Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Mrs. Mama Has a Biter

Jack attends daycare while I'm at work. About two months ago he went on a biting rampage all in one day where he bit 3 times (2 of those times was one baby). As the mother I was so ashamed at what he had done. It was serious mommy guilt at its worst. At that time he was only 16 months old so it wasn't like I could have a talk with him to get him to understand that it was wrong. At daycare they put him in timeout in a playpen.

I thought the issue was over but today when I picked him up I learned that he had bitten again (the girl he had bit the 2 times before). Two months ago the mother of the baby he had bitten was not happy at all. I know that told her today that she was bitten again by my sweet biting monster Jack. So I know she isn't happy and I don't blame her at all. The other mother of the child he bit was a lot nicer and said "well next time it could be my child who bites". I appreciated her positive attitude. 

My stomach is in knots knowing that the mother is all mad again. I don't blame her but I still don't like it. I hate someone having negative feelings about my sweet baby. 

Here are some pieces of advice for dealing with parents whose kids have been bitten by your child.

1. Talk to the daycare provider and get all the information about what happened. You want to know the facts.

2. Talk to your daycare provider and discuss discipline when the biting happens.  Our specific daycare can only do separating by putting him in the playpen. You don't want them to be too harsh nor too lax. Discuss with your partner what form of discipline you are most comfortable with and if he bites at home then do your own discipline. I can't help but wish one of those kids would just bite him back.  

3. Reach out to the parents in some way. I chose to call them. You could see a note if calling them is not an option. You could mail a note to their house or take it to the daycare for them to give to the parent.

4. When speak or writing to the bitten kids parent make sure to let them know that you are not okay. I explained to them that unfortunately we haven't been able to discipline the biting ourselves because he hasn't bitten around us. I did explain that it is not okay and that I felt mortified by what he had done. I apologized a million times. After talking to the mad mother she said "I really appreciate you reaching out to me because you have me feel much better". She started out angry and that phone call calmed her phone. The other mother was crazy nice but she also said she loved that I had called her. 

5. When Easter rolled around I made sure to bring really nice gifts to all the kids. I kinda thought of it as a "I'm really not a bad mom who lets their kids get by with stuff" so here is a nice gift to make you have positive thoughts about my sweet bitter. 

Any suggestions from mamas whose babies were biters? 


  1. Ugh, that's awful! I had to sign two incident reports on Wednesday because Travis had bitten two different kids. I have no idea where it came from because I've never seen him bite before! I also had to pick him up early because he'd had a fever, so I was hoping that he just hadn't been feeling well, but then his dad told me that he'd been biting at everyone all weekend when he was with him. The past couple days he's been better, and I still haven't seen him try to bite, so I'm hoping that he's done. At my daycare, they're not allowed to share who was bitten or who did the biting with the parents. That's grounds for some serious legal issues. So at least no one knows it was my Travis! I was absolutely horrified because he usually has the sweetest disposition.

  2. Not only does C bite, she pinches, pulls hair and hits. She does this at home, daycare, the library...it doesn't matter where. I know that it's just a phase all kids go through, but it's so embarassing when it's your kid that's the culprit.

  3. I feel for ya mama. My daughter isn't a biter, but has been hitting. I just keep telling her no & grabbing her hands, I'm hoping it's a phase! Ps - first time by the blog!


  4. Luckily, Arabella never bit anyone, and she has never acted aggressively toward anyone...except her parents! We just had a huge blowup tantrum at my friend's house tonight. In fact, almost every time it has happened, this particular friend witnesses it, and practically no one else even believes us that she's got it in her! I was really happy to read this post because I empathize with you and how we as parents agonize over our children's behavior. I'm in the same boat!