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To wish I could stop being such a wimp

(9 Posts)
HoppinMad Fri 19-Apr-13 23:36:14

I hate confrontation of any sort, always have. I think i've inherited this wimpish gene from my lovely DF, who I have never seen get into an argument with anybody to this day. other than the occasional episode with DM but you can guess who wins the argument there

So now that DC (3) is growing up it's becoming increasingly clear to me I need to grow some balls/man up (God I hate these phrases), as there will be moments where my DC will need me to stand up for them. No major occasion has arisen yet and even though I am fiercely overprotective over them and would not let any harm come to them, I still really need to work on this wimpishness.

So today DC was playing in the back garden, he parked his bike quite close to the fence we share with one set of neighbours. (He wanted to stand on it and look as they had friends over hence lots of noise and laughter). I should point out we have only recently moved and he doesn't know the kids very well, has never played with them so was very curious. I was watching him from the open window whilst feeding baby. I noticed the group of kids come over to the fence to dc and start badgering him for his ball claiming its theirs. He remained silent but didn't give in. Then I saw one older boy climb up and grab dc's bike to which I shouted 'oi' and he sheepishly put it back. After a few more minutes of this badgering dc told them firmly no they cant have his ball, I then intervened, told them its dc's and brought him back inside for dinner. I felt so so proud of him for standing up for himself, because as a child I would have just handed it over. Some of these kids were much older around 7,8 but he wasnt intimidated by their behaviour.

As for me, I try not to let people walk all over me now in adulthood but thats only because I avoid those types of situations. If the children's mother demanded the ball saying it was theirs even though I knew full well it wasn't, and seemed like she's picking a fight I may have just given it anyway thinking its only a bloody ball and not worth falling out over.

I'm bloody pathetic aren't I sad

So aibu to wish I could stop being like this? How can I learn to be more assertive before my dc learn to pick up on this weakness of mine?

Buddhagirl Sat 20-Apr-13 01:31:39

Your not pathetic!
Yanbu
Pay for assertiveness coaching?
Buy a book on being more assertive and do what's in the book?
Set yourself one assertive thing to do each week then do it while building up to a higher level of assertiveness?

TotesAmazeGoats Sat 20-Apr-13 08:10:00

I DISPISE confrontation, and whilst if I am provoked I can hold myself together just about, it's afterwards where I become a mess. (Shaking, feeling sick, often tears) and I tend to avoid it at all costs.
My OH works in car rental, and can argue white is black and black is white, so generally I let him take my battles (I know, I know)

Now I was really hoping becoming a mum would help with this, and I feel it has a little, but not enough to know that I could hold my own without loosing it iyswim.
I also need a huge dose of "man up".
Sorry OP, not much advise, but just so you know, you're not the only one on MN with no balls!!

haggisandneeps Sat 20-Apr-13 08:28:24

Another one here who struggles. Have a meeting coming up on Tuesday where I need to tell DD's school all the issues that I have with them with regards to the way they look after my DD. She has special needs but is in mainstream school. I've borrowed 'Confidence for dummies' from the local library to try and prepare myself to stand up to 10 professionals all convinced they know what's best for my DD when in reality they only see a snapshot of her. I'm one of lifes 'yes' people and will avoid confrontation at all costs so this is causing me sleepless nights.

LindyHemming Sat 20-Apr-13 08:54:12

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

purrpurr Sat 20-Apr-13 09:07:54

You're not a wimp OP. I can't handle confrontation either. I grew up in a house where one parent was allowed to tantrum on a 24/7 basis, displaying behaviour that always seemed to have the potential to become violent towards me or my sibling, but never quite got there - I believe in movie description terms this would be called living under 'sustained undefined threat'. It was miserable. Now, I fight back, where my non-threatening parent did not. It's a skill that needs to be learned and it took me years, but in order to look after yourself and your own, your internal prioritisation needs to change.

HoppinMad Sat 20-Apr-13 10:05:35

Thanks for the replies, feel alot better after reading them!

Buddha and Euphemia I will look into assertiveness coaching/training, it seems like it might just be what I need. You are right being non-confrontational most likely is learned behaviour as opposed to genetics but I feel genes can play a very small part too? My DGF was a very shy gentle soul and my DF only spent a few years of his life with him but turned out just the same. Theres many other examples.

Totes and Haggis Thanks its comforting to learn I am not alone! I hope you get it sorted for your daughter haggis I know that would give me sleepless nights too and would probably take all my strength in not becoming a blubbering mess.

purr i'm glad you have managed to learn how to handle.confrontation now. My dp are both lovely, though dm wore the trousers and was going through the dreaded menopause during my teens my siblings and I had a relatively happy childhood. The only issue being I felt abit lost being part of a big family.

Ds is running around in circles this morning as you do chanting 'its my ball' I think yesterdays incident is still playing on his mind bless him. Hes a veryquiet and shy boy and with all my heart want to empower him with the toolsneeded to become a happy confident individual.

wibblyjelly Sat 20-Apr-13 10:24:26

I hate confrontation as well, OP. I'm hoping now, like you, since I've had DS that I will be a lot more assertive on his behalf. I haven't been in a situation to test the theory out though smile

canweseethebunnies Sat 20-Apr-13 10:27:31

I actually think there are some parts of personality that kids are born with. I was excruciatingly shy as a child, never stood up for myself, and even suffered from selective mutism. My DD, on the other hand, is an absolute extrovert, and takes after her father, despite the fact we split up when she was nine months old.

I think if you do have a shy child though, it is important to lead by example, and show them they don't have to be afraid of speaking up for themselves. Assertiveness course sounds like a good idea, and not just for the sake of your DC, but your confidence also. Good luck!

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