She smacked my daughter... WWYD??

(745 Posts)
Clumsyoaf Mon 08-Apr-13 12:53:06

In shock, just come home from a soft play place, went with some other mums that I have just started getting to know. DD (4 years old) being unruly - we are going through a phase at the moment, one of the other mums just picked her up and smacked her on her bottom. I was completely stunned - I would never hit a child my own or someone elses... DD in tears i just gathered up DS's stuff took DD and left.

I want to pick her up on it, or call the police or something..... sorry dont have anyone in RL i cant speak to right now so sorry for ranty message im just still stunned!

WWYD?????

toosoft Mon 08-Apr-13 12:55:52

Knocked her fucking block off.

MadameJosephine Mon 08-Apr-13 12:57:53

I would knock her fucking block off call the police. How dare she assault your child!!

Or at least said something? I know its hard when you are on the spot, but you need to show your DD you will keep her safe. Did no one else say anything? Was this one of the mums from the group you were with?

Icantstopeatinglol Mon 08-Apr-13 12:58:27

I don't think I'd be able to stop myself from smacking her back and seeing how she liked it!
I'd be absolutely furious if someone smacked my dc!!
Hope you and your dd are ok.

freddy05 Mon 08-Apr-13 12:58:28

If she'd hit me I'd have rung the police so if she'd hit my daughter I'd do the same thing.

people can smack their own kids if they want that's their choice but no one hits mine!!

hairtearing Mon 08-Apr-13 12:58:49

I would have said something and had her removed, but I understand you were in shock and hindsight is a wonderful thing.

God just sympathy here that's awful.Is your DD ok?

OhBuggerandArse Mon 08-Apr-13 12:58:49

I'd want to know what 'being unruly' and 'going through a phase' actually meant in the circumstances, and what you do yourself about it.

Of course she shouldn't have done it, but sometimes people lose the rag and their better judgement when they see a child continually behaving badly at the expense of others. And four is quite old to be out of hand unless there are underlying issues.

ilovecolinfirth Mon 08-Apr-13 12:59:16

I would tell her how upset you are and break contact. I wouldn't call the police as you would put the other mums in a difficult position and you may want to continue to build a friendship and their children.

AGivenNickname Mon 08-Apr-13 12:59:40

I'd be marching round her house asking what she was playing at.

I'm not sure the police would do anything. There was a case somewhere where a toddler was smacked by someone in boots. The parent phoned the police and they weren't interested.

I'd still be phoning them though.

CloudsAndTrees Mon 08-Apr-13 12:59:56

I would have called the police at the time. Unfortunately there probably isn't much they can do about it now.

Contact the soft play centre and see if they have any sort of CCTV, or if there were any staff witnesses. At the very least, this woman should be banned from the place, but really, she should be prosecuted.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 12:59:58

God that is terrible. Iw ould have been utterly shocked. I can't believe you didn't do soemthing at the time.i think you need to rouse your MOthervtiger a bit, OP.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 13:00:13

Mother tiger

hairtearing Mon 08-Apr-13 13:00:30

Even in an extreme situation I would remove my child before hitting another, obviously has a violent streak.

ENormaSnob Mon 08-Apr-13 13:00:37

Please clarify that she picked up your tantrumming child, smacked her on the bottom to chastise and you said nothing but swiftly left? shock

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 13:02:24

OhBugger

I presume you smack you own children because your post sounded a bit like a justification

IAmNotAMindReader Mon 08-Apr-13 13:02:58

No she should not have smacked your child at all that is stepping beyond her bounds. There are a lot of other ways she could have stepped in.
However you yourself have admitted DD is going through a challenging phase. Is it possible your eyes have glazed over with the constant stream of it and others have actually found her to be a pain in the arse and got tired of waiting for you to deal with it?

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 13:06:07

As for WWYD

i'd say watch your child like a hawak, and next time, stand up for her

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 13:06:18

Hawk

AGivenNickname Mon 08-Apr-13 13:06:19

I'm sorry but even if others were tired of waiting to deal with - that doesn't give them the right to smack OP's child.

MrsPeeWee Mon 08-Apr-13 13:06:25

I'd call the police.
She's assaulted your daughter.

This disgusting women needs putting in her place, right now.
She's not only crossed a major line, she's also done something unimaginable and illegal.

I am shocked that you didn't murder her there are women that actually dare do this.

OhBuggerandArse Mon 08-Apr-13 13:06:48

No, I don't. And I don't think it's a good way of disciplining a child.

But I have, in the past, got very frustrated at other parents' total lack of interest in preventing their child from behaving appallingly, and can understand how in circumstances like that someone might lose their judgement and their inhibitions. Am not condoning it, but would like to hear more about the circumstances.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 13:09:59

Bugger

OK, but ther are, IMO no circumstances needed to explain it. We have all encountered children who are behaving very badly, and who make us very angry. If an adult is out there who would let that spill over into violence I'd be pretty worried aboutnthat

MixedBerries Mon 08-Apr-13 13:10:48

I'm with OhBugger on this. We need to know more about what was going on. I saw a very similar situation develop at our local toddler group last week.

HungryClocksGoBackFourSeconds Mon 08-Apr-13 13:11:04

Call the police. for what it's worth, I think you did the right thing in leaving.

Hitting her back would have taught your DD that retaliating is the correct response to violence. She does however need to know you have her back and will not allow people to harm her, call the police and press charges and show DD that if people do bad things they will be punished.

Was there anyone else there you know that could be a witness?

HungryClocksGoBackFourSeconds Mon 08-Apr-13 13:12:36

We don't need to know more about what the OP's DD did, she is a defenseless four year old child, there is nothing she could have done to deserve being physically assaulted by a fully grown adult.

LimeLeaffLizard Mon 08-Apr-13 13:12:54

Is smacking illegal now? Does anyone know of a link to somewhere the law on this is explained? Would be interested thats all.

Where's the OP then? I'd be interested to hear more, but if an adult had been doing something wrong and another adult nearby lost their judgement and inhibitions and smacked them, that might not end with people simply being able to get their stuff and walk out.

raspberryroop Mon 08-Apr-13 13:15:58

smacking your own child is not illegal but can be child abuse if extreem- smacking someone else's child is assault

HungryClocksGoBackFourSeconds Mon 08-Apr-13 13:16:53

For Lime

It isn't illegal to smack your own child, but IMO it should be. Gentle discipline is a viable, violence free alternative. There is no need to hit children.

HandMini Mon 08-Apr-13 13:17:19

I think the Children Act 2004 states that smacking can only be reasonable and is not deemed reasonable if it leaves a mark.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 13:18:02

LimeLeaf

i would be very surprised if smacking someone els's child isn't an assault. Ironic really

Are we doing the entire plot of the The Slap here?

XBenedict Mon 08-Apr-13 13:18:25

Really? We need to know more? I just can't think what the OP could say that would make us all what happened was in anyway justified.

Are you ok OP?

NotSoNervous Mon 08-Apr-13 13:18:43

I think I would of hit her and said now how do you like it but I would phone the police

Clumsyoaf Mon 08-Apr-13 13:19:13

Basically I had gone to change DS nappy, when i came back DD was in a tug of war with another child over a ride in police car toy (the childs mum was the one that had smacked her) - i went over and took DD for soem time out as the other child had been playing first. I turned around to entertain DS when i turned back she was going for the car again - queue the other mum coming over picking her up and smacking her bottom whilst telling her she needed to learn a lesson in sharing

Floggingmolly Mon 08-Apr-13 13:19:16

What did you do? I'd have decked her called the police.

Fairylea Mon 08-Apr-13 13:19:46

Call the police and tell them someone has assaulted your child. (On a side note I find it absolutely appalling that police wouldn't do anything in the boots case - if it was an adult hitting another adult it would be assault pure and simple).

I absolutely cannot stand any smacking and if a stranger or another person touched my child I would literally open the gates of hell on them.

Hope your dd is ok x

NotSoNervous Mon 08-Apr-13 13:20:45

I do agree that hitting her would be wrong and teach your DD and any other children there that might have seen that its acceptable and it isn't but I think if I was in that situation I would have seen red and snapped

Clumsyoaf Mon 08-Apr-13 13:21:07

DD has been quite difficult, refusing to take no as an answer and wanting her own way all of the time - I do the time out and going to her level etc, but I have never ever smacked her.

lottieandmia Mon 08-Apr-13 13:21:20

How dare she do such a thing? angry on your behalf.

XBenedict Mon 08-Apr-13 13:21:44

Maybe that's why the OP left, before she saw red?

PeneloPeePitstop Mon 08-Apr-13 13:21:55

Call the police.

AnAirOfHope Mon 08-Apr-13 13:22:04

I would have asked her if she wanted me to punch her so she learns not to hit my children or for me to simply call the police as she assulted my dd!

SunflowersSmile Mon 08-Apr-13 13:22:06

I actually think walking out saying nothing will have expressed your shock and fury very well.

Clumsyoaf Mon 08-Apr-13 13:22:11

i have had a few texts from the other mums asking if im ok - i think im going to call 101.

Ledkr Mon 08-Apr-13 13:22:15

Omg I'd have fecking killed her.

NotSoNervous Mon 08-Apr-13 13:22:26

X post

shock

Okay I deffinatly would have lamped her one and said you need to learn to keep your hands to yourself and okay my fucking child

Icantstopeatinglol Mon 08-Apr-13 13:22:37

That's disgusting op!! How dare she intervene and assault your poor dd!! You have every right to be angry. I'd phone the police and see what they say....I'm sure if she's done it to your dd she'll do it again! Next time she might get what's coming to her cos not many would be able to hold back as you did. I think you did we'll to hold your composure....not sure I could!

HungryClocksGoBackFourSeconds Mon 08-Apr-13 13:22:49

How is your DD OP?

Have you called the police? The soft play should have CCTV, so hopefully you shouldn't have any trouble proving it.

LimeLeaffLizard Mon 08-Apr-13 13:23:27

Thanks raspberry and Hungry. I've seen this topic come up a few times on MN and felt a bit daft for not knowing this.

DaemonPantalaemon Mon 08-Apr-13 13:23:48

Come on Britain, make your minds up. You either disallow smacking or you don't. In scenario one, a mother smacks her child, and you all give a universal shrug. Because smacking is not harmful you reason, it is just a little smack. In scenario two, a stranger gives the same smack to the same child for the same behavior. Cue the outrage.

Do you not see how very silly and contradictory it is? It is like medieval laws allowing a man to chastise his wife with a beating, but punishing another man for doing the same thing.

The bottom line should be that smacking is wrong. No matter who does it. Say it loud. Smacking is wrong.

Once a society gives permission to smack, it can not be surprised when strangers take this permission to justify their own behavior.

LetsFaceTheMusicAndDance Mon 08-Apr-13 13:23:54

You need to inform the police that your daughter has been assaulted.

Well done for not slapping the woman yourself. That would have been very stupid in many ways.

Scholes34 Mon 08-Apr-13 13:24:09

BurningBridges - yes, but without the sex.

HungryClocksGoBackFourSeconds Mon 08-Apr-13 13:25:34

Agreed Daemon

Fairylea Mon 08-Apr-13 13:27:55

Agree Daemon.

LovePickles Mon 08-Apr-13 13:28:35

No, no, no, no, no! How can someone do that? I really don't understand what's wrong with just approaching you to take care of the situation! There's always someone who wants to blame the child's behaviour for the adult's behaviour, but there is no excuse for hitting someone else's child. Ever. Teaching children to be violent towards strangers, whilst trying to be the moral compass of soft play makes you a bit of a hypocrite in my book! YANBU!

Op, I don't know how you kept your cool, but 'HEY! Wth do you think you're doing' would have left my mouth sooner than it would have taken me to process the pictures my eyes have just seen.

Once had a woman thumping my son in the back right in front of my eyes because he was taking a little too long to get in the door of a shop. (She pushed in between me and him, and the door was a bit heavy for him to push. I literally stood over her while she dug her knuckles into his back saying 'come on, come on, hurry up'. Couldn't help myself but call her up on it, she DENIED it! Then ran out of the shop. What is wrong with some people?

BlingLoving Mon 08-Apr-13 13:28:37

Right. The other woman was 100% wrong and you should definitely a) tell her that and b) decide not to have anything to do with her ever again.

but calling the police seems overkill to me. She didn't slap DD around the face. I assume she did not hurt DD really and that DD is crying more in shock?

I don't approve of smacking and I would be making it very clear to anyone who smacked my child that it was absolutely unacceptable. But I would not call the police. It's like people smoking around children - it boggles my mind that they do it, and I would not allow a friend to light up in my house or take DS inside to a smoker's house, but I'm not about to call the police about it.

Sorry, I know this is an unpopular view. but I think you have to be realistic. This woman was wrong. But she did not abuse your daughter.

SmellieWellies Mon 08-Apr-13 13:28:56

I say it loud- smacking is wrong.

I'd be going to the police too.

How is your DD now, OP?

LilRedWG Mon 08-Apr-13 13:29:22

Not sure what I'd do - I think I'd react as you did and walk out. In reply to her texts I would probably send a simple response, "No, I'm not okay. You hit my child. Please do not contact me again". I'd then think about how you'd like to take this forward.

HairyGrotter Mon 08-Apr-13 13:29:34

I'd have gone fucking nuclear. I wouldn't lay a finger on her, but I'd have her on her fucking knees crying.

Ah hell no! Yes, children can be little buggers, but there is NO WAY I'd lay a hand on anothers child?! What sort of psycho does? Get your arse in her face and lay that down, she needs some boundaries!

Or do what sensible folk do, call the police (I'm no sensible, I'm a reactionary sort ;))

SmellieWellies Mon 08-Apr-13 13:30:26

I think it is abuse, Bling. It is assault, IMO. (Although tbh i may be slightly hypocritical here as I think my reaction would have been to throw a punch at her).

LilRedWG Mon 08-Apr-13 13:30:54

I think I would be calling the police non-emergency number for advice.

I'd calm down and have a cup of tea

Then I'd ask someone to look after my children for me

Then I'd go to her house and knock seven shades of shit out of her

But I'm prob not a good example to use

HungryClocksGoBackFourSeconds Mon 08-Apr-13 13:32:23

Yes she did Bling if someone picked me up and slapped my arse I'd be going to the police, why does a child who is unable to defend themselves deserve less protection?

vintageclock Mon 08-Apr-13 13:33:38

No one should smack a child but calling the police is OTT. I would make it clear to the other mother that she was well out of order and demand an apology but, seriously, don't you think the police have enough to to?

Fairylea Mon 08-Apr-13 13:33:41

Smacking is assault. It is physical assault. Not the same as passive smoking!

If I went over to someone in the street and smacked them they would have no hesitation phoning the police. Regardless of whether it was face / hands / bottom etc.

Why do we not offer the same level of seriousness when it happens to the littlest and most vulnerable members of society? Makes me so angry that people think it's not worth calling the police.

Nerfmother Mon 08-Apr-13 13:33:44

Do you not think that actually calling the police would be a massively divisive and destructive thing to do to a group of friends? And cause more harmful longer term effects than the actual smack.
You should calmly tell her its wrong, etc. All this hysterical I'd effing lamp her seems really ott, and likely to incite the op to do something that she can't take back.
We don't smack btw, I've banned it, I don't like it, but this wasn't a sustained uncontrolled attack - please think about the longer term outcome you want for the group of mums you meet with.

MonaLotte Mon 08-Apr-13 13:35:39

WTF? That is terrible op. I would have gone mental. What did the mother do/say when you were leaving?

LovePickles Mon 08-Apr-13 13:36:39

What HungryClocks said!

Rainbowinthesky Mon 08-Apr-13 13:37:06

I agree with nerfmother. I don't smack and don't see any value or point to it but lots of other people do.

Dominodonkey Mon 08-Apr-13 13:37:19

I love the amount of idiots on here who are so 'disgusted' by the violence of the women smacking the child they would 'knock the women's block off'

OP - the woman's behaviour was obviously unacceptable but you need to sort out your child's behaviour - the fact that she went back again after being pulled away by you shows you need to change your discipline strategies since she obviously does not think she has to do as you say.

toosoft Mon 08-Apr-13 13:39:22

Smacking someones child is a massively destructive thing to do and a group of friends would not come before my child and my childs welfare.

Rainbowinthesky Mon 08-Apr-13 13:39:34

It does sound like your dd was being a pain and ruining it for this other parent and child but that doesn't excuse smacking. People who do smack though, I would think, would smack for behaviour like that.

MrsWembley Mon 08-Apr-13 13:40:20

My close friends know that they can tell my DD off if she is being naughty and I can do the same for their DCs. We also all know that in situations where they are playing up we will also remove them, after a couple of warnings, and take them home.

But never, ever, in a million years would they smack my child and I would never smack theirs. And this is a woman who you are just getting to know? Un-fucking-believable!shock

However, I agree with those who say the police would probably not do anything. You need to step up and show your DD that you've got her back by saying something to the woman, preferably whilst she's around. I would have packed up and left, as you did, and I don't know if I'd have said anything at the time (shock does strange things to the vocal cords), but I'd certainly be on the phone now, telling her exactly how inappropriate her actions were.

I'd also point out out that her DC had been playing with the car for a while and maybe it was her DC that should learn to share...

LovePickles Mon 08-Apr-13 13:40:20

What would you do Dominodonkey?

Icantstopeatinglol Mon 08-Apr-13 13:42:39

Domino....I'm disgusted at a grown woman smacking a child!! I would be smacking someone of the same age (ish!) able to look after themselves! Very different..not ideal but if someone thought it ok to hit my child I'd be standing up for my dc and I don't care what anyone thinks.
The 'idiot' is the parent who thinks its ok to hit someone else's child!

Smacking your own child is one thing and even then i only agree with a light smack if all else fails and that's only for extreme circumstances like them trying to run out in front a moving car for example.

But to smack someone elses child is shocking to the core. No one has the right to chastise your child in such a way, ever!!!
I personally would pull her up on it and not socialise with such a person again.

DialMforMummy Mon 08-Apr-13 13:44:36

Agree totally with Bling.
You should have said something there and then.
I am quite shocked at the number of people saying "yeah, I'd get her and knock her out". Pathetic and irresponsible attitude, not mentioning the dreadful role model for the DC.

TumbleWeeds Mon 08-Apr-13 13:45:00

But if someone (adult) was hurting another person (adult), behaving in inappropriate ways and you intervene by slapping their hand/face/ whatever, then it would be looked at in a different way than just plain assault. Especially if you had already spoke to them and ask them to stop.

This is a child we are talking about here. Other ways could/should have been sought.
But I would also like to know what was the child doing. Was she hitting the woman's child and no one intervene? Was she pushing/biting for the x time that morning and the mum reacted to protect her own child?
I can't agree that that woman's reactions were right.
But under repeated 'misbehaviour' from the dd, then I can see how another parent could have over reacted.

Also what was the 'smack'? a slight tap on her bottom leaving no more mark than a bruise ego or a real hit done deliberately to hurt?

Again, it should have been handled in a different way but before going to see the Police, I would think long and hard as to Why the mum reacted in that way.

ChocolateCoins Mon 08-Apr-13 13:45:38

I don't understand how smacking isn't illegal. If DP smacked me because I did something wrong, it would be assault. Yet if he were to smack our defenceless DD, it's fine. Doesn't make sense.

Call the police. What a horrible woman. I hope you and your DD are okay.

Emilythornesbff Mon 08-Apr-13 13:45:46

Very upsetting. I would feel so upset and angry if anyone had hurt my dc. I don't believe in smacking at all. (although I would feel like punching that woman). It's just hitting and we call it smacking when it's done to children to make it sound ok.

I would speak to the woman when you are calm and be very clear that her behaviour was outrageous. What happens next would depend on her reaction.

I don't think I would call the police over the smacking of a fully clothed bottom though but you must do what you feel most comfortable with of course. It would depend also, for me, on how hard this "smack" was.

I would also want to know exactly what had happened. In this "tug of war". Did your dd hit her child? How old is the other child? Just out of curiosity.

I assume there's a bit of sibling rivalry going on. Poor you. Good luck, it will get better won't it.

Pasflo Mon 08-Apr-13 13:47:23

It was wrong for her to smack your child. That sad perhaps you should realise if your child is behaving badly and stop spoiling it for other families who can control their children.

Pasflo Mon 08-Apr-13 13:47:36

*said

TumbleWeeds Mon 08-Apr-13 13:48:28

Sorry missed a couple of posts.

OP I have always kept an eye on my dc in that sort of circumstances. I would have expected her to go back to get the car tbh.

vintageclock Mon 08-Apr-13 13:48:48

I agree with TumbleWeeds. Obviously the other mum was wrong but I would be concerned, if it was my child, about the fact that she was being such a pain that another mother lost control with her like that. At four, she's not a toddler and should be able to understand that no means no. Constantly going back and annoying other children after she's been told not to must be really irritating for the other adults in the group who were probably itching to tell her off.

Totally wrong to slap her though and I would make my annoyance clear on that. But seriously, I wouldn't bring the police into it over one smack on the bottom.

LovePickles Mon 08-Apr-13 13:48:52

So it's understandable that a grown woman can lose her rag, but not that a four year old child can be a bit naughty at a play group. If it was affecting her time there, speak to the mother, don't put your hands on someone else's child! If she thinks that's ok, wonder what she gets up to at home behind closed doors.

ohforfoxsake Mon 08-Apr-13 13:49:59

Wow. Am angryangryangry for you. I hope you DD is ok.

I'd have screamed like a banshee 'how fucking dare you' and made sure everyone in the place knew exactly what she had done, got the manager and had her banned.

(NB I am very mild mannered normally)

Emilythornesbff Mon 08-Apr-13 13:51:15

I thin it's also a shame that you obviously trusted these women with your dd while you had to go and change ds and then one of them hit her. That would be very upsetting for me.
I wouldn't be arranging any "playdates" with her obviously.

vintageclock Mon 08-Apr-13 13:52:24

No one's saying its right for the other mother to lose her rag. We're just saying that instead of going to the police it might be better to tell the other woman that her behaviour was unacceptable and then to focus her energies on working out how to best discipline her daughter - who seems to be a child who was seriously annoying other people on a group outing. That would be my main concern as I would be afraid she would end up being excluded from things because other parents would just find her too annoying and badly behaved to want around spoiling things for their children.

BlingLoving Mon 08-Apr-13 13:53:05

The point is that it's unlikely DD was hurt. That's why it's inappropriate but, IMO, not the same as assult or abuse.

And we do lots of things to small children we would never do to adults. We physically remove them from places even though they want to stay. We speak to them in a patronising and simplistic manner. We decide things like what they will eat/wear/go to school etc. I'm not saying it's the same as smacking but the argument that says that if someone smacked me on the bottom I'd file an assult charge and that therefore a similar situation is an assult on a child is clearly wrong.

I think calling 101 is in order.

vintageclock Mon 08-Apr-13 13:55:07

Seriously, supposing you were out somewhere and were, for instance, a bit drunk and being a complete pest and a pita and someone gave you a smack on the arm and said 'would you ever stop shouting and pushing me' or somesuch.
Would you call the police?

LovePickles Mon 08-Apr-13 13:55:31

I call BS on those who believe there are children under control by parents 100% of the time. Some people are living on cloud cuckoo land. I try my hardest to make sure, when my children are out in public, that they don't get in the way or irritate other people, does it work 100% of the time, I'd be lying if I said yes. I'm sure no one can disagree with what I've said if you're living in reality. Children are spontaneous, adventurous and sometimes a bit naughty. They are children! Imagine a lioness being frowned upon because her cubs are being a bit raucous. It's ridiculous.

Emilythornesbff Mon 08-Apr-13 13:56:24

I've just realised that if this had been me as a4 year old being smacked by a new friend of my mother i'd probably have receivedfom other one for being naughty enough to "deserve" the I initial smack.

And my mother was relatively mild mannered compared to others at the time. Just shows how times have changed (for the better obviously)

OnwardBound Mon 08-Apr-13 13:56:59

OMG!

That is terrible, I think I would have had to say something then and there, along the lines "Hey, put her down! What do you think you are doing?!!!" but probably would also be so shocked I would have to leave straight away and burst into tears

I second calling 101 for advice. And maybe also reporting the incident to the soft play management [if you haven't already done so].

But it's really really not acceptable and I am amazed that anyone could justify smacking mother's actions.

Yes, she might have been irritated by your DDs behaviour and may have thought you weren't dealing with it [I know that's not the case and you were occupied with DS but just trying to imagine how this crazy woman might be thinking].

But then surely the mature and adult thing to do is either have a gentle quiet word with your DD about sharing or by approaching the parent and asking them to intervene please. Or failing that approach a soft play member of staff for assistance.

But to pick child up and smack her bottom, well that's absolutely not appropriate behaviour from an adult [even child's parents imo] and I think I would be having words with this woman if I ever saw her again.

In the meantime OP have a nice sugary cup of tea and try and relax.

Hope your DD is okay. For what it's worth my DS has also just turned 4 and has suddenly turned into a defiant, aggressive little horror [on occasion, mostly he's as sweet as always confused]. Think it might be something about the developmental stage they are at?

Just remember, this too will pass. And you won't be doing soft play hell for ever, thank god!

Fakebook Mon 08-Apr-13 13:57:08

Hi clumsyoaf. Whatchoo gonna do then? hmm

I am appalled that this woman smacked your child.

However, if there was a set-to going on involving your DD, why didn't YOU intervene pronto the second time to extract your DD/attempt to resolve as you had before?

I hope your DD is ok, and she should never have been smacked, of course, but if your DD can't cope with the play situation, taking turns etc, then you cannot leave her unattended, even for a few seconds until she passes that phase.

Emilythornesbff Mon 08-Apr-13 13:58:08

lovepickles agree

Well done for not smacking her back OP! I know what I am like, I would react then think.. so I would have jawed the bitch... but I am quite common I 'spose smile

I wouldn't call the police, but I would have it out with her one way or another!

shewhowines Mon 08-Apr-13 13:59:58

Unacceptable but i wouldn't go to the police.

I imagine she will get her "comeuppance" from her friends, who obviously disapproved, if they texted you to see if you are ok.

I would send the woman a text calmly stating how it was not an appropriate response, even though you can understand she was frustrated.

I would also let the other friends know how upset you are and get their feedback (although be careful not to put any of them in an awkward position as you don't want to upset them - just to make your position clear).
It may be that they don't condone the other woman's behaviour but they may have views on your parenting that you could perhaps learn from, or they may validate you completely. Either way it would be beneficial and helpful to get their perspectives on it.

TumbleWeeds Mon 08-Apr-13 14:01:18

Here is another way to look at it.

A new mum has started to come with us to our outings to soft play etc... Once again, she left her dd unsupervised and that child attacked my ds who was nicely playing in one of those big plastic car. She wanted the car and was pushing and hitting and my ds got quite upset about it.
Again the mum did nothing to prevent the attack and she took her time to intervene.
The little girl stayed away for a few minutes and then went right back to push my ds out of the car again and the mum did nothing again so I intervene as I couldn't stand my child being pushed over one more time.

I am not saying that this is what happened because it is impossible to know from the Op's posts.

But I agree that you should seriously look at how you handle your dd. Seeing the circumstances, you could have taken her with you when you change your ds nappy. You could have kept a close eye on her after time out. You could have kept her to your side or move around with her to prevent any more problems.
Oh dear, this bring back so many memories (and also the reason why I didn't go to soft play etc... for some time with my 2 as I couldn't give the right level of supervision to avoid that sort of situations)

XBenedict Mon 08-Apr-13 14:02:47

Good point TumbleWeeds (not saying this is what happened OP) but still doesn't justify the smack I'm afraid.

HappyMummyOfOne Mon 08-Apr-13 14:04:15

I'd have been livid but i disagree with smacking children. Its assault to hit an adult yet we allow people to do it to children who cannot protect themselves.

There is no excuse for her behaviour. However perhaps your friends think you are oblivious to your child being naughty and are totally fed up of it. However as aduts they can simply choose not to playdate with you until your daughter can behave. She is four, not a toddler, and excusing bad behaviour as a stage is doing you no favours.

I don't think you should expect to have to protect your child from assault by adults though. hmm

arabesque Mon 08-Apr-13 14:05:07

I think suggestions that the OP call the police are ridiculous.

A mother trying to look after her own children and being driven to distraction by another unruly and badly behaved child to the extent that she gives her a swift smack across the bottom has behaved ill advisedly and should be ashamed of herself.
But she's not a criminal! By reporting her you could end up causing all sorts of problems for the family which could impact negatively on her children.

Viviennemary Mon 08-Apr-13 14:05:17

Of course she shouldn't have done this. And there is no excuse. Did you actually see it happen. And was your DD hurting her child.

HungryClocksGoBackFourSeconds Mon 08-Apr-13 14:05:57

In that scenario, I would talk to the child. I would explain the need to share etc. If the child continued I would remove my child from harms way and speak to the mother.

No way in hell would I hit a child.

ICBINEG Mon 08-Apr-13 14:06:29

tumble yes but the correct ending to your story is...

"I couldn't stand to see my DS hurt so I picked him up to make him safe and then spoke to the unruly child's mum to point out that if she couldn't adequately supervise two children, then maybe she shouldn't bring them to soft play."

and NOT "I couldn't stand to see my DS hurt so I hit a four year old child".

HungryClocksGoBackFourSeconds Mon 08-Apr-13 14:06:33

sorry, that was in response to tumbleweed

LovePickles Mon 08-Apr-13 14:07:37

Tumbleweeds - all very reasonable until you left out 'so I intervened by picking up that lady's child, and hitting her'. The correct way would have been 'so I intervened by picking up my child, walked over to the offending child's mother, and explained that she had not seen her daughter hitting my child'.

Anyone would agree with that series of events, possibly even the OP, who probably would have agreed and told her daughter off accordingly. Except what that lady did totally overshadowed the child's behaviour, so what did it achieve?

Stepissue Mon 08-Apr-13 14:08:12

Not sure the police would do anything, I remember recently seeing that a Boots Shop Assistant smacked a customer's child and I don't think they would act.

Will try to find link.

Stepissue Mon 08-Apr-13 14:08:43
defineme Mon 08-Apr-13 14:08:47

I wouldn't call the police.
I would deal with this myself.
I would explain to dd that we were never going to see this friend again because anyone hitting her is unacceptable.
I would ring the friend and explain that I was cutting her off because of this.
I would keep on with the managing behaviour strategies that you've got.

I have no problem with people telling my child not to do something, or even physically removing them when they were small, hitting them is way over the line, just like it would be if they hit me.

JenaiMorris Mon 08-Apr-13 14:09:12

Twatting another mum at soft play would have really helped hmm

Tumbleweeds is talking sense.

OnwardBound Mon 08-Apr-13 14:10:14

Yes, but TumbleWeeds there are different ways to intervene as I outlined in my above post.

As a last resort, if your child is being attacked, it may be that you have to remove your child for their own safety. And then have a sharp word with mother of aggressive child asking for a bit more supervision and assistance in the future.

But there is no excuse I can see for taking it upon yourself to physically discipline someone else's child.

And really, the irony of it, so a child is pushing and hitting and an adult "sorts it out" by hitting the child in return.

What sort of message does that send? That it's okay to hit if you are bigger and stronger and are pretty sure the person you are hitting won't be able to retaliate or overpower you? hmm

Also that 4 year old child who is still learning about their emotions and how to control these is not allowed to slip up and get overwhelmed by aggression but an adult loses their temper and lashes out and this is okay somehow? hmm

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 14:10:40

I saw someone smacking a child in the playground years ago. The police were called - a confrontation developed between the partner of the wman who samcked, and the mother ofnthe child whomwas smacked.

I would hink there was something seriously wrong with the impulse control of an adult who did this. In the case the smacker seemed drunk.

As with anyone who behaves aggressively to their own child, or someone els's in public, i would assume worse was going on at home. So involving the police would seem a good idea.

BlueberryHill Mon 08-Apr-13 14:10:41

LovePickles I agree also. The other mother was well out of order, if she felt so strongly why not talk to your DD and say,' just wait a minute my DD is still playing with it, you can play with it after her.' Instead she resorts straight away to smacking her, it says far more about her parenting than it does yours.

I wouldn't call the police about this, its overkill. If I saw her out again I would watch her like a hawk. Chances are, based on the text from other mums that they are also a bit shocked about what happened.

MadameJosephine Mon 08-Apr-13 14:10:45

I'm sorry but I think she is a criminal arabesque. If she'd hit the OP she would be guilty of assault so surely it's worse to strike a defenceless child?

OnwardBound Mon 08-Apr-13 14:13:04

Sorry all those hmm were not specifically directed at you Tumbleweed they are in response to the OP itself.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 14:13:20

Agree with you Fairylea

JollyPurpleGiant Mon 08-Apr-13 14:13:26

OP, I haven't read all the comments from others, but I think your reaction was very impressive. I would not have been able to keep my cool in this situation and would have ended up swearing at her and losing the plot completely. Which would simply have taught the children around that it is acceptable for adults to behave like that.

You do need to deal with the situation now though, away from children, and I think calling 101 would be the sensible way to go.

Obviously it would be sensible for you to explain to your DD that you are dealing with the situation in an adult way and that the other mother's behaviour was entirely inappropriate and wrong and should your DD ever be treated like that again by anyone she needs to tell you immediately so you can deal with it.

DeskPlanner Mon 08-Apr-13 14:14:57

I would have punched her fucking face in, call the police. It's not to late, ring them now, they will try and find the evil bitch.

Clumsyoaf Mon 08-Apr-13 14:15:08

Thanks Tumbleweeds for that perspective and I can see it could be perceived that way, and i think we have all beenin that frustrating position when mums sit around drinking coffee and chatting whilst their DCs make mayhem. When i left to change DS nappy I took another child to the toilet at the same time, the child of the other mum was watching DD. I cannot abide bad behaviour in kids which is why DD has been such a challenge at the moment. Im on my own, if i dont take them both we dont get to go, i just didnt expect the other woman to hit my DD - she wet herself, ive never hit her before and i think she was quite stunned. she has a redish mark on her bottom and top of her leg which i have taken pics of and it clearly looks like a slap.

I havent yet responded to any of the texts because i feel silly for not challenging her behaviour. I wouldnt ever hit her but something along the lines of "how dare you" or something (ive had lots of good comebacks running through my head after the event!)

I'm of the belief that smacking is never justified, its a means of unleashing your own frustration not teaching your child that what they did/ are doing is wrong.

Times like this I wish I had DH here....

Tinks313 Mon 08-Apr-13 14:15:30

I think as none of us were there it's hard to advise/comment.
If they are friends did she pick up her friends child and tap her on the bum whilst saying "you need to lesson in sharing". It's the tone and manner that it was done that is more important. I am not condoning what the friend did, I personally don't smack my children.

TumbleWeeds Mon 08-Apr-13 14:15:32

Btw I completely agree that smacking wasn't the right response.

but I can see how I would have picked up the OP's dd up to take her away from that little boy....

arabesque Mon 08-Apr-13 14:16:58

MadameJosephine I get the impression from the OP that it was a swift smack across the bottom. That was wrong but I think 'assault' is a strong word for it and trivialises the genuine assault that some children suffer from everyday.
I'm not excusing the other mother's actions, but I think some of the comments on here are a bit dramatic.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 14:17:03

Lots of people are assuming that the other mother must have been extremely provoked and was at the end of a long tether

You simply do not kmow that is the case. If most of us would not hit our own child, let alone another person's child, then why is it understandable this woman did?

To me, it is more reasonable to assume that the other woamn is not in control of herlsef, and does pose a danger to other people, including maybe her own children

arabesque Mon 08-Apr-13 14:18:03

We're not assuming Jamie. We're going by the OPs description of what happened.

Tinks313 Mon 08-Apr-13 14:18:27

sorry clumyoaf a cross post, this was clearly a smack if it left a mark on you poor dd's leg.
I thought/hoped it could have been something more playful.

OnwardBound Mon 08-Apr-13 14:18:34

So she was hit hard enough to leave a red mark and was scared enough to wet herself shock

OP, I would be livid!

maddening Mon 08-Apr-13 14:18:43

But tumbleweed - as an adult in the situation (as in the parent of the other child) if you were upset about the dd's treatment of your ds you have the backbone to turn to the other parent and say " I'm afraid your dd is upsetting my ds - please can you deal with her".

If the parent of the naughty child then disciplines her own child all is good. If not you don't go to soft play with them again - and as the "wronged" party you remain in the right as it were.

However, by taking thw decision to physically reprimand (essentially assualting ) a child who it not in your care and whom you have no authority to do so you automatically become an agressor and no longer have any moral high ground - in fact you really are in the wrong at that point and can be judged as such.

TumbleWeeds Mon 08-Apr-13 14:20:13

xpost.

Clumsyoaf you are an extremely rational person.
That mum was supposed to watch your dd whilst you were in the toilet with your ds and her own child shock

that brings a whole new light to what has happened...

shock

I'd call the police. Tell them an adult hit your child so hard she left a mark and your dd wet herself. angry Yes it probably won't come to anything but it might give this woman enough of a scare that she doesn't do it again to another child.

I'd also ring the soft play place and state what happened, they may ban her.

I'd make it clear to the others that your DD is marked from it and wet herself. Their dcs are around this woman too, hopefully they are as disgusted as you and mumsnetters are.

At the time I'd have comforted my DD, had very strong words, stood up for my DD, involved soft play staff, and called 101 there and then.

olivertheoctopus Mon 08-Apr-13 14:21:05

What Tumbleweed said is ok until you get to the end and think "exactly where does the justification to smack someone else's child come arise?". I was smacked as a kid and don't really see it as a huuuge issue (not proposing to open debate) but I've never smacked my own kids and would NEVER EVER smack someone else's. It's wrong on about a million levels. Ok, so the woman might have been cross with OP's DD but she could have gently picked her up and moved her away (if she felt the need to touch her at all) rather than smacking her. If I was the smacking woman I'd have told OP's daughter to stop, picked my OWN child up and moved her out of the way and then gone all cats bum face at OP.

LovePickles Mon 08-Apr-13 14:21:36

Rinks, she hardly knows this lady. Regardless, I wouldn't smack a niece or nephew, I'd verbally tell them off, or tell their parents.

Clumsyoaf Left a mark? I would not have called the police, but I'd have a hard time not to if there's a mark. Marks left means assault. Smack a child and leaving a mark is child abuse in the eyes of the SS.

DeskPlanner Mon 08-Apr-13 14:21:43

Just noticed you know this woman. Stil phone the police.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 14:23:17

Sorry. It is pretty back and white to me. You either think it is OK to hit or you don't

If you don't think it is OK to hit a child, then you cannot agree it was OK to hit this child no matter the circumstances.

Some of you seem to be implying that if the provocation was sufficient, you would hit another person's child

Anyone care to admit that?

NatashaBee Mon 08-Apr-13 14:23:22

I would have no problem with someone telling my child off, removing them from a situation or putting them in time out if I wasn't there to do it - as long as whatever they did was appropriate to the age of the child and in proportion to the issue. Smacking my child, though? No way. I'm not sure I would call the police, and I think you were right to leave rather than confront her at the time, but there would definitely be some stern words had afterwards.

TumbleWeeds Mon 08-Apr-13 14:23:38

Err... Can I remind people that I have said before (and again and again. See posts before) that I do NOT agree with the fact that the mum smacked the OP's dd....

The last of the OP's posts put a new light on it anyway.

HungryClocksGoBackFourSeconds Mon 08-Apr-13 14:23:42

The woman hit the OP's daughter hard enough to leave a mark and to terrify the poor girl into wetting herself.

Bearing in mind that the law on hitting your own children says that you cannot leave a mark on them, does anyone still think it's OTT to call the police?

LovePickles Mon 08-Apr-13 14:24:10

Rinks = Tinks , auto corrected sorry.

olivertheoctopus Mon 08-Apr-13 14:25:09

Ok, I missed the 'she wet herself and it left a mark' update. shock Did you call 101 OP? As much as I don't think getting the police involved is entirely necessary because you don't exactly want them to bring charges, I do think Mrs Smacker needs to be told that what she did was totally unacceptable and should never be repeated.

HungryClocksGoBackFourSeconds Mon 08-Apr-13 14:25:50

The OP has taken photos of the marks, she has eye witnesses, and the soft play ought to have CCTV, I think the OP has a good chance of getting this woman prosecuted.

JollyPurpleGiant Mon 08-Apr-13 14:26:38

OP, I am so sad for your DD. What a horrible thing for her to go through.

Groovee Mon 08-Apr-13 14:26:42

You have to do what you think is right.

shewhowines Mon 08-Apr-13 14:27:07

But what have the other friends said about it all?

Clumsyoaf Mon 08-Apr-13 14:27:37

im going to send a text - to everyone who has text me including the other mum...... (all advice/criticism greatly appreciated). Im not going to call the police, but im not going to let it go either.

This is areally daft thing to say, but since 1130 this morning my dd has been on her best behaviour, tidying toys away, finish all lunch and snack....blush

catsmother Mon 08-Apr-13 14:28:12

OP - 12 years ago, I'd literally just left (the day before) an emotionally abusive relationship and had moved into a flat I didn't want (but was all I could afford) in a place I didn't want to be (but was all I could afford) and had taken my then 9 year old son to the park. A total stranger - a woman in her 60s - took it upon herself to smack him as apparently he'd knocked her grandson over. I didn't see the incident - though had seen the 2 boys playing normally together moments before. Regardless - the correct course of action if he'd done such a thing would have been to come to me before attacking my son. All I saw was my son in hysterics - through shock and a sharp slap (he had a red leg) - and this foul mouthed hag "your fucking son deserved that" who refused to explain herself to me.

To this day, that incident still upsets me. Because I was feeling so low - and because that was the last thing I'd ever expected to encounter all sense and logic flew out of the window and I simply gathered up our stuff and left. What I should have done - and still beat myself up about - was to have called the police, and to have asked other people in the park if they'd seen what had happened. Regardless of my son's "guilt" or not, she had no right to take the law into her own hands and assault him (he denied doing anything wrong). Had other people explained he'd pushed the other child, I'd have apologised, got him to apologise and devised a suitable punishment of my own depending on the circumstances but NO-ONE has the right to lay a finger on someone else's child.

Please call the police. It might sound as if I'm being over dramatic but honestly, I think I failed my son that day. My only excuse being that my head was all over the place and I wasn't thinking straight. I explained all that to my son - and since as well - but I think I was in the wrong and I agree with all the others that you need to send a message to your child that them being attacked is wrong. I did IIRC, call her something along the lines of an ignorant, foul mouthed creature who was old enough to know better but I should have done more than that.

HungryClocksGoBackFourSeconds Mon 08-Apr-13 14:28:55

Why aren't you going to call the police OP? This woman assaulted your child and you have sufficient evidence to prove it.

frogwatcher1 Mon 08-Apr-13 14:29:09

I would just phone her up and say that you were shocked she smacked your child and ask for an explanation. Calling the police is a way over reaction imo and will make you look very foolish. You can tell her that you feel it is very very wrong on all levels and you considered calling the police. You may be surprised by her reply - she may have never smacked before but been pushed to the edge by your dd.

Sounds like your form of 'disipline' isn't particularly effective - maybe you need to rethink what you are doing. Having spent years at soft play etc I haven't come across many children who 'tug' others off toys without parent intervention pretty quickly!

By the way I am in no way justifying smacking - particularly other peoples children (although most parents I know have smacked their own at some point in their lives although they would never admit it to the 'public' as such). However, maybe your child was being particularly challenging - her behaviour sounds quite extreme?

flaminhoopsaloolah Mon 08-Apr-13 14:29:53

Jesus!!!! I honestly don't know what to say OP. Unbelievable. I couldn't even think about contemplating for one second hitting someone else's child. Appalling behaviour.

frogwatcher1 Mon 08-Apr-13 14:30:00

ps. the marks could have been from the soft play surely?

Clumsyoaf Mon 08-Apr-13 14:30:13

The general jist of the texts has been - wtf?, you/dd ok? what the hell was that all about - the womans a loon etc but i dont know them well enough to confidently respond. I feel like im now the weak mom who has let her kid be in that position. Also, i think i would have been the person to follow the person in my situation out to make sure she was ok but no one came. They have all known each other a lot longer....

LovePickles Mon 08-Apr-13 14:30:44

Clumsyoaf of course she is, she's been humiliated. Wouldn't blame her if she has problems feeling safe around strangers now, if so called friend give her a stinging smack for the slightest thing.

defineme Mon 08-Apr-13 14:30:53

I retract my post. Now you've said it's left a mark I think 101 is justified. Do you have the other women's details? Anyway of getting them?

TerrysNo2 Mon 08-Apr-13 14:31:13

Clumsy if you don't do something more than sending a text now, I think you won't be sending a strong enough message that what she did was very very wrong.

IMO you need to all the police and report it because what she did was not ok at all.

I am so sorry for you and your DD that she put you in this position. angry

Be strong and know that you are totally in the right.

JenaiMorris Mon 08-Apr-13 14:31:43

It would be worth calling the non-emergency number. I like to think that a PCSO might pop round to hers to point out that you cannot go around smacking other people's children.

It is an odd thing to do.

MadameJosephine Mon 08-Apr-13 14:32:27

Oh god, poor little thing. I would be bloody furious if someone had actually left a mark on my child and made her wet herself.

I can see other's points of view with what might constitute an assault but surely this update from OP makes it a clear cut case? Her DD must have been terrified and humiliated

I cannot imagine smacking another person's child, or my own for that matter.

I once had to physically pick up and move a little girl who was not mine but who was in my sole care and who was refusing to move and we needed to move (because I had to take her somewhere to meet her dad!) and I was utterly terrified even at simply lifting her to get her to the front door!! I tried every trick in the book to get her to move without touching her so it was a last resort to physically move her when she did not want to be moved.... I was worried sick about it all that day afterwards.

OP - do you think the mother in question is the type of person who is now utterly mortified at her actions?? Maybe some of your other friends who stayed on after you left can say whether she said or did anything to suggest that she realised she had done something very wrong?? Not that that makes any difference to the fact that she did it, but it might mean that she is expecting a firm word from you... in which case I think you definitely say something to her about this being totally unacceptable but you DON'T go to the police.

Clumsyoaf Mon 08-Apr-13 14:33:54

when i said tugging - i meant they were embroiled in a tug of war over the toy. DD had the door the other dc had a handle on the underside of the roof and they were both pulling and screaming... she didnt physcially tug him off (not that she wouldnt but on this ocassion....)

frogwatcher, I am really open to any advice in reference to her behaviour - she is very opiniated and will not be swayed.

TerrysNo2 Mon 08-Apr-13 14:34:26

Also clumsy I think calling the police and letting them deal with a stern reproach is a much more grown up way of dealing with it rather than shouting at her in front of all those children at soft play.

I would also sit your DD down and explain to her exactly what you have done so she knows that you are a good grown up and deal with things properly! Your DD is probably very confused about what happened and I think you need to discuss it with her.

flaminhoopsaloolah Mon 08-Apr-13 14:34:49

I'd also call the police - she has no right to physically assault someone else's child - at all.

OnwardBound Mon 08-Apr-13 14:36:30

I think this thread also highlights another issue re soft play places.

Ever so often there are these threads were people complain that a child who is making a nuisance of themselves and receiving inadequate supervision from their parent.

Yes, I suspect that some parents may use soft play as an opportunity to sit down with a coffee and their iphone and leave their little darlings to run havoc unsupervised.

But it may also be that child's parent has more than the one child and is otherwise occupied.

I well remember the horror of having a baby in nappies and a toddler/pre-schooler at soft play.

Having to constantly be two places in once or be trying to deal with tantrum of older child whilst baby chooses to fill it's nappy or have a screaming fit for more milk at the same time.

Ah happy days.

So perhaps don't be so quick to assume that parent is careless, oblivious or incompetent.

Perhaps they are overwhelmed and only have one pair of hands.

DeskPlanner Mon 08-Apr-13 14:36:56

Please ring 101, she has marked your daughter, she has broken the law. She needs the police to knock on her door and humiliating her, see how she likes it.

Altinkum Mon 08-Apr-13 14:38:38

I'd call the police, even if its just to give her a bloody fright, whose to say she won't smack another child.

As for your child OP, persistence, persisitance ad persisitance.

Honestly its a battle of wills, but she will emit ally get the message

It took my ds2 over 7 month to realise he wasn't winning anything with me, I am really strict, and don't tollorate any un ruley behaviour

shewhowines Mon 08-Apr-13 14:40:01

But the friends did care enough to check up on you and validate your feelings/action.

I would imagine they made their feelings known to her, and even if they didn't they will view her differently from now on. She will be the loser in the long run.

I would text back thanking them all for their support, as you really needed it, because you are so upset about it all. You never know, you may get to know them much better because of it. Keep the moral high ground though and don't bitch too much about the woman even though she deserves it

frogwatcher1 Mon 08-Apr-13 14:40:02

Clumsy - I have no idea re her behaviour. Its hard enough bringing up my dc and in no way are they perfect (far from it), and I am sure you do a better job than me.
However, I think I am a fairly laid back person and people say I am good at seeing both sides of stories and I just wonder if the woman would now be mortified, and I know personally that some children just really drive me nuts. I just wonder if your dd's behaviour was worse than you realise but realistically only you know.
You could ask the people in the group who were there what they think? They will have seen it all - ask them if your dd was particuarly challenging, and if in their opinion, the lady should have the police speak to her. You may be surprised by their answers - they may be fully supportive of you.

DeskPlanner Mon 08-Apr-13 14:41:20

Your poor daughter was so shocked and scared she wet herself, please call 101. This woman needs to learn that what she did was very wrong and illegal. I wonder how she treats her own dc. She also needs to control her temper.

HungryClocksGoBackFourSeconds Mon 08-Apr-13 14:41:58

gentle discipline is very effective OP.

I still think you should call the police.

SmellieWellies Mon 08-Apr-13 14:42:14

yes, and also, if they know you are thinking about the police, that alone (if you do not follow through on it) might make her reflect on her beahaviour.

thanks

what a situation. I feel for you, and your poor DD

catsmother Mon 08-Apr-13 14:42:21

Clumsy - as I said, I've been there. When I read your post it bought it all back, together with that sickening feeling of failing your child. It was 12 years ago and it's still something I feel very guilty about. Ironically, my then 9 year old is now a police officer himself and when that incident came up a while ago as a follow on to some similar topic, as in "do you remember when ..." he did actually say that the police would have taken such a thing seriously. At the very least, that woman would have almost certainly got a strong warning.

In all honesty, I think it's remained on my mind far more than it did on DS and he certainly wasn't traumatised by it. All I can say is that it made me feel very bad for years after - as you can tell. I so wish I'd called the police that day - there were plenty of other people around - as there were with you - and even if they'd written me off as an over protective mother at least I wouldn't have felt so guilty as I'd have done everything I could. Guess I feel so bad as if another adult had hit me I'd have almost certainly called the police then .... I didn't because I was upset anyway, about to burst into tears myself and have a recollection of thinking that by the time they got there the old bag would probably have disappeared. That's not the case for you as you know who this woman is - if the other people there have been contacting you about it it shows that they too were shocked and that this isn't trivial.

If I could turn back time I'd call the police - and I could at least say to my son that without doubt the woman who hit him was very wrong and I'd done all I could.

Clumsyoaf Mon 08-Apr-13 14:44:46

I dont think she would think she did anything wrong, she is incredibly vocal and very judgey.....

She has been quite critical from what i have seen of her some egs:

eugh i wouldnt eat at pizza hut if i was starving... (the buffet is all i need on a fat day!)

what, you really didnt buy DS a new pram???? you used DDs?? but the germs and everything and they only cost a couple of hundred pounds hmm

well people in the military shouldnt have children... hmm

Wishfulmakeupping Mon 08-Apr-13 14:44:56

Op it was enough to leave a mark and scare you dd so much she. Wet herself of course you need to report it

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 14:45:28

OP

I sense you are worn down by her a bit. My DS 2 was boisterous and downright aggressive at times. Soft playnwas a terribly over stimulating environment for him and we stopped going. As someone said, sibling rivalry be playing a part in your DD s behaviour at the moment.

Chin up

But don't let any of that cloud the fact that this was completely unacceptable.

frogwatcher1 Mon 08-Apr-13 14:45:42

Are you 100% sure that 1. the marks were from the lady hitting her and not from the soft play, and 2. She wet herself due to being slapped and not from running around and playing and therefore would have been damp anyway.

My dd (older than yours) always wets herself at soft play or on the trampoline and often has marks, bruises etc that can't be accounted for.

Maybe both were caused by the slap but I do think that it is very easy to get carried away when people are encouraging a specific form of action. You need to, in your own mind, be sure of what you do and be happy and confident with it.

youmaycallmeSSP Mon 08-Apr-13 14:46:04

I think calling the police is ridiculous. If this woman isn't your friend then I wouldn't be socialising with her again. If she is then I'd either be expecting her to come over to explain herself and apologise or I would get on the phone and have an adult conversation about it.

catsmother Mon 08-Apr-13 14:46:32

Clumsy - regardless of your daughter's behaviour, another adult has no right to physically "chastise" her - AKA assault her. I know you're asking for advice about your daughter's stubborness etc too but really that's a separate issue entirely and has nothing to do with what this woman did.

Clumsyoaf Mon 08-Apr-13 14:47:13

if i could load up the pic i would show you, its a handmark and no my dd is very controlled when it come to her bladder.. and only her bladder!

Paintingrainbowskies Mon 08-Apr-13 14:47:49

How awful. I agree that you should strongly consider a call to the police. If someone hit me, especially hard enough to mark or to scare me that much I would call the police so it should be the same for children.

Also I think it reaffirms the message to your DD that no one has the right to use physical violence on anyone.

Clumsyoaf Mon 08-Apr-13 14:48:22

i think i need to think about this one.... and i defo wont be criticsing or bitching about the other mom. i am going to send the thank you text and just say how shocked i was and stunned DD was.

HungryClocksGoBackFourSeconds Mon 08-Apr-13 14:48:38

Why not call 101 and ask for advice, see what they could do. And then make a decision on whether to take things further?

shewhowines Mon 08-Apr-13 14:49:23

carsmother

But it affected you far more than your DS.

Would calling the police have really achieved any more than making you feel better?
The police being involved could well have traumatised your DS far more than it would have done by just telling him it was wrong and allowing him to move on and not making an issue of it.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 14:49:26

Clumsy

Is your DH in the military?

frogwatcher1 Mon 08-Apr-13 14:51:03

Well if you are that sure then I would certainly talk to the woman who did it, and also the group of friends making it quite clear how upset I was and how angry it had made me.

But I still wouldn't call the police personally. I would consider that an over-reaction.

mummytime Mon 08-Apr-13 14:52:41

To the person who said calling the police is ridiculous: Would you have said calling the police when my husband was punched on the Escalators on the tube in London was ridiculous? Both actions are "assualts", and so a criminal offence. Yes the police are unlikely to do more than have a word with this woman (and keep a record). But at least it will be on record, and this woman may think about her actions.

It was totally unacceptible. Legally in this country smacking your own child "as long as you don't leave a red mark" is legal. Hitting other people whatever their age is wrong, as is any time you leave a red mark. The only defence is protection, eg. I might leave a red mark on a child's wrist if I grab them quickly to stop them running in fornt of a lorry.

lysteddy Mon 08-Apr-13 14:52:47

I dont think the fact that it left a mark has anything to do with it.

The thing about leaving marks is that if the childs skin colour is light then surely a mark is left. What if the child was black, a mark probably would not have been left.

I agree with flamin "she has no right to physically assault someonelses child".

So u need to do something about it.

loopyluna Mon 08-Apr-13 14:53:08

I was in the "calling the police is ott" camp, right until you said your DD wer herself and has a mark, a handmark ffs, on her!
A tap on the bum would have been out if order and I would have reacted like you and proceeded to never speak to the woman again.
A slap that hard actually is assault and I think it would be reasonable for you to call the police.

More importantly though (imo) is to forget the woman for a moment and have a chat with DD to explain a. her behaviour at soft play was wrong and she should not have disobeyed you and gone back to the car BUT b. the other mummy was wrong to hurt her and grown ups are not allowed to hit children. (Actually, no one is allowed to hit!)

AllThatGlistens Mon 08-Apr-13 14:53:47

A hand mark was left on her and she wet herself, and you're not going to call 101??

I can imagine the responses if it had been an adult that was hit hmm

Please call 101. It's not just your child at risk, if she's fine to do this to yours then she will probably be fine doing it to other kids. That could cause real problems for a child who couldn't handle it.

I also think you need to show your DD that you will protect her, FGS this woman hit her so hard it left a mark and she wet herself. That's ridiculous (and would be no matter how hard she hit her).

I also never understand why it is deemed okay to smack a childs bottom yet we teach them that this is a private part and should not be touched. hmm

BlueberryHill Mon 08-Apr-13 14:57:28

Clumsy, children do go through phases of being more challenging, DS1 was going through one for a bit, seems to be out of it now. I have three children and find it difficult to keep an eye on them. I also have a DN who can be very challenging, very defiant at times but is also a lovely child. He seems to be coming out of it at present, his parents are strict with him, it is just his personality he is very decided about things. In the future, perseverance in his career or sport it will hold him in good stead.

I find when DS1 (6 yo) is challenging it can get into a head butting phase where all I seem to say is no, don't do that etc. I try to turn it around, bad behaviour is not tolerated but I find something that he is doing well, playing with his siblings or eating quietly in a restaurant and praise him or take time out to do something special with him.

I think your text to the other mums sounds fine, not sure how to handle the other mum, she sounds very judgey and would probably be very defensive and turn it back on your daughter, when she is the adult and should never have hit your child.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 14:58:13

True Schro.

frogwatcher1 Mon 08-Apr-13 14:59:08

Mummytime - although I didn't say calling the police was ridiculous, I am of the opinion it is OTT. I will therefore try to explain my logic.

With regard your husband and calling the police when he was thumped on the escalator, it depends on the circumstances as to whether or not I think it was appropriate.

If the peson doing the thumping calculated it and did it in a pre-meditated way then yes, I would call the police. If they were having a really crap day (wife in hospital, late for work etc) and your husband was deliberately being awkward and standing on the walking side of the escalator, blocking them trying to get through and they punched him out of frustration and a moment of madness, but then apologised and were horrified at their behaviour, gave an explanation etc, then no I wouldn't have called the police and would consider that inappropriate.

People cant be perfect all of the time - imo it is the thoughts behind behaviour that decide on the punishment.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 14:59:53

Clumsy

Try reading Playful Parenting

Frog Neither of those situations are acceptable. An adult should be able to control themselves and not strike out. I could maybe understand shouting but hitting is never okay (unless in actual self defence).

Chocoflump Mon 08-Apr-13 15:01:01

Oh clumsy, what an awful situation.

How dare that woman hurt your poor child. Call 101. She had no right to do that. Also ring the soft play area- they will want to log incidents like this (I used to be manageress in one)

Yes your DD was misbehaving but loads of kids do in soft play areas, it certainly did not warrant a slap from another mother. No child deserves that.

Has your DD mentioned it since? Have u spoke to her about it?

freddy05 Mon 08-Apr-13 15:01:21

If you slapped an adults bottom you wouldn't only be done for assault it would be sexual assault and leaving a mark is really not ok!

I said earlier that I'd give the same protection to my child as I would to myself and I stick with that, I would call the police if someone assaulted me, your daughter is too young to protect herself so it is your responsibility to protect her therefore you need to ring the police. Enforcing the law and protecting the vulnerable is what they are there for.

Wannabestepfordwife Mon 08-Apr-13 15:01:36

Op if I was one of the other mums and had witnessed a friend hit a child hard enough to leave a mark and wet herself I think our friendship would be fizzling out

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 15:02:01

Frog

I getbwhat you are saying. But in those circumstances, her husband has the abilitybto make a judgment for himself about whthervhe wants to accept those mitigating circumstances.

A child cannot do that. A child is just hurt and humiliated.

hardboiledpossum Mon 08-Apr-13 15:02:19

I really think you should call 101 and log this as an incident. You don't have to press charges. But if this is logged it should show up on an enhanced CRB. I wouldn't want this woman working with vulnerable people.

"I really think you should call 101 and log this as an incident. You don't have to press charges. But if this is logged it should show up on an enhanced CRB. I wouldn't want this woman working with vulnerable people."

^^ That.

I would call the police. Without hesitation.

Clumsyoaf Mon 08-Apr-13 15:07:46

Im going to have to call them.

I have spoken to DD, she was inconsolable all the way home.

Ive sent the text had a couple of replies about how shocked they were etc.

And yes my DH is military and is currrently away.

frogwatcher1 Mon 08-Apr-13 15:08:12

Schro - but people have moments of madness at times of stress and to think everybody is perfect is wrong imo. Ideally we should all be controlled, never hit, never be rude etc, but its not reality.

Life isn't perfect and until we have all been in all situations we don't know how we will react.

But I accept that this is just my opinion and that others will truly believe they would never be capable of hitting or striking out in anger. I have seen very placid people do very nasty things which are totally out of character. One person I know (very anti violence and calm in situations, was extremely violent (ending in prison sentence) to somebody who hurt somebody they loved). Life is full of surprises.

lastnightidreamt Mon 08-Apr-13 15:11:28

She was totally in the wrong - disgusting behaviour. I would never socialise with her again, and would reply to texts to her and others to that effect. I would also call her and have it out with her. However, I wouldn't call the police.

If it is true that a call to 101 would log an incident that would show up on a CRB, I think that it wrong. It would still be an unproven allegation at that stage. (Not that it is untrue in this situation)

Frog Shouting could be understandable, punching someone on an escalator isn't, no matter what the situation and the police should always be called, even if it is just to get that person anger management.

Violence should never be ignored.

Moominsarehippos Mon 08-Apr-13 15:12:12

It left a mark? Are you really sure? My mum used to whack us (we said she had iron hands) and we never had marks left. That sounds a lot worse than it was actually.

I wouldn't call the police. I would speak to her though. Was she worried that her child was in danger of being hurt by yours? Not trying to excuse it, just understand it.

Please don't make it into something scary for your daughter. Explain to her that it is always wrong to,raise your hand to,anyone and this lady

I am shocked that she would hit another child - even of that's how she disciplines her own child. Is she a Brit? I know some mums are a bit 'hands on' and tell me it's what they do 'back home'.

timidviper Mon 08-Apr-13 15:12:13

The other mother was certainly wrong but I still think calling it assault and involving the police is OTT. Quite frankly, I think they have bigger fish to fry and am shocked that so many of you think this is an ok use of public resources. You also risk whipping this up into even more of an issue and making this woman the victim of the scenario rather than the villain.

Agree with loopyluna about having the chat with your DD. She needs to be reassured that this is not a normal occurrence and she is safe but, by your own admission, she has not responded to previous discipline tactics and she also needs to learn to behave. I am not in favour of hurting children but when my DCs were little (20+ years ago) it was the norm to tap a child on the hand or the leg as a last resort for us and for most of our friends. None of our children are psychologically scarred to my knowledge and if you keep calm about this your DD will be fine.

TerrysNo2 Mon 08-Apr-13 15:12:22

Clumsy I am not surprised they are shocked, I would not be socialising with anyone who hit another child so it will be interesting if she suffers a backlash from this.

Good luck with speaking to the police, I think you and your DD deserve an independent assessment of this to help you resolve what happened.

Timid What she has done would be classed as assault, it's not just people on here calling it assault.

She also didn't "tap" if she left a mark, that is a hit.

Good luck Clumsy.

sherazade Mon 08-Apr-13 15:14:21

since there's no going back, I would ring her up and tell her that I wouldn't be mixing with her anymore as a result of her assaulting my daughter. *If she was on fb *or something I'd publicly shame her so other mums know what she can be capable of.

Icantstopeatinglol Mon 08-Apr-13 15:15:26

Frog...I know where you're coming from but if I was that adult who had lashed out regardless of the situation I'd fully expect some sort of reaction ie. calling the police/being hit back. Just cos someone is frustrated or has something going on in their life does not mean they shouldn't be punished for their actions surely? I'm sure we all at one point might lash out but to then expect to get away with it is not realistic either.

Moominsarehippos Mon 08-Apr-13 15:15:43

Posted too soon....
Tell your daughter that this behaviour is wrong, and that this lady was wrong to do this, and that she will never lay a hand on her again, and that you are going to tell her off.

Clumsyoaf Mon 08-Apr-13 15:16:15

omigod... really - she has just sent me a whatsapp message (a group is set up of all mums who attend the get togethers, so she has sent to everyone) saying "Everything ok clumsy? you left a bit sharpish this morning?"

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 15:16:24

Frog

Yes, we aren't perfect. But if i hit someone I would expect to take responsibilty for that.

Clumsyoaf Mon 08-Apr-13 15:16:59

how to respond?????

shewhowines Mon 08-Apr-13 15:17:08

Yes but Clumsy - of course she would be upset. She was disciplined in a harsh way that is not usual for her. She will get over it if you make light of it even if it is understandably hard for you . The bigger the fuss you make of it though, the harder it will be for her to move on.

Tell her, the woman was wrong to hit her and that you will be telling the woman that, however make it clear that she should have done as she was told anyway. Do not let her get away with her bad behaviour by deflecting the attention on to this woman.

She will deal with the situation as you show her. Don't escalate it yourself.

Clumsyoaf Mon 08-Apr-13 15:17:27

errr yes we left sharpish after you whacked my dd and left a mark.

Clumsyoaf Mon 08-Apr-13 15:18:40

the nerve!

AllThatGlistens Mon 08-Apr-13 15:18:54

Do not respond!!! Don't engage with her at all, this woman injured your child.

Call 101 and report it, for goodness sake.

frogwatcher1 Mon 08-Apr-13 15:18:59

Schro - I am not saying hitting is acceptable. Just that if the person is truly remorseful and has an explanation it can be dealt with by the people involved. Surely you have done something bad in life and learnt from it and have never done it again because you were so full of remorse?

I think that society relies too much on the police, councils, etc to sort their problems. Big problems yes, but if the people involved can talk it out and can accept the mistake and it wasn't premeditated then I think that is better.

I still think this is a waste of police time until the op talks it through with the woman and has evidence that she still thinks it was acceptable and therefore could do it again. This incident is done and dusted now and cannot be undone. What is important is the risk of the lady doing it again and the op can determine that as well as the police can. By involving the police she is potentially damaging a whole family.

catsmother Mon 08-Apr-13 15:19:13

shewhowhines

Yes, you're absolutely right - it has affected me more than my son - in the long term, and of course I'll never know what would have happened if I had called the police - whether or not it would have traumatised him more (though as a boy who was obsessed with the police from an early age he'd have probably been non-plussed - beside the point I know).

At the time, he was very upset though, and very shocked - as most people would be if they were suddenly hit. I did keep telling him she was very wrong not to have approached me instead but I also remember him saying "you should call the police" and it was me who pooh-poohed the idea as I wanted to get away.

I think on balance, it would have been better to take the risk of more upset vs him not feeling I'd done enough to deal with that woman properly. You know, most of us spend an age telling our kids it's wrong to hit others - yet when someone hit him I did nothing about it. I feel I was a hypocrite that day.

sherazade Mon 08-Apr-13 15:19:21

reply to the whatsap so everyone can see it detailing what she did to your child.

shewhowines Mon 08-Apr-13 15:20:46

I would respond saying that you were upset at her behaviour this morning and then say you will private message her.

You do not need to have this discussion on a public forum but take the opportunity to tell her exactly how unacceptable her behaviour was.

AllThatGlistens Mon 08-Apr-13 15:20:47

You don't need to reply, everyone saw it anyway! You don't need to escalate it with your DD, simply say that what she did was very wrong and you are going to make sure it won't happen again.

Then you report her.

Yes I have, including fights when I was younger and assault. Difference is I didn't expect to get away with it.

I don't think it is possible to reason with someone who believes smacking (and smacking other children) is acceptable. It is 2 complete differences of personality and there will always be strong views from both sides.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 15:21:25

Frog

If the woamn was remorseful she would have said sorry by now

Op ignore and call 101. Decide what to do after that

puffinnuffin Mon 08-Apr-13 15:22:34

I have been on plenty of Child Protection courses and leaving a hand print on a bottom is seen as pretty serious. To leave a hand print the woman would have had to of smacked her pretty hard. If this mark was seen at school it would have to be recorded and reported. I would keep a written record along with the photo and messages from your friends as evidence. Does your DD go to Nursery or School? It might be worth telling them what happened if the mark is still there, just to protect yourself and child.

I would also talk the woman (or e-mail) and then decide from there what to do next. It wouldn't hurt to get some advice from 101 and see what they advise before taking things further.

Wannabestepfordwife Mon 08-Apr-13 15:22:52

Op if she tries to justify her actions I would point out that none of the other mothers behaved in the same way

Jamie is right, the woman has sent a message asking why she left quickly. She obviously doesn't think she has done anything wrong.

Emilythornesbff Mon 08-Apr-13 15:23:56

Op following your update and now knowing that the woman hit your dd hard enough to leave a mark and wet herself, I would speak to the police.
Definitely.

Sorry you'be had a bad day.

And don't beat yourself up about discipline. All children fight over toys.
If you stay consistent with your dd things will improve.
She's only 4.

Stay away from this woman she's horrid.

Madmum24 Mon 08-Apr-13 15:23:57

OP she clearly knows she is in the wrong and is now trying to minimize it! I am a very non confrontational person, but if an employee in the soft play/your childs nursery did this then no one would hesitate before phoning the police, if even to only get the incident logged. Do not feel intimidated by her because she is in your circle of friends who I would be reassessing considering they didn't stand for you at the time

I still the remember the shock I felt when my "friend" told me that she "had" to smack my then one year old, in order to teach her not to try to touch her bay's face............the look on my face must've said it all because she then went on to say "You don't mind, do you?"

Clumsyoaf Mon 08-Apr-13 15:24:56

goodness, i feel physically sick.

frogwatcher1 Mon 08-Apr-13 15:24:57

Jamie - not necessarily. Still needs a direct question and discussion in my mind.

GreenEggsAndNichts Mon 08-Apr-13 15:25:26

Soft play centres are the work of the devil. No good can come of them.

Sorry, OP. You do need to report this. At the very least, the <shudder> soft play centre should be alerted.

Clumsyoaf Mon 08-Apr-13 15:25:47

Im going to respond, Yes I felt i needed to remove my dd from the soft play after you assaulted her. or is that too full on??

Clumsyoaf Mon 08-Apr-13 15:27:16

im on phone to 101 - cant hurt to get some advice. this may sound silly but it was just the look on her face when she pelted her, she was talking through gritted teeth...

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 15:28:20

Frog

Well, i know you are being fair minded, but really, vcan you imagine yourself, or a nice thoughtful person you know

A) hitting a small child

And then

B) not immediately apologising

Imreally don't think so

SmellieWellies Mon 08-Apr-13 15:28:20

no. not too full on.

But expect an immediate reaction- denial- self justification- telling you you are overreacting etc.

I still think 101 is a good bet.

outtolunchagain Mon 08-Apr-13 15:28:34

I disagree she has sent this message precisely because she knows she has done wrong and is trying to justify it or make sure that she has the upper hand.She is trying to normalise what she did.

I agree with allthatglistens.I was all for keeping a low profile,cutting contact etc but that message seals the deal for me ,she probably hits her own children and therefore it came pretty easily to her and now she realises she has made an error and is trying to cover her tracks

ItsallisnowaFeegle Mon 08-Apr-13 15:28:35

Make a stand OP, for your daughters sake. Be it a confrontation with this person with the facts and a demand for an apology to DD, or to report her, but please make sure you and your DD are heard!

FWIW show me a 4 yr old who behaves impeccably all the time. I've never witnessed it!

almostanotherday Mon 08-Apr-13 15:28:41

Nope that's sounds fair to me, short and too the point.

AllThatGlistens Mon 08-Apr-13 15:28:44

OP DON'T RESPOND TO HER! Take your advice from 101, don't engage with her.

shewhowines Mon 08-Apr-13 15:29:03

Don't involve the others. Keep the moral high ground.

Just say 'You know why I left" I'll private message you. Then mention you feel she assaulted DD one to one.

Wossname Mon 08-Apr-13 15:29:11

She is trying to take the initiative and play it down so you, and everyone else, thinks it's no big deal. Call 101, if nothing else they will give you advice. Dont reply to her until you've done that. Then reply so everyone can see it saying 'you smacked my 4 year old so hard you left a mark (which I have photographed) and made her wet herself. On what planet is that normal behaviour? Don't contact me again.'

wibblyjelly Mon 08-Apr-13 15:30:12

Clumsey, if you do report it, make sure you keep a records of all messages sent between you, as you may then have written proof of what has happened, depending on how she responds. Hope your ds is OK.

AllThatGlistens Mon 08-Apr-13 15:31:20

Or, after you've spoken to 101, I would then respond and tell her pretty much that, that you've taken advice from 101 after she assaulted your daughter this morning and have nothing further to say to her.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 15:32:20

Agree with Wossname

Altinkum Mon 08-Apr-13 15:32:21

I would NOT REPLY, and let the police handle it, if she is still marked now then that must have been some smack,

You can use physical chastisement on a child as long as no mark, tool or implement is used, outside of this breaks the law.

seriouscakeeater Mon 08-Apr-13 15:33:21

mrspeeweee is right, phone the police. How dare she assault your child! I probably would have gone of the deep end and smacked her but you actually did the best thing by leaving, so phone the police now.

She wasn't chastising your child, she lost her temper/control with a small child!

LookingThroughTheFog Mon 08-Apr-13 15:33:45

Clumsy, do not respond to the woman. Before you do that, look up the number of your local police station, give them a call, and say to them that you want to take advice on this as you're not sure what to do. You're aware that it's technically assault, but you're not sure you would be looking to prosecute, or even whether that would be possible. Can they please advise you, as you are concerned about the situation and are unclear. Failing that, call your Health Visitor with the same questions.

Please can you get some professional advice before doing anything else?

flaminhoopsaloolah Mon 08-Apr-13 15:33:47

If this woman doesn't think twice about hitting someone else's child hard enough that she actually leaves a handprint...how does she treat her own children?

Altinkum Mon 08-Apr-13 15:34:14

OP have you phoned 101.

KurriKurri Mon 08-Apr-13 15:34:43

If someone hit me and left a mark (r even if they didn't leave a mark) I'd be asking for an assault charge.

In what universe it it justifiable to hit another person? People who hit adults and come up in court don't have 'he was annoying me' excuses listened to.

If she is prepared to do that to your child in public, what the hell might she be doing to her own children behind closed doors?

OP you are doing absolutely the right thing by contacting the police, good luck, and hope your little girl is OK.

frogwatcher1 Mon 08-Apr-13 15:35:11

Jamie - I find it hard to imagine myself hitting somebodys child out of anger. But the problem with trial by mumsnet is that we were not there and also we have no idea how it was perceived by people that were there. It is not our lives that will be affected - by talking to the people that were there the op would have a fairer account of what happened.

For example, by what one poster said who has done child protection courses, it takes a hard hit to leave a mark. The ops child would have been wearing clothes and it would therefore be a real hard slap to leave a red mark several hours later. In a soft play centre I dont think any parent would stand by and see a child hit this hard. Therefore, in my mind, there is doubt that the mark is caused by the hit. If it was then fair enough - the situation is very bad. But the friends who saw it all could give a fairer account of the situation to the op before she potentially ruins this other womans life.

However, I would have spoken to the woman before getting the police involved in anyway.

LetsFaceTheMusicAndDance Mon 08-Apr-13 15:38:33

I know I'm projecting here because I'm talking from my own experience but I think you will deeply regret it if you don't stand up for your daughter now. You will regret it for yourself and the way you feel as a mum. Our job is to protect our children and if we don't do that to our own satisfaction, it feels bad - for a long time.

Ring the non-emergency number and discuss it with the police. Tell them that you have a picture of the mark. Tell them about the texts from the other mums and tell them about the picture.

HungryClocksGoBackFourSeconds Mon 08-Apr-13 15:41:45

I agree with other posters telling you not to respond to her text.

NotSoNervous Mon 08-Apr-13 15:42:57

I think your doing the right thing phoning 101. She can't think it is acceptable to assault a child

Oh my good god!!! I think my mother bear would have been unleashed full force on her...I would absolutely call the police...

I have never been anti-smacking but I have never been one to smack at everything either. A short tap to the back of the hand when near plugs etc...

When I have smacked my children for discipline I have to admit its because I have lost control of the situation and not because its going to teach them anything.

She needs to be held to task for this...do not back down OP...your DD reaction to this (especially when you dont employ this type of discipline) breaks my heart sad

MandragoraWurzelstock Mon 08-Apr-13 15:46:03

On reflection I might be thinking to press charges. I have smacked my own eldest child, before, out of sheer desperation and it was horrible, but that was many years ago and I would NEVER touch someone else's child, and have not smacked either of my subsequent children either...it is wrong...it is undoubtedly wrong and an awful thing to do to your own children but especially awful to do it to someone else's.

I think the woman might benefit from having it drummed home to her that this is not how you handle children.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 15:47:53

Frog

Mark or no mark, she must have lost control OR she thinks this is OK.

I think we will have to agree to disagree

AnAirOfHope Mon 08-Apr-13 15:48:10

I would reply to her publicly with “you smacked/assulted my child i though it best we left“

DontSHOUTTTTTT Mon 08-Apr-13 15:48:29

I wouldn't respond to her.

KurriKurri Mon 08-Apr-13 15:48:34

frogwatcher - I really don't understand the argument that we should not report unacceptable/illegal behaviour in case we 'ruin someone's life'.

If this woman's life is 'ruined' then she has ruined her own life by making a very poor choice in her behaviour. We all go through life trying to make the right choices, and need to accept that if we get it very wrong and harm another person (particularly a child) then we will be called to account.

If this woman's usual repsonse to children is violence, and she has children of her own, then a check on her now might stop her ruining a child's life.

call the police

only way we can stop this shit, be interested to know if the police do anything though

AllThatGlistens Mon 08-Apr-13 15:51:25

Hope you're ok OP and that you're taking advice from 101.

I really don't think you need to worry about replying to her, everyone already knows what she did, you don't need to 'go public', I'm sure the news will be spreading like wildfire and the police may advise against it anyway as it may inflame the situation.

What's important is that your daughter knows that you are protecting her, and this ridiculous woman is made aware that she behaved completely inappropriately, and, illegally!

MammaTJ Mon 08-Apr-13 15:51:30

Quite frankly, I feel you need to report it, not just because of your DD, but because if she can behave like that to someone elses child in a public place, what the hell is she like in private with her own child?

MandragoraWurzelstock Mon 08-Apr-13 15:51:35

Also it may show up on any CRB check she has to have if (God forbid) she ever decides to work with children.

I think it might be worthwhile for that reason alone

cerealqueen Mon 08-Apr-13 15:54:09

This woman got so angry she hit a child over a soft play incident and it left a mark. She has anger issues, she could do worse if she is riled enough. Other children need saving from her and she needs saving from herself. I would report the incident.

cheeseandbiscuitsplease Mon 08-Apr-13 15:55:33

Seriously you would all call the police?
I would certainly have had words then and there with her, at the very least you need to sort this out with her but I can't help but think calling the police is extreme?

AllThatGlistens Mon 08-Apr-13 15:58:05

She left a livid handprint on the little girl (which is illegal) and she wet herself, which she apparently is not prone to doing so was clearly in response to being hit. The OP also stated she was inconsolable all the way home.

Would it be acceptable to you if it had happened to an adult?

Assault is assault, no?

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 15:58:24

Cheese

Seriously. I would have spoken to here there and then, and told her that she had assaulted my child and put the fear into her. But in the OP situation I would call 101

frogwatcher1 Mon 08-Apr-13 15:58:30

Kurri - I am not saying don't report it in case it ruins somebodys life. I am saying that imo the op should talk to the woman first, along with others who saw it, rather than being led by those of us who were not there.

The woman may be absolutely devastated and never have done it before or do it again. The friends who know her, and the op if she talked it through with her, would ascertain this. Then a decision could be made about the police.

Jamie - I dont disagree that she must have lost control or consider it ok. However the thing we must agree to disagree on is what the op does now.

It doesnt matter what we all think - it is only our opinions. The op must do what she thinks is best.

What I find most odd is that somebody could stand in a soft play, hit a child hard enough to mark through clothes, and a group of parents stand by and not even refer to it.

Wossname Mon 08-Apr-13 15:58:48

Not sure we all have the presence of mind to deal with it there and then - I think I would feel really odd and unsure what to do, as it's just not a normal situation to deal with. And it's not like OP's called 999! She rang non-emergency police number for advice, that's a rational response i think? I dont think I could deal with it msyelf right ion the moment, wish I was that self assured though.

TerrysNo2 Mon 08-Apr-13 15:59:30

I don't necessarily think this is a police matter as she won't be charged with anything but they are also here to provide advice and support to people. If you don't do something severe about this then she will not see that what she did was very very wrong. She needs someone independent to tell her that.

ShipwreckedAndComatose Mon 08-Apr-13 16:02:20

Wow! Just read the thread.

To leave a mark and cause your dd to wet herself is just shock

TheSlug Mon 08-Apr-13 16:02:26

OP what advice did you get from the police?

Wibblypiglikesbananas Mon 08-Apr-13 16:02:31

What did 101 say? Please take their advice. I don't think you're overreacting, the main thing here is to ensure that your DD knows you're on her side and that no one has the right to do that to her.

You behaved extremely well given the circumstances by walking away and retaining your dignity. Don't engage with this woman now. As others have said, the other people there saw what happened and you have evidence to show the police in the form of their messages asking if you're ok.

Let the police do their job and have no more to do with this vile woman. If this is what she's like IN PUBLIC with someone else's child, who knows what she's like behind closed doors?

Good luck and stay strong.

HungryClocksGoBackFourSeconds Mon 08-Apr-13 16:04:00

Not sure why the OP should have any sympathy for the person who assaulted her 4 year old child?

The OP's main priority should be to ease her daughter's fears and reassure her that this woman's actions were not acceptable and that she will face the consequences. Ringing the police is the correct action in this situation.

Who gives a shit about the woman? She's a vile creature and should know better than to go around assaulting four year olds.

Sparklyblue Mon 08-Apr-13 16:04:40

I think you have done the right thing, calling 101.
How awful for your DD

ClumsyOaf - my reply to this woman's text would be:

"We left softplay in a hurry after you hit my child, who is inconsolable and has a handprint left on her skin. I am now considering my options."

What she did, whether one classes it as an assault or not, was unacceptable, and she needs to accept how far out of line her actions were, to apologise to you and your dd, and to promise to control her temper in the future - that is a minimum.

Telling her you are considering your options would hopefully make her think you might be calling the police, and that might be enough to shock her into realising how unacceptable her behaviour was.

I would also advise you to ring the non-emergency number, to ask for their advice - remember, you don't have to take it if you don't want to, but it would give you more facts to help you make your decision. I did exactly this when my son was attacked at school by kids who tried to push his face into the urinals - I contacted the non-emergency number for advice - and the officer I spoke to said that what had happened was an assault and could be taken further, if my son and I wanted to. Then I contacted the school by email to tell them about the incident and ask them what they were going to do about it, and told them that I had spoken to the police, and what I had been told. The school got back to me very quickly, and the incident was resolved 'in-house' to my son's and my satisfaction - but I think it helped that the school knew how seriously I was taking it all.

StickyFloor Mon 08-Apr-13 16:06:57

Text to X

"I left because you slapped my child. Your slap left a red mark on her, and she was so shocked that she wet herself. I am appalled that you assaulted my child and do not seem to understand the consequences of this. I am taking advice on what I should do next."

Also please contact soft play and see if they have CCTV in case you do decide to take this further.

NatashaBee Mon 08-Apr-13 16:08:45

What did 101 say? StickyFloor's text reply is good, I think.

MandragoraWurzelstock Mon 08-Apr-13 16:10:48

no I would caution against any further contact with the person

She will only try and convince you (by peaceful means or otherwise) not to take it further. It will not change her thinking.

MandragoraWurzelstock Mon 08-Apr-13 16:12:21

Sorry Sticky.

I just think if she texts her that or anything along those lines, the response will either be 'you go to the police and I'll set my brother on you' etc etc or 'I did nothing wrong'

It won't change anything

It won't achieve anything except to put the OP in danger of retribution

whois Mon 08-Apr-13 16:13:02

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

cerealqueen Mon 08-Apr-13 16:14:36

Whois are you suggesting this is all made up?

middleeasternpromise Mon 08-Apr-13 16:15:18

This isnt a friend its a casual acquaintance she had no business hitting a child out of her frustration - what goes on in her house one wonders. You need to let her know its not over and you will take action - the other mothers are witnesses and clearly were appalled at the actions of this other woman who hasnt even had the good grace to apologise for her behaviour. Make a stand as you cant socialise with this woman anyway in future shes an arrogant ass. A visit from the police might just let er know shes not above the law.

Wow I'm shocked. I hope you and your Dd are OK Clumsy.
She left a hand print! That was assault. I too wouldn't text her back I'd take some advice from 101. She needs to understand how wrong she was and maybe a short sharp shock for her to realize she can't behave that way. Is this how she treats her own children too?

TwoPoundCakePuncher Mon 08-Apr-13 16:20:54

This is awful, i hope you get sorted clumsy i agree with others, i wouldnt respond to her, what a cheek! shock

Geordieminx Mon 08-Apr-13 16:21:23

Hope you are both ok x

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 16:23:09

Whois

If you think it is made up, report the thread

Creamtea1 Mon 08-Apr-13 16:23:28

Be prepared that calling 101 will lead to nothing. I've been through this, with DS who was just coming up to his 3rd birthday when his then childminder smacked him on his bare bottom so hard it left a bruise, this was because he wet himself.
I called local social services who involved the police (child protection) and ofsted investigated the CM. after 4 months they decided there was no cause for concern (even though she admitted it) and all 'charges' so to speak we're dropped, and ofsted removed any reference to the incident from her record.
Approx 2 years later I found out she had stopped childminding.

ReluctantBeing Mon 08-Apr-13 16:23:42

What was the advice from 101?

elsie07 Mon 08-Apr-13 16:26:02

Why are people suggesting calling the police? I can imagine their first response would be "could you have sorted this out yourself?" and "have you spoken to her?". And then you could say, no but I've posted my outrage on Mumsnet. Course she shouldn't have hit your child. Tell her that, really loudly the next time you see her.

Creamtea shock that is horrific. How COULD they let her carry on childminding?

Clumsy, that's awful for you and your DD. Don't worry about people saying her behaviour must have been ... blah blah. You don't smack other people's children - you just DON'T!

BellaVita Mon 08-Apr-13 16:33:31

A couple of years ago my friends son (yr6 then) was playing at the park. Some boys (same year) took his bike off of him and basically said he wasn't allowed in the park. He went home and told his parents.

The dad then went to the park and shouted at the boys and said they had no right to take the bike and to tell his son what he could or couldn't do.

Two hours later the police came knocking on their door and told him off for threatening behaviour hmm. Basically the boys had gone home, complained and the parents had got together and called the police.

You need to report the smacking.

TooYappy Mon 08-Apr-13 16:33:48

I phoned the police when my DS was 6 years old another same sex DC had "touched him inappropriately" in a neighbours house, (my Ds told me what had happened)

I shouted at the neighbour about how horrific/sick it was, phoned the police only to be told 'we are not really interested, have you spoke to your neighbour?'

McNewPants2013 Mon 08-Apr-13 16:33:56

I wouldn't hesitate in phoning the police.

If an adult hits another adult it is assult, but when it comes to children Ah it ok its only a child.

PoppadomPreach Mon 08-Apr-13 16:34:00

To hit a child hard enough to leave a red mark or several hours is assault.

Phoning 101 is absolutely the correct ourselves of action.

This woman needs brought down a peg or two - by official means - do not engage with her on any other level - including texts.

What a horrible thing for you and your OP - you did well to react the way you did.

KurriKurri Mon 08-Apr-13 16:36:31

If someone came up to you in a soft play area and hit you, would there be a clamour for you to sort it out amicably with a chat? of course not.

Because we live in a society that normalises assaults on children, assaults on children will continue and go unpunished.

Because we teach our children that adults can assault them and it will be brushed under the carpet and it is acceptable, children will grow up believing that other people have the right to do things to their bodies and no one will stand up for them.

PoppadomPreach Mon 08-Apr-13 16:37:10

elsie - I was expecting to think the same thing when I read the OP, however when I heard it had been a hard enough hit to leave a ark for hours, I think that warrants a call to the police.

If she had hit you hard enough to leave a mark, what would you have done - had a fight.

Don't imagine there will be any charges, but it would be very helpful for the police to go round to her house and perhaps explain why her action was unacceptable.

It is never acceptable to hit a child.

McNewPants2013 Mon 08-Apr-13 16:40:13

even if it did'nt leave a mark i would still report this assult.

It is not acceptable to hit other people, why is the age of the person being assulted matter.

EldritchCleavage Mon 08-Apr-13 16:43:36

I find it a bit odd people saying it doesn't merit police involvement. Hitting anyone, an adult or child, is assault. There is a very narrow exception to this allowing parents to hit their own children (but not other people's) as long as it is not hard enough to leave a mark.

Just because the mothers know each other socially does not make it ok. I can just imagine the threads on here if people at soft play felt they could start doling out slaps to any child in the vicinity whose parents they'd met when their behaviour displeased them.

Samu2 Mon 08-Apr-13 16:44:37

whois, I thought OP didn't notice the mark until after she posted this thread?

I hope you have called the police, OP.

I hope OP is busy talking to the police.

joolsangel Mon 08-Apr-13 16:55:39

smacking someone elses child is a huge no no. I would be absolutely livid. I can understand that you were in shock so just left without saying anything to her. it would eat at me tho as well. next time you see her, and in front of other mums, I would take the issue up with her calmly. ask her for an explanation then let her explain without interrupting. regardless of what she says. simply tell her that absolutely under no circumstance does she ever ever raise her hand to your child again and that if she has an issue with your child being unruly then she comes to you first without hitting your child. I would also tell her not to lose her self control again with your child. I would aim to make her feel small but in a non aggressive way.

cerealqueen Mon 08-Apr-13 16:55:43

If an adult hits another adult it is assult, but when it comes to children Ah it ok its only a child.

Exactly McNewPants2013. Well said.

elsie07 Mon 08-Apr-13 17:03:40

I don't think anyone has suggested it is ok, perhaps just that the suggestions to go fucking CSI on it are a bit, well unnecessary.

EldritchCleavage Mon 08-Apr-13 17:07:53

I don't think anyone has suggested it is ok, perhaps just that the suggestions to go fucking CSI on it are a bit, well unnecessary

Why, though? If someone slapped me I'd call 101. And someone slapping my 4 year old would be much worse than slapping me, in my view, not less serious.

KurriKurri Mon 08-Apr-13 17:07:55

I don't think anyone has suggested 'going fucking CSI' on it - merely consulting the 101 police non emergency number.

Calling 101 is hardly going 'fucking CSI'. hmm

NeoMaxiZoomDweebie Mon 08-Apr-13 17:13:06

No Mixed. We DO NOT need to know ANYTHING else about this. An adult has hit a child....it is illegal and assault and it does not matter what the child was doing it's not allowed.

Call the Police OP.

marjproops Mon 08-Apr-13 17:19:39

havent had time to read all posts here so if someone else has said this....didnt anyone else say anything to this woman, OP? your friends who are texting you?

someone should have come to your defence as you were too shocked to say anything at the time?

and i would complain to the softplay people to ban this woman from there.

Owllady Mon 08-Apr-13 17:23:12

would you really call 101 if someone slapped you?

I don't think i would and I wouldn't if someone smacked one of my children on the bottom either. I would have spoken to them myself and would have expected an apology

Clumsyoaf Mon 08-Apr-13 17:23:44

I called 101 and I stressed that I was only after advice, the red mark is slowly turning a green purple colour. Someone is going to come and speak to me before 7 tonight or some time tomorrow. They told me I was right to call them and said I shouldn't respond to her message but to keep all other messages from other " witnesses". I called the soft play and explained the situation, one of the girls who works there saw her hit dd but didn't think anything of it as she assumed it was her child! I was still hmm. The manager left at 3 but is back in tomorrow at 11.

Good for you clumsy - can't believe how hard she must have smacked your DD.

Clumsyoaf Mon 08-Apr-13 17:26:29

Sorry for the late reply, was sat indoors stewing but thought no I need to get the kids out Otis beautiful day. Btw she did resend the same message to me at 4 I haven't responded, but have had other messages on whatsapp saying hope u ok etc were going swimming on Wednesday and some of the other moms have asked on whatsapp if they will see me then....

seriouscakeeater Mon 08-Apr-13 17:27:22

owl what if u didn't get an apology? Would it be ok for people just to slap you and dc ?

Oblomov Mon 08-Apr-13 17:29:20

Very sorry to read this Op. You have done the right thing.

moonabove Mon 08-Apr-13 17:30:18

I would have gone ballistic so I quite admire the OP for defusing the immediate situation by removing herself and her dc. Now that she's had time to think about what happened then phoning 101 was absolutely the right thing to do.

Sounds like this person is trying to pretend that nothing happened so it's good to know you have an 'independent' witness at the play place.

catsmother Mon 08-Apr-13 17:31:19

Clumsy, I really think you did the right thing. I hope the advice you get when the police come to speak to you then helps you decide what to do next. Your poor daughter - green/purple sounds like she's bruised - which must have taken quite some force to do. Can't believe the gall of the woman texting you as if nothing untoward happened - but ignoring her is the best advice, apart from anything it means she has to sweat a bit and consider (hopefully) what she's done. Hope your DD isn't too upset still.

Owllady Mon 08-Apr-13 17:31:27

I am going to have to be honest now and I think if a grown woman slapped me or my children I would have most probably have slapped them back anyway, which would have been most unhelpful -confused

I also have a child who has challenging behaviour and has slapped people when out in the community and nobody has ever rang the police

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 17:32:57

Owl

Probably because they realise you child has challenging nehaviour and are being compassionatebtowards a child.

The situationsnare very different

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 17:33:19

Terrible typing! You get the gist

Oblomov Mon 08-Apr-13 17:34:05

I too wondered about what Owl said about talking to the other mum and expecting an apology.
Also, sometimes it is hard to know what to do, at the time. And we later regret not speakign up/ or regret reporting something. Or regret.... and then we might feel alienated in a group that we can no longer attend...... The mind boggles.
BUT, I just think that whent he Op commented on what the 101 caller had said to her, it all made sense that it was the right thing to do.

I hope.

Owllady Mon 08-Apr-13 17:34:39

I suppose they are. I am just projecting because I always feel awful about it. She has tried to hit small children as well but I have always seen that coming iykwim.

ANYWAY this woman didn't have severe learning disabilities and challenging behaviour did she and I need to feck off blush and stop being paranoid (it's half term i get a bit like this confused)

CharlMascara Mon 08-Apr-13 17:35:13

Oooh Clumsy poor you.

You never have any luck do you.

VivaLeBeaver Mon 08-Apr-13 17:36:12

Clumsy, I had similar when another parent assaulted my dd and another girl in the playground. They were older, 11yo at the time.

I called the police who came round and talked to me. I did get the feeling to be honest the officer thought it was a waste of his time, hmm

He asked me what I wanted done and I said I wanted him to go and warn her off as she'd also made threats and my dd was terrified. He did go and speak to her. He never mentioned assualt and never asked if I wanted to press charges. I didn't want to but thinkif I had wanted to I'd have had to have pushed for it.

Funny isn't it, if an adult hit another adult then no one would question them been charged with assault. But for a more vulnerable child you somehow feel you're making a fuss. Hope you're ok.

SneakyNinja Mon 08-Apr-13 17:36:30

Clumsy How on earth do you manage to keep getting into these situations!? confused

Why on earth didn't you confront her at the softplay? She hit your child hard enough to leave a mark and she wet herself but you said nothing. I don't understand.

Owllady Mon 08-Apr-13 17:37:55

as a practical recommendation to all parents out there, I would not under any circumstances take any children to a soft play place during a half term. It's the devils play pen of hell

Clumsyoaf Mon 08-Apr-13 17:38:02

I wish I knew, whatever it is I would stop doing it! I thought we were settling finally into a group!

Glad you called them Clumsy. Give you dd a big hug, so child deserves that, not even a naughty one.

carabos Mon 08-Apr-13 17:40:03

The most worrying thing about this is not so much that she hit the OP's child - that is horrific and action should be taken, but it's a one-off. As someone else said upthread, if she is on such a short fuse that she can hit someone else's child in public, what on earth does she do to her own behind closed doors?

IMO, for someone to be able to attack a child in public means they have already gone a long long way beyond that elsewhere. DH and I once saw a woman hit her own child (boy of about 7) with the full force of her outstretched arm across his face, in public at a sporting event. To me, that said that she must be literally beating seven shades of shit out of him at home and had zero self-control.

Very frightening indeed. I would be making exactly that point to all the other mothers in the group at every opportunity until she was completely ostracised.

outtolunchagain Mon 08-Apr-13 17:41:19

Verytelly I suspect that the OP was in shock. I am not sure that I would have been able to say something in similar circumstances , I suspect with a hysterical wet 4 year old and the shock of what had just happened I would have just wanted to escape .

MadamFolly Mon 08-Apr-13 17:43:33

Good that they are coming round, I hope she gets an almighty bollocking from them, she may even get a caution.

TidyDancer Mon 08-Apr-13 17:46:34

I am stunned at this, and I think you did the right thing calling the police. As I'm sure has been said somewhere, if she behaves like that in public, it is worrying what she is capable of when people can't see her.

Hope your DD is okay.

OnceUponAThyme Mon 08-Apr-13 17:48:14

I'd be fucking furious. she hit your dd hard enough to leave a mark and it sounds like it's bruising?
I'd definitely be pushing this as far as I could with the police.

Fleecyslippers Mon 08-Apr-13 17:49:25

My estranged husband has a police caution for hitting my eldest child and leaving a mark. You are doing the right thing. Vile bully.

flaminhoopsaloolah Mon 08-Apr-13 17:53:03

It's turning into a bruise now?! She managed to bruise her through clothes....how bloody hard did she hit her? Ws it with the palm of her hand because, and I'm no expert, I would think with the palm of the hand, the impact being over a greater surface area thus distributing the force, would have to be very high to cause a bruise. Bloody hell. Your poor DD. Im very glad ou called the police and they're coming around.

TumbleWeeds Mon 08-Apr-13 17:58:31

The mark is turning into a bruise!?!
Now if there was any doubt before, it is clear you need the police involved.

Well done to keep so calm. Hope the visit from the Police will turn out to be helpful too.

AllThatGlistens Mon 08-Apr-13 18:01:23

Bloody hell it's bruising? So glad you called 101 OP, you def did the right thing, and please don't respond to any msgs!

Hope your poor DD is ok sad

TumbleWeeds Mon 08-Apr-13 18:01:27

Oh and I remove my commens earlier. Whatever your dd's behaviour, there is NO WAY that hitting a child that hard canbe acceptable. Even if your dd had been very difficult to manage.

Don't question yoursel and your parenting too much. This is not what all this is about.

Nerfmother Mon 08-Apr-13 18:04:50

Hi clumsy. Are you absolutely sure the bruise (if its green) is from this morning? Don't they usually go black and purple first and then fade to green? (I'm not an expert, just mother of 3 small boys!) And surely it would be a massive smack to bruise a bottom? (Lots of flesh, not much bone).
Just suggesting you dble check before you speak to the pcso so you don't detract from what actually did happen?
I am not an expert, like I said, and happy to be corrected by more knowledgeable posters.

NeoMaxiZoomDweebie Mon 08-Apr-13 18:19:08

No Nerf...different people react differently.

mumofweeboys Mon 08-Apr-13 18:27:21

Are these other mums military wives too?

Nerfmother Mon 08-Apr-13 18:29:14

Thanks neo - just thought that was worth mentioning.

Floggingmolly Mon 08-Apr-13 18:30:57

Bruises don't go straight to green hmm

Glad you called the police. outrageous.

<<quick thread hijack, Jamie, do you situate soft play threads at zoomaround? I always do!>>

Zamboni Mon 08-Apr-13 18:37:40

OP, think you are doing the right thing by contacting the police. Your poor DD. And I can imagine how stunned and shocked you were so you didn't react at the time.

This woman needs a shock and to be taught that smacking someone else's child is most definitely not on. And as for any fall-out with the other mums - you're doing the right thing by your DD and to protect other children.

Oswin Mon 08-Apr-13 18:39:00

Bruises can go green straight away. I myself have a green bruise that's appeared from just being a red mark yesterday.

GreenEggsAndNichts Mon 08-Apr-13 18:42:16

Concur, I've had a bruise go straight to green, if it wasn't a very bad hit.

(er not to suggest her bruise isn't bad. I just mean, I've noticed mine will only go green when I haven't hit myself very hard)

Owllady Mon 08-Apr-13 18:44:18

if she has bruised her then I do agree you should report it as well, as you have done
I think language used as smacked her bottom and the reality that it has bruised her are a bit different to how I pictured it

Owllady Mon 08-Apr-13 18:45:02

I'm sorry btw if I offended anyone earlier, I don't even smack my own children and would be aghast if anyone smacked mine, it just wouldn't be my first response to phone the police

I think the fact that the policeman/woman on theother end of 101 didn't just brush it off shows that OP has done the right thing.

Unfortunately it's probably going to be quite tough doing activites with this social group in the future - but that of course is secondary to protecting your DD andother vulnerable children that this woman comes into contact with. I wonder if she has form for this - how many other children in the group has she smacked? Not that you can ask, OP, just musing.

flaminhoopsaloolah Mon 08-Apr-13 19:04:11

Hi OP

After a couple of questions about bruises I thought I'd look it up. I looked on a few websites and they all say the same thing really as this one below

kidshealth.org/teen/your_body/skin_stuff/bruises.html

I still think you should have the police over, bbecause really, if she can lose her temper like that in public with a child she barely knows, what is she doing behind closed doors? (And she might not be doing anything, but it's a concern) But I think you should have a read before deciding if the bruise is a result of the smacking.

ChippingInIsEggceptional Mon 08-Apr-13 19:08:00

Did they come around Clumsy?

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 19:21:48

Madame

Oh yes, that half-remembered smell wafts into my memory. Chip fat and poo.

Your boy OK my dear? DS1 is thriving

DS thriving at city. loving it. popular. becoming a wit. adored by teachers. top sets. Much more robust. Where did it all go right?? And so glad yours is too.

MooMooSkit Mon 08-Apr-13 19:23:58

Interested to know what happens with this, admire the OP for staying so calm! I'd have been furious!

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 19:27:39

Madame

yes - I think they were just more suited to Secondary. More variety of children. Their quirkiness appreciated. I love DSs accounts of conversations he has - even the nicknames they give each other crack me up. He copes with the more unruly element pretty well

Sorry for hijack OP

last bit of hijack promise! is he at SN?

essexmumma Mon 08-Apr-13 19:31:47

Good luck OP i hope your DD is doing Ok now xx

supergreenuk Mon 08-Apr-13 19:40:12

My word what a situation to be in.

DisorganisednotDysfunctional Mon 08-Apr-13 19:40:15

I wouldn't advise calling the police. How interested do you think they will be? They can't do anything unless they know who did it and have either witnesses or CCTV. Do you know the other woman's name and address? Will the soft play people know who she is? And if they do, will they say?

Depending on the size of your community and how the incident was perceived by witnesses, it could be the start of a very tricky situation. You might - quite unfairly - end up being that difficult woman who... or, worse, that deranged woman who...

And when you say smacked, would most people perceive it as violence or as more a symbolic tap? I fear that involving the police might do you and DD more harm than good. Maybe the other woman has had some terrible crisis and the other mums will think you're an arse... Or she may be part of an extensive criminal family (sounds absurd but could be true round our way.)

Too many imponderables, and once you've called the police you can't uncall them, iyswim.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 08-Apr-13 19:41:52

MD

Yah.

's O.K.

RTFT.

ah.

LaVitaBellissima Mon 08-Apr-13 19:51:45

Your poor DD sad

TheSecondComing Mon 08-Apr-13 19:52:11

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

CheCazzo Mon 08-Apr-13 19:56:18

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cocoachannel Mon 08-Apr-13 20:00:17

It sounds like there were witnesses DnD many of whom were shocked at the incident and have contacted OP.

marjproops Mon 08-Apr-13 20:12:31

OP dont worry about your social group, id be a bit miffed tbh if they didnt defend me or DC. your childs welfare is more important.

KurriKurri Mon 08-Apr-13 20:13:03

CheCazzo - if you think OP is troll, report, don't hint.

CheCazzo Mon 08-Apr-13 20:24:58

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LilRedWG Mon 08-Apr-13 20:25:42

How's DD now?

a tad disingenous che. really.

KurriKurri Mon 08-Apr-13 20:31:41

Then what are you saying CheCazzo? - what other conclusion is one supposed to draw from your post?

ShipwreckedAndComatose Mon 08-Apr-13 20:35:02

Jeez,I hate cryptic posting!!

Wingdingdong Mon 08-Apr-13 20:38:08

I have a bruise from this morning (tripping over DC's bloody mouse-on-wheels-on-a-stick, whacked leg against DC's toy kitchen...). It's yellow already. That bruise web page is talking shite, my bruises never last 10-14 days let alone stay red/purple all that time! Red first, purple 6-12 hours, yellow 12-24hrs, green and fading 24-48hrs. I have very pale skin and bruise very easily.

I can't see any reason to doubt OP's story.

I'd have phoned the police too. You expect 4yos to behave like young children. If you don't like their behaviour, talk to the parents, don't just hit the child. That's bullying and cowardice - and as others have said, if she
thought it was appropriate, what else does she think appropriate

MummytoKatie Mon 08-Apr-13 20:43:05

I have very very pale skin. The type that marks really easily. Have just hit myself on the (inside - where the skin is palest -of the) arm really hard. No red arm. But it still stings slightly.

That was a major hit.

SneakyNinja Mon 08-Apr-13 20:44:13

I for one always enjoy a good Clumsy thread grin

cocoachannel Mon 08-Apr-13 20:54:11

MummytoKatie fantastic dedication to the discussion there! They don't do an award icon so here's some flowers or wine if you prefer for going above the call of duty grin!

Moominsarehippos Mon 08-Apr-13 20:57:17

I am also very pale and bruise frequently (very clumsy!). If its something bloody hard (top speed squash ball or table corner... falling down stairs, dropping plate on foot, walking into sloping ceiling...) it's red with a white bulls eye, then darkens (purple/blue/black) the next day, and green/yellow the day after. Even when I broke several toes, the bruise lasted about a week.

I would be concerned if the child was bruised after a spanking tbh. Bruising through clothing from an open palm doesn't sound right, does it?

HungryClocksGoBackFourSeconds Mon 08-Apr-13 21:17:48

I have very pale skin and bruise easily too,

when I was a teen, playfighting with a crush got a bit too enthusiastic and I ended up landing on the wooden arm of a chair from quite a height. It hurt really badly and I actually thought I'd broken a bone. It went greeny blue instantly and developed into a black/purple bruise later on.
Needless to say, I went off him after that....

It must have been a serious whack to bruise a bottom at all, never mind in less than 12 hours.

Maggie111 Mon 08-Apr-13 21:31:31

I bruise very easily and they are dark instantly. When my OH bruises and it shows up, more often than not they are only yellow till they fade. unless he's been paintballing then they stay red for a long time!

Good luck with the police OP x

LittleEdie Mon 08-Apr-13 21:38:25

She left a bruise?! shock

She knows she's done wrong, hence all the messages.

Floggingmolly Mon 08-Apr-13 21:41:03

I'm really struggling to believe a smack on the bum left a bruise of any colour whatsoever. hmm

I can believe it. Children's skin is very delicate and bruises easily and it sounds to me as if the OP's little girl was wearing a dress or skirt and so the smack was on bare skin or just one thin layer of clothing.

uniqueatlast Mon 08-Apr-13 21:46:37

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Nerfmother Mon 08-Apr-13 21:49:14

No update, so presumably police coming tomorrow. Clumsy, please be clear in your mind what actually happened. I am really concerned that the outrage on this thread may have exagerated things in your mind? Maybe take a moment to think it through clearly, and read what you originally posted? It started with your child being picked up and smacked and has now become someone talking through gritted teeth 'pelting' your child, and leaving a bruise.

Report. report. report. don't speculate on a thread.

LittleEdie Mon 08-Apr-13 21:52:30

I don't think what the OP has posted has been particularly inconsistent though.

Stepissue Mon 08-Apr-13 21:55:53

Madame - exactly.

CutePuppy Mon 08-Apr-13 22:00:20

Gosh, I can't believe she smacked your child. Who does that?!? Glad you called 101 and I hope you and dd are ok.

Nerfmother Mon 08-Apr-13 22:02:01

Madame, if that's directed to me, I don't think its fair. I'm suggesting to the op that now she is involving the police she should be careful not to get caught up in the anger shown by other posters to the woman, and just to be clear about the marks definitely being caused by the smack.

good gracious

no nerf, directed to the poster directly before you. I agree with you.

Stepissue Mon 08-Apr-13 22:05:23

I'm bizarrely speaking for Madame here (sorry) but no Nerf, not at you., at the posters blatantly saying 'I don't believe/unbelievable/thread doesn't add up though'

Yours was sensible advice smile

MummytoKatie Mon 08-Apr-13 22:05:37

coco Thanks. It'll have to be the flowers cos I'm knocked up ATM.

I'm one of those weird people who can't help testing things. A button saying "don't press" or a sign saying "wet paint" always end badly for me.

Luckily (or maybe very unluckily) dh is just the same. Our old microwave had scorch marks from the experiment to try and find the length of microwaves...

Stepissue Mon 08-Apr-13 22:05:41

x posted grin

ta though step! i shall appoint you my top spokesperson!

uniqueatlast Mon 08-Apr-13 22:09:58

MadameDefarge I had reported. I'm not a prolific poster and so am unsure of the etiquette. Should I not have posted on the thread and just reported?

flaminhoopsaloolah Mon 08-Apr-13 22:10:27

I'm with you nerf...which I why I popped on a few websites to have a look at how bruises develop - I'd hate for the OP to actually get into trouble for appearing to make false accusations.

LittleEdie Mon 08-Apr-13 22:13:02

uniqueatlast The idea is that when a poster is genuine it could feel devastating to not be believed. When you report Mumsnet HQ look into it and delete the thread when appropriate.

Nerfmother Mon 08-Apr-13 22:14:19

Thank you madame and step - sorry for being sensitive! flaminhoops - yep, I think its easy to get all fired up, but at the end of the day the op will be alone when talking to the pcso, and when facing her friends.

uniqueatlast Mon 08-Apr-13 22:15:05

Ok, Thanks for that advice. smile

QOD Mon 08-Apr-13 22:22:46

I actually don't know if I'd take it further.

no worries nerf! its not like your reply was horrid!!!

Nerfmother Mon 08-Apr-13 22:56:59

Phew! Very hard to get tone right sometimes revises thinking on writing that novel

NoTeaForMe Mon 08-Apr-13 23:02:05

To report do you report the Original post then rather than report the thread?!

you can report any post you feel uncomfortable with. Op or within the thread.

LadyBeagleEyes Mon 08-Apr-13 23:23:23

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CheCazzo Mon 08-Apr-13 23:35:00

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laydeee! rules eh?

LadyBeagleEyes Mon 08-Apr-13 23:44:28

I've reported MadameD
And yy again to Che.

Is this the same mum who wanted their DDs to share a party or something, and something about a bouncy castle...?

DaemonPantalaemon Tue 09-Apr-13 00:00:21

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LadyBeagleEyes Tue 09-Apr-13 00:08:21

But yeah, let's all call the police, why don't we.
<sheesh>

stressyBessy22 Tue 09-Apr-13 00:09:07

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Bessie123 Tue 09-Apr-13 00:10:47

I don't think it is the shared bday party lady, wasn't that coffeedog or coffee something?

stressyBessy22 Tue 09-Apr-13 00:13:49

It was coffeedog, but then someone came back claiming to be the other mother - was that the OP?

Bessie123 Tue 09-Apr-13 00:14:10

Hmm, actually, maybe the coffee someone was the other mum. I think you might be right about op being the shared party poster

Bessie123 Tue 09-Apr-13 00:14:41

Shit, sorry, xpost

LadyBeagleEyes Tue 09-Apr-13 00:15:20

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no no LadyB, report yourself pdq!

Bessie123 Tue 09-Apr-13 00:20:43

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OP WHY did you go out when the police said they could call around before 7? I hope you didn't miss them, them this needs dealing with.

LadyBeagleEyes Tue 09-Apr-13 00:42:32

<sighs> at Headfirst.

<<snickers inappropriately at LB>>

I was merely pointing out an indiscretion in the story that if you ring the police and they say they will call around, you don't go out just because it's a nice day wink

Bessie123 Tue 09-Apr-13 00:48:43

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LadyBeagleEyes Tue 09-Apr-13 00:51:41

wink MadameD and Headfirst grin

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Just read the thread wondering the lady who slapped was the lady with the original party.

Clumsy I really hope your DD has no lasting marks and that she is ok.

differentnameforthis Tue 09-Apr-13 03:36:24

TumbleWeeds

Your post on Monday at 14:01 is making way too many assumptions. Op didn't say her daughter attacked, hit, bit that little boy.

My daughter, now 4, but at the time 2, was attacked in the school playground while waiting for her sister. The child that did it was about 4, (her mother was somewhere, certainly not watching her). She took my daughter by the hair and violently shook her head. I ran over as soon as it started (dd was in the sandpit) and removed this child's hands from my daughter's hair & told her to stop (yes, even when she saw me, she didn't let go).

I did not touch that other child other than to remove her hands from my daughter, and I did so as gently as I could. I picked up my child & walked away, and went to find her mother (who by now had seen what was happening, saw me walk towards her & started to walk off, to hide - leaving her daughter in the sandpit, I will add.)

I was beyond livid. I told her what her child did & walked away.

The next day (after being told by several other parents that this isn't the first time she had attacked a younger child) I reported the incident & the little girl was banned form school grounds.

My point is, I was raging! But I didn't, at any time during the attack even THINK it was my place to hit the other little girl! Because I was able to control my emotions, and my anger & not assault a child.

This motehr should have been able to do that too, regardless of what op's daughter did/didn't do to her child.

quietlysuggests Tue 09-Apr-13 05:11:44

will you come back and update us OP?

TumbleWeeds Tue 09-Apr-13 07:41:24

different If you read the thread I have said before and after that post, several times that I didn't agree with the other woman action.

I was only trying to give another way at what might have happened before the OP updated us re the bruise etc...
Because tbh from what she said originally, there was no way you could say whether she was actually letting her dd get away with murder or not. And with all posters saying she should call the Police, it was really important that she looked at her own actions before creating a huge issue that could have backfired on her.

But once again I have NEVER said that it was OK to smack her dd, quite the opposite.

AugustaProdworthy Tue 09-Apr-13 07:46:59

Please update OP. I would like to know what police do in these situations and hope your DD is ok.

DaemonPantalaemon Tue 09-Apr-13 08:05:04

OP has left the building. I repeat, OP has left the building.

Moominsarehippos Tue 09-Apr-13 08:05:21

Well, is it? Isn't it? Is it in the DM today?

stressyBessy22 Tue 09-Apr-13 08:25:22