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Have I just been the meanest Mum in the world? My son thinks so...

(146 Posts)
OHforDUCKScake Wed 20-Mar-13 16:14:27

This is very trivial. But sometimes I dont know if Im just being too harsh.

My 6 year old does somethinb very frustrating. If we were to treat him to something, he'll smile for a second then ask for the bigger one and humph when we say no. If its a toy, sweets or a lolly for example. Instead of just saying thank you, he'll ask why he cant have the bigger one/red one/one with the extra bit on it.

Its effing annoying. He's not spoilt either, he gets sweets once a week maximum, and we certainly arent buying him toys every 5 minutes we're broke!

This afternoon we go to Tesco. He goes to the toy aisle while I shop. I get to him when Im done and call for him, he holds out a £12.95 Hero Factory toy and I give him the answer I always give him. No. Put it back.

My toddler starts kicking off, Im heading to the till. DS1 asks if he can have 'a little lego man.' I say yes, he found a pound on the floor yesterday he can spend it on that.

He runs off, I start to pay with a shouting toddler and DS comes back with the flipping Hero Factory! Taking advantage of my 'yes' he does what he always does and pushes his luck. I said no, take it back we're leaving now.

He's ended up with no toy. He broke his heart on the way home saying Im hugely unfair. I said its a lesson learnt, Id said yes to a toy and he decided to push his luck and now he has nothing.

Was I being too harsh?

WeAreSix Tue 26-Mar-13 20:45:23

Exactly Leuji. You can't predict the what ifs in life.

It comes down to choice and your own personal judgement of what you feel is safe for you and your child.

Lueji Tue 26-Mar-13 19:59:01


I have had the same. grin

Can I have 7 Pringles?
No, only 4.
Oh, I don't want it then! <goes in a huff>


Lueji Tue 26-Mar-13 19:54:04

What if a meteor strikes the shop and hits you, but as your DCs were on another aisle they manage to survive???

What if you were taken hostage, but your child manages to escape because he/she was not with you?


WeAreSix Tue 26-Mar-13 17:43:37

She's a bit shaken but ok thank you alibaba

Alibabaandthe40nappies Tue 26-Mar-13 17:15:14

WeAreSix sad Your poor DD, is she ok?

WeAreSix Tue 26-Mar-13 16:23:29

So after reading this thread (and being on the don't leave children unattended side of the fence) I allowed DD aged 7 to go off on her own to get some buns for after school as a treat.

We live in a 'safe' area, low crime. We were in a small Co-op, only 5 aisles. I thought that the advice given about giving your DCs a little independence, giving her a job etc would be good. I trust her to say in the shop, do as she was told.

She came running back to me in tears. She had bumped into a man in a hoodie with his face covered. He was shoplifting and she witnessed it.

I know this was just bad luck and coincidental that the first time I let her go off to get me something that this happened. However, I won't let her do it again because the risk isn't worth it.

I wish I had the confidence in today's society that our children are safe... but it just doesn't feel that way.

AllDirections Fri 22-Mar-13 17:44:25

I think giving children bits of freedom like this IS actually responsible, you have to gradually teach them and allow them some independence.

^ This ^

I am jaw droppingly amazed that people think it's not okay to let a child of 6 go to the toy aisle of a supermarket, alone.

^ And this ^

I am really, really stunned that so many people leave their children alone in the supermarket That's not what the OP did though is it? Or anyone else who has said they have done the same thing as the OP?

Alibabaandthe40nappies Fri 22-Mar-13 13:25:10

Why 'PMSL at leaving alone in a public place'?

It is leaving them alone in a public place confused Which, IMO, is not something that you should do with a 6 year old child.

I am really, really stunned that so many people leave their children alone in the supermarket. I have never seen it, even in the Asda on the rough estate wink

SanityClause Fri 22-Mar-13 13:01:06

Oh, BTW, OP, fair enough about the toy. Can you have everything you ever want? Of course not, so it's a useful life lesson for him to learn as well.

If he really wants the toy, he can save up for it, and learn that people have to make choices about how to spend their money (sweets every week, or a toy once every few months?). Another useful life lesson.

If you are the meanest mummy, I have to share your honours, I think.

SanityClause Fri 22-Mar-13 12:57:17

I am jaw droppingly amazed that people think it's not okay to let a child of 6 go to the toy aisle of a supermarket, alone.

Surely it's a really safe environment - there's loads of the kind people around that you would tell them to ask for help if needed (ie people in supermarket uniform, parents with young children).

And opportunity to engage? She was concentrating on whether it was worth buying BOGOF yoghurts, not on her children!

5eggstremelychocaletymadeggs Fri 22-Mar-13 12:26:58

Yanbu and ywnbu to let him.go and look at the toy aisle.

I think giving children bits of freedom like this IS actually responsible, you have to gradually teach them and allow them some independence.

Lol at missed opportunity to engage, sure the child in question gets plenty of engagement with his mum and this missed five mins isnt going to harm.him!

WilsonFrickett Fri 22-Mar-13 12:18:26

PMSL generally (in-between the wiggling and squirming and twisting, obvs) grin

ReneandGeorgetteMagritte Fri 22-Mar-13 11:31:05

PMSL at ignorance of folk

AllDirections Fri 22-Mar-13 11:24:29

PMSL at 'leaving your child alone in a public place' grin

Dancergirl Fri 22-Mar-13 11:19:40

PMSL at 'engage with your child' grin

ReneandGeorgetteMagritte Thu 21-Mar-13 23:40:49

wilson I wasn't checking, it was a statement

It is not a responsible way to behave and is also a missed opportunity to engage with your child

You can wriggle and squirm and twist the words all you like, but you leave your young child alone in a public place, you are not doing your job as a parent.

Plenty of that going on in the world though, and plenty of much worse things you can do as a parent so I guess that makes it ok, yes? hmm

LittleEdie Thu 21-Mar-13 19:45:56

YANBU re the toy.
YANBU re leaving him in another aisle.

bangwhizz Thu 21-Mar-13 19:27:51

I would have said the lego man or nothing , you only have a pound and let him run back and change it.If he made a fuss then I would at that point have said 'no toy'. I don't think there ius any right or wrong on matters like this, it's just down to individual opinion on where 'the line' lies!

Dancergirl Thu 21-Mar-13 17:13:09

ladybeagle I LOVE that story smile

I'm not suggesting in any way that we should spoil out children or that the OP was in the wrong, but sometimes it's good to remember that our dc are small for such a short time and the time when they get so much pleasure from toys is also very short.

My 10 year old dd realised recently that she feels she doesn't enjoy playing with toys any more sad it came as a bit of a shock to HER that she was growing up.

I feel like buying my 6 year old all the toys she wants while I still can

DPotter Thu 21-Mar-13 01:34:05

I think you're spot on as well and I don't think you're mean either.

rhondajean Wed 20-Mar-13 23:32:51

Oh and yes snack a jacks are vile.

out2lunch Wed 20-Mar-13 23:32:00

i had this a lot with my dcs
at 6 is he old enough to understand a budget/read prices? eg you can have this toy as the price is below say 2 pounds or let him look for one the same price

rhondajean Wed 20-Mar-13 23:31:16

Cannot believe this thread! I had the most overprotective mother ever in the history of the world anda even I was allowed to sneak off to the toy aisle alone.

Anyway the actual question. I had real words with dd1 last year - she was 12 but she kept pulling the same thing, oh I like that tshirt, me ok shall I buy you it? Her oh no hold on actually this four times as expensive one is better.

Did she get any of them? No. Did she get bollocked eventually? Yes.

But she isn't six - she can get prices. My eight year old still isn't quite there on teh price differential between a pocket money toy and a proper toy.

YANBU though op, stick to your guns and teach him!

SomethingOnce Wed 20-Mar-13 23:20:06

He's just testing you, isn't he?

I quite admire his spirit, tbh, annoying though it must be in this kind of situation.

fuckwittery Wed 20-Mar-13 22:32:59

I let my DD go to the sweet aisle and come and meet me at the tills - she is almost 6. this is a Morrisons with about 14 aisles that is so close to our house we have been in it virtually daily from when she was a toddler. The security guard knows her name. (he used to tell her the sweet aisle was closed, but she doesn't fall for that any more). We don't spend more than about 5 - 10 minutes away from each other.

YANBU to leave your son in the toy aisle if it's a relatively small shop, and he['s familiar with it, and you'r epicking up just a few items. YWBU if it was a huge supermarket and you were going to be an hour doing your weekly shop. It's all about CONTEXT people!

can't remember what the original AIBU was about but I'll go with YANBU

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