Thursday, June 4, 2009

Taking a Bite Out of Crime--or other people

Well, yes, I did disappear off the face of the earth, but only for about a week. We had a terrific camping vacation full of all kinds of interesting stories about my cute kids and hiking with a stroller and the evil that is tent caterpillars.

But is that what finally got me to the computer? No, of course not. It was Matilda and her incessant biting of her friends. I've kept thinking it was a phase, every time she would bite another little girl I watch, who is 10 months old and her closest playmate. She was teething, or she had an ear infection, or there was some other excuse. But today I thought she'd been doing a really good job of being gentle, touching her friends with her gentle hands to show me what a good baby she was, and yet when they got home, her mom called to tell me that she had a big bite mark on her arm!

So how did I not notice that? I'm a little upset, first, because I swear I looked her over several times to make sure there was nothing I hadn't seen. But possibly worse, will she ever stop this? I've never had a biter; Zachary is really easygoing and is more likely to cry than to lash out (though he did get in trouble for hitting at school the other day--but that's another story). And Ezra is a fighter, but he's been one to scratch, and the kid he used to scratch would hit back just as hard, so there was no real sense that my kid was being a bully.

She's got her 15-month-checkup tomorrow, and I've also registered for a class on toddler biting. But I think at the heart of it is this feeling that my kid, my baby, is somehow bad, that only bad kids bite, and I've failed her and everyone else. My wonderful, beautiful, last baby is a biter! And my day care mom (who's kind of been becoming a friend) is upset--understandably. And I just feel like everything that's wrong in the world is wrapped up in my baby girl and the things she continues to do with her teeth.

I need a vacation from my family.


Aunt Becky said...

I need a vacation from mine. Oh wait, I'm getting one. And I'm insanely...going to miss them?? What is THIS emotion?

Anonymous said...

My girl went through the biting phase at about 15 months and so did my son. Luckily they only bit me, how lucky am I? So after trying "No", "NO!", "NO BITE", "OW, Mother fucker!" with no success, I bit them back. My son it only took one time but the girl is a bit more stubborn so it took a few times of biting her immediately after she bit me and now she has stopped.

Probably not what the baby shrinks would tell you to do, but it worked for me.

Good luck.

Kendra said...

"OW, Mother fucker!"

LOL! I ought to try that one!

LuLu and Moxley's Mom said...

You didn't fail here. She's only 15 months old and I bet it's a fairly common thing. Hey, I have teeth now! Yippee! BITE!

Hope the pediatrician can help.

PS -- There is a CLASS on toddler biting??? Who knew!

carrie said...

I've seen biters grow up to be perfectly normal and completely GOOD people! Don't worry, you're on it and she will get over it.

And yes, a vacation would be nice! :)

jasmine said...

Haha! I know the feeling!!

BabyonBored said...

Hey my Matilda went through a big biting phase at that same age and now Sadie is a major biter now at 18 almost 19 months. She does it on purpose with angry or frustrated intent. she bites her sister and hurts her. I figure Mattie grew out of it so Sadie will too. I try to just yell no bite as loud as I can or hit her on the nose with a newspaper.