is really frustrated at not being able to get his message across? We try really hard to understand what he wants, but obviously can't always figure it out. Any help would be much appreciated!

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Thanks everyone for your varied advice. Though some things we already do, others are some new ideas or new things to look into and so we are implementing some changes!

Featured Answers

Hi Roseanna,

My son hits himself in the head too. I have notice it is for attention. When he does it he looks at me to see my reaction. I have started to ignore it and he has not done it has much. As for hitting you I would defiantly have some sort of punishment for that! Don't worry about autisim sounds other Mothers are trying to scare you. My son is almost 18 months and says about 10 words. That is pretty normal for their age.


Most of this behavoir is normal. Most little one when they get mad or dont get their way hit someone, thing or themselves. All of mine did it. This is also the age that they go through seperation anxiety. This is also normal. After a while it will be easier. Just have patience and be firm with him and he will learn. Good luck.

Honey I've 5 children and I can tell you this IS NOT "normal" behavior.. it sounds like autism to me. If you vaccinate, this is a high probability. I'd look into it if I were you.

Just my 2cents.

More Answers

I know exactly what your going through. My 16month old son does the same thing. He's not as bad as what your describing, but he does hit himself in the face. I found that If I ignore it and redirect his attention he stops the dehavior. It doesnt work all the time, but it seems he is just trying to get my attention or let me know hes just mad. I see a small change in him as he is getting older and communicating. My doc says it could be just frustration in not being able to talk and get his way, who knows. Just know, it wont last forever, so I hear.

1 mom found this helpful

I have two things I would like to respond to. I work in public health, and the link between autism and vaccines is a topic I have been interested in for about 10 years. One study was published about 10 years ago showing a potential link between autism and the MMR vaccine. Many, many studies have been published since then that disprove this link. In fact, the issue is considered closed as far as science goes. It CAN hurt your child to wait to give them their vaccines. There is a medical reason they are given at specific ages. Even the argument that mercury was used in the vaccines is irrelevant now, they have not used mercury since 1999 (and cases of autism have not declined as a result).

As far as the head-banging behavior, I would ignore it. I am pregnant with my first child, but I taught an infant and toddler class for several years when I was younger. While every kid does not display this kind of behavior, all kids do something weird. ANY reaction, positive or negative, will reinforce the behavior, so just ignore it. This is difficult advice for parents to take, but it works with all people (including my husband). I would not allow your chld to hit you. Getting up and walking away is the perfect punishment at that age. Especially if they are clinging to you. This will correct the bahvior much faster than time out or spankings, especially since your son is so young. They don't really understand things like time out at that age, and they may not relate the spanking to their behavior.

I taught my students sign language. I don't know that many signs, but we taught them things they needed to communicate. They learned "hungry" "more" "thank you" "please" "down" etc. This helped them communicate, learn language, and learn to be polite. At 8-9 months they could sign, and around 13-15 months they would learn to speak. Even the two-year olds would often do both.

Good luck, I know this is trying. Be patient and loving, and never react in anger.

1 mom found this helpful

Dear Roseanna,

Don't panic. Have him evaluated. I have a friend who's son does the same things. Banging the head. Violent outbursts. Throwing things, anything. Rocking while watching TV. Clingy with his dad and won't leave when he is home, to the point where he won't come play with his best friend (my daughter). Maybe you have a friend in the psych department who can help you, but don't rule out that he is mildly autistic. Start reading up on it. There are so many levels of it. If he is,this doesn't mean he is stupid or retarded. It just means that you'll have to understand him well to know how to parent him better. You'd be surprised who you know that is slightly autistic. He might not be at all, but what does it hurt to find out right? I have three kids, 12, 5, 2. So far, the first has been diagnosed with ADHD. I found out after I noticed different behavior when doing homework. I picked up a book, then asked her pediatrician. As a new parent, you learn as you go, especially when you have more than one. The first child is an experiment!

D. in Edgewater


I have a B.A. degree in psychology and whereas I don't practice in the field, I am familiar with disorders. I want to tell you not to panic when these other mothers/mothers to be tell you to get him checked out for Autism. It is a good idea to, because his behavior could indicate it, but on the other hand, it could also be just behavior that he has discovered gets him attention.

My suggestion would be to, when possible and when it won't endanger him, allow him to do what he is doing without reacting. I know that is much harder to do than to say, however, every time you respond to that sort of behavior, it reinforces him to do it. You tell him no, he bangs his head, you will allow him to do it just so he will stop banging his head. This sends him the signal that all he has to do is start hurting himself and you will cave in to his wish. So...make the environment as safe as possible, remove all the hard things that he would hit himself with and replace or cover them with something soft. You can even go so far as to staple bedding foam to the walls at his height for a period of time so that when he bangs his head against them, it won't hurt him, or make him a wear a helmet. That way you can safely allow him to do his behavior and give him no reaction. Once he figures that this isn't getting him what he wants, he will stop and find something else to do to get his way. If you do this, expect the head banging and hitting to increase for a small while. As long as it is safe for him, then you can ignore it.

As for the violence to you...when he does this, pick him up, and put him in his room, or make a baby-pin with the free-standing baby gates, or if he is still in a crib, put him there, and then walk away until his temper tantrum is done. Once he quiets down, you can then go back in and take care of him. If he starts throwing a tantrum again when he sees you, walk out of the room again until he calms down. He will eventually get the picture that this is unacceptable and that if he wants attention from Mommy, that he needs to behave himself.

Make sure the space you put him in is safe for him. I stress that more than anything with this method. If it is a situation where he can really cause himself injury, you, of course, can't pretend that he isn't doing anything. But if it is a place with a lot of padding, that you know he can't hurt himself in, then it is ok to walk away and let him scream and cry. It will be hard on YOU, because you will want to go and make it all better for him...but every time you do that, you reinforce to him that this kind of behavior is acceptable and that he can always get what he wants.

I am not a mother yet, but I helped raise my now 14 year old nephew for the first 6 years of his life, and he was NOT an easy child. He was also prone to violence as a toddler..to himself and to others. One thing I used to do with him when he started that was to pull him into my lap and hold him down until he calmed down. He was not allowed to get up until he was calm and behaving. I knew that in my lap, he was not going to get hurt and I could control how he tried to hurt me. I caution against this though, because your son may come to view your lap as a negative place and not want to cuddle with you. I didn't have that problem too much with my nephew, but it is a possible side effect. So, I suggest making a safe, cushiony, soft place for him to go to time-out when he starts acting up. Someplace that you can feel secure in leaving him in and walking away for awhile.

And do mention the behavior to your pediatrician and have him checked out. It is better to rule out biological reasons for behavior, then to ignore the possibility and have to come face to face with it later.

I am a mother of a daughter age 3 and a son age 13 months. I would say that some of this behavior is normal but I would be more concerned about why he's not talking yet. I would certainly be letting your pediatrician know. It may be signs of autism. Of course I'm not a doctor but if it is autism the earlier you detect it the better care you can get for your son.
Good luck,
A. C.

Has your son been evaluated for autistic spectrum disorders. From what I have heard his behavior may be related to that.


Hi Roseanna,

My son hits himself in the head too. I have notice it is for attention. When he does it he looks at me to see my reaction. I have started to ignore it and he has not done it has much. As for hitting you I would defiantly have some sort of punishment for that! Don't worry about autisim sounds other Mothers are trying to scare you. My son is almost 18 months and says about 10 words. That is pretty normal for their age.

Hi R.,
I saw this for the first time today and I wanted to respond even though it has been a while since your request was entered.
My nephew (whome I helped raise) also had these hurting himself issues. Later on my seacond son has actually had these similar issues but not as extreme as it sounds with your son or my nephew. Which both here on my side have night tares also. They twitch in their slept, never really rest.
Colton is now 12 and a wonderful young man. Smart, kind, gentle spirited, popular, great at all sports and by all means one of the best looking kids on this planet.
He would be so sweet and loving one minute and any little thing would set him off. First off, make sure to be aware of what is on TV while he is watching and also if your husband is like mine he will watch UFC etc without even checking to see if the children are watching or not. Time out is what I have read on some of these responces... If he is like Colton then sending him to time out or a chair can result in thrush slinging abouts that can harm him even more. We took Colton to a therapist at 13 months and they suggested holding timeout. The first few times we ever tried this we would actually have to go for a time out after for ourselves. It is emotionally draining to hold your child or a child you love in you lap on a chair with your hand firmly wrapped around their body not allowing them to get down. Time is not what you use in this method. It is after the tantrum has stopped that they are exhausted you then turn them to you and tell them you love them and everything is going to be ok. Ask him if someone hurt him to make him so angry or if he is sad, mad, etc. You will take a physical beating in doing this. so if you talk to your doctor and this method is one you would both agree on, then be prepard for a physical and emotional work out. By the time the 2nd week rolled around he was already showing major signs of getting better. We also bought a little stand up punching bag and tiny gloves for him to beat out his frustrations on something other than himself. You can even make a family game out of it. Mom and Dad punching it releasing showing how to get his feelings out.

Matter of fact. I am Colton's favorite aunt. I always have been. But he would get so irrate that he would try to kick me in the middle of tantrums while I was pregnant. He still has an outbrust ever now and again but we just set him down talk and let him crry it out with us to help him threw. We used holding time out with my son as soon as he started and he stopped within a week of hurting himself.

Another way to distract them at such a young age would be insted of yelling out don't do that to yourself. We have alwasys been very fun loving, playful, but also strict... Run over grab him and tickle him while kissing his face and he will release some of that energy into his laughter instead of negative violance.

I do not think anything is wrong with your son. But, that is where a doctor comes into play. Some little ones just don't know how to express themselves. But, you need to nip it in the bud asap since blows to the head are very dangerous.

Best of luck and email if you ever need someone to talk to.

Hi R.,
I laughed when I read your story, because my 16 month old daughter recently started banging her head against things when we tell her no. It doesn't happen alot though, but it still worries me. I have been told by many other moms that this is common and she will grow out of it. My daughter is also extremely clingy towards me, even if my husband is in the same room. I just tell myself it is a phase and she is frustrated because she cannot communicate with us like she'd like to. I would maybe talk to your doctor, since your son is actually violent towards YOU - you probably would like to stop that before it gets worse. Good luck - you are not alone!


These behaviors are not "normal" from what I have seen with my 6 neices & nephews and experienced with my own son who is now 2. His actions are much more violent toward you and himself than typical.

First, contact your doctor and explain the same things you have here. Your doctor may request that you bring him in but ultimately you will WANT to go to specialist to make sure you have the correct diagnosis. I like doctors but I remember that Ped's look at the whole body and don't have the specialized education, in most cases, for this.

Second, enroll in a baby sign language class or if resources are tight go to your local library for sign language books that you will find in the adult section (start with the small words). Some libraries carry sign books for toddlers but it may not be as helpful to you. My son would become frustrated when he couldn't get us to understand so I started him and it helped.

Lastly, you can look on WebMD but try not to self-diagnosis too much or you will get yourself overly worried.

God Bless!

My advice is this--go with your gut instinct...The chances of it being wrong are not very high. I KNEW something was wrong with my first son, and everyone kept telling me I wasnt disciplining him correctly, I wasnt being strict enough, all is normal...and I KNEW it wasnt. He is almost 4 now, and I was right--he had a 50% hearing loss, has Autism, and has 7 food allergies that were making him aggressive...mostly soy on that part.
Talk to your ped...and listen to your heart, you know more than you think you do! :) *huge hugz*

Hi R., I had read about your situation and my best advice being a mother of a 4 years old girl with some special needs is to ASAP get a consultation with a Behavioral specialist of probably try an evaluation from a pediatric neurologist because odviusly it is not a normal situation and sooner you get help for your child better chances you have to fix it. Of course PRAY, PRAY, PRAY!


Most of this behavoir is normal. Most little one when they get mad or dont get their way hit someone, thing or themselves. All of mine did it. This is also the age that they go through seperation anxiety. This is also normal. After a while it will be easier. Just have patience and be firm with him and he will learn. Good luck.

I bought the book the happiest toddler in the world, and it has helped me!! My girl, slaps, pinches, bangs her head (which we figured out it was her teeth, nothing a few teething tablets didn't fix)the rest was her wanting to communicate with us! So we sat down and explained in big people words and showed her with her doll how things "should" be. Try the book though it helped us a lot!!
Liz in Deland

There were alot of responses, so I didn't read them all, but have you ever tried baby signs?? My daugheter did some of the things you described, and we started baby signs with her. She wasn't as frustrated b/c she was able to communicate after she learned some simple signs. I got the book for like $12, and if you ASL, you don't even really need the book, you just stick with the simple signs.

I am a mother of 4, ages ranging from 20y down to 10 months. I am also a Social Worker and a counselor. I worked with children for a number of years and with my own, of course.
Some of the behavior you have described is normal, however, some of it shows signs of a possible issue with ADD or ADHD or Autism or something else, perhaps he's just trying to tell you he needs something. I would get him in to see his pediatrician asap for an evaluation. He also needs to know that these behaviors are inappropriate and he should have appropriate consequences to them. Especially when hurting others. Hopefully it's not due to being spoiled. If so, nip it in the bud now, or it will be very costly later. That's not to say that you shouldn't spoil him with affection, just don't let him have his way everytime he wants something. He needs to know that you are listening to him even if he can't verbalize what he wants. Also, there is baby sign language that you can teach him to express what his needs are. There are many books available on the internet to help you learn how to do this.
Take a deep breath and relax. It will be ok.

Hey ok so i've read the other responses on this and alot i do not agree with. My now 9 year old daughter did this alot. She actually bit through her tongue one time in one of her fits so do not be alarmed by this behavior. Oh btw she is now in the gifted programs in her school. So now to help you weather this storm. All children are differnt so you are gonna have to fine ways to discipline. I actually threw myself down in the middle of the store one time when she started one of her fits and it worked she stopped and looked at me like i had lost my mind. Sometimes uncoventional methods is what it takes. If you need support in this please feel free to contact me.

I am sure not to be popular with this advise, but I wouldn't have him vaccinated again until you get this cleared up. Whether anyone wants to admit it or not. vaccinnations are a major cause of neurological developmental issues in our kids. He may be fine and just has some toddler issues, or you may find a few health related causes for the behavior. Regardless of what you've been told, you DO NOT have to have your child vaccinated to be in school. There is a release form.

Do your own research. Talk to MD's and ND (natural remedy docs). They are both on a different page and serve different purposes. My son started having seizures after vaccines. They wanted him on two drugs. He is drug free and treated through a naturopath I know.

You are your childs health provider. Use the computer to form intelligent questions and if any doctor grimaces when you show up with print outs, run.

If it's because of not being able to communicate yet, try teaching him sign language asap. there are lots of books out there about it. and some videos too.
What do you feed him? some things cause behavior problems, like food dyes and preservatives. start reading labels. Try to feed him as naturally as you can.
When you say no to him are you explaining why he can't do something and then giving an alternative to whatever you are saying no to?

The head banging and banging objects is perfectly normal. My son is 18 months old and it is partly expression, partly experimentation. I believe that him getting angry is also his way of trying to communicate. It's gotta be hard being so little and not having any way to tell people what you need or want. My son knows about 7 baby signs and I tell you they are soooo helpful. You may want to try that. It gives them an outlet for frustration. Also, I read that babies need time alone to kind of digest everything that happens. Maybe you should start trying to let him have a few minutes of alone time everyday to get him to be less clingy. Of course, talk to your ped, but it sounds like everything is going fine. :)

Talk to the education cillege- early ed.Put a helmet on him tied so he cant get it odd. Old fashioned but works SPANK his butt, Time out him in his room any of his stuff get ruined throw it out do not rebuy. And he has to give you one of his for each one of yours/daddy's he breaks. When he wants tell him show me. Then name the obectand let him repeat it.

You may want to try baby sign language, I used it with both my girls and it really seemed to help. I used the company My baby can talk, but there are many others. Also I would try to use redirection when your son hits himself and show him something else to do. It may just be an attention seeking behavior. As for the hitting and such when he is angry I would put him down immediately for a time out from mommy. Use a pack and play or something that can contain him and tell him no hit pick him up after a min. and if hits again repeat
Good Luck

My son is 18 mths and when he was around 15/16 months he was doing the same thing. From Banging his head on the cermanic tile to smacking and biting when he was angry because i said no. It's not odd. I have two other children and neither of them did this. I took him to the doctor and she said that some children because of the frustration of not being able to communicate to you what he feels they act out in the ways you have mentioned. It's like he understands that you say no he can't have whatever but he doesn't know how to whine to you about it. LOL. He will grow out of it my son stopped banging his head. I know it's hard to stop come like you said it comes on so fast. Just pick him up and cuddle him and eventually he will stop. It's like a phase he will grow out of. my son still bites but he's teething and does it more when he get excited about playing. I hoped it helped to know that your not alone. Oh and my son is so attached that he clings to me & won't even let my husband put him to bed. But you have to go to class and he will be fine when you leave although it is so hard to do. he just loves you and is very attached there's no rememdy for that!
Take Care & Good Luck.

Hey, I'm an absolute amatuer so, please, research my suggestions with your pediatrician, but here's what I think. Your little man is so eager to communcate and so frustrated at not being able to that he's doing what he can. I know your schedule is hectic, but how about getting a book about sign language from your library. And have you had him checked for allergies? If there's nothing medically wrong, redirection is a good tool. Absolutely, keep on giving him such a loving and supportive home and monitor the behavior. Check your area for free well baby clinics or nursing schools for discount clinics. I'm the mother of two and the step grandmother of 3, so I've tried these tricks and they worked for me.

My grandson, displayed unusual behavior, when he was a toddler, even before, but we didn't know what was going on with him. We prayed and prayed--------he had a brain tumor pressing on his optic nerve, a hypothalmic hamertoma tumor--I hope and pray this is not what your little one has , however, here is a great web-site please use it www.HHUGS.COM May God bless and take care of your precious little one. G. Kathy

I think you should seek professional help. This is serious. If there is an underlying problem, you need to get to the root of it. How is the relationship between you and the child's father? Does your son witness his father doing any of those behaviors he's portraying toward you? Is there something more to what you are really able to share? Are you in a hostile environment?

I am not accusing you are your boy friend of anything, but this is very bizzar.

Hi R.,

I think if you are already doing some of the advice of what these other mothers are telling you and trying new things and it seems not to be working. I believe you need to take him to the doctors to be evaluated to make sure there is nothing going on with him. Me as a mother of 2 after trying behavior correcting techniques and they didnt work or start showing that they are gonna work I would be concerned something was going on inside and take him to be checked..

Please do not listen to these mothers scaring you that it sounds like your child has Autism. I think it is very mean that they are telling you this without even knowing your child. A lot of what you said sounds like your son is going through growing pains, trying to see what buttons to push and how far to push them. I know Autism is out there and I know a lot of the facts about it. I do not think it is because of vaccines. There are so many diseases out there that I want to prevent my son form getting. I have two boys, one 8 years old and one 13 months. I got all my eight year olds shots and he is in advance classes..nothing is wrong with him. And I will get all the shots for my 13 month old as well. There is not a fact out there that says it is the MMR vaccine. I know it looks that way...But until you know it for a FACT other people shouldn't scare other Mothers to think the worst. When in most cases it is NORMAL toddler behavior.

Thank you for your time.

A little about me.
I have two boys, Tyler 8yrs Zach 13 months. I am 36 years old. I am a Restaurant Accountant and work two days a week.

I have four boys. None of them had autism so I can't tell you whether or not your son is displaying classic signs. However, my second child did have communication problems and was also very angry. He had many ear infections and while we got them under control, his inability to hear affected his communication ability, and made him very mad at the world. I would say at this point your son's problems are enough to make you worry, so therefore it is a problem in your household that is worth investigating. My advice would be this:
1. By a book on baby sign language; I often wished I had done this. Can't hurt in any way.
2. Talk to your pediatrician; see if you can get recommended for some sort of program that would help you investigate your son's emotions. Again, can't possibly hurt him; may help. In case he is autistic, this may be your early intervention time. If not, well you had some great help and therapy at this time in your life.
3. Stop the shots. With all my boys, I waited until after hey were two to get them done. As long as you aren't going out of the country at any time soon, he should be ok to wait . Again, can't hurt; even if it is not true that vacines cause autism. So he waits until 3 to get his MMR?!

Remember this; there isn't a child in this world that doesn't have some sort of issue. There is nothing "wrong" with your child. There is no shame in seeking help. You aren't a terrible parent because you had to reach out. In fact, you are a more conscientious and loving parent because you did reach out. None of us want our children to struggle, and in his anger, he is telling you he is struggling. we have the means and the knowledge to help our children now. Go for it. I will be praying for you.

His 15 month well check with his doctor should be coming up. I would tell the doctor everything you mentioned here. I don't know if it is anything to worry about but he would know.

Pick up some baby sign language books from the library. I started to teach my boy some sign to help communicate.
This is a tough time and age for the little guy, I went through some of this with my boy. Learning a little sign language help us out. He could tell us "more", "please", "angry", "sit", and a few other easy things. He felt like he was communicating with us.

Good luck and keep working with him to help him understand.

I do not believe that your son is displaying any characteristics of autism. Please do not be alarmed by other responses. The word autism is being used like the word cold or virus.
My daughter, now 29 months, displayed the same behavior as your son. She started this at 10 months. By the time she was 16 months I thought I was going to have to go back to work just to get away from her. She is very strong willed and stubborn. She wants it now and I can't move fast enough. She would hit and head-butt when I told her no. She would scream and I would cry because it hurt my ears. She (still) throws things when she gets frustrated in any situation. She would slap herself and me in the face.
I have done spankings, time-out, change of scenery, giving in, begging, etc...She has grown out of most of it.
When he is raging I suggest that you sit on the floor and drag him into your lap. Wrap him up in your arms to keep him from hurting you or himself. Talk to him almost in a whisper and explain exactly why he cannot act like this. My daughter was so interested in my whisper that she stopped immediately. You have to do this every time though. In everything you have to be consistent. He wants you and his dad to overreact when he starts to bang his head. Try to not even look. Walk away. Don't say a word. I bet he will only do it 2 or 3 more times!
I have several friends in my playgroup with kids much older than yours and they aren't talking. Don't be alarmed that he's not talking. If you want to do signing go to the library and check some out. If he is interested then buy them. Signing Time is my daughters favorite series. She watches it everyday. You will all be just fine!!

I really can't say if this is abnormal or just a toddler thing. I know my friends children who are 15mo are still not speaking, they just make sounds. My son is only 7mo so I havn't gotten there yet. I've seen a lot of people tell you this is autism. I do know that autism they say is caused by the MMR shot and only that shot. Most docs are giving it at 15mo and you said you're son has been doing this a few months. Did he recieve the MMR shot? I'm just curiouse.

Good Morning R., My name is Denise and I have seen this before in my own son now 4 1/2 yrs old...Tommy is diagnosed with Autism finally...He did have a good amount of speach but abruptly lost it at about 2 1/2 yrs of age and it prompted me to seek help...Having no ins at the time a client directed me to Early Steps intervention which did initial screening on Tommy and it was found that he only had a vocabulary of an 11 month old at 2 1/2 yrs of age...My heart sunk and has never come back in regards to this...My suggestion to you is to seek the help everyone is entitled even with no ins to have this screening done...Depending on where you live you will find help but your pediatrition should direct you and if not call the Health Dept for the process of Early Steps or even Easter Seals can give you info...Schools can also direct you at least the initial information...I do not have at hand the phone number but if you respond to me at another time I will have it handy for you...We all hope our children do not have the Autism Spectrum disorder but if it is there the sooner the better to help our children...I can go on with this subject coz it has consummed my life as well as my two adult children, the father is no longer in Tommy's life a usual thing, but I have also educated myself at the University of Google as most do today, and know more than doctors...I really have not learned much more than I gained from my research...And I easly could have written the book by Jenny McCarthy but I am not a celebrity...no new info in there either for me...Hope it is not the case for you but find out and take charge...as of this day Tommy still has had no therapies except some few hours at school in the morning and they work on speech and stuff in his very little class of 4 to 5 children and his teacher is absolutely fabulos...Tommy does talk some more and his agressions are down right now but he is also so very emotional at the drop of a hat...the communication is the most difficult on all parts concerned... and I must say that society is not understanding to date... but find out and take charge...All children develop differently and not every child has something wrong but better to check it out and find out that nothing is wrong than to ignore or be miss led by doctors and then tradgey is among you...don't sit back and wait as some doctors tell you...You are MOM and you are the protector of your child and your child's voice...that was the main thing I did find in my research...and don't give up...Contact me if you like as I am happy to help...my email is ____@____.com I am a Licensed Massage Therapist and Reiki Master Teacher...Hope this wasn't too long but there is so much more. Thank you, Denise J. L.,LMT/NMT/RMT in Deltona, Florida

I have 2 kids, ages 2 1/2 and 1 year. My son also throws himself back, and is constantly hurting himself by doing so but it doesn't stop him the next time. He also bangs his head for attention and clings to me. My daughter doesn't do the things your son does, but she has her own neurosis when she's mad or trying to get attention. All kids do! Especially at this age. They have so much going on in their head but don't know how to express it so they act out. It frustrates them that they can't communicate with you. Also at this age they don't know how to handle emotions so they tend to throw tantrums and cry (or like my daughter, scream until you think your head will pop off). My friend's son was also acting violent at the same age your son is, but it was just a phase and he no longer acts that way. But you HAVE to nip it in the bud now. He has to know that is not acceptable, and no matter what it is he can not get what he wants if he hits you. He can also get a time out (1 minute per year old.. so he can get 1 minute now). Time outs work great with my daughter. I haven't tried it with my son because he's better about "no" than she is. Another thing that helps is getting eye level with him and talking to him in a firm, but not angry, voice. That way he's not intimidated, but will know your serious. (that's the key with my son.. works with my daughter as well, but when it doesn't that's when she gets the time out, and then everything is ok after that)

I worked with autistic children for 2 years... I don't feel this is autistic behavior.. I think hes just being a TODDLER. Toddlers tend to be in rare form! They are short of being monsters at times! I do think you should speak to his Dr about these behaviors just as a precaution for anything, but I'm not getting the sense there's anything out of whack other than his age!

Good luck! hope things start to turn around for you!


You need to take him to a pediatrician and let them know these things. Not to alarm you, but your descriptions are characteristic of the beginning of autism.

By no means is that behavior normal. I have an 18th old and when she is frustrated or wants my attention she tries to bite or does bite me. We are working on it and she is getting better. Halifax Hospital in Daytona has a behavioral center and it might be a good idea to see if maybe they could help or could recamend some one who could help in your area. I know how hard it is when you can't understand, babies are never easy but you have a situation that could harm your child.

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