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stranger giving my child money

(225 Posts)
trackies Wed 15-May-13 22:09:36

Was at a toddler group with my 3 yo. There was a professional photographer there taking pics as approved by lady who runs it. They sit on a seat infront of a white screen. My child had a turn. My child is very chatty and friendly and likes posing for photos, and he found him easy to deal with. Bit later on my child, who likes attention and chatting to people, chatted to him for few mins, whilst i was there. Photographer was saying how lovely he was and he'd made his day, and then he gave him a gift of £2 and told him to buy some sweets with it. This freaked me out. I was a bit stunned. I tried to politely say that we can't take his money (i didn't want it!) but he insisted on me taking it. As i was leaving i tried to prize the £2 away from my child but he was clinging onto it so i left cos i just wanted to get out there! Got home and explained to small child that should not take gifts from strangers, but it wasn't his fault. I should have done something at the time. I was just caught off guard. Told my DH who said this man should have not been giving money to my child, and agreed that it's weird, but it could have been just someone being nice. But he was not happy. I told couple of Mummy friends who said it was weird aswell. DH said i definitely need to talk to the women who runs the group just to say that it made me uncomfortable and give the money back. Do you think it's weird ? or an act of kindness ? what would you do ?

Wallison Wed 15-May-13 22:20:18

Aw, sounds like he was just being nice. What possible harm could come to your child from a gift given to him by someone when you were with him and could hear everything that went on?

Or do you think there is a camera hidden in the £2 and the guy is using it to find out where you live and steal your child while your back is turned?

Chocotrekkie Wed 15-May-13 22:20:41

Def a Scottish thing.... smile

zimmyzammyzoom Wed 15-May-13 22:21:48

What is the world coming to when someone can't give a nice kid a treat? I assume you think the photographer must be some sort of paedophile? It was a nice gesture; a bit OTT granted, but I'd be flattered if a stranger thought my child was so lovely they wanted to treat them. It's 2quid for gods sake, to put in his money box, and its not like he gave it secretly like some sort of covert bribe confused I am northern fwiw though, so maybe it's just me!

eosmum Wed 15-May-13 22:21:49

It was a tradition in Ireland especially for newborns, old people would put a coin into the babies hand and they'd hold on to it, if they were asleep they'd put it in the pram. I still have the coins my dds got 21 yrs ago, but ds never got any so must be dying out now.

Op he was being kind, giving it while you were present nothing sinister there.

miaowmix Wed 15-May-13 22:22:00

very sweet. My next door neighbour gives dd a 'paaand', cos she's 'so pretty', apparently. We are S London, no idea if it's tradition, but I fined it v endearing

FannyFifer Wed 15-May-13 22:22:33

Total Scottish thing as well, random folk often give my bairns a "penny for a sweetie" usually a £1

Old folk would be very offended if you refused, I think it's lovely.

Your reaction is beyond bizzare.

HotCrossPun Wed 15-May-13 22:22:35

Why is it weird?

Your DC was chatting away to him, it made his day, he gave then a few pounds to buy some sweets.

Why did that warrant a discussion with your DH and then this thread?

FourLittleDudes Wed 15-May-13 22:22:54

My youngest boys make me a fortune some days. I remember being out with a friend once and her soon was being naughty, running off and shouting etc - a man gave him £1 to behave!

I would think it really odd to complain in your situation. Its not like he have him the money sneakily and told him it was a secret.

trackies Wed 15-May-13 22:23:00

ok. thanks all for your advice. Very much appreciated. He's 50 somethink i think. I guess i'm more on guard cos i found out recently that an OLD friend of mine from uni (who i haven't been intouch with for years) was recently convicted of molesting a child. Completely shocked me. Making my lack of trust radar go off.

HoneyDragon Wed 15-May-13 22:23:29

I'm in the south east and its fairly common here. Please don't worry.

cees Wed 15-May-13 22:23:53

I'm Irish and the older folk do that here, it wouldn't alarm me or have me running for the peado repellent, he was trying to be nice. YABU

FleeBee Wed 15-May-13 22:24:01

A very old chap gave my DC2 a pound the other day as we were walking past him. He stopped & chatted then gave DD2 a coin grin

enormouse Wed 15-May-13 22:24:06

I've had a few people do that. Just pressed a pound coin into DSs hand. We live in northern Ireland and DPs dad said its a traditional thing some people like to do with a new baby. My Indian relatives have done it too, for similar reasons and in lieu of giving presents.

Footface Wed 15-May-13 22:24:20

He was just being kind. Don't worry about it

AgentProvocateur Wed 15-May-13 22:24:30

God, I've heard it all now. What exactly does your DH want you to say to the woman who runs the group? It's a traditional kind thing to do. Take it in the spirit it was offered and tell your DH to unclench.

TheHerringScreams Wed 15-May-13 22:24:36

We've had his happen eleven times over two children in London, and six times in Russia for two children (one of whom was the same, but our eldest was grown up when we moved to London and our little ones were either born there or cute enough). A southern thing? Maybe a general UK thing!

timidviper Wed 15-May-13 22:25:05

I think it's quite sad that you and your DH are even thinking so mistrustfully of a nice gesture from someone being kind to your child. I know we all have to teach children to be safe but you need to be careful not to make yours over-suspicious if you always react like this.

My elderly aunt died recently and she told me, not long before her death, how sad she felt that she could no longer chat or give pennies to small children without mothers acting as though she was suspicious.

wigglesrock Wed 15-May-13 22:25:22

Was a very normal thing with my kids, Infact dd3 was given £1 for sweeties at the hairdressers last week. I am both Irish and a Catholic smile

WeAreSix Wed 15-May-13 22:26:22

I give my friends DCs a silver coin for their money boxes whenever I see them. I've never given a coin to someone I don't know, but I think it's just a friendly gesture.

It's an East Anglian thing wink

PlasticLentilWeaver Wed 15-May-13 22:26:29

I think it would be you who will look slightly weird if you speak to the lady who runs the group and try to give it back TBH. He was just being friendly, in a supervised environment. My DS used to go to a bowls club with his grandparents sometimes, and often came home with a few coins in his pockets from the other visitors. Never occurred to me it was anything suspicious.

chirpchirp Wed 15-May-13 22:26:45

I think he was just trying to be nice. It's not like he was a stranger who approached him in a park and offered him money (that would be weird). He was someone who had been asked to be there, was known to the toddler group and had been interacting with your child. He probably just and thought he was a good kid and wanted to do something nice.

I remember when DS was a only a few weeks old I push him in his pram and every trip out at least one person would put money in his pram.

enormouse Wed 15-May-13 22:26:46

So to sum up its scottish/Irish/northern Irish/southern/northern/Mediterranean/Indian/ haveimissedany? thing


LastTangoInDevonshire Wed 15-May-13 22:27:30

It's not him that is weird, OP - I'd look closer to home. Talk about over-reacting!!

loopydoo Wed 15-May-13 22:28:06

Yes agree it's also a Scottish thing. We were up in Calendar on holiday as little kids and I still remember a guy outside a pub (who looked a bit shabby), giving me and my sister 50p each to get an ice cream or sweets.

I said out loud as we walked away from where he was standing "is that man drunk mummy?" My mum wanted the ground to swallow her up!

polkadotsrock Wed 15-May-13 22:28:10

Aw I love little traditions like this. We had a few 'cross his palm with silver' or something from old folk when ds was born. Loved it.

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