to think my DN was cruel and to punish her?

(201 Posts)
mendimoo Fri 16-Sep-16 13:25:21

I look after my niece and nephew everyday before and after school as their parents work long hours. Today is DNs 9th birthday. DN has just started in Reception and DN is year 4. My nephew has been great with not asking to help open presents (my niece always nags him to let her help him) and really kind in making her a card off his own back, asking to bake her a cake and picking her a gift from his own piggy bank.

My niece had a few gifts at my house this morning (from me and grandparents) that her parents had said it was okay for her to open before school. One of the presents was wrapped in Frozen wrapping paper. My niece detests Frozen and actually sneered when she saw the paper. My nephew LOVES Frozen. He asked if he could please have the wrapping paper so he could use it to make a picture. She snatched it up and screwed it into a ball then dropped it into the dogs water bowl shock

My nephew sobbed and went into school crying for the first time since starting, saying he doesn't understand why his sister is so mean to him. I spoke to her and told her how unkind she was but she shrugged and was unrepentant. I was going to take her out for cake and bowling after school but I feel like cancelling now. DP thinks it was normal sibling behaviour but I think she was cruel and shouldn't be allowed to continue to be like that (she has form.) Her parents are unreachable unless it's an emergency and I have permission to punish as I see fit. WIBU to cancel tonight?

RiverTam Fri 16-Sep-16 13:28:04

I wouldn't, as it is her birthday. However, I would do something along the lines of getting her to buy him a roll of Frozen wrapping paper at the weekend. And I would have words with her, there's never any excuse for spitefulness.

MrsJayy Fri 16-Sep-16 13:28:41

Dont cancel her birthday night out that isnt fair I think she should apologise for being mean to her brother though.

PurpleDaisies Fri 16-Sep-16 13:29:03

I'd give her the chance to earn gave her treat by apologising to your nephew and doing something nice for him. If she won't, cancel the bowling.

MrsJayy Fri 16-Sep-16 13:31:07

Oh yes the frozen paper replacement is a good idea its a consequence for her actions she needs to know she has hurt her brothers feelings.

MrsJayy Fri 16-Sep-16 13:32:14

Canceling her birthday will only make her resent him more.

mendimoo Fri 16-Sep-16 13:35:38

She would apologise but it wouldn't be sincere so what's the point? If it was my own child I'd cancel it saying that seeing them being mean doesn't make me want to do nice things for/with them so the trip is cancelled.

Minisoksmakehardwork Fri 16-Sep-16 13:36:13

In my family that is par for the course for the age gap - utter resentment that a younger sibling came along after 5 years.

It is behaviour which does need stopping now. It's past nipping it in the bud.

Don't cancel her birthday treat, but I would let her know how spiteful it was. It's not even like it was a present, it was, to her, waste paper. But I would replace it, taking the cost out of some of the birthday treat money. So she might not get an icecream if that's the cost compared to the paper.

Going on, there needs to be a plan to help both siblings at least tolerate each other.

Haffdonga Fri 16-Sep-16 13:38:00

YABU, it would be very disproportionate to cancel her birthday treat.

Birthdays are stressful and over-exciting for some dcs and heightened emotions can make dcs behave badly. I'd say nothing about the wrapping paper today and celebrate her treat as planned. Then, later, when all is calm and the birthday excitement is over, you quietly and calmly talk through why she did that and how her brother would have felt. Ask her to think what she could do to make up for it and support her in following through (e.g. take her to a shop to get him some more frozen paper or give her the stuff to make him a frozen card).

Sounds like you don't actually like your dniece very much?

hoddtastic Fri 16-Sep-16 13:39:53

possibly a side issue but it's her birthday and her parent's can't even take a tiny half day each to make sure it's one of them (not her aunt) doing birthday pressies and treats in the evening?

Wonder why she's playing up? Any attention is good attention innit? Poor kid sad

RiverTam Fri 16-Sep-16 13:40:45

That's a bit tit for tat, though, OP.

Her birthday treat is separate to her being mean to her brother. Birthdays, IMO, shouldn't be dependant on certain behaviours. And lots of children can be quite badly behaved on their birthdays, it's all a bit much I think.

I would go for a consequence directly related to what she did, which is why I suggested her buying him more paper.

OlennasWimple Fri 16-Sep-16 13:47:51

Yes, it's cruel, and yes, it's normal childhood behaviour.

Though as others have said, if this is a recurring thing, her parents need to tackle this now so that it doesn't fester into something much worse. (Your nephew sounds fabulous, BTW!)

wonderingsoul Fri 16-Sep-16 13:48:06

Shes 9...... plenty old enough to know that that was v spitefull.

I would takem them but also make a song and dance about dn getting getting some frozen paper/colouring stuff and say she was paying for it.

Shes purposely and spitfully upset her brother for no reason. I wouldnt care if it was her birthday or not. It doesnt give free reign to be vile. Esp at 9.

LouBlue1507 Fri 16-Sep-16 13:48:40

YANBU OP, I agree with you. Your niece is 9 years old not 4, she's old enough to know better and was really spiteful.
I don't believe that she should be treated shy different just because it's her birthday. That doesn't excuse her appalling behaviour towards her brother.
If it wasn't her birthday would you have cancelled?

LouBlue1507 Fri 16-Sep-16 13:49:58

**any different not shy

rollonthesummer Fri 16-Sep-16 13:51:02

What a nasty thing to do! I'd be telling her parents. What a shame one of them couldn't have either have gone in late or come home early from work to do this treat themselves?!

mendimoo Fri 16-Sep-16 13:53:50

I like the idea of buying the paper out of dessert money.

My niece is wonderful but so competive and desperate to be the biggest and best that it often leads to unkindness towards my nephew. He worships her and is always sweet and kind to her. I praise him a lot and praise her if she's even vaguely kind but she persists in purposeful spiteful behaviour.

MrsJayy Fri 16-Sep-16 13:54:40

I do think her parents need to know what she did and be involved in herpunishment even though it happened with you,

Cagliostro Fri 16-Sep-16 13:54:48

Wow that was really spiteful of her sad

I don't think it's fair to cancel the birthday thing. If it was a random after school treat then possibly.

I agree with PP saying about her getting attention. Sad that her parents couldn't get the day/afternoon off sad

mendimoo Fri 16-Sep-16 13:56:45

She's going away for the weekend with her parents while I have my nephew so it's not like they've forgotten her birthday. But her parents do encourage her self important behaviour IMO by taking her away alone etc. They'd never just take my nephew away for a treat because my niece would kick up such a fuss.

HolaVida Fri 16-Sep-16 13:58:23

Seriously - I don't think this is a big deal.

I'm not saying it's acceptable/should be tolerated/isn't something to tell her off for, but come on, she's 9 ! yes, that's older than a 4 year old, but still, she's only a kid.
The chances are that her bad behaviour is actually the product of all sorts of things rumbling around in her little mind and it comes out in a split second decision to do something spiteful.

FWIW this sort of behaviour wouldn't be out of place in our house at various points, especially on birthdays etc. Not great behaviour, but certainly not something to cancel a fun trip after school about.

wizzywig Fri 16-Sep-16 13:58:31

Buy him a mega tube of frozen paper. Poor bub

LouisvilleLlama Fri 16-Sep-16 13:58:48

It seems like your nephew is being forced to be some second class child sad

LaContessaDiPlump Fri 16-Sep-16 14:00:12

God, that's the sort of spiteful shit my DS1 does to DS2 (they are 5 and 4yo respectively). I wouldn't cancel a birthday but definitely remove something she cared about in order to drive the point home that that is an awful way to behave.

Out of interest, when are you allowed to start calling it spite? DS1 has been like this since he was 2yo and DH gets huffy if I describe him as a spiteful little shit (out of his hearing), yet the behaviour shows no sign of abating. When does it officially become a bad behaviour attribute and not a 'kids will be kids' one?

Lweji Fri 16-Sep-16 14:02:46

I do think that was very nasty behaviour, and I'd certainly act to cut it short, birthday or no birthday. It's simply no excuse to allow such nastiness.

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