Hitting, Screaming, Calling Us Names (and What We Can do About it)


Janet helps a struggling parent understand her spirited toddler’s aggressive behavior and offers suggestions to respond more effectively. Transcript of “Hitting, Screaming, Calling Us Names (and What We Can do About it)” Hi, this is Janet Lansbury. Welcome to Unruffled. In this episode, I’m going to be responding to a question I received via email, … Continued

My Child Won’t Stop Hitting


In this episode: A parent says she feels helpless because her 2-year-old has been hitting other kids. She says her son loves people and enjoys playing with others, but parents are now keeping their kids away from him. She has tried several approaches, but nothing has worked, so she’s looking to Janet for some fresh … Continued

Aggressive Toddler Behavior (Hitting, Biting, Spitting)


In this episode: Janet responds to a father whose 2.5-year-old is acting out at home and at school by biting, hitting, and sometimes spitting when she doesn’t get her way. The toddler’s dad says he’s tried a respectful approach to curb her behavior, but it seems to be getting worse. This is Janet Lansbury, and … Continued

My Preschooler is Hitting Me

Hi Janet, My 3.5 year old has suddenly starting hitting, throwing things, and biting my husband and me.  Most of what I read seems to apply to toddlers and those with lack of language, but since my son is older and has very advanced language, neither of these apply. During the 2’s he was an … Continued

Biting, Hitting, Kicking And Other Challenging Toddler Behavior

We’re big. They’re tiny. They’re just learning our rules and expectations for appropriate behavior. They have a developmental need to express their will, and they have very little (if any) impulse control. With these complicated, powerful dynamics in play, why would we take our toddler’s hitting, biting, resistance or refusal to cooperate personally? We get … Continued

Toddlers That Won’t Go to Bed (Solutions from Eileen Henry)


Eileen Henry is a pioneering sleep consultant who for decades has helped exhausted, concerned parents guide their infants and toddlers to more restorative sleep. As Janet’s guest this week, Eileen shares her wisdom and detailed suggestions in response to emails from Unruffled listeners struggling mightily with their toddlers at bedtime. A one-year-old seems to get increasingly wound up … Continued

Coping with Your Child’s Possessiveness

“Mine! No, he can’t touch that!” Does this sound familiar? No worries. In their early years, children commonly go through phases of possessiveness that can seem totally unreasonable and extreme. They may want everything their sibling or peer shows interest in and try to take it. They refuse to share. In this episode, Janet explains why this … Continued

How an Angry Mom, Hating Parenting, Found “Immediate Success”


A parent writes that with her firstborn, she had listened to Janet’s advice and used many of her parenting methods with great success. To her surprise and relief, motherhood was relatively easy, and “I had friends comment how amazing I was as a mother.” After the births of her second and third child, however, things deteriorated. … Continued

Consequences vs Threats vs Punishments (Includes an Update)


From Janet’s inbox: A parent wonders if reminding her 3-year-old of negative consequences to his uncooperative behavior is the same as using threats or manipulation. She writes that her goal is not only to help him move through transitions with less pushback, but to learn the concept of time, how to manage it, and to … Continued

Encouraging Kids To Be More Assertive (Includes an Update)


Most of us hope that as our children venture out into the world, they’ll possess enough innate assertiveness to set boundaries and navigate the common struggles of childhood like toy taking, unwanted roughhousing, unkind words, bullying. When our kids don’t stand up for themselves, it’s easy to assume that their lack of assertiveness is derived … Continued

Meltdowns That Keep Happening, Even When We’re Doing Everything Right


A parent writes that she’s feeling helpless and desperate about her 3-year-old’s frequent, intense meltdowns, which sometimes last up to an hour. This mom says they usually “relate to control and power struggles where he tells me or my husband to do something.” And although she remains calm, responds with empathetic words, assures him that … Continued