My Son, The Vampire

Sean has learned to bite.  Which I can’t blame him, really.  Evan’s favorite game is “How can I annoy my baby brother the greatest.”  So in a lot of ways, Evan had it coming.

But rather than let Sean get carried away in a Chicago musical number, I some how have to discipline this grievous assault.  The kid leaves bite marks.  It’s only a matter of time before he breaks the skin.

The first time Sean did it, my dad was babysitting, and he was at his wit’s end on what to do.  If it had been his kid, it would have been a couple of spankings or a bite back, which worked so well on my middle brother when he went through this phase on me.  (Unlike Evan, I was a perfect child.)  But my dad knew how I feel about physical punishment, so he placed Sean into time out and cuddled Evan.

It happened on my watch last night.  Even though I threw Sean into time out for three and a half minutes, I don’t think it really had an effect, since Sean started laughing and talking to himself during the middle of it.  Nothing like a punishment that works.

And I wasn’t stupid enough to think this just happened out of the blue because Sean was so hungry from missing dinner, he mistook his brother for a hamburger.  As I comforted Evan, I interrogated him on what happened right before the teething incident.  Evan was using Sean as a punching bag.  Nice.  Now I have to be in the same room with them at all times like a warden.  Where’s my shot gun?

So what’s a poor, enlightened mother suppose to do?

I’ve seen the whole biting the kid thing work, but I feel it’s a bit barbaric and contradictory.  Nothing like hitting to let some one know hitting is wrong.  I’m not sure that the time out thing is working, since it seems the place for Sean to work on his inner comedic monologue. 

So any advice out there?

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10 Responses to “My Son, The Vampire”

  1. TheKitchenWitch Says:

    I have no wisdom, only sympathy. Time outs don’t seem to be effective over here, either.

    You could always take t.v. away for the day, but that is punishing MAMA. I learned after just 1 instance that that punishment is not for me…

  2. Ink Says:

    Takes time for the kids to learn how to do a time out, but eventually it sticks. Hang in there! (But boy howdy, do I understand your frustration.) Luckily, biting is a phase. Since they do it when they can’t express themselves, we always would stop and hold him at arms length and say, “What’s wrong? Can you use your words, please, instead?” and sometimes that helped. Not that we didn’t get bitten plenty…

  3. Ink Says:

    So, in other words, I don’t really have any advice except This Too Shall Pass. 😉 (((Fae)))

  4. insider53 Says:

    I understand the whole “if they know what it feels like to be bitten they won’t bite” empathy thing. But what if you have a stubborn kid. Are you going to bite him every time? I can tell you what I did but I’m not proud of it even if it did work. We were on a trip in the RV and once again he (age 3) bit his 12 year old sister. I was at my wits end because nothing worked. So I took a bar of Ivory soap and made him bite it and as it scraped against his teeth told him every time he bit his sisters or spit on them he would have to bite the soap. Well it must have tasted pretty bad because he never bit or spit on them again. I was horrified by my actions and cannot recommend them to anyone but sometimes we all lose it and go to a place we don’t want to because we don’t know what else to do.

  5. theycallmejane Says:

    Because of my over-the-top reaction I created a biting monster. As soon as I realized I was only making matters worse, unless my daughter broke my skin (she didn’t have siblings so that wasn’t an issue) I ignored it. It stopped almost instantly. However, you’re dealing with child biting child – so the rules may be different. If there’s a way to have a “matter of fact” reaction, maybe that’ll help. (sorry, this isn’t feeling like much help – you absolutely have my sympathies ’cause this is a toughie!)

  6. jc Says:

    Advice for Warden Fae? put bullets in the shot gun and cock it. Give at least a warning shot into the floor or ceiling to scare em. You don’t need a stinkin badge. A fancy costume, sure – get the one with the 10 lb utility belt and the pretty patches on the sleeves.

    Make him mow the lawn, rake the leaves, scrub the car tires. If he keeps it up, you won’t ever need a maid.

  7. parenting BY dummies Says:

    Bite him back. It’ll make you feel better. I’m so kidding. I struggle with punishing #3 effectively also because there is really no reasoning with a one year old. But, my mom (parenting guru that she is) assures me that it really is just a matter of firm consistency, inhuman patience, and time. Respond with the same, swift, firm action each time, don’t let yourself get riled up (which would include laughing which is what I usually struggle with not doing) in front of them, and wait. They may only have the IQ of a chimp at this age, but you see how smart chimps. They can learn!

    In other news, check out PBD tomorrow, I have a little message in there especially for you!

  8. parenting BY dummies Says:

    how smart chimps ARE. I meant to say “you see how smart chimps ARE”. I bet they have the sense to proofread!

  9. jlewicky Says:

    Just my sympathy. You have to be with them, or have one of them with you, I guess. Makes it HARD to get anything done. I do kinda like the housework suggestion 🙂

  10. joz1234 Says:

    Take something away that he loves. Christian is 2 1/2 and I could take away TV (that sound horrible I know…but yes he watches TV…I’m a pro-TV mom)

    Or

    Time out (keep working at it)…maybe in a room with no toys where you can shut the door instead of a corner of the room (not sure how your setup is)…Nicholas would never have done well (still doesn’t) in an open area where he can get attention at all. The closed door really helps with him.

    Or

    Bite him back (not repeatedly…just the one time to make sure he understands how that feels)…hopefully he will figure it out…if not, at least he understands he is hurting someone. Don’t repeatedly bite him…then it’s just like a spanking. The idea of the bite is for them to feel what it feels like to get bitten.

    Good luck.. Much patience to you.


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