Hi Cathy, I have a darling adopted daughter who is now 20 months old. She has now been with me for 6 months and she is amazing, but recently she has developed an unusual habit which I find upsetting. When I try to deter her from doing something e.g. breaking something or ripping up books, she starts hitting herself in the face or hits her head on the floor. I’m at a loss as to what is causing this or how to stop her. I tried comforting her and also ignoring the behaviour when it wasn’t too violent. I would be grateful to hear anything you have to say.
Peggy T, Canada
CG: Hi Peggy, please don’t worry about your daughter’s behaviour. What you describe is not uncommon. Children work through all types of weird and wonderful behaviour, even those in good homes, who are loved and well cared for. However, although this is a stage your daughter is going through – having found a new way to express her frustration, you would obviously prefer her to express herself in a different way, as this way could harm her. Don’t overreact when she starts hitting herself, just quietly pick her up, hug her and re-direct her to a better activity, exactly as you have been doing. Let me know how you get on, but I think you will find she will soon work through this. It sounds to me you are doing a great job of parenting your daughter. Cathy x