Sunday, December 26, 2010

My Brother's Keeper

If you read Hitting Is Unacceptable, you'd already know that No Hitting is a big lesson I had to teach Caden.  He took to this lesson so well that he even corrected me after I swatted Charlie on his butt once.  Hitting is not acceptable in our house, period.  Of course, that means outside our house too.  No spanking either.  I believe there are always more effective ways to discipline and/or cope with stress that don't result in inflicting pain and fear and encouraging unhealthy behaviors.

So when I started babysitting a little girl around Caden's age, Lisa, things got a little challenging.  Lisa is 3 and a half, only a few months younger than Caden.  She is a beautiful little girl with the sweetest smile.  But boy, can she throw a tantrum like you wouldn't imagine.  And when she decides she wants to pick on someone, she'll go right up to them and hit them.  

One day I was cooking lunch while the kids were in the living room.  Still in my line of sight, Caden and Lisa sat on the couch watching a cartoon while Sean (at the time he was one) sat on the floor playing with his blocks.  As I was washing my hands, Lisa provoked a No Hitting lesson that I wasn't prepared for.

She climbed quietly off the couch, nonchalantly strolled over to a quiet and unexpecting Sean.  After quickly scanning his toys, she picked one up and with all her might whacked him over the side of his head.  My poor little guy cried out as he fell over in pain.

Before I could get to him, Caden flew off that couch so fast I barely knew what was happening.  Like a lion, Sean's older brother hauled butt towards Lisa and shoved her so hard that she fell right on her rump and landed on her back.

Looking down at her, with his index finger pointing at her face, he said "There is NO hitting in this house!  Hitting is hussable!!"  "Hussable" is how Caden says "unacceptable."  His face was very stern with disapproval.  "You don't hit my brother!"

So, I had a crying Sean in my arms as I checked his head and a crying Lisa on the floor staring up at a protective big brother Caden who was still standing over her with a very stern look on his face.  Whew.  The incident called for lots of "sorry"s and "are you okay"s. 

Although Caden was only looking out for his brother, I still had to teach him that he had indeed broken the No Hitting policy as well.  The human side of me was just a little happy that Caden had been so protective of his brother.  But it didn't stop me from having to add more details to the No Hitting rule.  


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