K just turned 3. She is a fun loving little girl who plays with baby dolls. She thinks Hello Kitty and Dora make the world go round. She will grab your face to give you a kiss and always greets you in the morning with a big hug.
But, at times, the sweetness fades. My little girl gets angry and violent. She can hit, pinch, kick, and bite. Once she calms down she apologizes and cries and feels bad, but randomly this behavior returns. Sometimes she's jealous and sometimes she's super tired. Whatever it is it keeps her from controlling those actions and she lashes out.
These instances are not common. They don't happen everyday. They don't even happen every week. They sometimes happen on clusters, like when she decided to get rid of her pacifier the same time we moved her to a big girl bed. There is no set pattern.
Recently this behavior caused the mother of her BFF to decide that K was too aggressive and that coming to her birthday party was not a good idea. That the girls needed to be separated. I'm struggling with this as I know K is not the only party in this relationship that has inflected injury on the other. They are 3 year olds. (I'm also upset because this info was sent to me in a text message, by someone who was supposed to be my friend, but that's another story)
Today was a recipe for bad behavior. She woke up early and had no nap. While out to dinner with a friend, K got mad because I wouldn't take her to the boys bathroom. This ended with her smacking me in the face as I carried her screaming out of the restaurant. As we continued to the car, she pulled my hair and tried to pinch me. I held her close and got her in the car as quickly as I could. She screamed herself to sleep in the car.
When we got home, she woke up and refused to apologize. We read Hands are Not for Hitting and talked until she apologized. As we have done before, we talk about what else to do when she gets upset. She was calmed down and wanted to cuddle, so I put her pjs on her and we watched a little TV before she went, kicking and screaming again, to bed.
I do everything possible to avoid creating the situation that happened today. Sometimes it seems unavoidable. I'm at the end of my rope. I'm afraid that more friends are going to withdraw from doing things with us. Right now I just want some reassurance that this is normal. I even discussed it with her pediatrician at her well check-up. Her reassurance isn't helping much right now.
Please tell me you've been there, done that and that it gets better.
- The Big Blue Momma