to be hurt by comments about my DS from friends staying with us?

(84 Posts)
Petershadow Tue 20-Nov-12 11:15:40

Or do I need to get a thicker skin?

Separate comments made by both of them

"ooh, just what you need, more sugar"

"yes, that's what you should have, more sugar"

DS is very active, borderline hyperactive

In no way does he have too much sugar.
One of the occasions he had just got up, one of the occasions, he had just had weetabix for breakfast

Dh thinks it was a bit out of order too.

squeakytoy Tue 20-Nov-12 11:16:33

They have clearly been reading Mumsnet.. ask them their username grin

No!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Dont admit on MN to putting sugar on weetabix - you will start a riot :D

HeathRobinson Tue 20-Nov-12 11:18:40

I take it your friends don't have children?

Petershadow Tue 20-Nov-12 11:19:17

he didn't have sugar on his weetabix!!
we actually don't have sugar in the house
I went to put some on my porridge this morning

Petershadow Tue 20-Nov-12 11:19:47

they do have a daughter, but she's only young and probably very placid

ArtexMonkey Tue 20-Nov-12 11:20:34

I thought the supposed link between sugar and behaviour had been disproved?

Anyway, they sound very rude.

I thought that there was no sciency type proof that sugar made any difference to behaviour anyway. You need to print off a few papers and leave them lying around, casual like.

ShamyFarrahCooper Tue 20-Nov-12 11:20:43

What Heath said. Our DS has so much energy. Our friends without kids wonder how we cope grin whereas he's fine, he likes jumping out playing games he creates.
I remember one friend looking horrified saying 'Is he this bouncy all the time?' grin
He's just one of those kids who likes being on the move.

They sounds like dicks then...tell them to mind their own business!

TremoloGreen Tue 20-Nov-12 11:21:04

Ask them to repeat themselves. When they do, say "oh, do you have a specific recommendation about DS's diet?" Force them to say what they're actually thinking rather than just make a snarky comment.

Also, if they don't like sharing a house with your DS, they can pay for a hotel next time!

Cross posts between the clever ones.

Buy him a bag of Haribo and suggest a b&b down the road grin

ShamyFarrahCooper Tue 20-Nov-12 11:22:11

Oh and I don't know about sugar but my ds goes a little crazy if he has ice-cream. Giggles like mad, for ages. It's extremely funny but we do limit it.

Petershadow Tue 20-Nov-12 11:23:29

DS is like this all the time, he doesn't stop until the second he closes his eyes.
I have monitored his sugar intake over the years and there is absolutely no difference when he eats biscuits or chocolate.
He has a couple of small biscuits when he comes out of school, chocolate is a treat

Kalisi Tue 20-Nov-12 11:24:01

Depends how they said it really. Was it sarkie? Do they consider your DS to be 'energetic,' in a PITA way?
It was either a passive agressive swipe at your parenting or a joke. My Nephew is similar to this but he is a wonderful kid and I know my sister does not overindulge him. Doesn't stop me teasing her though and we have both been known to say comments like that when he is running around with the mop bucket on his head

SooticaTheWitchesCat Tue 20-Nov-12 11:26:32

Pack their bags, leave them on the doorstep and lock the door next time they go out.

I wouldn't like rude people staying at my house. Let them come to me I love sugar on my Weetabix wink

sue52 Tue 20-Nov-12 11:27:49

If they are staying with enjoying your hospitality they should keep their ill considered comments to themselves. Very rude to remark on your child's diet or behaviour.

PandaNot Tue 20-Nov-12 11:29:14

Why did they say that if he wasn't eating any sugar? confused

But very rude anyway. Obviously their way of commenting on his behaviour which they shouldn't be doing.

Petershadow Tue 20-Nov-12 11:29:37

Kalisi- I don't actually know them that well, one of DH's best friends and wife
They live abroad

I think they consider my DS to be "energetic" in a PITA way. That's what hurts, I would never make comments like that about someone else's child.

If my mum or sister said it, I would laugh. Because they know how I struggle with him, and they know it's not me giving him too much crap

Also, DS was like a caged animal, having to stay in while they made their mind up about what they were doing, he couldn't eat his food where he wanted, they slept in the spare bed, where he has been sleeping,they upset his routine a lot (I know that happens with guests)

SugarplumMary Tue 20-Nov-12 11:31:03

they do have a daughter, but she's only young and probably very placid

That will be why - they'll be assuming all DC are the same and that their DC placid behaviour is good and that it’s down to their superior parenting.

Like others I think the science says sugar makes no difference and only the most critical parents assume it does – as a parent I don’t believe that.

Find a response that shuts your freinds up – or don’t have the round till they learn better while wising in your head horrific parenting experiences on them in the future.

Petershadow Tue 20-Nov-12 11:31:35

they bought pastries from the shop and offered them around

and I had made chocolate cake with DS, and he saw it in the fridge and asked when we were having it

purplecrayon Tue 20-Nov-12 11:32:13

It's just rude and I would not have them to stay again. I would also consider the value of their "friendship"

Kalisi Tue 20-Nov-12 11:32:20

Oh ok then, yeah what everyone else has said then. They sound very rude!

AngelWreakinHavoc Tue 20-Nov-12 11:32:35

Why would they say 'more sugar' if he wasnt having any?
Why would You say 'nothing' If he wasnt having any?
makes no sense confused

OovoofWelcome Tue 20-Nov-12 11:33:40

They were rude. But the moment to make a response has passed.

You just need to decide what to say the next time they say something snide.

"Please don't make derogatory remarks about my son or any member of my family," accompanied by a steely glare feels about right grin

SamSmalaidh Tue 20-Nov-12 11:33:42

Are you sure they're not just making a joke?

It's the kind of thing I could imagine saying if DS is being particularly hyper.

THERhubarb Tue 20-Nov-12 11:33:51

Without being there, how are we to know?

Why would they comment on him having more sugar unless they had seen him having sugar? Your OP makes little sense.

You say that your ds had weetabix without sugar, so why then would they have said that?

I think there may be more to your OP than you are letting on. But in any case, it's entirely up to you. If they feel there is a problem that could be their way of trying to tell you.

Rather than post it on Mumsnet for justification as to your upset, I would pull them up on it. Next time you are with them just mention it to them and ask them if they thought your ds had too much sugar. It might have just been a silly throwaway comment or they might really have concerns. In any case it would be a good chance for you to explain about your ds and the evidence against sugar being an influencing factor in hyperactivity.

THERhubarb Tue 20-Nov-12 11:36:04

I think for both of them to say it on separate occasions, it would indicate that they are concerned about the amount of sugar your ds has.

It may not be any of their business but I still wonder why they would have said that if you supposedly do not have sugar in the house? And if you don't have sugar in the house, where did you get yours from to put on your weetabix? Or have I misread that?

No shock

Wrong thread sorry!

OxfordBags Tue 20-Nov-12 11:40:06

This makes me angry for your DS. It's HIS home, not theirs, and it's much easier for adults out of their own routine to be flexible, instead of a child. How dare they stay as guests with a family and criticise a vital member of that family?! Just because he's a child does not mean he should not be respected. The fact that you personally don't even know them that well is even worse - they enjoy the hospitality of someone not that close and then insult her child and by that, cast aspersions on her mothering skills and choices? Very bad behaviour.

Perhaps because he is one of your Dh's best friends, they feel they can speak that way, but that's still not acceptable. Seeing as they think such a close alliance allows plain speaking, get your Dh to have a word. Doesn't have to be aggressive, just tell them that you were both were hurt and offended by the way they spoke to and about your son and that it was not their place to offer so-called advice or observations.

Or, as they live abroad, it would be easier than usual to just let the friendship drift...

PS I have a crazily-energetic DS too (and he doesn't actually like sweet food!). One thing people don't get is that this can actually be an absolute joy. smile

Petershadow Tue 20-Nov-12 11:40:19

see 11.31 post

"more sugar" does suggest that they think he has too much

In their company he had weetabix, and a snacky picnic lunch of tomatoes, cucumber, celery, crackers, ham and cheese

and fruit

and sandwiches

OxfordBags Tue 20-Nov-12 11:42:40

THERhubarb, many people make comments about sugar or sweet food in connection to energetic or hyper kids. It's just such a powerful belief in society that folk trot it out without the slightest evidence ot knowledge of the child's diet.

Petershadow Tue 20-Nov-12 11:44:15

considering they didn't see him eat anything unhealthy, "more sugar" would suggest that they thought that too much sugar was a general reason for his behaviour. No?

Or maybe I'm just overthinking and they were just saying "you are active enough, you don't need sugar"
but I even think that's a bit rude

THERhubarb Tue 20-Nov-12 11:48:33


This is why you are confusing me.
You stated that you had no sugar in the house. Yet you said that you were getting some to put on your porridge.
You had also made a chocolate cake, which unless I am very much mistaken, will need sugar. So you either do have sugar in the house or you don't.

Also, if your ds had not eaten any sugary treats in their presence then why would they make the comment at all?

The fact is that you said BOTH had made this comment on two separate occasions. Occasions on which, you said, your ds was NOT having any sugar at all.

Therefore your post does not make any sense.

Petershadow Tue 20-Nov-12 11:49:14

DS didn't have sugar on his weetabix.
I didn't have weetabix, I had porridge, for the first time since my microwave has been fixed. And I went to put sugar on it, and we didn't have any, because no-one uses it. Hope that makes sense!

I don't have to see them that often, maybe once a year. Other friends in the circle have more children and are great with DS, they don't raise their eyebrows at all.
They are lovely, this surprised me.

Petershadow Tue 20-Nov-12 11:50:02

Er, the chocolate cake was a packet mix blush !!!

Petershadow Tue 20-Nov-12 11:51:12

TheRhubarb, please see my post of 11.31 as to when/why/how the comments were made

I'm not making this up!!

THERhubarb Tue 20-Nov-12 11:51:27

BTW I agree that it is none of their business and I agree that there is a tendency to think that over active children must somehow be fed sugar by their parents. Sometimes children do have unhealthy diets which does not help their hyperactivity disorder and sometimes children have the healthiest diet ever and it does not make any difference.

I am not giving my opinion on this particular scenario as we don't personally know the OP, or her ds and can only take her word that he eats healthily.

I am stating that the OP is confusing.

SamSmalaidh Tue 20-Nov-12 11:52:06

I think it was probably just a joke, rather than a deliberate point about his diet.

ExitPursuedByABrrrrrrr Tue 20-Nov-12 11:53:20

My DD has sugar in her tea.

<shoots self>

Petershadow Tue 20-Nov-12 11:54:37

Sam- even if it was a joke, they are commenting on the fact that he is a little bit hyperactive, is that a bit rude?
I wouldn't do it, unless I knew someone very well

You're probably right, they'd probably be horrified if they knew I was upset

THERhubarb Tue 20-Nov-12 11:55:35


Right, perhaps it would help if you had explained that as I am not generally known for my mind reading powers.
Mind you if you nobody had sugar in the house then why would you look for some for your porridge? Hey ho!

Still confused over these friends. They offered pastries yet made that comment about your ds?
And another comment when your ds didn't touch the chocolate cake?

I don't get it. Sorry.

Bring it up in conversation and explain the sugar connection to them. Or just ignore them. I don't know!

Egusta Tue 20-Nov-12 11:56:23

I agree with OxfordBags about they need to respect your son because it is HIS home.

And people do make assumptions. I am still very very sore over a dinner party guest of ours suggesting there was something psychologically wrong with our DS because his behaviour was 'erratic and disturbing'. HE IS 2 AND HAVING A FUCKING TANTRUM.

and breathe.

My dear old dad has a favourite phrase in these situations. 'Tell 'em, Fuck 'em'.

Labootin Tue 20-Nov-12 11:56:30

Yabu but only because of the packet mix...

catstail Tue 20-Nov-12 11:58:40

they are trying to empathise with you by being funny, they dont mean it literally about "more sugar", they already know hes not having much sugar

SamSmalaidh Tue 20-Nov-12 11:59:31

Is it rude to comment that a child is hyperactive confused - I think people often make jokes of children's behaviour as a way of sort of empathising with the parents too.

Petershadow Tue 20-Nov-12 12:01:15

Rhubarb--- It's not a rule that we don't have sugar in the house.
But I went to the sugar bowl thing this morning and there was none there.

I only brought sugar up because someone assumed he had it on his weetabix. The actual sugar product, not just in food.

Actually I started a thread a while ago asking do you have sugar in your tea or on your cereal, as I was curious
Under a different name though, so you're probably still not going to believe me!! grin

Petershadow Tue 20-Nov-12 12:04:03

catstail- that makes sense

Rhubarb, I think it is confusing, Because why comment if you haven't seen the child eat any sugary food. Exactly. That's kind of the point.
Why would they say that, they have no evidence. in my head they are assuming he is like he is because he generally has a diet with too much sugar

Petershadow Tue 20-Nov-12 12:06:01

in my defence about the packet mix.... ds gets involved, loves cracking the eggs.
But if I had to weigh and measure everything he'd lose patience and be off


harryhausen Tue 20-Nov-12 12:13:38

I'd be upset by comments like that. My DS is 5 and sounds exactly like you describe yours OP. He's an excited puppy from the moment he wakes up, always chatting, jumping, running, acting the fool. He physically can't keep still. He eats well, loves fruit & veg but yes....likes a sweet or two. This makes no difference to his behaviour. In fact the times he's worse is straight after a bath & in pyjamas ready for bed - he sleeps fine though.

I've often had snidey comments from my sister & her husband about him. Once he was climbing a tree at my mums along with his elder girl cousins (my sisters girl).

My BIL said "are you aware DS is climbing a tree?"
I said "yes. He's fine. He still has a cycling helmet on anyway from his bike"
Sister says to BIL "yes. She has a very er 'relaxed' approach to parenting".


I hate to talk about genders, because I had an elder DD who never placid and very adventurous too - but some boys just ARE almost like bright little animals that just need to be on the GO!

Very rude. They're talking rubbish. I can't stand people who make comments about older children when they haven't even experienced that age yet. I always hope they'll have a rude awakening.

OovoofWelcome Tue 20-Nov-12 12:36:54

OP, your post really wasn't confusing.

They were inappropriate.

THERhubarb Tue 20-Nov-12 12:43:02

Petershadow - my apologies, your posts were just very confusing and I simply could not fathom why both of them would make two separate comments about him having more sugar if they had not seen him have any in the first place. I still can't fathom that tbh.

I think I do sympathise with the presumption that parents give children too much sugar and junk food. Unfortunately this can be the case as seen when Jamie Oliver tried to tackle school dinners. Any wander around any school at lunchtime to peek into packed lunches will reveal the truth that most kids are fed rubbish I'm afraid.

I used to work in a school as a TA for children with special needs. Every lunchtime there would be a 'Ritalin Queue' at the office. If you saw what these children had in their lunchboxes you would be horrified. Bar one child whose parents really did try, most would have chocolate, crisps, cereal bars, biscuits etc. Sandwiches would be sparse at best (jam or chocolate spread) and the kids would just cram themselves with this junk food.

One child was really very hyperactive and disruption and despite the evidence to the contrary, his behaviour was markedly worse after lunch. We would sit his parents down, go through his diet and try to persuade them not to give him chocolate, chocolate and yet more chocolate for lunch. But despite our best efforts they would and you could just watch him go higher and higher and higher until he got into trouble and was sent to the Head. Every single afternoon. Yet basically he was a good kid.

I know that not every parent is like this and tbh Petershadow, yours sounds like he has a great diet anyway. Weetabix is a pretty healthy cereal, not a typical kids cereal packed with sugar.

Have you tried Omega 3 supplements? I think they did a study on that recently and the findings were very positive.

You have my sympathies but do recognise that this is not ignorance from your friends, this could be borne out of previous experience although if they have only seen your child eat healthy food then they are really very presumptious and need to be set straight.

Whoknowswhocares Tue 20-Nov-12 12:50:01

Are you sure it wasn't an ill judged comment that was meant to be a joke and just came over all wrong?
We can all do that, can't we? If its a first 'strike' then I would expect you to be a bit thicker skinned but its got to be taken in context. Lots of snidey remarks=rude but a one off=a daft comment not to be taken too seriously imo

N0tinmylife Tue 20-Nov-12 12:50:49

It sounds to me like you are over reacting a bit. From what you have said your DS has a great diet, and is just very full of energy, which you struggle with at times. I have a DS exactly like that, never stops from the moment he wakes up, until his head hits the pillow at night. I am sure I, and other people have made comments along the lines of the comments your friends made. Nothing was ever meant by it, just that there is a perception that sugar gives energy, and kids like ours have far to much plenty as it is.

I think you are perceiving the comments as negative, when they are probably not meant to be at all, unless there have been other comments about his behaviour you haven't mentioned here?

NotQuintAtAllOhNo Tue 20-Nov-12 12:51:46

"But I went to the sugar bowl thing this morning and there was none there."

Did that surprise you?

And how come you did not know you had run out of sugar?

Maybe the friends had seen your ds help himself to sugar?

Maybe the problem is that you have a sugar snacking child?
Maybe this was their way of telling you that they have seen him eat sugar from the bowl?

GoldenGreen Tue 20-Nov-12 12:54:54

It sounds like they were joking based on his "hyperactivity" and the supposed link to sugar intake - implying that he had had loads, but not necessarily expecting him to actually have consumed any.

If you replace the word "sugar" with "caffeine" you'll see what I mean - one might say it jokingly but not really expect a child to have had lots of caffeine.

Anyway, that aside, it was rude of them to say it - but they may not have a realistic idea of what the normal range of activity/general liveliness/noise in children is?

Brycie Tue 20-Nov-12 12:56:10

Oh parents of an only girl. You don't need sugar - you need a very very large pinch of salt. Smile, ignore, smile, ignore.

Petershadow Tue 20-Nov-12 12:58:43

That's why I'm asking, because I am very defensive of DS's behaviour, because I feel like I have tried everything and that's just the way he is.
It is also very much on my mind at the moment as he had a shocking week last week, his behaviour was awful
So yes, maybe I'm overthinking it

TheRhubarb, your scenario sounds shocking.
Fortunately DS's school only has school dinners and they are very healthy and tasty.
I have tried Omega 3, didn't really make any difference, but he still has it

Notquint- The 3 bears took the sugar I think!

diddl Tue 20-Nov-12 12:59:06

Do they mistakenly think he has been having the sugar from the bowl, then?confused

Petershadow Tue 20-Nov-12 13:01:37


maybe they went to put sugar in their tea, and because there was none, they assumed ds eats it

Brycie Tue 20-Nov-12 13:03:54

Are you looking for advice here? As I would have a try at a bit of magnesium, zinc or taurine, if you are really that worried about behaviour. They help focus which always helps behaviour.

SparkyTGD Tue 20-Nov-12 13:04:59

I think you should forget about 'why' they said it but make sure to question them on it if they say anything similar again.

eg What do you mean 'more sugar'? and be ready to explain that your DS has a healthy diet & yes he is a bit hyper but its not really anything to do with that.

They will probably say 'Oh, I was only teasing' to which you could reply '"I know but there's someone I know (invent person) who really goes on about this and it really annoys me because they don't know anything about it" wink

mummytime Tue 20-Nov-12 13:07:24

Do you have Orange Juice? Because that used to make my DS more hyper.

Your house guests were rude and seemed to have reached the fish stage (began to smell).

You can't expect normal behaviour when his routine has been so disrupted. Especially if they aren't letting you get out in the morning. I would be tempted if they hang around to much, to treat your DS like you would a dog and just take him for an early morning walk regardless.

brew to give you patience.

SamSmalaidh Tue 20-Nov-12 13:07:41

Exactly - they could easily have said "ooh, no more coffee/red bull for you!". I doubt they were commented on his diet, just making a joke about energy levels (and maybe trying to empathise/stop you feeling bad about his behaviour - saying it is funny rather than bad).

Petershadow Tue 20-Nov-12 13:09:57

Brycie, I'll try anything! thank you

mummytime- he does have juice, but not loads, and I still water it down
if I give him the choice he will opt for milk

THERhubarb Tue 20-Nov-12 13:11:27

Petershadow - you might find this article on diet and behaviour helpful. It's not just sugar that is to blame it seems.

mummytime Tue 20-Nov-12 14:12:06

You might want to switch juice to see if it has an effect. OJ was severely restricted for years in our family.

Brycie Tue 20-Nov-12 14:47:20

Peter, if you do zinc make sure you give before bed as it makes them sleepy.

blanksquit Tue 20-Nov-12 14:51:59

I think it just sounds like a joke really. I wouldn't read too much into it.

Floggingmolly Tue 20-Nov-12 16:49:54

The key phrase here is "they have a daughter"...
Little boys are not the same species as little girls. Fact.

coldcupoftea Tue 20-Nov-12 17:08:03

Oh God, I hate comments about other people's parenting, especially snidey sarky or passive aggressive comments. A friend of DH's was round the other day and I gave DD age 5 a snack of some grapes, at around 6.45. His comment: "ooh it's a bit late to be having grapes isn't it, they are full of sugar, you won't get to sleep...". OK it may not be the perfect bedtime snack, but she wanted them, I didn't have much else in and most importantly it was none of his business!

Floggingmolly I do disagree with your statement though and I hate it when parents use 'boys will be boys' as an excuse for their badly behaved DC who just happen to be male hmm Not saying this is what the OP is doing though...

Floggingmolly Tue 20-Nov-12 17:14:29

Yes, coldcup, in terms of bad behaviour I agree.
In terms of sheer whirlwind energy, though, they do seem to be different.
(or maybe it's just my kids...)

MyLittleFireBird Tue 20-Nov-12 17:39:46

Children need healthy food and eating a diet of crap does affect them negatively, however I would point out to your friends and anyone else that the idea that sugar specifically causes kids to stay awake/be hyperactive/play up etc is a myth.

blanksquit Tue 20-Nov-12 21:23:32

Floggingmolly - i disagree with you too. I've known plenty of calmer, less active boys than my dd.

griphook Tue 20-Nov-12 22:08:39

^Or maybe I'm just overthinking and they were just saying "you are active enough, you don't need sugar"
but I even think that's a bit rude^

This is what they were saying, I think they were being a bit sarky, it's the sort of thing my brother would come out with about my ds, who doesn't stop from the moment he gets up.

My db's dd is very placid and he believes this is how all children should be, sort of seen but not here.

Don't worry about, but if they say something again just make a comment back

MorrisZapp Tue 20-Nov-12 22:17:52

They were joking, presumably. And sugar does have a direct impact on energy levels, that's why office workers hit the chocolate at 3pm.

And the op made no sense, and still doesn't.

All in all, a big over reaction.

Dominodonkey Tue 20-Nov-12 23:37:24

Your kid is a pita. They commented on it using a sugar reference. Many people will think it but won't say it.

If you don't like it, don't ask them to stay again.

Petershadow Wed 21-Nov-12 06:09:51

Very constructive domino, thanks for your input
And you don't know my child, so fuck off

And Morris, I'm sorry if it's a bit complicated for you
I think I've explained everything now

Alliwantisaroomsomewhere Wed 21-Nov-12 06:40:51

I have a friend who has sugar free days in her house. Last time I saw her she told me this about 4 or 5 times. I am happy for her. biscuit - sugar free of course.

OP, ignore the stupid comments on this thread. YANBU to be irritated by the comments made by your guests. I reckon you should let your DS have a sugar fest while they are there.

HarderToKidnap Wed 21-Nov-12 09:09:22

I think a good rule in life is to try and give people the benefit of the doubt. The "more sugar" thing is probably an in joke amongst their group of parent friends and they just said it to your DS. If they have been nice to him and seem to like him, put it down to being a slightly misjudged joke and enjoy the rest of their stay.

Petershadow Wed 21-Nov-12 20:19:42

Forgot to buy sugar again today!

Willdoitinaminute Wed 21-Nov-12 20:23:54

You must be friends of my sis and her DH. Exactly the sort of thing they would say. Unfortunately they can't have children so they will never know!

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