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To tell everyone not to buy DS any Christmas presents ?

(112 Posts)
formallyknownasloveydarling Sat 10-Nov-12 19:28:47

Firstly, I should point out that I am very very angry so please tell me if I am being a bit extreme.

DS, aged 4 had a friend round today. They trashed his toys. Expensive toys like a play mobile castle, and pirate ship that cost around £100 each and all the paraphernalia that goes with it. DS was the ringleader.

Some things were actually smashed so cant be repaired and it will take longer for me to put the castle and ship and battering ram etc back together than they spent playing with it - much longer.

After they had trashed his bedroom, they came down and started chucking Lego round the lounge. The other boys' mum and I were in there with the babies so we were able to stop them.

When it was time for the friend to go home, DS punched him in the stomach. The little boy went home in tears and I could see his mum was pissed off with DS. I was so embarrassed.

After they had gone I went with my son upstairs to his room and told him to tidy up everything and what hadn't been put away in 30 minutes would be taken away from him, along with the smashed up pirate ship and castle.

When I went up 30 minutes later he had left a lot of it on the floor still. I said more than once 'have I got this right - you would rather have your toys taken away than put them in the basket?' In various ways as I wasn't convinced he understood but he assured me 'yes, he'd picked up a few and I could take the rest'. I have already confiscated the boat and castle.

AIBU to deduce he is a spoilt brat with far too much? I have never been big on material presents anyway but he gets a lot from his GPs. Compared to friends he is about average on the amount of toys he has but it is far far more than I had growing up.

I almost took a bin bag and put all his toys in it. I am livid and so ashamed that I have raised someone with such little respect. Christmas is cancelled for him.

formallyknownasloveydarling Sat 10-Nov-12 20:00:14

But this is just it natural baby - when do you stop making excuses/giving reasons for their behaviour and put some of the responsibility on them?
He was exhausted and I was downstairs but dies that really make it ok?

Personally I think not! A 4 yo should surely have some responsibility for his/her actions?

wonderingsoul Sat 10-Nov-12 20:02:27

no four year olds can play unsupervised nicely. but they obviousely wasnt, which should have been heard.. and if you cant hear them them you need to check on them to make sure their playing nicely.

four is still young and are still learning how to play socially and nicely.

valiumredhead Sat 10-Nov-12 20:02:35

Oh please! Get a grip, it's some broken up Lego and he hit out - perfectly normal things in a small child.

LadyMargolotta Sat 10-Nov-12 20:03:36

Given the chance, most children will disassemble their toys at this age, and chuck them around the floor. The point is, not to give them a chance, and to stop them as soon as they start doing it.

I am more concerned about the punching in the stomach. In what context was it? Was it rough play or was it done out of aggression?

puds11 Sat 10-Nov-12 20:04:32

I don't think it should be accepted as 'normal' for a 4 year old to punch their friend in the stomach!

formallyknownasloveydarling Sat 10-Nov-12 20:05:01

Valium red head: in our house it is not normal to throw toys, smash things up or hit. Obviously. Even when you are 4.

squishyotter Sat 10-Nov-12 20:05:33


Punish him, educate him, love him.

squeakytoy Sat 10-Nov-12 20:06:03

they are four, you should have been supervising.. yabvu

GrimAndHumourless Sat 10-Nov-12 20:08:15

oh yes I do indeed have a shedload of boy offspring, no girls just boys

I do think you have over reacted, but I'm not you, and you have a small baby to boot.

Is your boy tall for his age? Very easy to have higher expectations if they LOOK older, iyswim. Also the thing about being embarrassed in front of another Mum, BTDT (am projecting here, you might not be feeling that Burn of Shame that starts in yer boots and reddens your chest before flushing neck and cheeks hotly)

valiumredhead Sat 10-Nov-12 20:09:15

It's not 'normal' in my house either but kids aren't born with social skills, er educated them, that doesn't mean over the top punishments. You sound bonkers and clearly have no idea about small children.

waits for OP to say she is a teacher/Nursery nurse

CailinDana Sat 10-Nov-12 20:11:01

He was tired and you knew that. The behaviour of all children goes out the window when they're tired. Yet you left him in the room on his own with his friend which is the perfect situation for things to get out of control. And that's what happened, naturally. Things then blew up, he hit his friend and got dirty looks and shouting (difficult and stressful for anyone) and got sent to his room to tidy up, whereupon he just gave up. It was too much for him. And you let it get that way.

You're his mother, not his jailer. You're supposed to look out for him. In your shoes I'd be annoyed and have words but I'd recognise that I didn't read the signals right, and didn't supervise enough and that it was all just a fraught situation that got way out of hand. Flying off the handle at a small boy and threatening something extremely nasty like "cancelling Christmas" is a massive overreaction, massive. He did this not because he's some nasty creature who needs to be beaten into submission but because he couldn't control the situation, did the wrong thing and made some pretty big mistakes. Like everyone does from time to time. You are there to teach him not to make him feel like shit.

BTW why on earth did you buy him toys that you and your DP had to make - surely the idea is for him to make them? It sounds like you're annoyed because he "broke" your toys rather than his own. He didn't break them - he did what you're supposed to do with Lego, which is take it apart.

formallyknownasloveydarling Sat 10-Nov-12 20:11:22

About the hitting (someone asked): it was probably attention seeking/out of control tiredness (they stayed a bit longer than we would have liked and didn't leave til 6.45 - my kids are normally in bed by 7 as they are early walkers).

Tomorrow he has to draw a picture and we will write an apology together and post it. I am not as concerned about that as I feel I've dealt with it ok.

But for my child to leave his toys on the floor to be taken away as he is too lazy/tired/spoilt/only 4 (delete as appropriate), really concerns me.

valiumredhead Sat 10-Nov-12 20:12:21

Good Lord hmm

Violet77 Sat 10-Nov-12 20:12:45

Should be supervised at that age. ( don't leave mine alone)

Let him win stuff back with positive reward, stickers, beads etc.

LadyMargolotta Sat 10-Nov-12 20:13:48

I'm surprised that you are more worried about him not tidying up the mess then you are about him making another child cry.

MrsGhastlyCrumb Sat 10-Nov-12 20:14:51

So, two four year old boys were playing alone and unsupervised upstairs while their mothers were downstairs with their new siblings? Added to the mix, your son was tired and cranky already.

Um. Have you considered that they may have been acting out for a reason? Maybe they both need a little re-assurance from their mothers- the saying he didn't care about his toys smacks of a cry for help to me- maybe he needs a little time with you rather than flash toys. I can't think of anything more likely to make things worse than to cancel Christmas, to be honest- although it sounds like you would do well to tone it down if you're going to get upset about expensive things getting broken.

By all means, remove some toys for now, but honestly, I think you need to do a little listening and observation too, and take this as an early warning.

wonderingsoul Sat 10-Nov-12 20:15:00

But for my child to leave his toys on the floor to be taken away as he is too lazy/tired/spoilt/only 4 (delete as appropriate), really concerns me.

it shouldnt concern you.
he was over whlemed by everything thing.

im am sure had you supervised his tidying and even said" this isnt much fun having to tidying all this on your own is it? this is why you shouldnt take every thing out/ throw things around" he would have done it.

naturalbaby Sat 10-Nov-12 20:15:14

You need to calm down and get some perspective, and give yourselves a break. Show him some love and be kind to him and see how he responds. Look at it as a cry for help. You know he's capable of tidying his toys but what is he trying to tell you by not doing it? He's not doing it to be naughty, he's not lazy - you said he's tired, you can't think straight when you're tired so how can you expect him to?

apostropheuse Sat 10-Nov-12 20:15:17

I can't believe how seriously you're taking the fact that he struggled to put his toys away.

Give the child a break.

It's over and done with. He's been punished. Move on.

valiumredhead Sat 10-Nov-12 20:16:03

If my ds had had a playmate until 6.45pm I would expect the mother of all meltdowns and would place the blame squarely on my own shoulders tbh.

cornflowers Sat 10-Nov-12 20:16:08

For what it's worth, we have the Playmobil castle and it comes apart very easily - absolutely no 'smashing' required. If you want it kept intact as an ornament, I'd suggest supergluing the parts during reassembly.

MrsGhastlyCrumb Sat 10-Nov-12 20:16:19

(Oh, and LadyMargolotta is right, too- punching his friend was by far his worst offence.)

CailinDana Sat 10-Nov-12 20:16:56

I agree with MrsGhastly. You're expecting him to care about his toys. He doesn't. That tells you a lot. Perhaps he cares more about the fact that his mother is being so nasty to him? Perhaps he feels so backed into a corner that he just doesn't see the point in tidying up?

You've said a few times he was tired - you recognise that he wasn't in a fit state to deal with this situation - yet you are still expecting perfect behaviour. Why?

Send him to bed and talk about it in the morning. Getting into a lather over things like this is so utterly pointless.

EnjoyVampirebloodResponsibly Sat 10-Nov-12 20:18:37

A tired 4 yo left unsupervised. Hmm. Can't imagine how that wasn't going to go tits up.

Are you really that annoyed with him, or yourself?

Belting the other kid v not gd, but again tired and utterly overexcited, you can surely see how it got to that point.

I think taking the toys away and having to demonstrate good behaviour was a fine approach. Cancelling Christmas, definitely OTT.

hugoagogo Sat 10-Nov-12 20:18:43

He is 4-has he recently started school then?

If I remember correctly (and my ds is 14) the first few months of school boys revert to 2 year olds at home and push a lot of boundaries.

If you expect children's behaviour to improve in a linear fashion, you will be in for a shock.

Punishing him weeks and weeks after the event is pointless and cruel.


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