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My Child Is Aggressive, What to Do?

Questioner

K

Reply Date

Jun 25, 2018

Question

My son is 2 year old , the problem is that he started to develop an aggressive attitude. He hits me if I take something from him, or force him to do anything that he dislikes. He hits his friends when they start playing, sometimes out of jealousy or just anger. He is even aggressive when he holds me or plays with me. I sometimes give him timeouts or hit him back to prove that it hurts to hit. I don't really know how to handle this and I seriously want to fix this problem before it aggravates. So, what went wrong?

Counselor

Answer


Child Aggressive

In this counseling answer:

“I would kindly suggest to intervene whenever your child is aggressive by removing him from the playgroup, giving him a timeout and directly but gently holding his arm (with no pressure or harm) to prevent him from hitting you or others if you are nearby and see he is about to hit. Tell him “no” firmly. In an age-appropriate manner, explain to him what behaviors and actions are not acceptable, and what the consequences are.”


As-salamu alaykum ,

Thank you for writing in to our live session. As your child is very young, I kindly suggest you do not hit your child. Hitting your child only reinforces the behaviors you are trying to stop. Your child cannot cognitively connect the reason why you are hitting him, he only knows that you too, are hitting. Additionally, there may be repercussions from child protective services depending on where you live for hitting a two year old.

As far as “what went wrong” according to child experts on development, aggression at this age is a normal phase of development. “Primitive language skills, a fierce desire to become independent, and impulsiveness make kids this age prime candidates for getting physical.

Nadine Block, executive director of the Center for Effective Discipline in Columbus, Ohio states “Some degree of hitting and biting is completely normal, because 2-year-olds are so focused on ‘me’ and ‘mine, so while your 2-year-old’s behavior may embarrass and worry you — and it’s certainly not okay for him to hurt other kids — it doesn’t mean you’re raising a bully.


Check out this counseling video


By consistently letting your youngster know that aggressive behavior won’t cut it and showing him other ways to express his feelings, you can help him control himself and learn to get along with others. ” (1). I would kindly suggest to intervene whenever your child is aggressive by removing him from the playgroup, giving him timeout and directly but gently holding his arm (with no pressure or harm) to prevent him from hitting you or others if you are nearby and see he is about to hit.

Tell him “no” firmly. At an age-appropriate manner, explain to him what behaviors and actions are not acceptable, and what the consequences are. By being consistent in stopping his aggressive acts as well as rewarding him when you see positive behaviors, he will soon insha’Allah see a change in his behaviors. Consistency is important however so he develops an association between negative behaviors and consequences (time out) and good behaviors with praise. Insha’Allah examines his environment and try to correct anything which may be contributing to his aggression. Additionally, I would kindly suggest monitoring what he is watching on TV or any video’s he is playing (if you are not already).

Insha’Allah with consistency, consequences your son will outgrow this normal phase rather quickly. Raising healthy, kind children is a challenge at times, but with Allah’s help, as parents, we somehow make it through!

1-http://www.babycenter.com/0_aggression-why-it-happens-and-what-to-do-about-it_63817.bc

Salam,

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Disclaimer: The conceptualization and recommendations stated in this response are very general and purely based on the limited information provided in the question. In no event shall AboutIslam, its counselors or employees be held liable for any damages that may arise from your decision in the use of our services.

Read more:

How to Discipline a Child Who Talks Back?

My Own Little Rebel




About Aisha Mohammad-Swan

Aisha Mohammad-Swan received her PhD in psychology in 2000. Aisha worked as a Counselor/Psychologist for 12 years for Geneva B. Scruggs Community Health Care Center in New York with a focus on PTSD, OCD, depression, anxiety, substance abuse, marriage/relationships issues, as well as community-cultural dynamics. She is certified in Restorative Justice/ Healing Circles, Conflict Resolution, and Mediation, and is also a certified Life Coach. She is currently studying for her certification in Islamic Chaplaincy, and takes Islamic courses at SHC. Aisha works at a Women's Daytime Drop in Center, and has her own part-time practice in which she integrates counseling and holistic health. Aisha also received an MA in Public Health/Community Development in 2009 and plans to open a community counseling/resource center for Muslims and others in the New York area in the future, in sha' Allah.

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