Toddler hits to avoid bed - FamilyEducation
Toddler hits to avoid bed
07/18/2008 at 14:09 PM

Our 2 year old never hits anybody until he has to go to bed.  He will only hit my wife, not me, to get into timeout and avoid bed.  We go through 5 or 6 timeouts in a row every night until he finally is utterly exhausted and goes to bed crying to sleep.  I cannot always be home at night to put him to bed myself.  My wife is tired and stressed over the behavior.  Any suggestions?

Maybe try making bedtime a little more pleasant by giving your son a wind down time. Read a favorite story, talk about what you did that day or what you have planned for the next day, play soothing music, watch a short movie together.... Give your son the choice so he has something to look forward to and something he enjoys doing. Instead of focusing on the negative behavior, encourage positive behavior by reinforcing your son's efforts. I hope this helps. Good luck!

I would go along with what concerned said. Warm bath, cuddle time, story, quiet talking, and the music is a great idea. Try some nice classical music like Tchaikovsky's ballet music, very soothing for all the family. You could also try some aromatherapy. You can get bubble bath here in Britain for children which has stuff like camomile and lavender in it to help children unwind. I'm sure you must have the equivalent over there. You could also try using essential oils in a burner or in a porcelaine light bulb or radiator container. Do you think your child may like a massage. That can work wonders for the giver as well as the receiver. A nice back rub, or even just a hand massage can be good. Like concerned said, try not to use negative reinforcements such as time outs at bedtime.

The hitting you describe should probably be dealt with differently at that time of day. It that's the only time, so much the better. At 2 it sounds pretty normal as far as behavior, and pretty smart, huh! Try the reading thing starting with a sort of book that requires some interaction. I used trucks and dinosaurs-there are alphabet books with all sorts of things now - that will give him something to look forward to for bedtime rather than alone time. Be specific about how long you will 12 pages or A through J or whatever. I also used Raffi's Baby Baluga song and book which was so fun. Another thing for an active boy...Rocking is a motion that really relaxs active kids.