19 Month Old Hitting Me

Updated on October 01, 2009
T.S. asks from Austin, TX
8 answers

I am having difficulties with my 19 month son. HE has been hitting me when he gets angry or doesn't get hat he wants. I have tried a few different ways of discipline. But nothing seems to be working. Now he even hits the dog when he gets angry!. He apparently doesn't hit anyone else. The babysitter says the kids never hit each other. I don't understand how this started or how to make it stop. I have tried timeouts and I don't even know he really gets what time out is. All I know is that I really need help with this one mamas. My son is so sweet and affectionate but I just need some advice on how to work with him on this issue.

2 moms found this helpful

What can I do next?

  • Add yourAnswer own comment
  • Ask your own question Add Question
  • Join the Mamapedia community Mamapedia
  • as inappropriate
  • this with your friends

Featured Answers



answers from Houston on

This is pretty common at this age and most of the time it is frustration from not being able to communicate effectively. So I think it's important to try and find out why he is hitting and what the triggers for the behavior are. Then try to show him a better way to deal with it. Using words and hand signals for instance instead of hitting.

Definitely make it clear that hitting is a no no, but there is no need to go overboard because if he sees that this behavior makes you upset and he is getting attention for it he will continue to do it to get a rise out of you.

Show him hugs are better than hits. Let him know that you understand he is frustrated and mad, that it is ok to say I'm mad, but it's not ok to hit.

Hang in there, this is a phase that will pass!

More Answers



answers from Houston on

My son went through a short phase of this... probably around this age. I think it was him trying to control his feelings and not really knowing how. My advice... say something like "no thank you" and walk away. Maybe not making a big deal of it but firmly getting the message across that if he does this it will create distance between you two. Maybe if he hits the dog take him to a different room from the dog -- dog should stay where he is but your son will have to leave the room. Clear and direct and do it every time. If my son did it while I was carrying him in a store, he would have to walk or get in the cart or something. If he did it while we were sitting on the couch I would get up and leave him.

This definitely stopped him from continuing to hit me at that moment. Not sure if it was the cure to him hitting... I think that his growing out of it combined with results he didn't really like the results is what has stopped him. Now when he gets angry/frustrated enough to hit he is able to voice his feelings more easily. More used to having those feelings or something. So therefore he doesn't seem to go to hitting to get his point across as quickly. Good luck.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from College Station on

19 mo are TOO young for time out!!!!!!

At this age, you need to take his hand and say- we do not hit- firmly. Every time he does it. Fein tears if you have to. Make him see that he is hurting you even if he is not physically hurting you. If you are spanking him or swatting his hand when he does something wrong, stop.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from El Paso on

Be really stern - a loud, strong voice- and tell him "NO hitting! Remove him to high chair or crib - anyplace he is safely confined and give him a small pillow to hit - "We don't hit people or animals. You just have to be consistent and have your mean mommy voice on to show him how serious you are. This may be just a toddler phase, but this message of no hitting pertains to all ages and won't traumatize him.



answers from Houston on

Children just like animals always measure up thos that they are around and if they think they can rule over another they will try to place fear into those in a lower position. What your son senses in you is that you will not hurt him and his hitting you is just his way of using you as something he can conquer. What I would suggest is that when he hits you pop him hard on the hand. If he cries, do not comfort him. Explain to him that he must keep his hands to himself and never hit a girl. I use a cloud made of construction paper. My grandson had a hitting problem. We cut out blue clouds and covered them with cotton and glue. We also cut out black clouds. When he is bad his cloud is black. At the end of the week if his cloud is still blue I reward him. Hope this helps.



answers from Victoria on

my son is 20 months. when teething he will try to bite me! only me! it usually scares me and i will hold (not grab) his face and tell him "absoultely not" in a firm voice. he does hit and its been a problem with daycare as he can be the bully. at 19 months i found out she was putting him in time out! i was so excited didnt know time out would work for under 2 yr old. now when he is doing something he shouldnt all i have to say is dont do that or your going to time out. he gets it loud and clear. as for him hitting we constantly tell him no hitting and then give him something to do weather it be a toy book , something on tv.its a distraction tool for now but soon we will have to think of something else. be right there when he hits you or the dog and tell him no every time. he is learning and will get it. time out is one min per year of age. you have to tell him when you set him down " no hitting your in time out" and he has to stay for one min. if my son gets up i dont extend the time only set him back down and tell him no...he is usually upset and will cry for that min. after time out i give him a hug and tell him we do not hit! and then the love you hugs and its ok lets go play nice now. but it is working it took time though.



answers from Houston on

I have a 22 month old and he has been hitting for some time now, typically when he is overstimulated or not getting his way. We tried firmly saying, "no hitting," leaving the room when he did it, putting him in time out, and sometimes out of frustration, swatting him on the hand. None of this had the effect I wanted. He seemed to think it was funny that we were giving him this different kind of attention. Most recently, what has been working REALLY well, is doing a fake cry after he hits. If he hits me, I put my head down and start suddenly crying like a baby, and I say, "That hurt Mommy." He immediately comes and gives me a hug, kisses me on the lips, then "touches soft" on my face. It's like he actually UNDERSTANDS the consequence of his actions.....that he can really hurt someone. I know children don't really begin to feel empathy developmentally until they are closer to 2yrs, so my son may be responding to this because of his age. But, it's worth a try.


answers from Houston on

We did time outs for hitting when my son went through the hitting phase. He is old enough to know what they are I think. We also got down on his level, looked right in his face and said, No, hitting! in a firm voice. That getting down right in their face works wonders. Also being really consistent with discipline for hitting is very important. Like you can't afford to just let it go sometimes. EVERY time requires action from you. For time out we had our little guy sit in one spot at that age and did not allow him to move from that spot. If he would move we would immediately make him get in that same spot. When forced to stay in one place, he got the idea he was in trouble and would cry. For his age a time out was only about 1 minute. It did break the habit of hitting for us. Good luck!

For Updates and Special Promotions
Follow Us

Related Questions

Related Searches