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My One-Year-Old Beats Me Up

Earlier this week, while holding Wita in the grocery line, a sweet, elderly woman approached to complement her. Wita performed her usual head tilt and shy smile combo, and as I was thanking the woman and mentioning that yes, she was a sweet baby indeed (lie), WHACK. Chubby baby hand straight up in my mug, and credibility failure to the max.

It seems Wita is a hitter, y’all. And I am at a loss. Look at this face! Does this face look like one of a sadist to you??

I certainly don’t think so, but unfortunately, the girl is a huge fan of smacking unsuspecting family members upside the head. To complicate matters, the whole hitting issue is completely new to me; Wito just turned 5 years old and hasn’t laid a finger on me (or anyone, for that matter) his entire life. How is it that I have a 13-month-old on the warpath? What have I done differently with her? These questions bounce around in my head while I’m icing down my swollen cheekbone.

I guess it’s as good a time as any to confess being a judgy judgmental mom in regards to hitting in the past. Whenever I attended playdates or took my sweet, non-hitting son to the park, I wondered about those kids throwing mini-slaps around. Surely SOMETHING was going on in their family environment. Babies aren’t just wired to hit…they have to learn it from somewhere, right?

OH, WAS I WRONG. (And I’m offering a formal apology to all the parents that received a subconscious eyeroll from yours truly.) Wita hasn’t been around any hitting/slapping/etc, yet she’s been doing it since she was about 7 months old. What gives? A pediatrician recently told me that toddler hitting is one of the very first signs of Type A behavior. (I have NO idea where she might have inherited this trait. Really, I don’t! Let me make you a bulleted list of all the reasons why!) Have you heard of this Type A toddler hitting theory? Do you have a young hitter? What about siblings, where one hits and the other doesn’t? How do you deal? THE QUESTIONS. Please enlighten (or at least commiserate with) me.



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