Who is BU, me or DH?

(99 Posts)
OxfordBags Sat 05-Oct-13 22:54:05

My Dh has asked me to put this to the vote on MN because he thinks I am being silly about something. Here's the problem:

We have a 2.5 yr old. He is a real little worrier, gets quite anxious and timid about stuff and needs a lot of reassurance about quite small things, like someone standing near him in a shop. On of his biggest things is that every night before bed, I have to spend ages reassuring him that animals are not going to come into the bedroom and 'get' him. I don't know where he got this fear from, but it is very real for him.

Anyway, earlier, I went to the loo before we started bedtime, and I came back into the living room to find him showing DS a YouTube video of a crocodile about to attack a baby gazelle. I took the iPad away and pretended it was a game, which DS fell for. I've watched the video since and the attack itself, which DS didn't see, is really brutal, bloody and horrible. Ds has just got a crocodile cuddly toy, and DH's reasoning is that it would be interesting for Ds to see what crocs are like. As though that's the only possible way of finding out more about crocodiles hmm

Dh says IABU for thinking this was a problem. I say he is out of his tiny mind to show such a video to a child of that age full stop, never mind to a tot who has a terror that animals are going to attack him. I must add that DH is an otherwise sensible chap, who is usually quite judgey about stuff like parents letting kids play age-unsuitable videogames, etc. I also pointed out that as it's always me who does the end of bedtime, it's all too easy for him to not worry about Ds being upset, as he won't be the one dealing with it (I don't begrudge doing this for Ds, please don't comment about that).

Who is BU?!

Thanks.

OxfordBags Sun 06-Oct-13 00:11:19

Thumbwitch, he does have that inbuilt judgement about things that are scary usually, it's precisely because it was so out of character for him to nearly expose Ds to something scary, and also out of character to not accept his fault, that I was moved to post.

I still nurse Ds to sleep, that's why DH doesn't do the final bedtime section. Not desirous of comments on that, thank you, lovely posters.

Thumbwitch Sun 06-Oct-13 00:13:47

Agent, he liked watching nature programmes on television, had no issue with animals being eaten etc. He also used to play fighting games, not really sure why because I certainly didn't encourage it, it seemed to be innate! Always using twigs to fight imaginary enemies and gore them to death.

He accidentally got to see Lion King when he was 2 because I had never seen it myself, and we were at my Dad's, who had the video. I didn't know it had a death early on in it, so when it happened, it had to be explained. I actually think the Lion King is quite a useful learning tool (albeit perforce in my case!) for small children to hear about dying, but if I'd realised I wouldn't have shown it to him then.

He didn't actually drink blood of course. wink

BillyBanter Sun 06-Oct-13 00:35:05

Maybe he needs this!

splasho.com/upgoer5/

Inspired by this:

xkcd.com/1133/

Opalite Sun 06-Oct-13 02:20:04

What in the world......
He is hypocritical and VERY unreasonable! I have no idea how he could possibly justify this...

HicDraconis Sun 06-Oct-13 05:48:54

Yes your DH was unreasonable, but he already knows that so enough on the crocodile video.

My husband is sahd to our two boys and as soon as they could talk he has answered questions at an adult level. We've never subscribed to 'talking down' to their level, if they're old enough to ask a question they're old enough for us to answer. My oldest definitely understood the concept of death by the time he was 3. I'm not sure why you had to protect your son from a dead shrew.

OxfordBags Sun 06-Oct-13 08:31:20

Hic, FIL started going into lurid detail about decomposition. I had already told Ds that the shrew was dead. I don't 'talk down' to my son either, but I don't think he needs to know about decomposition at 2.5.

Having talked about the matter more this morning, DH told me that he only typed 'crocodile' into YouTube and clicked on of the options,he didn't actively search for anything to do with killing; I tried this out for myself, and he's telling the truth. He accepts that he should have realised that the majority of vids about crocs will involve them killing something, and that when the voiceover started talking about 'the gazelles are unaware of the lurking beast as they drink at the water's edge', he should've turned it off (that's what I heard as I entered the room and flipped the cover of the iPad).

He also says that he thought Ds would be able to tell it was 'only on the iPad', but accepted this was dense when I pointed out that adults know horror films are fiction but still crap their pants (not literally) watching them.

DameDeepRedBetty Sun 06-Oct-13 08:46:46

Crumbs OP I think your DH got away quite lightly last night - I was reading through and thinking 'I'd never ask a sensible question in AIBU on a Saturday night, how long will it be before someone tells her that DH is abusive and she should LTB?'

Hope ds gets less nervous at bedtime as he grows older. I remember very clearly being petrified that there was something nasty under the bed when I was very very little (under three years old), I was staying with one of my grannies at the time, and she sprinkled some magic dust under there for me which made them go away.

You're perfectly right, what you see not long before bedtime can prey on your mind. Later on, aged about 8, I was awake and terrified for a good hour because there might be a Cyberman walking down the passage towards my room! I was alright if I was allowed to keep a light on though. But my mum was going through a phase of shouty Lights Out at the time.

ZillionChocolate Sun 06-Oct-13 08:49:23

Glad DH has accepted HWBU. Unfortunate it took a MN vote for him to realise that and he wouldn't just accept your judgment.

oldgrandmama Sun 06-Oct-13 08:56:00

Sorry, but I'm wondering what else your 'anti fluff, very realistic ...'etc. etc. idiot of a husband has been telling your tiny son, to make him so fearful. Bet it's not just the 'crocodile' thing.

kitbit Sun 06-Oct-13 09:02:53

Dh needs to do some research on age appropriate, sounds like he's well intentioned but not getting the levels right. He also needs to use some common sense and listen to your ds's fears and watch his reactions, instinct is a good guide but research will help.

And he needs to listen to you grin

arethereanyleftatall Sun 06-Oct-13 09:06:45

What a horrid thing for your dh to do. Cruel. These things are very real for children.

pictish Sun 06-Oct-13 09:09:18

He wasn't being cruel. Come on.

ShotgunNotDoingThePans Sun 06-Oct-13 09:10:49

Well, maybe it's not just the crocodile thing - or maybe OP's DS is just one of those children whose imagination goes into overdrive at bedtime.
I had one of those, and I know for a fact all he'd ever seen at that age was Tots TV, Teletubbies and that ilk <shows age>. He woke up with 'bad dreams' until about 6 or 7 years old.

One thing I came across was a suggestion of using something as a 'guardian' - maybe the crocodile toy or maybe that option's not such a good idea now! Have to say, it didn't work for us as we couldn't find anything that didn't also scare DS - we were probably a bit thick though - shoud have used a totally benign, cuddly thing to fend off with the power of good rather than Hopper or a morphed Power Ranger grin.

OxfordBags Sun 06-Oct-13 09:12:38

Oldgrandmama, you are way off. Dh doesn't tell him scary things, I have repeatedly said that it was entirely out of character for him to be thoughtless about the video, and that he's normally very gentle and sensitive. He does explain some stuff in too-conplex ways, but that's things like explaining what a combine harvester does, or other totally unscary things like that.

DS has always been a sensitive child, and I was just the same. It's just his character. I don't know any of kids of his age that don't have at least one irrational fear, he is at the prime age for all that. My DH has not made him nervous, or given him fears by secretly scaring him.

As I've also already said, DS spends most of his waking life pretending to be various animals, including pouncing and grabbing stuff, and wants to only read books about animals, zoos, etc., so it's not like he has a huge phobia. I actually think his 'animals getting me at night' thing might've been triggered by my cousin explaining that her cat flap lets her cat in and out of the house in the night.

ExcuseTypos Sun 06-Oct-13 09:12:42

OxfordBags be prepared or a lot of people who won't have read all your posts to come on say 'your H is a nasty so and so'.

RTFT or at the least the OPs posts or YOU'LL end up looking a twat.

Anyway, I think it's a very good idea for your Dh to put your DS to bed and deal with his anxieties. But let him watch you a few times, so he picks up a few tips on what to say to reassure your dswink

ShotgunNotDoingThePans Sun 06-Oct-13 09:15:11

OP has already said her DH was misguided and has admitted as much. We've all made mistakes as parents - and it's usually experiences with the first child that throws these mistakes up.
At least he now knows what's not acceptable and will hopefully engage brain in future.

cornflakegirl Sun 06-Oct-13 09:15:57

In general, I'm with your husband. Vid probably a bad choice for bedtime, but in general I've been happy for my boys to watch nature stuff, including predation, from fairly young. I wouldn't have a problem explaining decomposition either. We've actually got a really good Wonderwise book (aimed at young children) called Yum-Yum that explains food chains and decomposition.

My MIL once let DD watch Casualty when she was 5.
Cue 12 months of sleeping on the landing as she was terrified of house fires (that episode showed one). DD was not an anxious child until then.

BeScarefulWhatYouWitchFor Sun 06-Oct-13 09:17:26

I'd say thoughtless rather than cruel. Hopefully he'll think next time before showing your DS something unsuitable.

ShotgunNotDoingThePans Sun 06-Oct-13 09:19:59

Re. the sensitivity: when my DS lost his first baby tooth aged 41/2, I stupidly told him aboutthe Tooth Fairy and openedthe window a crack to 'let her in.' Cue much hysteria and an extended bedtime again. He was fine after that though, once he'd seen the cash!

OxfordBags Sun 06-Oct-13 09:23:13

Thank you, ExcuseTypos. People are clearing not reading the whole thread, or indeed not even my OP properly. My - nornally very sensible, thoughtful - DH did not set out to deliberately make our son watch animals being killed, and Ds didn't actually see it. I should've realised that some people will somehow extrapolate that he was being malicious, or has been secretly filling his mind with horrors, SIGH.

FrightRider Sun 06-Oct-13 09:27:32

I think the key phrase your DH needs to learn is 'age appropriate'

there is showing videos of crocs in the wild to show a child what a real one looks like, and there is showing them videos of them ripping another animal to bits.

pictish Sun 06-Oct-13 09:28:12

It's too late Baggy - nothing you say will make an iota of difference. Neither will the fact that you are are married to him and know your subject.
No one is listening.

BoffinMum Sun 06-Oct-13 09:29:50

Oh my goodness me, your DH has transgressed remarkably in showing bloodthirsty animal butcherings to your DS.

But otherwise with regard to the lofty explanations, your DS will work it all out.

raisah Sun 06-Oct-13 09:41:05

What's he going to do next? Show your ds videos og exrcutions on you tube to make him 'man up'? What a cruel man.

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