what behaviour to expect from 9/10 year old boy?

(57 Posts)

how in control are they? how much can you expect from them interms of keeping their temper, not hitting, being gentle with little ones?

HarkTheHassledAngelsSing Sat 22-Dec-07 07:52:33

I think it varies hugely - my 9.5 year old DS2 can be quite hard on his younger brother (expects him to have the same level of understanding, etc., gets cross when DS3 has a strop) and certainly has hit him, but very rarely. I think DS1 was a lot more aware of acceptable behaviour when he was 9 or 10.

can i ask your advice?
mt friend has a son who is 9 or 10 i'm not sure which.9 i think.

and he is SO rough with the younger ones.
he kicked my 7 year old in the balls a while agoshock and is constantly fighting with the other kids. and yesterday when they were all playing here, he slammed my 4 year old's fingers in the door. my ds lost the skin on all of his knuckles and was so upset it's unreal. we had to sit with ice packs on his hand etc.

she went off to talk to him and came down saying that he had said sorry.

i just don';t think that is good enough. if my seven year old did somehing like he would have been in trouble! i know it probably wasn't intentional but if he hadn't been excludung my child it wouldn't have happened.

i was talking to dh about it and saying 'what has to happen to make her do something' and dh reckons she nevcer will-he's reached this age without her controlling him-she never will now, and if that is true, it throws up loads of other questions....


please? am i over reacting?

lyra41 Sat 22-Dec-07 08:35:30

it does sound like she has real problems with him. Does he have a dad on the scene?

oh yes-parents happily married-very strong family etc

lyra41 Sat 22-Dec-07 08:42:11

Hmm, I don't know how you can handle this. How much do you see of them? All I can suggest is that you supervise the children closely when he's around to try to prevent your own children getting hurt.

Does your friend ask for any advice about him, or does she think he's normal?

a while ago we all talked as a group about how some us felt that he went too far and was hurting the others . she thought it happened when he was bored and we all came up with tactics etc.
she never seems to actually tell him off. she has a very gentle parenting style and has lots of discussions with him which is great but sometimes...i think he needs to know that he done wrong! i never hear that he has been on a computer ban or anything.

i don't know-some real acknowledgement yesterday about how badly hurt my ds2 was would have been nice.

dirtygertiefromnumber30 Sat 22-Dec-07 09:05:00

i had a friend like this janitor, the final straw was when her ds and my ds were upstairs playing I could hear lots of bumps and crashes. When i went to check on them, her ds had totally destroyed my ds' room (smashed glass picture frames, pulled shelves off wall, ripped down posters etc). I called my friend upstairs to see what had happened and she calmly said "oh dear, what a mess. come now boys, lets have a tidy up"

She fully admitted it would have been her ds who had created the mess so i told her it would be best if the went home, i would deal with the tidying up. (my ds was crying his eyes out)

When i spoke to her later she said that she had made her ds a babychino (frothy milk with choc on top) with her new coffee machine because he was so upset!!!

Anyway, from that time on we have seen considerably less of them. How close are you to this friend? Can you just limit the time your dcs play with her ds?

we are quite close and the children all go to the same school.it's awkward.sad

poor ds2-he couldn't speak properly for about 30 mins-he was just gulping like mad.

oh well-no point spoiling christmas by worrying about it. i just wish i could do confrontation because i would say something and hang the consequences.

mmelody Sat 22-Dec-07 09:27:22

I have a friend with a similar son janitor. Its really hare because while I love her to bits I find her parenting of him to be unbelievably frustrating..especially when the little ones get hurt as we have another friend with a toddler and a 3 year old. He gets frustrated with them and really shouts in their faces and will get physical if he gets the chance. My friend like yours talks of screen ban time when I think he needs a good bollocking there and then (scuse language)
I have explained to my friend that I find it frustrating and she pays lip service to it but never changes. I kind of step in now (as does other friend) and tell him off as if he were one of mine.

mmelody Sat 22-Dec-07 09:27:49

hare *hard

dirtygertiefromnumber30 Sat 22-Dec-07 09:32:35

hmm, well apart from not seeing them so often or totally supervising their play there's not much you can do. I agree that her parenting style seems too lenient but it would be very awkward to discuss it with her!

your poor ds though sad

HarkTheHassledAngelsSing Sat 22-Dec-07 10:36:21

None of this boy's behaviour is "age appropriate", IFSWIM - most 9 year olds have a much clearer idea of boundaries. I don't agree that the mother has left it too late to turn it round though - it can still be undone.
I'm with you on non-confrontation (it's my lifestyle choice!) and don't know what I would do in your situation - can you pass the buck to any mutual friends who are better at confrontation? Because that's what I think this situation needs - if the boy is left unchallenged, then by 12 or 13 it will be too late.

i know what you meansad
i just don't know what to do.

have tried chatting to her about it in a gentle way.

she must feel wful because 'we' as a group have said that we are not happy with his behaviour but he still behaves badly.

he still has mad tantrums and screams and lashes out. sometimes he can be a really nice kid but he just ....

SHE infuruates me because she doesn't seem to take any action.

KITTYmaspudding Sat 22-Dec-07 10:44:36

Perhaps she doesn't know how?
Tbh you have to protect your children from him. no matter how much you like her. You can't expose your kids to his violence, it wouldn't be fair sad

cornsilk Sat 22-Dec-07 10:45:07

I have a 9 year old and IME they can quite quickly get 'out of control' when they are in 'unfamiliar' situations without the normal boundaries and playing at someone elses house seems to be the main potential for trouble! They really need to know who the adult in charge is and when they are in someone elses house it can be confusing. Next time you need to be really assertive with him throughout his stay and constantly and very firmly reinforce your rules. If you keep doing this he will learn. You cannot assume that a 9 year old just knows how they are expected to behave in different situations. Some do, some don't.

KITTYmaspudding Sat 22-Dec-07 10:48:27

Oh yes I too have a 9 year old ds and I would say that he and all of his friends would not behave like that. Ds2 (8) and his mates would know better as well. no matter how rough their play gets.

ahundredtimes Sat 22-Dec-07 10:48:41

Perhaps she doesn't know what to do?

Perhaps she knows what will happen if she bollocks him in front of you and would rather deal with his tantrum at home?

I feel a bit sorry for her in a way MMJ - and for your ds of^course.

She sounds like she's spent years saying 'please don't do that ds' and doesn't know where else to go when he ignores her. Some children are challenging, and he sounds like he's one of them.

My approach would be more friendly and sympathetic I think. I'd want to say to her 'Crikey that thing with the door, it made me think it must be quite hard for you if your ds carries on like this at home a lot.' and see if she wants to talk? She might appreciate support?

i have a seven year old ds and no way does he behave like this and when he does behave badly he knows about it!!!

KITTYmaspudding Sat 22-Dec-07 10:50:42

Do you think the child might have 'problems' or do you think it's soley related to ineffective/ineffectual parenting?

cornsilk Sat 22-Dec-07 10:52:35

My ds wouldn't play like that either - but my point is that if I just let he and his friends do what they want they are wild. 9 year old boys need firm boundaries. The op could try to apply these in her house as the child's mum isn't and it is her house. It might make a difference and it also might help his mum.

HarkTheHassledAngelsSing Sat 22-Dec-07 10:53:51

I was going to ask the same as Kitty - it strikes me that there could be other issues apart from ineffectual parenting. Not quite sure what though. Is there a teacher you could have a quiet word with?

i don't know.
he is very very bright-g and t definitely.she says that shouting at him doesn't work it just makes him worse.

i have known him since he was a toddler and he has always been a challenge so who knows.

cornsilk Sat 22-Dec-07 10:54:18

agree with a hundred times - a supportive ear would be better than a cold shoulder.

i wouldn't give a cold shoulder! i love her to bits! she's lovely! which is what makes it hard!!!

cornsilk Sat 22-Dec-07 10:57:21

Why don't you try to discuss with his mum how you can control the play situation to make it easier for him. She will know when he struggles e.g when he's hungry, tired etc. Maybe the play goes on for too long. There has got to be a way round this.

thank you all for your ideas and input. i knew i wasn't being unreasonable. it will have to be a job for the new year-to talk to her .
i think i should stop posting about it as i'm getting all stressed thinking about it and it's time to have fun and relax now!!!

ScarletA Sat 22-Dec-07 11:00:15

My best friend's son is a bit like this. And she swings between letting him get away with it or telling him off ie is never consistent. She is VERY hard on older daughter though - who is THE most lovely child sad.

I have tried to say things over the years but it has largely fallen on deaf ears, she just gets upset and defensive and parents in exactly the same way. It is so bad that I find it difficult to spend time together as two families, her son is fine (ish) when she is not around but regresses to a spoilt, aggressive, whining monster in her presence and the whole thing just winds me up so much I now actively avoid situations where we will all be together. Which is a shame because my kids love both her kids - despite how nasty he can be to them.

I suppose what I am trying to say is that say something if it would make you feel better, but don't expect her to parent any differently - not radically so anyway. You have to find a way coping with the boy's behaviour - I certainly am not shy of telling off my friend's boy if I feel it is necessary.

I personally find the practice of endlessly explaining everything to a difficult child very counterproductive. A firm no and a brief explanation of why is sufficient - entering into lengthy reasonings with kids who are having tantrums (whatever age they are) just spins the silly behaviour out for as long as the dialogue goes on - but that's another thread altoghether...

My sympathy with your situation x

pinetreedog Sat 22-Dec-07 11:00:43

children have to be taught how to deal with angry feelings. Not by shouting but by talking through the feelings, recognising them and then doing something about them. Counting to ten, five deep breaths, walking away before coming back to speak, whatever it mightbe.

I find it unacceptable how many children just say these days, 'i have a very short temper' as if that is excuse enough for aggressive behaviour toward sothers.

pinetreedog Sat 22-Dec-07 11:04:55

I've just read whole thread. Yes, he should be tsaking more responsibility by saying sorry himself, by seeing the results of his behaviour and by having consequences for this sort of beahviour.

That's all the basic stuff.

pollyannainexcelsis Sat 22-Dec-07 11:05:59

my ds is a bit like this - although he doesn't get violent because he loses his temper, but he goes overboard in his play fighting - and doesn't understand boundaries. He is dyspraxic though, and doesn't get messages from other children when they have had enough. He also completely "loses it" sometimes when he is frustrated. He is very kind and gentle to toddlers/babies.

coldtits Sat 22-Dec-07 11:08:15

How about disinviting him?

Because I know for sure that if my little boy had been kicked in the balls by an older child, that child would not be coming back into my house, my child would not be expected to forgive and forget, and I would be making that perfectly clear to that child's mum.

If An adult had kicked another adult in the balls, not only would he not be forgiven and have it glossed over, he would be facing criminal charges.

*If this child doesn't learn to control his temper within the next year, he may face criminal charges anyway - the age of criminal responsibility is 10*

I wouldn't forgive his mother and father for not dealing with this, and i wouldn't exp[ect my child to forgive either. It's a horrible thing to do - maybe inform him (and his idiot parents) that if he ever does it to someone who does decide to press charges, he will have a violent criminal record, maybe she will consider NOT treating him like a 14 month old baby?

mummytheresa Sat 22-Dec-07 11:32:27

I banned a friends child from my house about 18 months ago.
I didnt say it outright as I am a bit of a coward, but the children were coming about twice a week and destroying things, writing on furniture with lipstick they 'found' in my handbag, my youngest would always get hurt and be in tears, the oldest would be called names etc.
Whenever my friend suggested to come in for a cup of tea I was always too busy, too messy, husband is home.., and sugested we went to hers or out.
I never terminated the friendship but changed the footing of it so that we were always somewhere that needed supervision and they were not left to run wild. I also started to tell them off as though they were my children instead of waiting for her to do it.

KITTYmaspudding Sat 22-Dec-07 11:33:53

mmj, you do like this child's mother and want to carry on seeing her but what about you children? Do you honestly think talking to her in the new year is going to make any lasting difference?
I suppose it might work if you lay down the law in your own home and tell him off.
Sorry to to be negative but I don't think talking to her is going to stop her son beating up your children and causing them great distress sad

KITTYmaspudding Sat 22-Dec-07 11:36:04

coldtits, I agree with you. harsh as it might seem , the kid deserves to be punished, really punished.

lots to think aboutsad

her younger son is ds1's best friend. and he is fab.

the phone just went and it was my friend phoning to see how ds2 was!shock
i totally fudged it and didn't say anythingsad

coldtits Sat 22-Dec-07 11:53:10

Well you can still invite the younger son! You don't have to ban the whole family - but it would send a lou7d clear message to all concerned that the older child's behavior is not socially acceptable if you make a stand - really you will be doing him a favour - what if he is kicking the crap out of someone in 3 years time, and then kicks a copper in the bollocks?

coldtits Sat 22-Dec-07 11:53:56

It's ok - don't worry it's really hard to speak your mind when you're under pressure.

MeMySonAndI Sat 22-Dec-07 12:07:34

Or, you can meet without the children. That's what we do with a couple we know well, and we like as we couldn't bear the behaviour of their children or pay for damaged furniture every time they came.

She says her son loves mine to bits, that wants them to keep in touch and has ring me in several ocassions asking if her child can come for a sleepover at our house (!) but then, once that you have found the child kicking DS's head while he was curled up on the floor, you really don't give a s**t on how much the other child "loves" your child. Not safe, very stressful for us all... no point in insisting.... and there is also a point where you have to be a good mum too and stand for your own children's well being. (As DS clearly put it after one incident blush)

yulemoonfiend Sat 22-Dec-07 12:09:43

give her a copy of How To Talk So Children Will Listen and Listen So Children Will Talk for xmas. It's very good on postivie parenting techniques for older children.

lljkk Sat 22-Dec-07 12:44:01

I think people are being too hard on the older boy, he did a dumb thing, but he's only a dumb little kid (by implication of his age). It's not his fault he's not being held to account.
I would speak calmly to the friend about how you feel the kick in the groin went over the line of normal boyish behaviour, really hurt your own boy. Ask your friend for how she thinks to prevent a recurrence, because otherwise you're simply afraid to let your lad alone with him, again.

A lot of the other lines taken by other people (including explicitly not inviting the older lad, or giving a parenting book, cringe) means that janitor may as well kiss the friendship goodbye with this family, if that's what you want, so be it.

KITTYmaspudding Sat 22-Dec-07 12:54:50

I disagree lljkk, at 9 he is accountable for his behviour and he should know better.
You could say it's not his "fault" because his mother hasn't shown him how to behave, nor has she punished him in any way it seems, still he will know that what he did is wrong, yet he choses to do it because he can and he knows there will be no consequences.

Saturn74 Sat 22-Dec-07 13:05:28

I have been in a similar situation, tmmj.

And when my children kept getting hurt, and the mother of the other children didn't deal with it effectively, despite me asking her to, I stepped in.

I told the children in no uncertain terms that it was unacceptable behaviour, that if it happened again we wouldn't meet up with them anymore.

The children dealt with it really well, and they moderated their behaviour.

The mother burst into tears, and kept making sarcastic references eg: "oh, don't laugh too loud, children, or Humphrey will tell you off". hmm

We don't see them anymore.

It's a shame - but I couldn't stand by and let my children be bitten, kicked, pushed down stairs and verbally teased any longer.

coldtits Sat 22-Dec-07 13:06:56

He wouldn't do it in front of his headteacher, would he? therefore he knows it is wrong.

ds is ten and as gentle as anything - very considerate of all people,esp those younger...never seen him get cross,though I know he can get cross as he does vent his anger from time to time, but only appropriately.

yulemoonfiend Sat 22-Dec-07 13:22:45

lljkk - I wasn't being srious about the book, sigh.

yulemoonfiend Sat 22-Dec-07 13:26:37

Meant to add, we have a list of golden 'house' rules up for the benefit of my 2 boys.(stuff like, no climbing on furniture, no name calling, shouting or hitting, respect etc, We made them up together and the rules apply to adults too!) So when we have difficult children round, we very gently but firmly go through the rules when the children arrive. The parents often then say things like ''Algernon, you've just broken fmf's rules'' so it's not like I have to enforce them on other people's children and risk treading on parenting toes.

cornsilk Sat 22-Dec-07 13:35:09

Yulemoonfiend that kind of approach is exactly what 9 year old boys need and is the point I was trying to make earlier about it making it easier for his mum if he knows what the rules are in someone elses house.

yulemoonfiend Sat 22-Dec-07 13:38:07

grin Do you think I am finally getting the hang of this parenting lark after 10 years?

cornsilk Sat 22-Dec-07 13:40:58

Well I'm impressed! (And will be pinching that particular parenting technique!)

Blossomhill Sat 22-Dec-07 13:59:39

My 10 yr old ds is great with little ones and honestly wouldn't behave like that. He has never been boisterous as such.

yulemoonfiend Sat 22-Dec-07 14:04:52

my ds is fantastic with younger children. Just not his little brother...!
But then he does astonishing things like use his own money to buy his brother a compouter game which younger ds has been craving and craving. Bless.

ahundredtimes Sat 22-Dec-07 14:17:02

My best friend has told my ds1 off lots of times. He used to be more boisterous than he is now, and sometimes I'd feel a bit like Humphry's friend, because it is a bit embarrassing. And often she'd fly at him - but it was rarely without good cause.

I didn't make remarks or anything, because it WAS justified. It's a tricky area this though. She has two girls and I used to think that her expectations were really high. They might not have been though in retrospect. And there's such an edge of Do-Goodery about taking other people's children in hand.

I felt much better when she said to me 'he's a tricky bugger isn't he?' and we could talk about it.

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