Friday, May 2, 2014

Toddler Bully (and blossoming big brother)

I got a bad report from daycare today. Benjamin got in trouble. He dumped his oatmeal on another kids head. (Twice... but lets not get into this part because I think its a daycare fail he was given a second bowl). He thought it was funny. I was also informed that he always targets the same child, someone smaller than him. No parent wants a report like this. It was much easier when he was the kid getting bit... its easier to be the  parent to the victim than the aggressor, at least in the Toddler room.

As soon as we left the toddler room I sat him down to talk to him. I asked if he had done what they said, and he said he had, that it was funny. I said it wasn't funny, it was mean, very mean, and he shouldn't be mean. He seemed to get it, but I wasn't sure. Later, when DH joined us in the car, I told Benjamin to tell Dad why he got in trouble. Benjamin very reluctantly said "I dumped my oatmeal on someones head". DH said it wasn't nice. I said it wasn't nice. You could feel the tension in the car. A few seconds past, then DS said in the most pitiful, guilty-feeling voice ever - "Next time I will eat my oatmeal". I am pretty sure he gets he shouldn't dump oatmeal on someones head now... I just hope he can extrapolate it a bit to other behavior. At a minimum, to "I shouldn't dump food on other people". If we are lucky it would be "I won't be mean". But, I don't think he is old enough to understand what is mean and what is not. We will have to work on it.


In more friendly news, Benjamin is warming more and more to this whole "big brother" thing. We first told Benjamin about the pregnancy when I was about 11 weeks along and had just heard a healthy heartbeat again. We told him he was going to be a big brother. He didn't get it at all. He said "maybe later" and wanted to go back to playing. We tried saying a baby was coming but he didn't get it. I would mention it here and there trying to get it to sink in for him. He usually responded with "not now" "I don't want to", and one time with the oh-so-adorable "I am too little". I added in the information that baby was growing in my belly. This somehow seemed to make it more real for him.

The first time he acknowledged the baby was because I was morning sick. He asked if I was OK when I was gagging/retching while changing him one morning. I said I was fine, that sometimes the baby made me a little sick. About ten minutes later as we got ready to leave, and I gagged again, he said "Baby make you sick?" and pointed at my stomach. I said yes! But I was OK, and told Ben his hug made me "all better". A couple weeks later, Benjamin agreed to wear his "I'm a big brother" shirt to daycare. I asked him right before dropping him off if he was going to be a big brother, to make sure he would respond OK (and not freak out), and he said yes. Apparently he spent most that day though telling the daycare workers he would be a big sister. LOL.

It seemed to become even more real for him last week when we told him it was a girl and he would have a little sister.  He has started talking about the baby in a loving voice, and wanting to see my belly. Over the weekend he asked if the baby likes trains, and with some prompting says he will have to teach her about trains and how to do puzzles. He even said "MY baby" tonight when talking about it. It was quite adorable.

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