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to reprimand my friend's child if she won't?

(54 Posts)
DecapitatedLegoman Sat 17-Sep-11 08:20:41

Our sons are the same age and play together quite well but roughly, lots of tickling and rolling around and chasing. Her son doesn't listen when mine wants to stop so tears ensue sometimes.

At her house recently her son was hitting mine as we ate lunch, and later he shoved my baby repeatedly. Both times she was there but just pretty much ignored it so I told him off.

I really like her but I feel uncomfortable that it falls to me to deal with this. I also hate confrontation and have convinced myself that she's secretly pissed off with me and is going to want to have it out with me.

I hate the diplomacy side of this having children thing!

scuzy Sat 17-Sep-11 08:24:51

well if she says nothing your right to say something. and if she has the cheek to have it out with you simply say "well tbh you werent saying anything and as much as i love you and your son i dont want to see my ds being hurt".

however i will say that sometimes its ok to let them on and sort some arguments or rough play out themselves. step in when it gets too far.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sat 17-Sep-11 08:28:31

YANBU. I think too much is made of 'diplomacy'.... they're your children and if some little horror is beating them up in front of you, what are you supposed to do? I've stopped seeing one friend because their son was particularly aggressive towards other children.

AKMD Sat 17-Sep-11 08:30:13

YANBU, there's no point standing to one side and letting your children get hurt just in case you offend your friend. FWIW I told off a little girl in the supermarket a couple of weeks ago because she was whacking her tiny baby brother in the trolley next to her while their mum was packing the shopping. I was expecting an earful but the mum was so grateful, she looked close to tears.

DecapitatedLegoman Sat 17-Sep-11 08:33:55

I think part of my problem is that I'm quite strict, probably intervene too much and am a bit obsessive about manners. I would never overlook aggressive behaviour and would be horrified if my child started thumping someone else's. But she probably gets by just fine with the ignoring tactic and wonders what's crawled up my arse.

fedupofnamechanging Sat 17-Sep-11 08:34:02

Ordinarily I think parents should be left to deal with their own children. The exception is when your own child is being hurt, in which case you have every right to step in, especially if their own parent is ignoring the behaviour.

exoticfruits Sat 17-Sep-11 08:35:07

Don't do the diplomatic bit. Be the old dragon and her DS will be very wary of you.

FellatioNelson Sat 17-Sep-11 08:36:00

It's the age-old nightmare. I was always exactly the same - would be very reluctant to say something as I have known mothers who would not bat an eyelid in criticising/telling off other people's children in front of their own parents and it NEVER ends well. I always took the coward's way out and eventually saw them less and less. Now I am older and wiser I might be more inclined to say something, diplomatically, though. I am always diplomatic. grin

The only time I have ever spoken out about this kind of thing (after much provocation and biting of tongue) was with my sister's children (who are lovely now, but where the most HIDEOUSLY behaved, feral toddlers. And it resulted in her not speaking to me for six months!

ByTheWay Sat 17-Sep-11 08:36:06

YABU - speak to the mum not the child.

Just because telling off an adult makes you feel uncomfortable is not a reason to tell off her child.

halcyondays Sat 17-Sep-11 08:36:51

Yanbu. I bet you if the boot was on the other foot your friend would have something to say, if it was your child that was hurting hers and you ignored it. I wouldn't hesitate to reprimand a child if they were hurting my child and the parent ignored it, particularly if it involved shoving a baby.

exoticfruits Sat 17-Sep-11 08:39:25

You could try her first-I doubt if it will work. If not, definitely speak to the DC-you can tell any DC off (despite some mothers thinking that you can't).

CogitoErgoSometimes Sat 17-Sep-11 08:40:03

'Speak to the mum'.... this often results in some wishy washy, limp-wristed 'darling, that's making mummy sad' crapola... and the little horror concerned carries on thumping your kid because they don't take any notice of mummy and that's why they are like they are. No. Tell the kid 'play nice' and fix it with a meaningful glower.

PonceyMcPonce Sat 17-Sep-11 08:40:17

Warn your son, then tell them both off

It's going too far now
No fighting
Stop that boys

ladyintheradiator Sat 17-Sep-11 08:41:53

Hmm I have a friend a little like this, tbh I see less of her now. YANBU to do the reprimanding - of course as scuzy says there are times when you can just let them get on with it but not always and if she won't say anything what's the alternative?

DecapitatedLegoman Sat 17-Sep-11 08:44:35

To clarify, I asked them both to calm down when there was hitting at the table. When it continued I said "Oh no that's enough, it's wrong to hit people". When he shoved DD I just said "That's not nice, we should be gentle with babies" as he was thumping her shoulders hmm.

Bartimaeus Sat 17-Sep-11 08:47:49

I'm not yet a mum (2 weeks to go grin ) but I remember as a child that we were all told off by whichever adult was nearest. My mum and a couple of friends would meet up very regularly, with a total of 10 children. We all expected to be told off by whoever, not only our own mum. In fact, it had a lot more impact coming from "Auntie X" than from our mum...

ArmageddonOuttahere Sat 17-Sep-11 08:48:59

I'm really wary about this now. When at another mum's house when our DC were toddlers her DS was busying himself with trying to dismantle her jewellery box. I stopped him quite sharply as he was breaking it and was asked to leave by his mother when her DS started crying.

Not sure how I would have handled it differently with hindsight TBH..

scuzy Sat 17-Sep-11 08:54:50

tbh what you said is prefectly fine.

was at MIL last night. me and two SIL arrived are there were 4 3yr olds and 2 one yr old twins. between us all there were lots of "oi, thats not nice", "stop it", "calm down", "get down off there", draggin to the toilet and changing/dressing kids.

dunno if it is because we are family but we treat all the kids like our own and no one bats an eyelid when it someone else reprimanding our kids

AKMD Sat 17-Sep-11 08:59:21

Armageddon the other mum sounds like a nutter (unless you grabbed the boy's wrist, dragged him off and yelled in his face of course!).

If DS was doing something naughty and someone else spotted it and told him off before I could then I would probably be embarrassed but grateful rather than cross.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sat 17-Sep-11 09:01:14

@Armageddonouttahere.... don't shy away from doing the same thing again. A mum that can't tolerate another adult correcting their child's bad behaviour is rather insecure IMHO. And children who know they can behave as badly as they like because mum will always defend them risk growing up unable to accept authority.

DecapitatedLegoman Sat 17-Sep-11 09:02:05

Arm that's mad - she actually kicked you out?! I'll be much more careful in future - but how else do you handle it if your child's being whacked?

ArmageddonOuttahere Sat 17-Sep-11 09:19:41

She was quite precious and I don't miss the friendship. Was quite relieved, in fact. IIRC (it was years ago) all I did was take the jewellery off the boy and said "Don't do that or you'll break your mummy's things"

Cogito is absolutely right - most secure mums can accept that their offspring will not behave perfectly all the time and it is acceptable for another adult to step in if there is the risk of hurt or damage.

Decap don't stop intervening - you are completely within your rights to protect your child - YANBU at all. If the other mother sees it as an affront to her parenting then that's her problem.

messybessie Sat 17-Sep-11 09:27:14

I love it when other people tell my child off.

To me, it reinforces that there is an expected code of conduct, rather than just my random dictats.

They listen more too. blush

pigletmania Sat 17-Sep-11 09:32:18

Too right, if your friend is going to sit there and not parent her child when he does something wrong, than you are well within your rights. So what if she is pissed off, you have to tell her, I most certainly would if she was my friend. I have a dear friend like this, whose ds can be very rough with dd, pushing her, hitting her and being rude, and has hit me at times. My friend is very soft, and is a bit ineffective tbh. So I tell him off, she does not seem to mind, she said that he has to learn from other people that what he does is wrong.

pigletmania Sat 17-Sep-11 09:33:33

Vice versa I don't mind others disciplining dd if she is being naughty. I was be blush that i could not do a good job myself.

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