In how I reacted to this violent 4 year old

(46 Posts)
Peculiarparenting Mon 05-Sep-16 21:39:05

Today was my sons first day at school. He just turned 4 last week. I was nervous for him about how he would deal with the hustle and bustle. However he seemed okay. The children were only in for half the day. After collecting him we went to the park adjacent to his school. Many of the other reception children who were in today also stayed to play in the park after being dismissed.

A little girl was playing with a piece of equipment in the park and then moved on to another piece of equipment. My son started using what she had just left. She then came running back telling him to get off as it was hers. He laughed and continued to use this equipment whilst she chased him round it. He and I thought they were playing a game. After a while I took pity on her and asked my son to take turns and let her have a go. He left the piece of equipment reluctantly but stood near it whilst she was playing. He then tried to take it back again. At this point the girl started shoving my son and grabbing the front of his jumper. She even shouted at him that this was her park. As soon as they started pushing I jumped in and physically tried to move my son away from this girl. However she kept on at it even though I was there and I repeatedly kept telling her no pushing. Stop pushing. I was pulling my son away from her but she kept following and being aggressive. Finally her dad came running over and removed her from my son. She was holding on to the front of his jumper with both fists at this point. My son didn't seem too fazed by this and went back on to the piece of equipment. However me and another mum exchanged a look of what the hell just happened as she had witnessed the whole thing. The little girl went home shortly after.

Anyway when I told my h about this he sort of blamed me for not sticking up for my son. Apparently i shouldnt have told my son to let her have a turn after she had left the equipment. He also thinks i didnt do enough to protect my son when the girl attacked him. However there was nothing I could do without physically touching this child to stop her except try to get my son away from her. I did tell her to stop pushing but she ignored me. Should i have shouted at her or told her off more firmly? I wouldnt like that if someone did it to my child. He also thought I should have had a go at her dad or her but by the point her dad came over she had run off and he had gone after her. He said to her what do you think your doing but he didn't directly apologise to me or get her to apologise to my son. Should I have demanded an apology?

Anyway now I'm feeling pretty shit about myself and what happened. I have never been a confrontational person. I avoid it and he has made me feel that my desire to avoid confrontation made my son in to a victim. What do you think was IBU in not being more firm with this child? Her father was not near to her during the incident and came running over when he noticed how she wouldn't let go of my son. Or is my h being the unreasonable one by expecting me to have done more to stop this child from hitting my son.

Nursenat100 Mon 05-Sep-16 21:43:21

I think this all sounds like a bit of an over reaction....this sounds like pretty typical 4 year old squabbling/pushing/shoving. I think your intervention was more than appropriate and had you done more you would most certainly have been the one attracting odd glances. Of course you have to look after your son, but allowing them to work out how to deal with confrontation is part of that process. You didn't allow him to be hurt. Don't feel bad

Peculiarparenting Mon 05-Sep-16 21:44:10

Sorry for the essay. Basically what would you have done in this incident?

mummymummums Mon 05-Sep-16 21:52:07

Your DH is being unreasonable IMO. He wasn't there and you were. Sounds like you did fine and anything more would have been OTT.

OhMrBadger Mon 05-Sep-16 21:52:26

Sounds like a pretty standard scrap between 4 year-olds to me. Was she about the same age as your DS?

I think your DH is overreacting and will need to get used to this sort of unfair altercation now that your DS has started school. You did all you could, but I do think the dad should have said something to you and your DS by way of an apology.

Ohflippinheck Mon 05-Sep-16 21:56:28

I would have done exactly the same.
They were probably all overwhelmed by their first day and for all you know she may have behavioural problems.
Your son needs to know how to deal with this sort of behaviour which will happen at school.
Talk to him about it. Don't let your husband make him a victim by suggesting you should have 'protected' him. Give him the tools to cope if it happens again.
You both sound very anxious which is understandable as it was his first day but its not unusual behaviour and she will learn some boundaries in school.

pictish Mon 05-Sep-16 21:57:17

Pay no heed to your dh - he wasn't there, you were. People can be very forthright in situations they didn't actually have to face. wink

RubbleBubble00 Mon 05-Sep-16 21:58:39

Your dh being completely overy protective (perhaps bit sensitive to ds starting school as I would struggle with dc just turning 4 - so little).

You were there you inteevened. As soon as other parent saw they came over.

Zippydoodah Mon 05-Sep-16 21:59:49

I think the only thing I might have done differently is not ask my son to give her a go. She spotted a chink in his armour and thought she was running the s how. I might have said 'No, it's my son's turn now. You've had a turn' and suggested a nice piece of equipment far away or asked her where her Daddy was. I would not have said anything to her dad as these things rarely go well

HorridHenrietta2 Mon 05-Sep-16 22:00:05

Daddy was ott what you did was fine, kids get in scraps and they do need to learn to fight their own battles. Don't feel bad, these things do happen from time to time. Your son's fine so tell his dad to relax a bit!!

Canyouforgiveher Mon 05-Sep-16 22:02:44

I would have done exactly what you did.

Good luck to your dh demanding apologies from 4 year olds fried from their first day at reception.

Your dh is what is known in the US as a Monday Morning Quarterback - able to predict all the right plays ... the day after the game.

SunnyBanker Mon 05-Sep-16 22:03:03

I think you're OTT in calling her 'violent' and I agree with a pp - this sounds like typical 4 year old pushing/shoving - which should be handled by speaking to the child in a firm voice. There's nothing else you should have done IMO.

Birdsgottafly Mon 05-Sep-16 22:04:26

""Should I have demanded an apology? ""

Not from a hyped up four year old, sometimes it's possible, but it often doesn't solve the situation.

The fact it was the start of the new term, may have had something to do with the behaviour.

You kept calm and handled it correctly. If you had to done anything else, it probably would have escalated.

SexNamesRFab Mon 05-Sep-16 22:06:50

I would have done the same as you. You knew she was no threat to your son and were modelling calm, reasonable behaviour. DH is PFB.

VenusRising Mon 05-Sep-16 22:07:55

Armchair parenting is so much easier than the real nitty gritty on the front lines.

You are a parent , you were on the front line and you made a decision. There you are! No one can call you out on that. You did the perfect thing.

And it looks like you made a friend in that other woman, excellent work.
I bet that little girl will find it a difficult road... Her dad seems to think she's better off away from other kids, as he scarpered with her. I bet she's a bit of a nightmare.

I like the sound of your DS, he sounds lovely. Well done!

Fwiw, some kids seems to bottle up the stress of school and can act the maggot when they get out/ home. Maybe this is the case with this little girl, or maybe she has form wink You'll no doubt find out in time.

Get that other mother's details pronto, and put your DHs analysis from the comfort of his LazeeBoy- chair to the back of your mind.

rosesarered9 Mon 05-Sep-16 22:08:07

Your DH was BU but everyone on MN will tell you that it would NBU to tell off someone else's child.
This sounds like typical 4 year old behaviour IMO/E.

notgivingin789 Mon 05-Sep-16 22:09:11

OP you did a good job! Don't listen to your husband, his being a bit OTT.

I think the reason why the dad didn't apologise was maybe he was a bit overwhelmed and just "forgot" in the heat of things whilst removing his DD of your DS.

But don't second guess yourself! I would of done exactly the same as you.

pictish Mon 05-Sep-16 22:10:13

Dh is also all mouth and no trousers. He wouldn't have done the stuff he says you should've - he'd have done the same as you, like any sane person.

Have a go at the dad? Shuttt upppp.

bumsexatthebingo Mon 05-Sep-16 22:11:05

I think you and your dh are overreacting. Your son tried to take something off someone (which you had got him to give up) and the other child reacted by pushing your son.
I think you did right to encourage your son to take turns after a while. And while the pushing was obviously unacceptable he will rub people up the wrong way if he takes things off people when they are using them rather than asking if he can have a turn so I would speak to him about that.
Obviously you did right to step in and protect your son and hopefully the dad will have had a word with his dd about her behaviour.
Demanding apologies would be ott.

HeartsTrumpDiamonds Mon 05-Sep-16 22:12:53

I think you handled it perfectly well, and it sounds like how I (hope I) would have handled it too. Your DH is being overprotective!!!

Soubriquet Mon 05-Sep-16 22:13:17

I think you did fine

The only thing I would have done differently, is I would have removed her hands from my sons jumper and walked away

RunningLulu Mon 05-Sep-16 22:16:22

I would have switched at the dad if he touched my kid like that, and told him to keep his girl on a leash if she can't behave. But I'm the aggressive sort which is why its better that dh does the school run!!

Italiangreyhound Mon 05-Sep-16 22:17:04

I think you did brilliantly. Your dh was not there. I think he is over reacting.

Mycraneisfixed Mon 05-Sep-16 22:18:23

You did all the right things.

AndNowItsSeven Mon 05-Sep-16 22:18:37

Violent , really , you need to calm down.

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