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To find it annoying when people tell me I'm lucky to have well behaved children?

(288 Posts)
alisunshine29 Fri 15-Mar-13 12:08:26

My eldest is 5.5 years old and youngest has just turned 9 months. Today we walked to school then I took youngest DD to a baby/music group. On the way to school we saw eldest DDs mum drive past, DDs friend was hitting her mum while she was driving and she was struggling to fend her off. We caught up with them at the car park and the mum was talking to her child as though it had never happened (I wasn't mistaken - they'd stopped in traffic so could clearly see) and 2 mins later her daughter started having a tantrum about taking a toy to school and slapped her 2 year old brother in anger. The mum barely reacted and in the end let her take it and left it for the teacher to take away and deal with the consequences. Younger brother was trying to climb out of pushchair so mum passed him her iPhone with a tv show on to keep him still and he threw it in the road! Mum just smacked him and retrieved it. After the eldest children had gone in to school, she excused her daughters behaviour by saying that she's tired because she went to sleep fifteen mins late last night and had to walk from the car park - it's about 300 metres!! She asked where I was parked and I said I'd walked from home, she was amazed as its almost two miles away. She then commented on how lucky I am elder DD is so well behaved and can cope with the walk.
At baby group, it was chaos as they have organised music activities where parents and kids sit in a circle and do actions etc. The leader specifically asked children are not allowed to run riot like last week, when some damage to the building was caused and pointed out a separate room where those not wanting to join in could go for a chat and cup of tea. Still, mums let their babies crawl/toddle everywhere, older toddlers were running around and pulling notices off the wall leaving pins on the floor etc. Their mums either ignored them or tried to pin them still on their lap. Again, a mum commented that I'm lucky that my daughter is well behaved.
Of course my youngest is only tiny and has no rules as such, but if she wasn't interested in the music group I'd have gone in the other room and kept her happy/occupied. I'm quite strict and very consistent with my eldest DD hence the reason I believe her to be well behaved - it is not luck. Special needs excluding, I think it is inexcusable for a child to hit a parent like DDs friend was this morning - particularly while she's driving, it's dangerous for everyone. To not do anything about it I believe is the mum neglecting her duty to her daughter. Her DD was going crazy in the school foyer about the teacher trying to remove her toy and her mum just shrugged and left them to it like its normal. AIBU to be annoyed when people say I'm lucky to have well behaved children?

BabyMakesTheBellyGoRound Fri 15-Mar-13 12:39:03

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ArielThePiraticalMermaid Fri 15-Mar-13 12:39:06


There is no luck involved ever. It's all due to fantastic parenting such as yours smile

Kneedeepindaisies Fri 15-Mar-13 12:39:09

I was about to say something similar, Midlife. My DS was well behaved and lovely until he turned 10. He can still be lovely of course but no one compliments us on how well behaved he is anymore!

TwoBoiledEggs Fri 15-Mar-13 12:39:20

Ignoring bad behaviour is the most basic dog training tip ever... And quite applicable to toddlers as well.

All children are different. I don't think you are "lucky" however. My more tricky to handle child is an absolute joy and I feel sorry you won't experience that sort of vibrant personality. Much better than a pudding of a child, who just sits there.

GirlOutNumbered Fri 15-Mar-13 12:39:30

I work hard to ensure that I bring up my children well and although a splattering of luck when the genes got mixed up is involved, I hate it when people assume I have to do nothing to make my children behave.

A friend of mine always comments on how well my son eats, as if its by magic that he can hold a knife and fork properly

SolomanDaisy Fri 15-Mar-13 12:39:49

Hahaha, you're being smug about the behaviour a 9 month old compared to toddlers grin

bloodyschool Fri 15-Mar-13 12:39:57

I think you should wait until all your children have grown up before you start congratulating yourself. You have hardly got started as a parent yet!!!

BabyMakesTheBellyGoRound Fri 15-Mar-13 12:42:24

You know what they say OP,dream baby,nightmare toddler.

flippinada Fri 15-Mar-13 12:42:27

You could always turn this around and look at it from another pov.

Someone might be congratulating themselves on their strictness, boundary setting etc.

Could be their children are so well behaved because they are frightened to be otherwise?

TwelveLeggedWalk Fri 15-Mar-13 12:42:39

I have toddler twins.
One will chat, watch, quietly read a book and eat her lunch self sufficiently. I can take her anywhere.
The other is a running, climbing, screaming, head butting whirlwind of curiosity and destruction. I am more circumspect about where I take him.
Did I parent one better than the other?

PeppermintPasty Fri 15-Mar-13 12:45:40

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FrauMoose Fri 15-Mar-13 12:46:05

I had a friend whose child was 'the perfect son'. He was the well-behaved intelligent child of middle-class teacher parents. He always got high marks in exams, had worthwhile hobbies, and ended up doing the sort of course that more or less guarantees a good job at a sought-after university. Last time I met my friend, after a long absence, I asked - with the usual sense of dread - how her son was doing. I was very taken aback to hear that he had had a major breakdown at university and had to leave. He'd then spent two years back at home, hiding in his room not speaking and only coming out at night and/or to see a counsellor. He'd just recovered enough to start studying again- back in the first year - on the same type of course but at a much less prestigious university.
Sometimes it's better if they're being a bit bad. They are being their real selves, not pretending -and struggling to be who their mother and father want them to be.

TuftyFinch Fri 15-Mar-13 12:48:00

Have you thought about writing a book?
You could call it 'How to have the most best behaved children in the world'.

HerbyVore Fri 15-Mar-13 12:48:47

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Startail Fri 15-Mar-13 12:49:58

YANBU it drives me mad that parents seem scared to tell their DCs of in public,

My DDad was fairly strict and loved us to the moon and back.
I' grew to appreciate having freedom within very firm, very loving boundaries. It gives an enormous sense of security.

I knew my parents would always be there for me, in return it seemed natural to earn that respect.

I try to do the same with my DDs. I take a lot more cheek than DDad would, but they know that if they push too hard they will be reined in.

I think you really do have to decide what is acceptable behaviour and stick to it.

And you have to know your DCs, what works with easy going DD1 does not necessarily work with DD2.

Sometimes you have to step back and see it through their eyes and work out how to get them back on side.

eavesdropping Fri 15-Mar-13 12:52:55

YABU. If somebody told me I was lucky to have a well-behaved child then I would concede that yes, I probably am. In fact I've thought it myself when I've watched her be better behaved than others - I haven't sat there mentally patting myself on the back for being a better parent. It's exactly the same as thinking I was unlucky for having a crap sleeper - I don't think that was down to me either, just one of those things.

LadyBeagleEyes Fri 15-Mar-13 12:54:29

For such a perfect parent Op, you are on here a lot asking advice from others.
So maybe it's the wisdom of all the crap mums on here that's put you in such an elevated position.
But, like Tufty, I'll await your book, for when my ds becomes a parent, as he's all grown up now.

jollygoose Fri 15-Mar-13 12:56:10

Its very easy to pass judgement on other peoples children. It is usually thought to be the parents fault in lack of discipline etc. I think otherwise I ha ve 3 now grown thank goodness who have all been treated I thought with the same firm but fair and kindly discipline, 2 of them were normal kids sometimes naughty but not usually, child no 3 was an absolute horror from 18 months onwards, I was too scared to take him to toddler groups and was often summoned to school usually because he had bashed someone - incidentally for all mothers in despair he has turned into a relatively normal grown up and is now earning a good living.
So yes UABU unless you walk in someone elses shoes you cannot know how it is for them I think you just want mnts to say what a wonderful parent you are.

ReallyTired Fri 15-Mar-13 12:57:37


Your kids are still really little and have lots of time to change, especially the baby. Nine months is plenty of time before the terrible twos start! This time next year you might regret this thread.

Children go through phases. Ds was very hard work as a toddler, but his behaviour is excellent at the age of 10. Dd has always been well behaved. I would not write such a smug post as I know that lots of kids turn bad during their teens.

We are lucky when we have well behaved children. We are lucky to have healthy children however they choose to behave. Go an ask the women on the IVF boards whether someone is lucky to have well behaved children or just lucky to have a child.

whimsicalmess Fri 15-Mar-13 12:58:08

My eldest the most perfect,placid baby you could ask for.

then at 1 a switch went off and in came a difficult.hyperactive toddler.

there is always some luck involved,

coppertop Fri 15-Mar-13 12:58:25

Babies and toddlers crawling and walking at a babies' group? Whatever next!

Who on earth holds a babies group in a building that's not suitable for small children to move around in? confused

TheRealFellatio Fri 15-Mar-13 12:59:20

I completely agree with Worra but as it's way back on page 1, I'm going to C&P it here:

'I totally get what you're saying the sense that some parents never punish their kids/always make excuses for them - and then wonder why they're at their wit's end with their behavior.

But having had 3 children, I can honestly tell you that there certainly is an element of luck involved. Some kids are much easier to discipline than others and you may well be a lot less smug when your baby is a bit older.

She could well turn into the most willful child you've ever had the horror to meet...and nothing at all like your eldest child.

So perhaps a little empathy for other parents and a little less smuggery?'

Also, if this child doing all the hitting is only 5 how on earth did she mamage to reach her mother when presumably strapped into a car seat or booster in the back of the car? confused

TheRealFellatio Fri 15-Mar-13 13:01:11

The way my kids have been as babies has not reflected (necessarily) how they were as toddlers and small children, and neither period has (necessarily) reflected how they have been s teenagers and young adults.

My easiest baby/toddler has been the most troublesome teenage BY FAR compared to the other two.

WorraLiberty Fri 15-Mar-13 13:01:37

Tufty and *LBE - re the book...

She'd better be quick before Katie Hopkins beats her to it... grin

WileyRoadRunner Fri 15-Mar-13 13:02:41

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