Dealing with Luke’s temper tantrums and completely irrational arguments can be annoying and exhausting, but once in a while, you just have to laugh at this little boy’s complete confidence in the fact that he is indeed, the Center of the Universe. One of the behavioral quirks we’re dealing with is that when Luke hurts someone, he tried to deflect the trouble he is in by pretending to be hurt himself, or if that doesn’t work, to try and be mad at Mama or a brother to turn the anger around.
An example from this morning:
He and Jack are playing on the couch and Luke punches him in the face a few times, at which Jack gets rightfully upset and tells him he needs to apologize or he isn’t going to play with him anymore. Luke runs away laughing, and I get involved, trying to explain to him that he can’t just hurt people, and that he has to try and make Jack feel better by giving him a hug and maybe apologizing. “No, I don’t want to do that! Jack hurt me!”. I ask him again to make Jack feel better and he runs over to the blue chair and starts reading a book. I give him a few minutes and I tell him again that he was naughty to hurt Jack and that he needs to make Jack feel better. He says:
“I’m tired of all that Mama, come and read me a book!”
We continue on in this vein for a few more minutes without much success, so I think we are going to have to rely on the “we don’t want to be with someone who hurts us” and go and hide in the bathroom away from him. It doesn’t sound like much of a punishment, but Jack was a big biter in his day and this was extremely effective. Seeing Mama and Chance going into the bathroom and closing the door almost always elicted crying and it soon ended the biting. Luke is little more blase about being in the bathroom by himself, so I think we’ll try going away from him and seeing if that helps get the message across.