wwyd - ds pushed (fully clothed) in pool by other kid

(203 Posts)
duplotractor Sun 27-Jan-13 09:16:25

we are on holiday and I'd been for a swim in the hotel pool with my ds1. After we'd finished I was tidying uo and my ds was waiting for me - quite near the edge of the pool but he is sensible and I had my eyes on him the whole time.

Suddenly a boy - aged about 6/7- raced up and pushed ds in. I rushed in fully clothed to pull him out. I wasn't out of my depth but 2yo ds most defintely was. It was horrifying seeing my child submerged in the water.

My son was not surprisingly hysterical when I pulled him out and coughing etc.

The dad of the boy picked up his son and started hurrying away sort of poking his boy in the cheek as he went. I shouted after them "you could have killed my son". But they were hurrying fast and I wasn't really trying to catch them anyway.

Lots of people from around the pool were watching and staff came hurrying forward (obviously not wanting a scene). Suggested going to the indoor changing rooms to dry off and carried our bags for us. We were both soaking wet.

I just feel really traumatised and shaken by it now. Should I have remonstrated more with the boy/his dad or conplained to the pool attendants?? They obviously knoow what happened but should I have made more of a fuss.

duplotractor Sun 27-Jan-13 09:18:38

The pool attendants were sympathetic and got us water etc but I was crying and at the time it didn't occur to me to strat complaing about the boy.

BertieBotts Sun 27-Jan-13 09:25:05

shock You should have put his age in the title - I assumed he was older and it was a prank (still not great obv) - but who pushes a toddler into the water? That's horrendous.

I don't know about complaining - I'm not sure what the hotel staff could do? I mean presumably they would know who the other family are if they are guests.

Also you need to get DS checked out by a doctor because he might have inhaled some water. Even if he seems fine, get him checked over ASAP just in case.

meditrina Sun 27-Jan-13 09:27:01

The father will know how dangerous it was. And nothing you say will make any real difference to the way he disciplines his DC.

And it is probably better that your DC does not hear the unexpurgated version of your initial reaction. I hope he's ok now.

HDee Sun 27-Jan-13 09:28:42

It was a 6 year old boy thinking he was being funny, in holiday mode, and not considering the consequences. It's why we have to supervise our children, because they are prone to stupidity.

But there is no way a two year old should have been out of arms reach of you near water anyway. He could just as easily have tripped or slipped in himself.

ohforfoxsake Sun 27-Jan-13 09:29:37

I would complain to the hotel management and your rep if you have one.

Knowing I'd have to see that arsehole parent at breakfast would ruin things for me as I'd want to yell at him.

What happened was horrible for both of you, but he handled it really badly.

You might not achieve much by complaining, but you'll feel better and the hotel may make an effort to give you a better holiday while you are there.

BertieBotts Sun 27-Jan-13 09:30:12

In fact the pool attendants should have arranged this - I'm sure they must know the risks!

If he has any of the following symptoms in fact you need to take him to A+E:

Persistent coughing lasting over 20 minutes
Sudden tiredness or lack of energy (excepting usual nap times etc)
Chest pain (or any pain as small children are not great at identifying where it's coming from)
Difficulty breathing (although I'm sure this one is obvious!)

Other than that out of hours will probably be ok, but I wouldn't leave it until Monday.

duplotractor Sun 27-Jan-13 09:30:24

oh god yeah - I need to take him to the doctors. I was thinking that initially as well but when he stopped crying I was so relieved that I forgot about it. It was an outdoor pool so not sure how clean it was at all.

SavoyCabbage Sun 27-Jan-13 09:30:51

I dot think there's much the hotel could do really. You didn't see it coming and neither did the pool attendants.

I would gloss over it with your ds. I don't blame you for being shaken up.

ohforfoxsake Sun 27-Jan-13 09:31:10

HDee bad form of you to turn this on the OP.

HDee Sun 27-Jan-13 09:31:29

Ohforfoxsake, ridiculous. Why would you want to dwell on it? Why is the other parent an arsehole? Kids do stupid stuff.

HDee Sun 27-Jan-13 09:32:29

Bad form? So we always have to take the view that the OP holds no responsibility? I missed that memo, sorry. It wasn't in the rules when I signed up.

ohforfoxsake Sun 27-Jan-13 09:33:28

What would you do Hdee if your child ha done the pushing? Laugh and tell the OP to get a sense of humour?

Or if your toddler had been pushed in? Tell him to get over it?

BertieBotts Sun 27-Jan-13 09:35:27

I agree there's nothing the hotel can do. They can't control the behaviour of the other guests. However the pool attendants should have directed you to medical attention because of your DS's age. He will in all likelihood be fine but it's best to get young children checked out if they've fallen into water because they can panic and inhale it - there is a reflex which should prevent this, but best to be safe really.

HDee Sun 27-Jan-13 09:36:57

No, offs, I would have told him off and made him understand how dangerous it was. Why do you assume the other parent hasn't done this? He walked away jabbing the boy's cheek.

duplotractor Sun 27-Jan-13 09:37:44

thanks for quick replies. I will ask the hotel reception re the doctor issue - I think they were horrified too.

Re ds being out of arms reach - he is sensible and has never fallen in a pool before - he was maybe 1 foot from the edge and I had my eyes on him. I obviously would never leave him unattended near water but he wasn't I was near just packing our stuff away.

HDee Sun 27-Jan-13 09:38:05

If my toddler had been pushed in, I'd get over it, yes. I'd dry him off, make him feel better, feed him a biscuit and he'd probably forget pretty soon.

PoppyWearer Sun 27-Jan-13 09:38:06

Sounds horrific, OP.

perplexedpirate Sun 27-Jan-13 09:39:05

Sorry you are shaken up OP, that must be horrible.
However, there is no way a 2 yr old old is 'sensible' enough to be left out of direct reach by a pool.
Similarly, although the 6 yr old did a very stupid and mean-spirited thing, at 6 he isn't really responsible. It sounds like he got a good telling off from his dad as well.
I'm not sure what complaining about him (them?) will achieve.

MarshaBrady Sun 27-Jan-13 09:39:11

That's awful. And you can be very close and not stop a child shoving a toddler. Poor little thing.

HDee Sun 27-Jan-13 09:39:38

The words sensible and two-years-old dont really belong in the same sentence do they? They are unpredictable. However, this was just a stupid accident. Thank God you we paying attention, but dwelling on it won't help anyone.

OddBoots Sun 27-Jan-13 09:42:07

HDee " Why is the other parent an arsehole? Kids do stupid stuff."

Maybe because they didn't stay to make sure the toddler was okay, or make the 6 year old face the consequences of what they had done, or say sorry?

duplotractor Sun 27-Jan-13 09:43:26

I was maybe a metre away from my son. Loads of 2/3 yos I know are trusted to walk along quiet streets next to their mum (say when mum pushoing a buggy) wbo jumping in the road.

Notquitegrownup Sun 27-Jan-13 09:44:28

Your poor ds - and poor you too. What a shock!!

Of course the other family should have apologised to you, profusely and lengthily. Maybe they panicked however. What their ds did was very dangerous indeed and must have been awful, for everyone, to watch. Whilst my ds1 didn't do anythiing that dangerous, he did do some very rash things quite out of the blue at that age, and whilst I always punished him I am aware that I may not, at the same time, have dealt with the other people involved as I ought. My focus, I think, was usually remove him from the place/situation, in order to gain control of the situation and then to punish him appropriately. I always used to try to apologise later - maybe they will do the same and seek you out to apologise?

It sounds as if you did all that you could, You made sure that your ds was safe and your priority at the time was to calm him, and to get him safe and dry, with the help of the staff there. I think that it's important to keep this in perspective for him, and not let it put him off swimming pools. Swimming together can bring so much fun, and what happened was very very rare. Try to reassure your son as much as you can ("Goodness, that was so unlucky" and "It's very very sllly to run near swimming pools in case you knock someone in" )and vent the anger which you must be very rightly feeling on here. smile

So glad that your ds is OK. Enjoy the rest of your holiday.

PPT Sun 27-Jan-13 09:44:52

duplotractor- this is in no way your fault- you were supervising your son- if it weren't for the other boy, your son wouldn't have fallen in- and you were close enough to jump in and rescue him.

Try (hard as it might be) not to dwell further on this, or let it ruin your holiday. It was a stupid thing for the older boy to do, but I'd leave it now. Don't let this mar enjoying further experiences in the pool. I'd get your son swimming again as soon as is reasonable, as it'd be sad to develop any fears.

HDee Sun 27-Jan-13 09:44:52

I never make mine say sorry, and I really don't think I'd have hung around in this situation for long either. I'm not the sort of person to stand and take a roasting for something out of my control.

Sorry is just a word. What would seeing a hysterical, soaking wet child and mote have achieved?

duplotractor Sun 27-Jan-13 09:45:11

My ds always wear reins on the street but I think a pool when I'm watching him and nearby is less dangerous.

Nishky Sun 27-Jan-13 09:47:03

I agree with HDee - why on earth did you think a 2 year old was safe out of your reach near water? The ' he's sensible' doesn't wash with me eithe I am afraid.

HDee Sun 27-Jan-13 09:47:06

Duplo, I have had a few two year olds, and on a road with cars I would never, ever trust one of them not to wander into the road. You honestly know people with two year olds who let their child walk next to a road without being held?

OddBoots Sun 27-Jan-13 09:47:30

If my child caused another child harm I would at the very least stay around to make sure there was no major injury and I would apologise for not keeping my child under my control. Isn't that the very minimum one should do?

HDee Sun 27-Jan-13 09:48:54

Yes, if it was a push in a soft play area, or a knock on the head with a toy, but not in the situation described.

5madthings Sun 27-Jan-13 09:49:01

Well its not very nice but sometimes kids do silly things, the 'pusher' wont have thought about the consequences.

If my child did that i would be very cross and would apologise myself to you but i agree you shouldnt have let him stand my the edge of the pool on his own.

My youngest is two and when by the pool or any water she must hold my hand and ds4 who.is four must stay right by me. Children are not sensible?! And even the most sensible kid in the world has moments where they do something stupid.

Anyway get your son checked out and i hope he is ok. Maybe the boy and the dad wl apologise if they see you again, i suspect he was mortified tbh.

duplotractor Sun 27-Jan-13 09:52:09

The dad didnt really say anything to me though I think he would have got in to get ds if I wasnt already doing so. Re the road comment - I wouldn't not hold my ds on a road but yes I have seen people with multiple children have the older ones walk alongside them on the inside of the pavement.

BackforGood Sun 27-Jan-13 09:53:53

What 5madthings and others have said.
Understandably you were shaken up and scared, but the other little child was 6 - he'd have not thought through the "possibles" and "what ifs" any more than you did - and you are both an adult and a parent. The other child's parent was on the scene straight away and clearly - from your description - giving him what for. He was probably embarassed and dealt with it the best way he could. No idea why you are thinking of complaining to pool attendants - what are they supposed to do, except perhaps suggest that non swimming infants shouldn't be poolside of their parents at all times ?

JenaiMorris Sun 27-Jan-13 09:53:59

I think I would have dragged ds away in the manner this father did, and seek you out later to apologise.

Your toddler should not have been so close to the pool - do you know how easy it is for a small child to drown before anyone even realises they've slipped into the water?

Letmeintroducemyself Sun 27-Jan-13 09:56:57

I hesitate to post but I am going to.

My son nearly drowned in my sister's pool, which is gated off - the latch couldn't have caught.

I was in the kitchen over looking the pool and I heard a splash - my initial thought was to wonder how the dog had got over the fence - then the penny dropped and I realised it was probably DS.

It seemed like forever but he was rising back up when I went out - the covers were on the pool so if I hadn't heard the splash ........

I saved my hysterics for when ds wasn't about (I also didn't realise I should have called doctor).

Since then - I do not remove arms bands from my DCs until we are away from pool area anywhere and the holiday rule is no arm bands no swimming.

I learned from our lucky escape - which would have been my fault entirely - and so should the OP.

You should have given dc a hug and not worried about other family. I am vert glad ds is old though.

duplotractor Sun 27-Jan-13 09:57:18

My ds was being watched all the time though and I was just shoving our swimming stuff in a bag. I honestly would not have left him unattended but short of putting him on reins I couldn''t hold onto him at all times.

Letmeintroducemyself Sun 27-Jan-13 10:00:06

duplo unless you change your attitude your ds is an accident waiting to happen - you don't hold his hand on the road? my 5 year old holds my hands on the road.

seriously it only takes a second as this incident should have shown you.

duplotractor Sun 27-Jan-13 10:03:10

I said I do hold my son by the road. But I view a swimming pool where I am watching (and talking to) him as slightly less dangerous. After all it takes a few mins to drown but I had him out the water in seconds.

TheNebulousBoojum Sun 27-Jan-13 10:03:10

Perhaps the hotel staff could send someone to have a word with the parents of the other child, reminding them about pool safety and the rules. That is if they are resident there.
OP, it wasn't your fault but I would seriously consider putting yourself between your son and the water when you are packing, or getting him to sit for on the bench.
You might not be able to physically hold him all the time, but you need to be more aware.
Next time he could fall in of his own accord.

LIZS Sun 27-Jan-13 10:07:26

Agree it would be best if hotel staff reminded family of behaviour code in pool area and even that a further breech could mean they cannot use it again. Their priority ahs to be the safety of other guests. Of course it is possible that the child has SEN or in any case should have been better supervised anyway if prone to such impulsive actions.

specialsubject Sun 27-Jan-13 10:09:19

nasty fright all round - and the other kid should have been disciplined and told to apologise. Pushing people into water is not a jolly jape even though all kids want to do it. Nothing the attendants could do.

but you were right there to rescue your child, which you did. He'll be fine. If he had been unconscious, even for a moment, it is an A and E job (secondary drowning) but otherwise unless he shows unusual symptoms, don't worry.

and get him back in the water ASAP.

JenaiMorris Sun 27-Jan-13 10:09:59

it takes a few mins to drown but I had him out the water in seconds.

Oh that's alright then hmm

Seriously, accidents happen and nobody's perfect but you do seem a little in denial as to your role in this.

Letmeintroducemyself Sun 27-Jan-13 10:10:47

sorry misread your post and thought it said you didn't - apologies

FannyFifer Sun 27-Jan-13 10:16:46

Can't believe people are having a go at the OP.

Both my children were sensible as toddlers. If I said stand there and don't move then that's exactly what they did.

Hope your little one is ok, you were right beside him and got him out quickly so try not to worry.

Cantbelieveitsnotbutter Sun 27-Jan-13 10:17:35

So how do other mums manage packing the stuff up when you go swimming and a 2yo? She had an eye on him enough to see what happened, enough to get him out.

Op the dad should have stayed to make sure your ds was ok & apologise. Or be talking to the rep about who you are to apologise.

mercibucket Sun 27-Jan-13 10:18:09

I would speak to hotel management to see if that boy can be banned from being poolside. I doubt there's much else you can do. Agree with all the posters who suggest playing it down to your son and getting him back in the water as soon as possible. Absolutely disagree with any poster who suggests this was anything to do with you or letting your son stand near the pool. This is entirely the fault of a very poorly brought up child with useless parents, or alternatively the actions of a child with some kind of special need who was being poorly supervised by his parents.
Hope you enjoy the rest of your holiday and don't let this spoil things for you

mercibucket Sun 27-Jan-13 10:18:10

I would speak to hotel management to see if that boy can be banned from being poolside. I doubt there's much else you can do. Agree with all the posters who suggest playing it down to your son and getting him back in the water as soon as possible. Absolutely disagree with any poster who suggests this was anything to do with you or letting your son stand near the pool. This is entirely the fault of a very poorly brought up child with useless parents, or alternatively the actions of a child with some kind of special need who was being poorly supervised by his parents.
Hope you enjoy the rest of your holiday and don't let this spoil things for you

Nishky Sun 27-Jan-13 10:20:13

Fanny- did you stand them next to a pool when on holiday and they are likely to be excited though

My toddlers would have been involved in helping me pack the bag rather than being told to stand still. Thus ensuring they are with me and toddlers enjoy that sort of thing

Nishky Sun 27-Jan-13 10:21:33

Oh come on mercibucket- ban the child from the poolside? You have to be kidding.

WhereMyMilk Sun 27-Jan-13 10:22:17

HDee-you wouldn't apologise...seriously?

At best, poor manners. What do you think that teaches your children? That you can behave how you like with no consequences? An apology was necessary IMO but there again, I try to teach my children the right way to treat others...

5madthings Sun 27-Jan-13 10:22:38

We have no idea that the boy is poorly brought up!!! Even the best behaved children do things that are out if character and I doubt they can ban him. If it were my son I would not allow him in the pool for a day or two and he would be punished.

I have five children and some of mine have been very sensible toddlers but they can still slip and fall.mine sit down next to me away from the pool when I am sorting stuff.

I don't care how sensible a toddler is I wouldn't let them stand by the side of a pool unless they were holding my hand.

mercibucket Sun 27-Jan-13 10:33:54

Of course a hotel can ban people from using their facilities if they go round pushing fully clothed people into the pool. It's more a question of if they know who he is, in a large hotel complex obviously they wouldn't, so op will have to let it go.
And, obviously imo, any 6 year old who does this, unless they have some kind of 'issue', is poorly brought up. Quite likely they have never had to apologise for their actions, have parents who excuse their actions and minimise it with victim blaming, for instance.

skullcandy Sun 27-Jan-13 10:35:32

It is NOT your fault OP, you did nothing wrong, and all the smuggy smugs need to leave you alone.

Glad your son is ok. But, for the future, keep your DS sat on a chair/bench away from the pool edge while you pack.

HDee Sun 27-Jan-13 10:36:11

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

BertieBotts Sun 27-Jan-13 10:37:28

Children CAN drown in seconds so be aware - that's why you don't leave them alone in the bath even for a minute. I would be wary about a poolside more because of the slipping possibility.

I suppose at 6 if the boy didn't have any younger siblings they might not have known that most 2 year olds can't swim and it would be extremely dangerous to push them in, especially if he hadn't been taken swimming often. Still I hope the parents did impress upon him the seriousness of what happened.

KnightBusRider Sun 27-Jan-13 10:43:53

Jeez, I can't believe people are actually blaming the OP here.

She has already stated she was right there watching him and she obviously was because she had him out the pool in seconds.

Why be so bloody nasty and mean? Does it make you feel proud of yourself?

JenaiMorris Sun 27-Jan-13 10:44:27

I'm not blaming the OP.

I just find it odd that she cannot see that it is not OK to have a toddler so close to the poolside that they could either slip in or be pushed. He must have been right up to the edge.

Everything is someone else's responsibility - the pool attendants, the boy's father, the 6 yo boy himself...

5madthings Sun 27-Jan-13 10:45:22

No it doesn't mean he is poorly brought up. Children lack impulse control, he won't have understood the consequences of his actions. Children do silly things it doesn't mean they are badly brought up it means they are a child who will now hopefully be taught that what he did was wrong.

And yes the hotel can ban peoolkwand maybe for persistent our repeated bad behavior but for a one off incident from a young child who was silly it would be overkill.

duplotractor Sun 27-Jan-13 10:45:34

Well of course I wish I'd done things differently and probably won't be going back to that pool. I felt awful seeing the boy come up but not being quick enough to prevent it.

But it was a kids pool (yes I know kids can drown in hardly any water) and I was probably given my ds at least as much attention as other parents there. Always watching him from within a couple of metres but letting him move around a bit on his own - partic in the swallower part of pool.

I will speak to reception once my ds2 is awake (he wasn't at pool) and at least see what they say about a doctor. I reckon the pool attendants might know who the boy was so perhaps I will mention it again to them in unlikely event we go back.

5madthings Sun 27-Jan-13 10:47:06

Its not nasty or mean to point outthe obvious, a toddler shouldnt be standing by the edge of the pool on his own, even if she was right there. She wasn't close enough to grab him and stop him falling if he slipped.

duplotractor Sun 27-Jan-13 10:51:11

Now someone tells me about water inhalation I understand the risks but tbh I previously just thought I needed to be close enough to react quickly - not to prevent him jumping in. He has done baby swimming for 2 yrs now and never fallen in but when others have its just been about getting them out quick.

5madthings Sun 27-Jan-13 10:53:50

I am verysuprised the pool guards didn't get him checked out tbh.

It happened and was a shock to both of you, hope he is OK.

Water safety isn't always taken as seriously as it should be, as a parent its always good to expect the unexpected!

ProphetOfDoom Sun 27-Jan-13 10:54:56

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Also, the kid who did the pushing may have been as young as 4 but big for his age (I have a tall DS who was often mistaken for being quite a bit older than he was) so I don't think it's relevant or useful to rant about how 'badly brought up' he must be. All kids do at least one horrendous thing in childhood because they are kids and haven't got much in the way of impulse control or common sense.

Sorry you had such a fright OP, but shit happens and at least you and your DS are all right.

FlouncingMintyy Sun 27-Jan-13 10:57:29

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

HyvaPaiva Sun 27-Jan-13 10:57:43

The child who pushed him in needs to have it explained to him as dangerous. The parent of that child should have apologised and helped you, as well as dealing with their child.

You however are taking no responsibility for the fact that had you sufficiently watched your son and sufficiently kept him out of danger's way, this wouldn't have happened. He's TWO! Sensible and careful he may be but he's two. And I for one won't listen to it being 'bad form' to question someone's parenting. Fact is, you don't stand a two year old next to a pool ever and those who talk this away to placate the OP are just as wrong.


larrygrylls Sun 27-Jan-13 10:59:53

As ever on here, so much hysteria.

Why on earth should you not let a 2 year old stand on the edge of a pool in your sightline? What is the worst that can happen? He falls him and you jump in and get him out. How on earth does anyone supervise young families of more than one? Assume both parents are there all the time? Pay for help? On holiday, with my 3 and 2 year old, they can potter around where they like as long as I know I can quickly get to them if they get into trouble. Children need to learn awareness of safety issues themselves and that means allowing them to take some risks. A paediatrician interviewed recently said the prevalence of older children in A&E after accidents was due to the mad safety culture we have now. Little children are not allowed to make little mistakes and so consider themselves invulnerable and take big risks as they get older.

A 6 year old should not push a 2 year old he does not know in the pool. How is that ever excusable? If he has special issues, he needs appropriate supervision. If not, he is clearly not well brought up and I would have thought the hotel should take some sort of sanction, at least a formal warning to his parents or something that he would be banned if it happened again. I would be so furious if a big hulking 6 year old pushed my 2 year old into the water. I would not consider it "high spirits" or anything like that. I would at the very least expect a major apology from both the child and his parents.

And, as for hospital for a 2 year old swallowing water, why? Human beings are designed to occasionally choke on water and survive. If every time I accidentally breathed in water while playing in the pool with my brother as a child, I was taken to hospital, I would have spent most of my holidays there. Sure, if I was sick or showed some symptoms of being unwell, but not otherwise. The toddler just needs some big cuddles, some reassurance and a nice drink and something to eat when he calms down and then get on with the holiday.

JenaiMorris Sun 27-Jan-13 11:02:23

There is no such thing as an NT child who is entirely predictable. Some are less impulsive than others, but none can be trusted to never do ridiculous, dangerous things.

When he was about 5, my own ds ran out into a side road, something I swore he would never do, because he was so aware of road safety and so sensible near traffic. It only happened once, but without wishing to be melodramatic once is all it takes. (He was fine btw - just scared the hell out of me!).

Anyone witnessing that would have been quite justified in thinking that I was naive, a little negligent even.

I don't keep him strapped to my side of course (well, not at 12 wink ) or wrap him in cotton wool - but it was a wake-up call.

ProphetOfDoom Sun 27-Jan-13 11:02:46

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

FlouncingMintyy Sun 27-Jan-13 11:05:47

As ever, on here, too much victim blaming (don't we all love it?) and not enough sensible advice for the op.

Op I would ask the hotel management to speak to the family of the boy who pushed your son into the water. This incident needs to be followed-up so that the child, who is still only 6 after all, realises just how serious this could have been and is in no way a funny joke or prank at all. His dad may have disciplined him, but then again he may not. I am quite sure that the hotel would not want a drowned toddler on their records so they need to follow this incident up.

Hope you are feeling a little better now.

seeker Sun 27-Jan-13 11:10:16

If either of mine had pushed a toddler into a pool when they were 6 it sure as hell wouldn't have been "just one of those things"! Can't believe people are saying all this "oh he was only little" "he didn't realize what he was doing" and incredibly, "I would have done the same as the father"

Jesus wept!

Nishky Sun 27-Jan-13 11:11:23

Larry- a child falling in and being pulled out is not the worst that can happen in that scenario.

"I never make mine say sorry, and I really don't think I'd have hung around in this situation for long either. I'm not the sort of person to stand and take a roasting for something out of my control.

Sorry is just a word. What would seeing a hysterical, soaking wet child and mote have achieved?"

Unbelievable. If your DC, for whatever reason, nearly kills someone, you wouldn't hang around the situation for long either. That is charming.

Sure, OP was right there watching him. But surely she could have let her 2 year old stand somewhere safe while waiting for her, and not right at the edge of the pool? I am sure it would be perfectly feasible to supervise her son if he was standing on the other side of her while she was packing their stuff, or sitting on the sun lounger? If he was further from the pool side, the other boy would not have been able to push him in, and the whole experience avoided.

As for the other family, maybe they were mortified, and does not speak English?

courtsareadisgrace Sun 27-Jan-13 11:17:46

The child who you think was 6 or 7 who did the pushing could have been 4 and big for his age. And really not had any clue that what he was doing was anything more than fun. His father was ticking him off, what more did you want them to do? It was an accident, kids are excited on holiday.

larrygrylls Sun 27-Jan-13 11:19:18


What is, excluding the most bizarre and extreme scenarios? They could fall from their own height and knock themselves on the side on the way in? Yes, but unlikely toddlers do much damage falling from their own height. And, even if they do, it is no worse than a toddler falling and hitting their head anywhere else. They still get pulled out within 10-20 seconds and are fine.

Of course, you can think up bizarre fatal scenarios. However, unless you are going to walk 1 foot behind your toddler 24/7, there will always be ways they may come to serious harm. And, against that, being too cautious really does have a cost. As I said, as they get older, they take more stupid and truly dangerous risks. And, even more to the point, they lose their excitement and inquisitiveness about life. I see so many 3-5 year olds frightened of playground equipment, swimming pools, even a walk somewhere they don't know well. That comes from somewhere.

I would expect an apology.

5madthings Sun 27-Jan-13 11:19:58

I don't think most of us are saying its just one of those things but we do acknowledge that children are unpredictable, can be impulsive and that even the best behaved child can act out of character and do something silly and no they won't automatically think of the consequences.

Mine would have got told off, really told off and we would apologise.

But no i wouldn't let a two or three year old stand by or wander about by near a pool. Even with five I keep the little ones right by meat a pool, if I can't hold their hands they sit down next to me. And when we get in and out I teach them to do it safely.
I don't molly coddle my children at all, far from it in fact but I do teach them ways to be safe. Particularly around water.

courtsareadisgrace Sun 27-Jan-13 11:20:09

And I would have had the two year old over by me when I was packing up and not next to the water on his own. Plus, if you're packing up, you're bending down and lifting things and concentrating on getting stuff in the bag and not watching the toddler 100% of the time, you can't be.

Nishky Sun 27-Jan-13 11:31:44

I suggest you look at statistics on drowning larry before you use dramatic words like bizarre.

My children are afraid of none of the things you describe. They ride horses, play football in goal, climb trees and a whole host of other things that are an injury risk- my daughters love of speed has let to two nasty bike falls one of which required stitches- she still rides her bike and is immensely proud of the scars on her knees.

So I don't think my children are wrapped in cotton wool. I wholeheartedly agree with you about children needing to be exposed to risks and learning to cope

However, I would not have let then stand near water at 2. They are not scared of water now.

I have made many errors of judgment that have given me the shivers and the what ifs. I think that is what the op did- she is not prepared to accept that however

Catchingmockingbirds Sun 27-Jan-13 11:33:52

I think you handled the situation well, even if you were standing right next to your DS I don't think you'd be able to stop him being pushed in if the other boy was quick enough. By the sounds of it it all happened really quickly so you wouldn't have been able to prevent it.

I wouldn't have let mine to be left by a pool, but, I think that a boy of six/seven pushing a fully clothed toddler into a pool is awful, had that been my child I would have been mortified and would have definitely apologised and made my son apologise.

notso Sun 27-Jan-13 12:37:16

larrygrylls I am by no means an over protective mother, but not allowing a two year old who is not wearing a buoyancy aid to stand at the edge of a pool is sensible. I am all for children taking risks but they need to be age/ability appropriate.

OP this must have been horrible and shocking for you and your DS and I hope that you are both ok. I don't think there is much the other parent could have done to make either of you feel better, though I think I would have stayed around to apologise and see that your son was alright, and to show my own son the consequences of his actions.

courtsareadisgrace Sun 27-Jan-13 12:42:47

When my son was not quite 4 he was wearing aged 6 clothes. He's still tall now. How does the OP know the child who did the pushing was 6 or 7? It is very irritating when others expect more of your child because they are taller than average. This could quite easily have been a tall 4 year old. There is a very big difference in understanding between a 4 year old and a 7 year old.

The DC did not slip, jump or fall into the water. He was deliberately pushed. Other child's father should have apologised and done whatever he could to help OP afterwards. Not run away like the big feartie wuss he was.

courtsareadisgrace Sun 27-Jan-13 12:48:49

But. The OP was packing away. If you're packing away you can't be watching your child all the time like a hawk the way you need to near water.

Yes, the other child shouldn't have pushed him into the water, but the father was, as I read the OP, quite obviously ticking him off. Unless the OP likes swimming in artic waters, she's not in the UK on holiday, so how do we know that the other family were English speakers?

courtsareadisgrace Sun 27-Jan-13 12:49:17

how does she know the other family

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Sun 27-Jan-13 12:50:06

I don't understand the hysteria here either. When my non swimming 2 year old is wading around in the baby pool, shock horror, I don't hold her hand, she goes several metres away by herself. I can't believe that is that unusual, the OP was supervising her child far more closely.

You know your child. The OP knew her child wasn't going to randomly jump in the pool or mess around and slip. The OP can't be expected to make preparations for every possible event that might happen.

courtsareadisgrace Sun 27-Jan-13 12:51:30

So the OP can't be expect to make preparations for every possible event that might happen, but the parents of the other child are expected to make preparations for every possible event that might happen?

Excited kids on holiday are unpredicatble and accidents happen.

Nishky Sun 27-Jan-13 12:55:33

Itsall with your use if the phrase 'shock horror' the only hysteria is coming from you! We are not talking about being in a pool

Nishky Sun 27-Jan-13 12:56:14

Of the phrase clearly, not if......

seeker Sun 27-Jan-13 12:56:29

""I never make mine say sorry, and I really don't think I'd have hung around in this situation for long either. I'm not the sort of person to stand and take a roasting for something out of my control"

So the pusher's actions are out of his parent's control but the pushee's parent is supposed to have been completely in control of the incident? Eh?

DoctorAnge Sun 27-Jan-13 12:57:08

Only on MN could people blame the OP in this scenario! My goodness.

courtsareadisgrace Sun 27-Jan-13 12:58:10

Small children + swimming pools = massive potential for accidents.

I wouldn't have let a non-swimming child be within a foot of a swimming pool without armbands or something on some sort of flotation device. What's wrong with "it's time to go now come and stand by me while we pack the bags"?

courtsareadisgrace Sun 27-Jan-13 12:59:54

If I took my child out in the car with no car seat at the age of 2. And another car crashed into us and my child was injured. It would be the other driver's fault (and they'd be an adult, not a child but whatever) but I would still be partly responsible for not adequately ensuring the safety of my child

(And yes I know a car seat is a legal requirement but it's the best example I can think of)

JenaiMorris Sun 27-Jan-13 13:26:09

Toddlers aren't steady on their feet. They are small and easily jostled. Taking away the fact that the OP's child was pushed, there was still a risk of being accidentally knocked into the pool or of falling over something and ending up in the pool.

As I said upthread I'm not blaming the OP, but as the child was so close to the edge that she could be deliberately pushed in she was also at risk of ending up in there entirely accidentally.

courts, your car seat comparison isn't far off.

OddBoots Sun 27-Jan-13 13:43:06

There are so many different angles to this one.

Maybe the 2 year old should have been further from the pool, without knowing the facilities we don't know if that was possible.

Maybe the older child acted in a way which couldn't have been predicted when he ran and pushed a fully clothed person, the age of the person he pushed is by the by.

Either way, the adult with the older boy taught him that when you do something very wrong you don't try to deal with the consequences you walk away instead. Yes, children do things they shouldn't but they learn right from wrong by the example they are set. No wonder we have so many adults who think nothing is ever their fault.

lljkk Sun 27-Jan-13 13:44:11

Can't believe anyone is having a Go at OP. shock

"Let he who is without sin cast the first stone", eh?

I swear, according to MN no child should ever set foot out the door without full safety gear of every description on their body.

I hope you both recover soon, OP. I don't see how you could have done better.

If it had been my 6yo I might have been too embarrassed to approach you later. Don't try to figure them out.

qazxc Sun 27-Jan-13 13:45:04

duplotractor to reiterate what PPT said it is in no way your fault, your child was not unsupervised as you where next to him packing up and where able to jump in and pull him out when he went in.
Maybe have a word to the hotel, if the people are also guests maybe they could have a word about supervising their children better. But other than that there isn't much else they could have done, they were just as surprised as you were and by the sounds of it did help you as much as they could.
The dad should have come over and check that you and your DC were ok and apologised (and make his DC apologise) but by the sounds of it the kid was getting a good telling off and maybe he just ran off out of instinct not wanting the situation to descend into a screaming match.
I feel for you it must have been an awful shock, but you are ok, your DS is ok, so try and forget about it and enjoy your holiday.

JenaiMorris Sun 27-Jan-13 13:55:57

llj, at least two of us who've suggested that the child was too close to the pool have also admitted to having had situations where our judgement was wrong.

Having had those experiences doesn't mean we shouldn't comment here; quite the opposite in fact.

courtsareadisgrace Sun 27-Jan-13 15:11:04

I have made errors in the past, I am in no way saying I'm perfect - DD was swept off her feet by a wave as a toddler when I was standing right beside her and we were only ankle deep.

But. The toddler was very close to the pool, without a flotation device, and the OP was busy doing something else.

Yes, it was the 6 or 7 year old's *fault* that they ran up to the toddler and pushed them in (if they even were 6 or 7 - DS is tall and looks much older than his actual age) but they were a child and children do silly things, especially on holiday. The OP also has to take some of the responsibility for not watching her child closely enough.

sweetestB Sun 27-Jan-13 15:32:54

Why couldn't your son stand closer to you Op?
Why wasn't him sitting on a chair while you were packing?
It doesn't matter if your 2 year old is very sensible, as you found out, the 6 year old were not sensible at all.
And your son could have been pushed by accident by children running around, or he could have slipped.
It's about you teaching him how he can keep himself safe too.
I think you have to accept your fault in this.

seeker Sun 27-Jan-13 15:37:33

Look, it doesn't matter if the OP was half a mile away swigging gin. An older child pushed her child into a swimming pool, and that child's father swept him off without trying to do anything to help, apologising or getting the child to apologise. That is completely unacceptable. And it staggers me that people are excusing the child. If a 6 year old I had brought up had done this I would be furious, embarrassed, mortified and seriously questioning my parenting. It is not normal, excited impulsive behaviour in a 6 year old, it really really isn't.

WhereMyMilk Sun 27-Jan-13 15:42:51

What Seeker said...exactly.

To be fair, it also would be the same in my eyes, if it was a very tall 4yr old, such as my DS. He knows you don't push anyone into a bloody swimming pool ffs-even when they are in their swimming kit, unless it is within a game being played, and the person being pushed is expecting it and can respond accordingly.

WhereMyMilk Sun 27-Jan-13 15:44:08

Also cannot get over "I wouldn't make mine say sorry" No wonder we have so many self entitled twats around.

CalamityKate Sun 27-Jan-13 15:46:02

If this child was in fact a NT 6 year old, here's whet I'd have done:

He'd have been marched up to you and made to apologise. I'd have apologised to you myself. I'd have told him, in front of you, that there would be no more swimming for him until I was satisfied he'd learned to behave properly around water. And I'd mean it because at 6 there is NO WAY a child should think it was ok to push anyone in the water, much less a toddler and much less a fully dressed one.

courtsareadisgrace Sun 27-Jan-13 15:46:55

As I read the OP, by the time the dad arrived, the toddler was out of the pool? And how do we know that the child was 6 or 7 and not a big 4, or that the family spoke English? There were others dealing with the OP and her child, the man took his child off and seems from what has been said to be ticking him off.

The man didn't react perfectly. He should have got his child to apologise. But people don't always think straight when they're panicking and shocked.

The Op still made a mistake by having a toddler inadequatley supervised at the side of a pool.

I have seen boys impulsively push other children into the pool. Today. At the swimming pool. And they were a lot bigger than 4 or 5 or 6 or 7.

CalamityKate Sun 27-Jan-13 15:46:57

Absolutely agree with Seeker ^

DeepRedBetty Sun 27-Jan-13 15:53:42

any sign of an apologetic dad yet?

And I agree with Seeker.

Tigerbomb Sun 27-Jan-13 15:53:47


<Seeker speaks sense>

courtsareadisgrace Sun 27-Jan-13 15:54:01

If the worst accident that ever befalls one of your DC's is that they are pushed into the pool and hoiked out in seconds by you then you'll be bloody lucky.

Mine have had tons of bumps and bruises and bashes and scrapes. Shit happens. Kids do stupid stuff. They're kids. It happens. The 4 or 5 or 6 or 7 who was the pusher didn't think it through, they just thought it would be fun, I'd guarantee it.

OP, wait til DS1 is the 6 or 7 and is battering seven bells out of DS2 on a regular basis.

DeepRedBetty Sun 27-Jan-13 15:56:00

And the toddler was adequately supervised - when the child was deliberated pushed into the pool, the parent rescued him immediately.

A lot of holier than thou-ing going on in this thread sad.

5madthings Sun 27-Jan-13 15:56:57

The boy shouldn't have pushed the toddler and the dad should have aspologised.

Other than one poster I think everyone has said they would have apologized and that their child would have been told off.

A child may know not to push another child especially a younger one into the pool but sometimes even the best behaved child does something wrong, for all we know he could have just seen some older children larking about and pushing each other in and then copied them in an attempt to join in.

The child is something wrong, he and his dad should have apologised but as others have pointed out maybe they didn't speak English?

People are not blaming the op in saying its perhaps not the most sensible thing to let a two years old stand by the side of a pool whilst you are bust doing something. This time he was pushed, another time he could slip or even impulsively jump in as children can be impulsive.

courtsareadisgrace Sun 27-Jan-13 15:57:38

If the toddler hadn't been standing within a foot of the edge as the OP has said, he wouldn't have got pushed in.

I think the OP is panicking because she feels guilty and that it's partly her responsibility. I do that. If it's partly my fault I deflect the panic on to the other person.

courtsareadisgrace Sun 27-Jan-13 15:58:17

I agree with 5madthings

seeker Sun 27-Jan-13 16:01:16

Actually, I think that a fully clothed non swimming 2 year old being unexpectedly pushed into deep water is potentially up there with the worst things that could happen.

Boys pushing each other in is normal, impulsive behaviour. Pushing a strange toddler in is not. At 6 or even at 4.

JenaiMorris Sun 27-Jan-13 16:04:07

I'm not excusing the child. But the level of supervision is relevant, because had the OP's son not been right at the poolside it wouldn't have happened!

If the toddler had been in a park and the big kid pushed him, he'd have been hurt. But in this situation he could have drowned.

I don't know what I'd have done if my own child pushed another into a pool, other than that he'd have received an almighty bollocking. Chances are I'd have removed him to do this, or sent him to stand elsewhere and then dealt with him. We simply don't know what happened between that boy and his dad.

LadyMargolotta Sun 27-Jan-13 16:05:20

Agree with seeker. A very nasty thing to happen. And not normal behaviour for a six year old.

Duplotractor I hope you and your ds are ok and can enjoy the rest of your trip.

seeker Sun 27-Jan-13 16:10:50

"I'm not excusing the child. But the level of supervision is relevant, because had the OP's son not been right at the poolside it wouldn't have happened!"

No. If the other boy hadn't pushed him it wouldn't have happened!

Ffs, if your child hurts another in your presence, you apologise, it's manners and decency.

TheSecondComing Sun 27-Jan-13 16:12:35

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MarshaBrady Sun 27-Jan-13 16:13:02

The hotel manager should say it was very dangerous and ask him to apologise. That should stick in the mind.

5madthings Sun 27-Jan-13 16:16:58

If the child hadn't have pushed him he could still have slipped or even jumped into the pool himself.

The child shouldn't have pushed him, the dad should have apologized.any child of mine that did it would get a bollocking and I would apologize.

But I don't think its unreasonable to suggest to the op that perhaps keeps a two year old away from the edge of a pool whilst she packs bags etc.

courtsareadisgrace Sun 27-Jan-13 16:18:52

It was a kids pool.

Although kids can drown in centimetres. But it was a kids pool. He was hoiked out quickly. But if he hadn't been standing within a metre of the poolside it wouldn't have happened.

He's 2. He could have decided to run to his friend and fallen in. He was too close to the poolside. And the OP was putting stuff into bags and therefore could not have been watching him all the time.

DoctorAnge Sun 27-Jan-13 16:23:54

Absolutely bang on seeker.

If it were my 6 old I would have gone ballistic actually and explained that what he did to a baby could have drowned him. I would have made him apologise to op.

How could anyone NOT reproach a child for such awful behaviour. The mind boggles.

NormaStanleyFletcher Sun 27-Jan-13 16:24:18

What seeker said

JenaiMorris Sun 27-Jan-13 16:25:39

It might have been a kids pool, but the OP says her ds was out of his depth. He was not safe there, even if a random big kid hadn't decided to shove him in.

courtsareadisgrace Sun 27-Jan-13 16:30:46

Well, if he wasn't safe there then she should have had arm bands on him.

Of course the child should not have pushed the toddler.

But, if the toddler was not standing at the edge of the pool, it would not be possible to neither push him, nor for him to fall in by accident.

Whether the toddler would have fallen into the pool without the boy pushing him is neither here nor there, as long as the boy was standing somewhere unsafe, where he could easily trip and fall in himself, without anyone pushing.

I still dont understand why the op could not let her child wait somewhere safe while she was busy packing the bags.

seeker Sun 27-Jan-13 16:35:11

He was not safe because somebody pushed him in. Deliberately. The op was there in second and got him out so she can't have been more than a foot or two away. But it is irrelevant where she was. The blame lies with the child who pushed him in.

I am afraid I disagree. If the boy was sat on a chair/sun-lounger, nobody would have been able to push him in, and it would not been possible for him to fall in himself either.

As a parent you should not place a child at the edge of the pool as he is at risk of falling in.

seeker Sun 27-Jan-13 16:38:32

Whether or not the OP should have been closer to he child is another thread. This one is about the toddler being pushed in by an older child, and people thinking that it's a perfectly normal and understandable thing for a 6 year old to do.

DeepRedBetty Sun 27-Jan-13 16:38:48

I don't think the judgey-panted ones are listening seeker.

courtsareadisgrace Sun 27-Jan-13 16:40:15

Oh FGS, I already said, the blame lies with the child who did the pushing in. Yes, of course. But it was a child they do silly theings sometimes. The OP had her child without armbands right by the side of a pool where he could have tripped and fallen in all by himself. Which wasn't safe and showed a poor judgement call. Like with my car seat analogy.

BiscuitMillionaire Sun 27-Jan-13 16:46:43

'But it was a child they do silly theings sometimes'
'Silly'?! Pushing a fully clothed unknown toddler into a pool? That is more than just 'silly'. I would be absolutely shocked and appalled if my DS had done something like this. And he would have had serious consequences.

And it's utterly ridiculous to blame the OP.

courtsareadisgrace Sun 27-Jan-13 16:48:36

Kids do stuff without thinking through the consequences is what I meant.

Yes I would have made my child apologise and told them never ever to do such a thing again BUT if the op's small toddler hadn't been within a foot of water in which he was out of his depth it woudln't have happened.

BiscuitMillionaire Sun 27-Jan-13 16:48:54

A friend of my DS was pushed into a pool by classmates when he was 5, and had a fear of water for about a year afterwards as a result.

courtsareadisgrace Sun 27-Jan-13 16:53:14

My DD when she was 5 cut her hair. She got the scissors and hacked about 3 inches off her fringe. Now, she didn't think through the consequences, she did something silly/stupid - and yes she got a bollocking.

But part of the blame was mine because I had scissors in a drawer where she could get them.

This summer, my 4 year old was on a high climbing frame/castle - I know he is capable of good climbing so I was happy with the situation. I was on a bench watching him. A bigger kid 6/7 year old deliberately shoved him off a ledge - smack about 4 metre drop to the ground below.

Was that a poor judgement call on my behalf?

When the parents of the other kid found out - they weren't there - they came to see us when we got back from the hospital and even though they didn't speak English, they apologised and they made the boy apologise to us all. It did make me feel much better about it.

I hope you are feeling ok, op, it's a real shock when something like this happens.

What Seeker said.

If my 6 or 4 year old did this I would be mortified and apologise profusely and give them a bollocking.

In general.

Where is a 2 year old safer:

A. Standing by the edge of a pool where he can fall into the water, be startled by a flying beach ball, or anything really?

B. Or a meter from the pool, with mum between him and water?

lljkk Sun 27-Jan-13 17:11:57

Can we all agree that a 6yo pushing a stranger small child at random for no apparent reason into the pool was an utterly freak event? It's far outside my life experience.

Whether we all need to be highly prepared for utterly freak events is the only moot point.


But, can we also agree that to take precautions around pools, and keep babies and toddlers away from the pools edge is a sensible thing to do?

sweetestB Sun 27-Jan-13 17:19:53

the child who pushed isn't totally blameless and his father's attitude wasn't right
the OP simply didn't keep her son safe enough in this situation. Simple.
If this same 6 year old boy were running around and bumped on OP's son by mistake? and even if the child and father apologised, OP's son would still have fallen in, being at risk and scared.

sweetestB Sun 27-Jan-13 17:23:03

Lesson learned OP?
teach your child how to keep himself safe and don't rely on other children or adults being sensible enough.
you say your 2 year old is sensible but YOU were very sensible this time

seeker Sun 27-Jan-13 18:15:55

If your child was the pusher would you say "oh it was just a silly thing- children do silly things sometimes"?

larrygrylls Sun 27-Jan-13 18:21:59

Well, the poor OP has scarpered and who can blame her?

The OP has acted perfectly sensibly and, even given the fact that a mini yob shoved her son into the pool, he is perfectly safe, which is proof enough that she was looking after him in a responsible way.

Six year olds do not act randomly in that manner, at least unless they have specific problems or are extraordinarily badly brought up. What the six (or four or five) year old did was very wrong. If the older child were mine, I would firstly give them the bollocking of all time and then seek professional help to try to understand what happened. It is not even close to normal behaviour.

The OP has no lesson to learn other than how unpleasant some people can be behind the cloak of anonymity.

5madthings Sun 27-Jan-13 18:23:03

No I would tell my child off, they would get a bollocking in fact and we would apologize. Saying children do silly things is not saying they won't be punished for them.

JenaiMorris Sun 27-Jan-13 18:24:37

No I wouldn't, although I maintain that all NT children are capable of doing bizarre, stupid and dangerous things at least once.

The thing is even if he'd not been pushed, this toddler was in danger of falling or being knocked accidentally into the water. It is not wise to let small children so close to a pool.

poozlepants Sun 27-Jan-13 18:28:32

If my 4 year old did this I would apologise profusely, he would be made to apologise whether or not we spoke the same language as the child. Then we would tell DS in no uncertain terms how dangerous it was and then he would given some sort of punishment. Otherwise how is the child ever going to learn that what he did was dangerous. Any other reaction from the parent is just wrong IMO.
Whether it was a spur of the moment thing or not he needs to learn there are consequences to his actions.
I am interested to know what all the posters who are blaming the OP would do. Tell their DS it was the woman's stupid fault for not having armbands on a fully clothed toddler or standing him too close to the pool. Yeah that'll teach her.

JenaiMorris Sun 27-Jan-13 18:31:09

Also most of us have been at pains to emphasise that we have all taken our eye off the ball.

5madthings Sun 27-Jan-13 18:32:27

Even the best behaved child does stupid things occasionally, it doesn't mean that they need a professionals asessment.

Our ds2 had issues with impulse control and we did get a referral via the gp and school to camhs who decided he was a perfectly normal nine year old and we were doing all the right things in having boundaries and reinforcing them but the part of the brain that controls impulse control doesn't fully develop until late teens and so children sometimes do reckless/stupid things. They need to be disciplined and have it explained to them why it is not OK it doesn't mean that they have been badly parented or that they have problems. Its because they are children who are learning and who don't always think before acting.

larrygrylls Sun 27-Jan-13 18:34:33

And I don't understand why the OP is being accused of doing anything dangerous. Her son DID get pushed in and he was plucked out and is fine. That demonstrates that the OP had her eye on him enough to keep him safe in the very worst case scenario.

All those who are sympathetic to the six year old. At what stage does a "random" six year old evolve into a dangerous criminal? Six year olds are old enough to empathise as well as understanding the consequences of their actions. If one of my sons ever does something like that, they will (after a very severe sanction) be discussed with their school and taken to see a psychiatrist to try to understand what happened. Even at two and three and a half they know not to endanger other children (although I appreciate that the two year old still may not fully understand).

Kiriwawa Sun 27-Jan-13 18:35:38

Whether the 2 year old was safe standing where he was is neither here nor there.

Christ I hate MN sometimes - people are so determined to pick holes in other people's parenting that the big picture gets entirely overlooked.


larrygrylls Sun 27-Jan-13 18:41:31

"the part of the brain that controls impulse control doesn't fully develop until late teens and so children sometimes do reckless/stupid things"

Didn't Thomson and Venables use that in their defence? I hate the "poor impulse control" excuse for bad behaviour. I appreciate that certain children do have genuine problems but it is a problem and not in the normal spectrum. For those children, it is up to their parents to keep an eye on them, not for other parents to be expected to be extra vigilant in case they get hurt by bigger children with "poor impulse control". That is the extreme end of victim blaming.

Nishky Sun 27-Jan-13 18:44:23

Er Kiri- I think those of us commenting on the positioning of the two year Los are the ones looking at the BIGGER picture, rather than just the actions of a six year old

If my children had done that they would have the bollocking of their lives and would be banned from pool by me for a proportion of the rest of the holidays. What the child did in pushing is so abhorrent I can not imagine my children doing it and I would be horrified and devastated

None of that detracts from fact that two year old should have been sitting next to his mum while she packed the bag

Nishky Sun 27-Jan-13 18:45:21

Two year old. What is Los ffs!

JenaiMorris Sun 27-Jan-13 18:47:16

Exactly, Nish.

5madthings Sun 27-Jan-13 18:47:33

What venables and co did wasn't about impulse control it was a long and sustained attack they took him and walked for miles before killing him.

But for a child to push another is a spur of the moment decision that is impulse control.

Children that commit violent acts often do have issues, poor impulse control may be one of these but there will be much more going on there.

A six year old who pushres a toddler into a pool once, is told off and then never does it again doesn't need a psychiatric assessment nor does it make them more likely to be a dangerous criminal.

We are overreacting in saying its a good idea not to let a toddler stand by the edge of a pool but you are suggesting the child who pushed him needs yo see a psychiatrist.

5madthings Sun 27-Jan-13 18:50:17

And yes we are looking at the bigger picture, this time he was pushed, next time he may fall or just get in the pool himself given two yr olds are not sensible or predictable and the op may not be in a position to jump in so quickly or she may be distracted and not notice straight away. Hence not letting a two year old stand by the side of the pool in the first place.

Rosa Sun 27-Jan-13 18:53:54

Father should have stopped helped you out got 6 year old to apologise or if boy had SN or whatever he should explained. OP not in the wrong she could see her child and she took action.... If my 6 yr old did this she would be in serious trouble.

Nishky Sun 27-Jan-13 18:55:30

I agree with 5mad. A couple of years ago dh was in the pool with dd on holiday. A mum arrived with two children and was momentarily distracted. The smallest - dh reckons about 3 decided to walk down steps and was under water before her mum got to her. Blink of an eye is all it takes.

Kiriwawa Sun 27-Jan-13 19:03:54

No, you're really not Nishky.
None of us expect to be shoved into the pool by a random stranger

The fact that the potential outcome (that he was a non-swimming toddler who could have drowned) was so serious was irrelevant to the act itself. A kid pushed another random person into the pool with no provocation, no discussion, no eye contact, no nothing.

What if the kid he'd pushed in had been 3? Or had been my DS who is 5 and has got his 10 metre swimming badge? Do you really think he would have done any better than a non swimming toddler? I very much doubt it.

That's what I mean about the bigger picture.

seeker Sun 27-Jan-13 19:14:19

Bloody hell, no wonder people won't let their reception children go to their friends for tea if they think NT 6 year olds can't be expected not to push random babies into swimming pools! Personally I have higher expectations of my children than that.

Nishky Sun 27-Jan-13 19:26:47

I wouldn't have allowed my children at 5 to be standing alone by a pool. I might now they are old enough to be diving in as they do in lessons. None of us expect to trip either.

I really think you are failing to see that bigger picture.

5madthings Sun 27-Jan-13 19:38:31

I wouldn't expect my child to push a toddler into a pool either, I would (as already said) be mortified and furious and they would get a bollocking and we would apologize.

But I am aware enough to realise that my well behaved children may for some reason do something unexpected and totally out of character and that this doesn't make them a future criminal, its just that children can be unpredictable and impulsive and when they are they need to be told off and taught/reminded of how to behave and that actions have consequences.

seeker Sun 27-Jan-13 19:40:08

It's not a bigger picture-it's a different thread!

JenaiMorris Sun 27-Jan-13 19:41:41

I wouldn't have expected my child at that or any age to push another child, let alone a smaller one, into a pool.

But I'd still have a fireguard (or rather turn the cheesy 'real flame' gas fire off) if he'd had a friend over to play. Kids shove, push and fall over far more than adults or adolescents (such as mine is now - no danger of falling from in front of the xbox into any physical hazard!).

HecateWhoopass Sun 27-Jan-13 19:46:52

Gosh, what a terrible shock for you and your son.

Have him checked over, as others have said but try to downplay it to him. He'll likely be more frightened if he feels you are. And you don't want him to have a fear of water.

Re the other child - he did a really silly thing. But children of that age don't think like adults. I bet it simply won't have crossed his mind. He will have thought what a funny joke to play. It may even have been an attempt to engage your child in play.

His dad should certainly have stayed, made sure your child was ok, and apologised. His reaction was possibly shock and embarrassment. That doesn't make it ok but hopefully he will have taken a lot of time to sit down with his child and explain exactly why what he did was so dangerous.

And you now know that anything can happen! And will keep your son on the other side of you (ie you between him and the water) when you are by the pool again.

Sorry that you both got such a fright. x

ubik Sun 27-Jan-13 19:54:35

I can't believe some of the people on here blaming the op.

I would have made my six year old see the consequences of her actions if she had pushed a tot into the water fully clothed. I hope the little boy got a telling off.

I would have stuck around to see what help I could have given.
Op- how awful.

Mumsnet is nuts sometimes.

Kiriwawa Sun 27-Jan-13 20:04:10

Nishky - how on earth do children learn to swim if you don't let them stand alone by the side of a pool?

If my 5 year old shoved a fully dressed younger kid he didn't know into the pool without any prior communication, I'd take him to see a psychiatrist. Seriously. This is not 'normal high jinks.

nb. My DS has SN

qazxc Sun 27-Jan-13 20:10:45

if the op wasn't supervising her child she wouldn't have been able to fish him right back out, which she did. he was only a couple of feet away from her and she had her eye on him, right up to the point the other kid shoved him in the pool.
Surely a six year old (or even younger) knows not to push or hit another child. Let alone an unprovoked attack on a much smaller child (who clearly wasn't swimming as fully dressed).
Granted it does sound like the dad was giving him a right telling off, but he should have made sure op and her ds were ok and apologise, and make his kid apologise.

sweetestB Sun 27-Jan-13 21:30:59

Clearly, having her eyes on him wasn't good enough was it?

sweetestB Sun 27-Jan-13 21:36:19

This thread seems to surreal tbh
1. mother letting fully clothed 2Y toddler standing alone by the pool while she is busy
2. older kid pushing fully clothed toddler in the pool for no reason
3. Father's rushing away and not apologising
4. Hotel staff not offering medical help

sweetestB Sun 27-Jan-13 21:55:50

AIBU to leave my 2 year old quite near the edge of the swimming pool waiting for me to pack my stuff?
He's fully clothed and have no armbands on as we already have been swimming and now I'm tyding up. The pool is out of his depth but I will have my eyes on him for the whole time and he is a very sensible boy.

YANBU. In the worst case scenario e.g. another child push him in, or bump into him by accident, or he slips in, or even if he decides to do a last jump (you know children are unpredictable sometimes) , you can always dive in and fish him out, so not a big deal.

courtsareadisgrace Sun 27-Jan-13 22:10:54

So, all the dad did wrong was not apologise - he appears to have given his child a ticking off, what difference would it have made if he had apologised?

Suppose the 6 year old had tripped and accidentally knocked the 2 year old into the pool? The thing is, the child would have or could have drowned regardless of whether the 6 year old did it on purpose or apologised or anything else.

And in order to prevent that potential outcome, the OP should have had the 2 year old standing beside her.

Yes the 6 or 7 year old should have been made to apologise, and if he was mine he would have been, but that does not excuse the fact that the OP had a small child inadequately supervised in a situation where he was at risk of injury.

Like I said up thread, if I take my 2 year old out in my car with no car seat, and someone else runs into us, completely their fault, my child is killed or injured, it's still the other person's fault that the accident happened, but I am partly to blame for not putting my child in a car seat and taking adequate steps to protect them from injury.

And whether or not the other party says sorry makes damn all difference to what happens to my child. IYSWIM?

Nishky Sun 27-Jan-13 22:22:54

Kiri- I suggest you read your last post back'

' how do children learn to swim if they are not allowed to stand by the pool '

Did you really mean that? Because mine learnt to swim by going IN the pool. With an adult.

Bugsylugs Sun 27-Jan-13 23:00:23

Not read it all.

Op am stunned that dad whether he spoke the same language or not did not stop and convey horror/remorse for son or some such similar. Hope your lo is ok.

My dc has been having lessons since 3 months buoyancy aids are not used so no he would never have had any floatations device on at the side of the pool so is not 'bad parenting'. At 4 he now uses a float (so no attached bouncy aid) or a shark fin. He is tall so but at 4 knows not to run near a pool, get in until someone he knows says it is ok and never to interfere with anyone else on the pool side. The other boy will have seen someone else doing similar I guess. I would be spitting at the dad.

Bugsylugs Sun 27-Jan-13 23:12:28

Sorry floatations devices.
Some really ridiculous comments of course you can pack a bag and see exactly what someone is doing if in the right place. Her supervision was fine lo ok if possibly a bit traumatised

Letmeintroducemyself Sun 27-Jan-13 23:17:40

those slating the dad, maybe he was afraid to speak to OP who was hysterical, maybe he was worried his son would be assaulted, I would have been.

The OP did say she believed the dad was about to go in after her DS, so he was hardly unconcerned.

Letmeintroducemyself Sun 27-Jan-13 23:18:10

oh maybe he thought the op was best left alone to deal with her distraught child and planned to apologise if he saw her again.

Remotecontrolduck Mon 28-Jan-13 02:23:25

This is crazy. While it was probably unwise to let your toddler stand by the pool as he could have slipped over, into the pool or on wet tiles etc, there is NOTHING that justifies the actions if this horrendously behaved child

I second what someone said about taking my child to a psychiatrist if they did that. Seriously, that is NOT normal behaviour at all, and my kids would have been so punished they wouldn't know what had hit them. The fact that the dad did nothing probably tells you all you need to know.

If the kid did have SN, it's up to the parents to make sure that kid is under control. There is no way this should have been allowed to happen.

courtsareadisgrace Mon 28-Jan-13 03:47:44

I would hope that a psychiatrist would have a titter of wot and laugh you out of his office of you landed with a 6 year old and said "he pushed a two year old into the poplin holiday. Once. "


courtsareadisgrace Mon 28-Jan-13 03:48:16

*pool on

I didn't catch the op saying the dad was going to go in the pool?

Courts, an apology makes a massive difference. To everyone.

courtsareadisgrace Mon 28-Jan-13 07:35:02

But it wouldn't have made any difference to whether the child was injured or not is what I'm saying. I get that the dad should have apologised I have said that already, the point I am making is that if the toddler had been hurt an apology wouldn't make a difference to whether or not he was hurt.

HotheadPaisan Mon 28-Jan-13 07:52:49

DS1 is still very impulsive (6, ASD), I'd be mortified if he did this but would be torn between trying to help and apologise and getting him out of there to prevent any further escalation.

Sorry this happened OP, it's a rubbish situation all round. I keep between my 3 year old and 6 year old at all times, they sit at opposite ends of the table etc. We supervise constantly, and I mean absolutley constantly, and still there are occasions when DS1 pushes DS2.

We are taking DS1 for psych support, possibly medication for anxiety which results in anger, the impulsivity is all part of it. Incidents happen but I agree it's not typical behaviour at this age.

HotheadPaisan Mon 28-Jan-13 07:56:28

It's not typical because it's not hi-jinks between similar aged kids, and even then I'd expect some self control and awareness of the danger of doing this. It sounds impulsive and that needs addressing, it looks like the father knew this though. I don't want everyone just getting angry with DS1 all the time though, and I don't want more impulsive incidents with DS2 or others, I want to help him curb the behaviour.

JenaiMorris Mon 28-Jan-13 08:59:56

If parents honestly believe that their children have never done anything impulsive, potentially dangerous (my own ds running into the road) and/or downright stupid they are either blinkered (there are a few of them), naive or only have very small children (it'll happen).

I don't mean as extreme as pushing a random toddler into a pool, but just read the thread on here about the worst things children have done to a sibling, for example. A one off moment of utter idiocy does not warrant a trip to a psych!

JenaiMorris Mon 28-Jan-13 09:00:47

Oh Hothead that wasn't addressed to you btw. Sorry.

larrygrylls Mon 28-Jan-13 09:02:15

I am seriously amazed at what passes for normal on MN. I take my children out for soft play at least once a week. There are frequently 5-8 year olds there as well as the little ones. They are normally playing the table football or the video games etc or reading the books provided. When they play with the little ones, they are normally very sweet and helpful. I have NEVER seen a 6 year old hit a two year old or push one down a slide or anything like that.

Where I have seen children with impulse control, this normally affects their interactions with peers (for instance, at pre school) and siblings. Mostly the impulsive behaviour is driven by a rational idea such as wanting a toy or overreacting to mild provocation. Where does the impulse come from to push a completely unrelated 2 year old minding his own business into a swimming pool? If my 3.7 year old did that, I would be SERIOUSLY shocked and, yes, he would be paying a visit to a psychiatrist who, I am sure, would take me seriously. At 6 a combination of knowledge about the dangers of drowning and empathy should prevent this kind of "impulse". If it is normal, how many parents on this board would actually say their children had done something causing clear (and obvious) risk to another child's life? I am not really sure I see the difference between this and a 6 year old "impulsively" shashing a hard object on a toddler's head. They are both impulsive actions in that the idea may have only occurred to the child a fraction of a second before perforning the action.

If I had been the father, I would have stayed, apologised, asked if I could help, got my child to apologise profusely and then offered to pay for any cleaning costs or to replace any damaged articles. The idea that he might have been frightened of his son being assaulted by the mother of a two year old is ridiculous.

HotheadPaisan Mon 28-Jan-13 09:26:43

I agree, kids do the strangest things JenaiMorris. It's all about context and patterns though, if there's a pattern to it or this is the latest in a long line of incidents it needs looking into.

I would be shocked and furious if this had happened to my 3 year old, I'd also be annoyed with myself that I hadn't corralled him by the wall. As I said, I'd be mortified if my six year old, who does have issues with controlling his impulses and social interaction in general, had done this to another child too.

courtsareadisgrace Mon 28-Jan-13 09:33:35

How the heck can anyone say from one incident at the side of a pool on holiday whether it's a pattern or not?

HotheadPaisan Mon 28-Jan-13 10:02:21

You can't, just saying.

duplotractor Tue 29-Jan-13 01:41:05

Thanks everyone who encouraged me to complain to the hotel because I feel better for having done so.

They said the boy and dad were there for brunch, so not resident guests - they shouldn't even have been wandering around the pool. Though they had eaten at the hotel several times and the boy was "notorious". I asked if that meant he'd done it to other children and the manager said no, so not sure what other stuff the boys been up to.

Anyway the manager said after the incident the boy and dad went to the restaurant, the staff obviously not aware of what had happened. THe manager (by the pool) said that he called security who ejected the boy and man from the hotel before they had eaten and that they would not be welcome back in the hotel.

The manager then said that the father had beaten the boy quite badly later sad
although the hotel obviously did not approve of such things. (not sure how hotel would know anyway - unless it happened on way out shock

It's possible the manager was just saying what he thought I wanted to hear - I don't know. He was also a doctor and thought ds seemed fine.

LadyMargolotta Tue 29-Jan-13 06:51:31

Thanks for the update sad at 'The manager then said that the father had beaten the boy quite badly later'

bringmeroses Tue 29-Jan-13 07:18:41

Try and forget about it for DS sake. The 6yo may have troubled home life or just have a mean streak. Either way you're better off forgetting about it as much as poss and dwelling on all the positive things about the holiday. Hopefully in DS"s mind it'll be no worse than say falling off a swing at the park.

Yfronts Tue 29-Jan-13 22:36:28

My 6 year old would have never done that. What awful behavior.

An hotel Manager who was also a doctor who saw the father beat the boy? Really?

lljkk Sat 02-Feb-13 14:58:57

Small community in foreign country where corporal punishment is the norm, manager didn't need to see it, it will be the gossip of the community.

(I live in a small gossipy town in a parochial gossipy local authority area where everybody knows everybody else's business).

Poor OP and toddler.
Children or adults who fall in pools do need to be checked afterwards for delayed drowning or dry drowning reaction.
Rare but can be fatal.



Floggingmolly Sun 03-Feb-13 22:45:02

Why was your two year old standing close enough to the edge to be pushed in in the first place? (The Hotel manager is a doctor, who could also see further events unfold even though the man and boy had already left the premises? hmm)

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